The Standards Commissioner Kathryn Stone has found Schools Minister Jonathan Gullis innocent of wrongdoing after an opportunistic shadow minister reported him over a £7,200 donation. On Monday The Guardian learnt that Gullis was under investigation, after Labour MP Stephen Morgan wrote to Stone arguing Gullis should have declared a donation towards his grammar schools campaign when arguing for their expansion as a backbencher. How on earth did they manage to get that story?
Just three days later, however, Guido learns Kathryn Stone has completely exonerated Jonathan Gullis. She will not be taking any action on these issues as she doesn’t believe there’s evidence that any rules were broken.
Meanwhile, in a follow-up letter to leaky shadow minister Stephen Morgan, she slams him for his Guardian briefing:
“I was disappointed to note that you appeared to share your letter with The Guardian newspaper before giving me an opportunity to review or respond to your complaint. I consider this behaviour to be discourteous to me and I trust that it will not be repeated.”
Stone explains that she believes any onlooker would have concluded Gullis’ words were not influenced by the donation, rather influenced by his campaign, and that there is no evidence the campaign was launched as a result of said donation. Guido looks forward to the Guardian’s equally prominent coverage of this development…