Policy Victory: Cabinet Office Blocking Loony Civil Service External Speakers mdi-fullscreen

Ed Lucas has a new piece in The Times this morning complaining about the Cabinet Office’s “positively Soviet” vetting process for civil service guest speakers. According to Lucas, ever since then-Cabinet Office minister Jacob Rees-Mogg introduced the policy of scanning the social media profiles of potential speakers last Summer, “respected guest speakers are being barred from Whitehall”.  Apparently Lucas’s own friend failed vetting and was met with this explanation:

 “Rules introduced by the Cabinet Office in 2022 specify that the social media accounts of potential speakers must be vetted . . . to check whether these people have ever criticised government officials or government policy. The vetting process is impartial and purely evidence-based. The check on your social media has identified material that criticises government officials and policy. It is for this reason . . . that I am afraid that we have no choice and must cancel your invitation.”

Lucas, who is standing as a candidate for the LibDems, admits his friend volunteers “at a local Anglican church and votes Liberal Democrat” – two red flags for a start. Given how Whitehall had a history of inviting in witches, Green socialists and hard-left academics before these rules, Guido’s not so sure of the friend’s likely suitability. In fact, Guido claims Rees-Mogg’s vetting policy as our own campaign victory. There are dozens of stories in our archives reporting on the kind of topics Civil Servants love to be lectured on during working hours: everything from white awareness to the healing properties of crystals. All at the taxpayer’s expense…

Cabinet Office sources told Guido this morning that”some due diligence” has to take place to stop this nonsense happening again, pointing out they “wouldn’t want to invite people who have expressed antisemitic views for example“. Labour’s “former choice for Home Secretary probably wouldn’t get a call up”, they added…

mdi-tag-outline Cabinet Office Civil Service Whitehall
mdi-account-multiple-outline Edward Lucas Jacob Rees-Mogg
mdi-timer April 24 2023 @ 11:53 mdi-share-variant mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-printer
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