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There it was again. The assumption that I have seen from so many politicians and media commentators that almost no-one outside the political world cares about what is happening at the Leveson inquiry. I think that this assumption is wrong. Worse than that, it is staggeringly, appallingly, dangerously wrong.
John Bercow has been a good Speaker of the House of Commons on the substance if not the form. He is jealous of backbenchers’ rights, assertive in allowing urgent questions to bring ministers, including the Prime Minister, to the House and generally quick, accurate and fair in chairing proceedings.
Prime Minister David Cameron has ordered an investigation into Baroness Warsi’s conduct under the Ministerial Code. He has not ordered the same investigation into the conduct of Jeremy Hunt. It is arguable that both Warsi and Hunt are at fault. The accusation of double standards has arisen, as have implications of racism and sexism against the critics of Baroness Warsi.
Politicians should no longer be allowed to hide behind words while trumpeting a free press.
Jeremy Hunt escaped the most serious allegation against him with ease yesterday, simply denying the account of his position given by Fred Michel, News Corporation’s head of public affairs.
Hunt’s defence to being biased in deciding that the BSkyB bid could go ahead – provided Sky News were spun off –was that he sought and followed advice [...]
David Cameron, interviewed by Andrew Marr this morning, tried to go “big picture”, insisting that the Murdochs had never done a “big deal in exchange for support for the Conservative party”. Probably wise, rather than the more partisan arguments I suggested he might use (a) Tony Blair did it and (b) Gordon Brown didn’t resign when [...]
I don’t know whether Jeremy Hunt will survive. Like most of my colleagues asked for their broadcast opinion today, I said 50-50. But I know that he should survive.
His defence today of his conduct over the News Corporation bid for BSkyB was miserable, nervous and unconvincing. But he has a reasonable case. He “had expressed some [...]
I am still not sure if what Jeremy Hunt did was a sacking offence. He seems to have shown bias in making decisions about a takeover that was eventually abandoned, which might make it hard for him to have a similar role again.
While he and we wait to see how the fireball of sanctimony twists, [...]
The BBC is sore this morning. Staff already threatening strike action over management’s clumsily handled reform of the corporation’s pension scheme have now seen those same bosses take such a hiding from the Tories that the weals will be showing for the next six years.
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