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This blog asked yesterday whether Downing Street communications chief Craig Oliver was a liar, an incompetent, or both after he denied that government officers threatened the Daily Telegraph with tougher press regulation if it published its investigation into Maria Miller’s expenses.
It turns out he was both.
The Telegraph has now published a recording of the conversation between reporter Holly Watt and Miller’s advisor Joanna Hindley, on which its allegations are based. There can be no doubt that the reporter did indeed have Leveson held over her (corruptly); there can be little doubt that this was done at the request of Miller; and there can be no doubt at all that Mr Oliver knew about it.
So – a liar. And incompetent, because he had obviously discounted the possibility that the Telegraph reporter might have recorded the exchange.
It appears that Mr Oliver still has his job, despite having become the second person to disgrace it out of only two appointed by David Cameron. We cannot comment on Joanna Hindley.
The bullying, possibly blackmailing fraudster Maria Miller – who also persecuted thousands of disabled people while she was minister for equalities, also remains part of the government.
This speaks volumes about the lack of judgement displayed by ‘comedy’ Prime Minister David Cameron.
The longer he delays removing his rotten minister, her rotten advisor and his rotten media chief, the more rotten he and his government will become – in the opinion of the public.
And for this Prime Minister, public opinion is everything.
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