Friday, September 30, 2005

Davis And That Blunkett Scalp

Over at PoliticalBetting, site owner Mike Smithson has taken to dissing Our Man. His latest poke goes:

'Until yesterday’s formal launch of the David Davis campaign for the Tory leadership not everybody fully realised the part that Davis played in Blunkett’s departure. For in a BBC potted history of the paternity affair the Shadow home Secretary’s name appears just once and that was a reference to a call he made sixteen days before the departure.

But according to the short biography on his campaign website one of Davis’s achievements, we are told, was that it was he who “prompted” Blunkett’s resignation...he is talking about something that happened amidst a huge amount of publicity just ten months ago and is within people’s recall. You have to be careful about taking the credit for things that people know about.'

Oooh. Back in the knife box Miss Sharp!!

Of course, the first point is that neither you nor I would reference the BBC to support such a charge. But then, Mr S was a longtime BBC man- and is a Lib-Dem to boot- so almost certainly doesn't see the extraordinary bias so apparent to the rest of us.

Looking at the real record of DD's scalping campaign, we find that by early-December 2004 (MS's "sixteen days before") he'd been hard at work for weeks, including tabling 'dozens of parliamentary questions', all aimed at boxing-in the evasive Blunkett. Because in taking on the sleazy underbelly of New Labour, you need to be absolutely sure there's nowhere for them to run. Which is exactly what DD did.

In Blunkett's case it was particularly important not to move prematurely. As you will recall, most of the media- especially the BBC- were incredibly indulgent towards his behaviour, and the last thing Davis wanted was to get his attack characterised as more Victorian moralising from the Tories. Which it wasn't.

So he took his time, but kept the pressure on. The intervention noted on the BBC "potted history" was actually just the point at which Davis was ready to pin Blunkett against the wall. He told Breakfast With Frost:

“If [Blunkett] took the papers in [visa papers], and if that led to influence, even if he didn’t give the instruction in writing, as I’m sure he didn’t, that, I’m afraid, is a very unwise thing for him to do and I actually do think this is a resigning issue.”

Two weeks later, Blunkett was gone.

Nuff said.

PS Actually, I find it rather sad that Mike S has taken to bashing Davis. PBC is an excellent blog, and Smithson's usp is to remain above the mud-slinging. He should leave that sort of stuff to people like Guido and we peasants.


Blogger Power of One said...

Well if you are intrested in more about the David Blunkett Affair he recently pulled the forward to a charity book. emails to be found here

11:54 PM  

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