Observations On Prime Minister Condemns Conservative For Cash For Access, To Do It Justice I Have Included The Full Content Of The Article With My Comments Be low:
Mr Cameron said it was “completely unacceptable” and insisted it was “not the way” the party raised money.
He also promised an inquiry to ensure it would not happen again. He added it was “quite right” that Mr Cruddas had quit his post in the wake of the revelations.
“What happened is completely unacceptable. This is not the way that we raise money in the Conservative Party, it shouldn’t have happened,” Mr Cameron said.
In an undercover investigation, The Sunday Times claimed Mr Cruddas offered two international financiers the opportunity to lobby Mr Cameron directly on policy matters if they donated at least £250,000 a year to the party’s election war chest.
In the meeting, Mr Cruddas told the pair that “things will open up for you” if they donated that amount of money to the Conservatives. He added: “It will be awesome for your business.”
Announcing his resignation, Mr Cruddas said in a statement: “I deeply regret any impression of impropriety arising from my bluster in that conversation.
“Clearly, there is no question of donors being able to influence policy or gain undue access to politicians.
“Specifically, it was categorically not the case that I could offer, or that David Cameron would consider, any access as a result of a donation. Similarly, I have never knowingly even met anyone from the Number 10 policy unit.
“But in order to make that clear beyond doubt, I have regrettably decided to resign with immediate effect.” The newspaper claimed its investigation revealed rich donors could buy “premier league” direct access to the Prime Minister and exposed the “hollowness of Tory pre-election promises” to clamp down on lobbyists.
However, a Conservative Party spokesman told Sky News: “No donation was ever accepted or even formally considered by the Conservative Party. “All donations to the Conservative Party have to comply with the requirements of electoral law. These are strictly enforced by our compliance department.
“Unlike the Labour Party, where union donations are traded for party policies, donations to the Conservative Party do not buy party or government policy.
“We will urgently investigate any evidence to the contrary.”
Labour challenged Mr Cameron to “come clean” about what he knew and when. “Time and again the Tory party has been the obstacle to capping donations from wealthy individuals. Now it appears obvious why,” Labour MP Michael Dugher said. “Pensioners, the young unemployed and squeezed middle families cannot afford to buy this sort of access or influence which is just another reason why this Government is out of touch with the overwhelming majority of British people.
“David Cameron should come clean. Will the PM say exactly what he knew and when about an apparent effort to sell access and influence in Downing Street?”
Let us not forget since the 1960s to present that all the three main political parties has had their fair share of scandals, I begin with:
I spy with My Little eyes a part of history which dates back to a Conservative Government which dates back to the year 1963 which was know as The Profumo Affair.
The Profumo Affair was a 1963 British political scandal named after John Profumo, Secretary of State for War. His affair with Christine Keeler, the reputed mistress of an alleged Russian spy, followed by lying in the House of Commons when he was questioned about it, forced the resignation of Profumo and damaged the reputation of Prime Minister Harold Macmillan‘s government. Macmillan himself resigned a few months later due to ill health.
In March 1963, Profumo stated to the House of Commons that there was “no impropriety whatsoever” in his relationship with Keeler and that he would issue writs for libel and slander if the allegations were repeated outside the House. (Within the House, such allegations are protected by Parliamentary privilege.) However, in June, Profumo confessed that he had misled the House and lied in his testimony and on 5 June, he resigned his Cabinet position, as well as his Privy Council and Parliamentarymembership.
Peter Wright, in his autobiography Spycatcher, relates that he was working at the British counter-intelligence agency MI5 at the time and was assigned to question Keeler on security matters. He conducted a fairly lengthy interview and found Keeler to be poorly educated and not well informed on current events, very much the “party girl” described in the press at the time.
However, in the course of questioning her, the subject of nuclear missiles came up, and Keeler, on her own, used the term “nuclear payload” in relation to the missiles. This alerted Wright’s suspicions. According to Wright, in the very early 1960s in Britain, the term “nuclear payload” was not in general use by the public, and even among those who kept up with such things, the term was not commonly heard. For a young woman with such limited knowledge to casually use the term was more than suspicious. In fact, Wright came away convinced that at the very least there had been an attempt by the Soviet attaché (perhaps through Stephen Ward) to use Keeler to get classified information from Profumo.
Lord Denning released the government’s official report on 25 September 1963, and, one month later, the prime minister, Harold Macmillan, resigned on the grounds of ill health, which had apparently been exacerbated by the scandal. He was replaced by the Foreign Secretary, the Earl of Home, who renounced his title to become Sir Alec Douglas-Home. However, the change of leader failed to save the Conservative Party’s place in government; they lost the general election to Harold Wilson’s Labour a year later.
Stephen Ward was prosecuted in August for living off the immoral earnings of prostitution but was found dying in his flat before sentencing. The official verdict was that he committed suicide. However conspiracy theorists believe he was murdered by security services to prevent him disclosing information that may be damaging to prominent persons. He was defended by James Burge QC (who was later the basis for John Mortimer‘s character Rumpole of the Bailey). Keeler was found guilty on unrelated perjurycharges and was sentenced to nine months in prison. Profumo died on 9 March 2006.
Since then there has been scandal after scandal with the Conservative Party 1963 to the present time. Just as much as the Labour. But nothing tops the conservative party from being the #Nastyparty to employing Colusion and #Cashforcameron no doubt the list will continue.
David Cameron was stuck in another scandal on Sunday when a senior Tory was forced to resign for offering access to the PM in return stacks of cash.
Conservative Party co-treasurer Peter Cruddas was caught on camera saying he could get private meetings for people who handed the party “premier league” donations of £250,000.
Mr Cruddas, who only got the job this month, quit after being exposed by Sunday Times journalists posing as financiers.
He told them that in exchange for the cash they could lobby the PM directly and their views would be “fed in” to the No 10 policy group.
There was no point “scratching around” with donations of £10,000, he said, boasting that: “It will be awesome for your business.”
Major donors are invited to private dinners and other events at No 10 and Chequers with Mr Cameron, Mr Cruddas said, while donors and their business clients are also able to meet Cabinet ministers such as Chancellor George Osborne and Foreign Secretary William Hague.
In a statement on Sunday, Mr Cruddas said: “I deeply regret any impression of impropriety arising from my bluster in that conversation.
“Clearly there is no question of donors being able to influence policy or gain undue access to politicians.
“Specifically, it was categorically not the case that I could offer, or that David Cameron would consider, any access as a result of a donation.”
It is still hugely embarrassing with the PM, who is already facing criticism for his cosy links to under-investigation Murdoch executive Rebekah Brooks and disgraced former defence secretary Liam Fox.
Labour MP and member of the Commons public administration committee Paul Flynn said the “new Tory zeal for scandal free politics” had disappeared “like the morning mist.”
“David Cameron’s head is so deeply buried in the ‘PM for hire’ trough all that can be seen of him is his Gucci shoes.”
Mr Cameron said it was right for Mr Cruddas to resign and promised a “proper party inquiry.”
“What happened is completely unacceptable. This is not the way that we raise money in the Conservative Party, it shouldn’t have happened,” he said.
This exposes the sleaze and hypocrisy at the heart of the Tory party in all its gory detail.
“Those same people who attack the open and democratic finances and stuctures of the trade unions are caught up to their necks in another cash-for-access scandal.”
The Liberal Democrats (Fibdems)’ biggest donor, who has been on the run for three years after being convicted of a multimillion pound theft, has been arrested by police in the Dominican Republic, the Guardian can disclose.
Michael Brown, who bankrolled the party with £2.4m of stolen money, was detained near the resort of Punta Cana on the easternmost tip of the Caribbean island this week. Interpol has been informed.
Named by City of London police as one of Britain’s most wanted fraudsters,
Brown, 45, disappeared while on bail for a £40m fraud and was sentenced in his absence to seven years in prison.
His arrest signals the end to an international hunt that has involved five law enforcement agencies across three continents, and could lead to his return to Britain to serve his sentence.
It will mean further embarrassment for Nick Clegg, the deputy prime minister. The Lib Dems have refused to compensate Brown’s victims, whose money went into the party’s coffers to finance the 2005 election campaign.
The development could lead to renewed legal efforts by his victims to seek compensation from the Lib Dems and Brown through the British courts.
A City of London police spokesman confirmed Brown’s arrest. “We are pleased to hear that Michael Brown has been detained by authorities in the Dominican Republic, and are currently establishing contact with them to find out further details about his arrest.
“Clearly, at some stage we will look for his return to the UK, so he can serve the sentence for the fraud offences for which he has been convicted in this country,” he said.
Earlier, a diplomatic source said British authorities were informed of Brown’s arrest on Thursday. “There has been considerable co-operation between the two countries. There is a belief that Brown should be returned to Britain but there are still hurdles to overcome,” the source said.
There is no extradition treaty between Britain and the Dominican Republic. However, a Dominican government official indicated Brown could be deported without an extradition process. Brown is believed to have entered the island under a false identity, which is a breach of Dominican law, he said.
“If someone comes to the Dominican Republic on false documents he is breaking our laws and we do not want him here. That person can be deported,” he said.
Brown, originally from Glasgow, appeared from nowhere when he approached the Lib Dems in November 2004 with an offer of money for Charles Kennedy’s impending election campaign. The brash, ponytailed Brown lived in Majorca and claimed to be an offshore trader. He said his clients were vetted by US embassy officials. Despite not being a party member, not being registered to vote, and living abroad, he was welcomed with open arms by the party’s grandees.
Within months, Brown was flying Kennedy across Britain in a private jet and was being invited to dinners in Mayfair. Former Lib Dem insiders say he dazzled them with stories of Gordonstoun public school, St Andrews University and his connections with royalty.
The truth was that he had failed his maths O-level at his local school and completed a City and Guilds in catering at Glasgow College of Food Technology. He had no US government links – although he was wanted in Florida for cheque fraud.
The party received the donation through his company, 5th Avenue Partners. It remains the biggest ever received by the party from an individual. In the general election, the party increased its share of the vote by nearly 4% after his cash was spent on posters and advertising.
Brown was arrested in late 2005 after four former clients said he had duped them out of more than £40m in a high-yield fraud. His victims included Martin Edwards, the former Manchester United chairman, who had invested £8m with 5th Avenue Partners.
The court would later be told that 5th Avenue Partners was wholly fraudulent and that Brown had given money to the Lib Dems to give himself an air of respectability whilst duping his victims.
In June 2008, while awaiting trial for theft, false accounting and perverting the course of justice, Brown fled and a warrant was issued for his arrest. In the weeks before he disappeared, from his Hampstead bail address in north London, he changed his name on the electoral roll to Campbell-Brown and allowed his hair to turn grey.
City of London detectives have worked with Interpol, the FBI, and police in Spain, Switzerland and the Dominican Republic to trace his whereabouts.
Brown is believed to have been arrested because he had been living in the Dominican Republic on false documents, diplomatic sources said. The Guardian has obtained copies of Brown’s false identity papers and passports using the name Darren Patrick Nally.
The fugitive enjoyed a millionaire’s lifestyle while on the run. He lived in gated communities yards from some of the most pristine beaches in the Caribbean, drove a series of 4×4 vehicles and was a regular at exclusive golf courses.
In Punta Cana, he could often be seen walking his dog – named Charles, after the former Lib Dem leader.
Since 2008 Brown has used the name Nally to embark on a series of ventures that included a real estate business which has opened a subsidiary in the Bahamas.
Last February, he was investigated in the Dominican Republic over an oil deal after being accused of failing to honour a contract for 4,820 tonnes. He was ordered to be held in custody for three months.
If Brown is returned to Britain it will launch renewed high court claims for the Lib Dems to return his stolen money.
Tony Brown, managing partner at law firm Bivonas which represents US attorney Robert Mann who lost more than $5m (£3m), said that Brown would be asked to give evidence as part of his client’s claim against the Lib Dems.
“We hope on Michael Brown’s return he will be able to assist our client Robert Mann resurrect his claim in the High Court against the Liberal Democrats for the return of his stolen money,” he said.
Mann’s legal team was forced last year to drop a high court claim against the Lib Dems for the return of around $600,000 after running out of funds.
A Lib Dem spokesman declined to comment on any future high court action, but added that the donation was accepted in good faith and was cleared by an Electoral Commission inquiry. “There is no indication that the Electoral Commission will revise its opinion in this matter but any arrest abroad should lead to his [Brown’s] extradition to the UK,” he said.
A spokesman for the Dominican Republic embassy in London declined to comment. Edwards also declined to comment.
Then there was Labour A tycoon at the heart of cronyism allegations gave £505,000 to the Labour Party weeks after receiving a peerage, it was revealed.
Paul Drayson was elevated to the House of Lords in Tony Blair’s list of Labour peers.
Accounts published this afternoon disclosed he gave the cheque to party funds on 17 June, a week before he made his maiden speech in the Upper House.
The coincidence of the peerage and the gift is the second time Lord Drayson’s gifts to Labour have aroused controversy. He hit the headlines when it emerged he was made sole supplier of smallpox vaccines to the Government two years ago, at the time he was giving a total of £100,000 donation to Labour.
The lucrative contract earned his company, Powderject, an estimated £20million instant profit. It was criticised because the £32million deal was not put out to competitive tender and rival firms said they were excluded from bidding.
Government documents later disclosed that the Ministry of Defence wanted to buy from rivals, but discovered Powderject had cornered the market just in time by signing an exclusive distribution contract with a European manufacturer of the vaccines, needed to protect Britons from terrorist attack.
Lord Drayson’s latest donation to Labour – his biggest gift yet – was drawn from his private funds, according to the Electoral Commission accounts. He is reported to be worth ?100 million and has committed himself to spending three days a week on Lords business as a “working peer”.
Born in Greenwich, he styled himself Lord Drayson of Kensington because he now has a house in The Little Boltons. His support for Labour under Tony Blair raised eyebrows because he was thought to have been an admirer of Baroness Thatcher.
He gave two gifts of £50,000 each to Labour in 2001, when the Government was deciding to buy vaccines for emergency workers in the wake of the September 11 attacks.
It later emerged that Lord Drayson had been in a group of businessmen who had breakfast-with the Prime Minister in Downing Street at about the time MoD experts were meeting to decide what type of vaccine to buy.
No 10 has always denied the subject of the vaccine came up during the breakfast, but the coincidence fuelled concern that Mr Blair’s links with supportive businessmen could expose him to controversy.
After selling his company last summer, Lord Drayson described himself as “a very successful guy through my own hard work”.
Labour’s full list of donations declared to the Electoral Commission showed they pulled in more money than any other party in the April to June quarter this year. The party amassed a total £4.38million, much of it in gifts from the big trade unions.
The Conservatives were given £3.65 million, up almost a million pounds on the previous quarter and reflecting a recovery in party finances since Michael Howard took over.
The moral of this is don’t lecture us when it comes to donations as you can see I have outline