Yesterday, Press Gazette told the world that “Guido Fawkes has hired the young journalist who helped expose British diplomatic cables about Donald Trump, which led to the the resignation of ambassador to the US Sir Kim Darroch … Steve Edgington, 20, joins as the fourth staffer at the political blogging site, which is bolstering its ranks ahead of an expected general election this year”. Really? Tell us more.
“He joins Staines, Tom Harwood and Christian Calgie at Guido Fawkes. Former Guido staffers include Buzzfeed’s Alex Wickham, Mail on Sunday deputy political editor Harry Cole and special advisers Ross Kempsell and Hugh Bennett”. Staines claimed in his interview with Esquire magazine that “The lying in politics is on an industrial scale”, although he managed to miss out that he and his pals did rather a lot of it.
All of those mentioned are well-versed in the art of lying, with Staines’ current gofers Harwood and Calgie particularly shameless in their dishonesty. And Edginton - whose arrival has, for some reason, not been revealed by The Great Guido - is down to the usual standard. Moreover, his presence, as a former Brexit Party staffer, confirms the right-wing, and indeed hard Brexiteer, stance of the Fawkes blog.
But Edginton is a particularly egregious offender in the dishonesty category. As gofer to mercenary hack Isabel Oakeshott, he accompanied her to a BBC Question Time appearance in Derby. Also on the panel was Diane Abbott, whose treatment by both host Fiona Bruce and Ms Oakeshott generated fierce criticism. Edginton, with Ms Oakeshott’s assistance, concocted a claim suggesting Ms Abbott had been dismissive of him.
This depended on the implication that the two had never met before, but they had: he had harassed her outside the Labour Party Conference in 2017. He lied about that. He joined in the gaslighting of Diane Abbott. And he excused racist behaviour by rich white Trump supporters towards native elders in Washington DC.
But his greatest achievement was as the patsy for the leaking of former Ambassador Kim Darroch’s cables, initially credited to Ms Oakeshott, which led to Darroch’s resignation after alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson threw him under the bus in a blatant attempt to curry favour with Combover Crybaby Donald Trump.
On 12 July last, I suggested that the Metropolitan Police, who were investigating the leak, might find it useful to talk to Edginton. Nine days after that, he owned up in a Mail on Sunday op-ed. Again he lied, claiming his actions were Proper Journalism (ho ho ho) and not just another partisan Brexiteer hit job. And it got worse.
As Zelo Street regulars will recall, a series of experienced journalists and lawyers pointed out how Edginton wasn’t a real journalist (and still isn’t), it made no sense securing a scoop of that magnitude and then leaving his name off the by-line, his claims of impartiality were bunk, and that his account of how he came by the cables made no sense.
Steven Edginton can’t even lie convincingly. So he’s ideal material for the Fawkes blog.
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