After the resignation of Philip Rutnam, the revelation that a former DWP Civil Servant was given a £25,000 payoff which was partly down to the behaviour Priti Patel, now inexplicably made Home Secretary, and BBC Newsnight telling that a source within the DfID had made allegations against her back in 2017, the pushback began. The problem for those pushing back is that their latest effort does not stand serious analysis.
There has been, as Sky News has reported, a letter to the Telegraph, which might have carried more weight, had the increasingly desperate and downmarket title not become little more than a shill for CCHQ. “Nearly 100 people who have worked with Priti Patel have launched a public defence of the home secretary as she faces bullying allegations” tells the headline. In fact, they couldn’t find 100 people, and had settle for just 92.
And this is what they were prepared to sign on to: “We do not recognise the picture that has been painted of her this week … She is certainly a tough, assertive and effective leader, but even under extreme pressure she has never crossed a line or lost her temper … She expects high standards, but is always professional”. Which is total bullshit.
Perhaps all 92 experienced sufficient collective amnesia that they failed to notice the behaviour that got Ms Patel sacked by Theresa May. She had been caught effectively running her own foreign policy and colluding with a foreign Government. There were sufficient lines crossed there to produce a satisfyingly high resolution image.
No matter, the group also agrees “It is surely wrong that anyone can be publicly traduced on the basis of malicious rumours spread by people who refuse to reveal their identities or even provide verifiable facts”. Did the former DWP Civil Servant not exist? Did someone pay out £25,000 to a mere apparition, a figure of some Rotten Lefty™ imagination?
Did Philip Rutnam not reveal his identity when he stood there before the TV cameras? And did none of the 92 notice the BBC cautioning “The source who raised the allegations against Ms Patel at DfID in 2017 told Newsnight they were prepared to give evidence under their name to two official hearings”. This isn’t a defence. It’s witless tribalism.
That should be obvious when those backing this singularly lame effort are revealed. Apart from the Tel’s Tim Stanley appearing on Question Time last night, there has been an all-too-predictable intervention from the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog, who have told “some of the accusations are arising from civil servants who object to the Government’s wide-sweeping reforms”. This is more bullshit.
It has Sweet Jack to do with reforms, and everything to do with someone who is unable to deport themselves in the workplace with a modicum of professional decency and consideration to others. The Fawkes massive concludes with “Earlier in the week, Guido asked whether anyone will be brave enough to go on record at some point”.
See under Philip Rutnam and the source used by Newsnight. Then see the weekend papers, and repent at leisure when she gets the push. They never learn, do they?
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