Socialist Worker

Scandal shows that toxic Tories are in trouble

Issue No. 2482

The multiple identities of Tory minister Grant Shapps quit last week. Shapps handed Tory aide Mark Clarke a key job for the 2015 election.

Clarke has faced allegations he bullied, blackmailed and sexually assaulted fellow activists during his RoadTrip2015 campaign.

Tory activist Elliott Johnson was found dead in September. He had written letters accusing Clarke of bullying. A tape emerged of Clarke interrogating Elliott.

The Tory MP Robert Halfon admitted an affair and Clarke was accused of trying to blackmail him.

The role of David Cameron and his best pal Lord Feldman—the current Tory Party chair—is at best murky as to what they knew when. Cameron called in the aptly named Lord Pannick to help out.

An unpleasant little cabal moving through Tory circles is slowly coming into view from the shadows. It includes groups such as the Young Britons Foundation.

As an example, The Trade Union Reform Campaign was headed up by Aidan Burley MP—best remembered for buying a Nazi uniform—and run by Clarke.

It was a tedious lobby group to get the anti-union laws made harsher—and it got its way.

Deeply embedded in it was Clarke’s pal Harry Cole, a winner of the Young Britons Foundation’s Dolphin award. He’s now writing about the scandal as Westminster correspondent of The Sun.

Poisonous networks are the rule among the British establishment.

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What We Think
Tue 1 Dec 2015, 17:32 GMT
Issue No. 2482
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