Responsible but not accountable.. again..

Newsnight covered the Secretary of State for Wales etc Peter Hain’s current troubles on Thursday – video below – and the next day Hain made a statement to the Guardian blaming the number of hats he was wearing at the time for his forgetfulness over campaign donations, channelled through the non-think-tank Progressive Policies Forum, and said that “I just want to make it clear that when mistakes have occurred in the past I have never dumped on assistants or civil servants. I will not start doing so now. I take full responsibility.” The next day, Saturday, he made another statement – “I apologise for the embarrassment caused by poor administration and lack of early and clear disclosure” and he added that his Permanent Secretary was “satisified” there was “no conflict” with his Ministerial Code. The BBC’s Mark Saunders lists some more questions for Peter Hain and there’s a convenient time-line of events. Guido has even more, naturally, but despite Mick’s surpise one fact that suggests it might have been a case of Hain’s ego getting in the way is what this Channel 4 News report states – “It emerged that Hain had been late in declaring more than £103,000 – more than many of his rivals had spent on their entire campaigns.” He came fifth out of 6 candidates. But if Peter Hain is to be sacked persuaded to resign it should be because he’s been found to be in breach of his Ministerial Code. Of course, public money is currently being spent on his appeal against a High Court ruling that he did just that..

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  • nineteensixtyseven

    And now George Osborne has admitted not declaring nearly half a million pounds of secret donations. This is getting farcical.

  • Debbie

    This is an excellent quality political post. Great summary with the you tube blend. I doubt Peter Hain will go quietly, he has far too much at stake, his career and the deputy Leadership bid. He’ll go on and maintain that he was either a victim in all this, or it was an over sight. What ever the excuse he’ll go on, especially now the conservatives are also in the spotlight. Hypocrites, well yes if they are at fault.

    This PPF fund? Would that work like some kind of slush fund? In the video, it was nothing more than a drop address and no one actually seems to know much of it.

    Excellent links Pete, Guido has a great blog, and over on Iain Dale there is a great post in which he claims Peter Hain as the DWP’s secretary he should expect to be treated as anyone on benefit fraud.


  • Dewi

    Don’t think he can afford to go. Astonishing amount of money to spend and then come fifth out of six. He owes a pile of personal cash now. Shame – not a bad bloke.

  • GavBelfast

    When Michael Crick’s on the case, the chances do increase that the subject will soon be toast.

  • nineteensixtyseven

    “This PPF fund? Would that work like some kind of slush fund? In the video, it was nothing more than a drop address and no one actually seems to know much of it.”

    I think it is a legal means of donating via proxy if you go via a thinktank but as this seems to have been set up for that sole purpose it doesn’t look too good!

  • George

    Same language as that used by Bertie Ahern.

  • Jo

    It’s a rather odd sort of strategic defence to claim that because you weren’t up to the pressure of the NIO job, you nontheless were aiming for the (presumably even more pressured) job of Deputy Leader, though?…shurley shome mishtake?

  • Danny O’Connor

    If Brown had any coconuts he would sack Hain the pain.