Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Michael Moore in tapegate doo-doo now

The Daily Telegraph tapes story is rolling on with many twists and turns. Here's the latest Scottish angle, concerning Michael Moore, filed for the Daily Record:

Lib Dem Scottish Secretary Michael Moore is the latest government minister to blow the lid off the cosy image of the Tory-Lib Dem coalition

Talking to undercover Daily Telegraph reporters Moore has described the nightmare of introducing policies that he has no belief in

Moore said the coalition decision to cut Child Benefit for higher-rate taxpayers is "blatantly not a consistent and fair thing to do"

Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk MP Moore also admitted the increase in tuition fees for English students to a maximum £9,000 was “a car crash”.
He described the Lib Dem u-turn on student fees as "the biggest, ugliest, most horrific thing in all of this..., a train wreck"

Moore was also quoted as saying the coalition had "marginalised" the Conservative right wing, who, he said, "hate us with a passion - and I can't say it's unreciprocated".

He insisted that Lib Dem ministers "remain passionately Liberal Democrat"and said some Conservative ministers were "on a different planet" .

He said fellow Scot Defence Secretary Liam Fox "probably couldn't stay in the same situation for very long" if they were discussing a wide range of policies.

Moore is one of a string of Lib Dem Ministers taped in their constituency surgeries by undercover reporters criticising coalition policy.

The candid confessions, led by Business Secretary Vince Cable, exposed the sham of co-operation that Tory leader David Cameron and Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg present in public.

Moore told undercover reporters he was tortured by the decision to increase student fees despite an election promise not to.

He said: "I signed a pledge that promised not to do this. I've just done the worst crime a politician can commit, the reason most folk distrust us as a breed. I've had to break a pledge and very, very publicly." Moore said the move was "deeply damaging" to Lib Dems.

The comments were published after a dramatic day that saw Business Secretary Vince Cable humiliated and stripped of some ministerial responsibilities after he told the same undercover reporter he had "declared war" on Rupert Murdoch over the media tycoon's bid to take over BSkyB.

Cable left David Cameron and Nick Clegg furious after he bragged to a blond female reporter that he could bring the Government down by using the "nuclear option" of resigning if Conservative colleagues pushed him too hard.

Cable kept his job but was stripped of the responsibility of judging on the News Corporation bid to take over BSkyB.

Sacking him would have destabilised the coalition but keeping him left Tory backbenchers thinking Cameron had no authority as Prime Minister.

Labour described him as a lame duck Minister who should walk the plank.

Other Lib Dem Ministers fell for the same trick as reporters posed as constituents.
Business Minister Ed Davey said he was "gobsmacked" by the decision to cut Child Benefit, and Pensions Minister Steve Webb said he had written to Chancellor George Osborne seeking changes to the policy.

The Child Benefit cut which will hit couples where one partner earns just over the £42,000 higher-rate threshold but not those with two partners earning just below that level.

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