Remember “Biscuitgate” – which Stephen reported on last week – the apparent inability of the Prime Minister to decide which sort of biscuit he liked?
Turns out there’s not a crumb of truth in it. Private Eye’s Adam MacQueen reports for First Post:
“Being more decisive would spare the Prime Minister needless embarrassment” declared the leader column of the Times, and even David Cameron weighed in at Prime Minister’s Questions: “Are we really going to spend another six months with a Prime Minister who cannot give a straight answer, who cannot pass his own legislation, and who sits in his bunker not even able to decide what sort of biscuits he wants to eat?”
Except, er, no one asked him. As Mumsnet founder Justine Roberts has now clarified in a posting on the website, the biscuit question proposed by various messageboard users was never put to Gordon Brown in the hour that he devoted to the interview.
“The truth is that Gordon Brown didn’t follow the live chat on the screen directly – he answered the questions grouped and fed to him by Mumsnet HQ and his advisers. He didn’t avoid the biscuit question because it didn’t cross his path…
“We were conscious of not merely focusing on frivolities. Fun as biscuits are, access to the Prime Minister is precious and we would have hated to waste time on Rich Tea Fingers at the expense of miscarriage or school starting age. Plus, of course, we’d rather not be seen as a soft touch.”
It does rather beg the question about how Gordon Brown let it be thought for so long that he didn’t have a view on biscuits when he could have squashed (fly) the stories. At time of writing 154 mums have weighed in on the issue over on Mumsnet – with more than a few participants feeling sorry for how the PM has been portrayed.