Ed Miliband’s Director of Strategy tells MPs: lay off Rupert Murdoch

Via the New Statesman website:

An email, forwarded on behalf of Ed Miliband’s director of strategy, Tom Baldwin, to all shadow cabinet teams warns Labour spokespeople to avoid linking hacking with the BSkyB bid, to accept ministerial assurances that meetings with Rupert Murdoch are not influencing that process, and to ensure that complaints about tapping are made in a personal, not shadow ministerial, capacity…

It goes on: “Downing Street says that Cameron’s dinners with Murdoch will not affect Hunt’s judgement. We have to take them at their word.” …

The guidance concludes with the warning, “We must guard against anything which appears to be attacking a particular newspaper group out of spite.”

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  • Good to see Baldwin still delivering for his old boss. Doesn’t put Milliband in a good light though

  • I think that anyone watching the mess that Cable landed himself and his party in by getting his private position and feelings mixed with his Ministerial duties and responsibilities would see the sense in the memo.

    If Cable had been able to hold his water then he wouldn’t have lost a huge chunk of his portfolio including the BSkyB bid – of course the more I think about that the more I wonder if it was a means of ditching a very difficult issue – maybe Clegg was quite happy the Tories were left holding the baby. Who knows?

    No one is being told not to discuss anything but just to ensure that the two issues aren’t mixed and that a Minister dealing with a personal issue should make it clear he is not speaking as a Minister but as an MP. That is absolutely normal practice.

    It will be intersting to see if anyone tries to read anything into this which isn’t there as it might be a good thermometer or litmus test for paranoia levels 🙂

  • Oh give up, EcoJon. Labour cower in Murdoch’s presence and you know it. Your attempts at defence are really quite painful.

  • @Robert C
    Labour may cower to NewsCorp, I won’t stick up for them here, but Cameron (the leader of this coalition) having dinner with them with all that is currently occuring is surely ill advised at the very least.

    As for taking Downing Street at face value…… not all the time there’s a Tory in there!

  • Where’s Labour Matt on this thread, then?

  • Hideously ironic that the Liberals are trying to make capital out of this by criticising Miliband + Murdoch…at the same time as allowing Hunt + Cameron to wave the Murdoch bid for BSkyB through, smiling gleefully.

    Get a grip guys.

  • @ Cuse

    We ARE making capital out of this, because we have every right to. At least we have been trying to do something in terms of resisting Murdoch. Labour never even tried.

  • David Allen 3rd Feb '11 - 3:37pm

    All of you, come off it. The three parties all crawl to Murdoch and should all be equally ashamed of themselves.

  • EcoJon

    Mercury rising 🙂

    Blue paper has turned red 🙂

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