Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Saucy Sally Doesn't Give a Sheet

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

Saucy Sally Doesn't Give a Sheet

Article excerpt

That prisoners' friend, Ken Clarke, better watch out, because I hear Citizen Dave has started ridiculing the In-justice Secretary behind his back. Cameron entertained favoured scribes from the right-whinge media at No 10 by mimicking the cabinet old lag. Pushing out his tummy and sounding like Rumpole on speed, the Prime Amuser talked legal mumbo-jumbo and expressed faux concern for the real victims of crime--felons detained in Her Majesty's establishments. The odds are shortening on Clarke's early release when the reshuffle comes.

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Ted Miliband may have cause for concern, too, after the Labour leader's authority was usurped by Ed Balls at a party fundraiser. The shadow chancellor anointed the junior frontbencher Gloria De Piero as culture secretary and the new arrival Michael Dugher as defence secretary in the next Labour government. Balls would, of course, need to succeed his boss to guarantee that happened. Loud coughing from the table of Jim Murphy, the current shadow defence secretary and latest favourite of dispossessed Blairites, suggested he harbours ambitions of his own.

The Treasury bed of nails must be making the trust-fund Tory "Sir" George Osborne pull out his hair. From the Press Gallery, your correspondent has spied a bald patch. Not yet the size of Cameron's, it is nevertheless visible beneath a combover from a parting on the left. Perhaps when the Buller Boys insist we're all in this together they're referring to shrinking barnets.

Back to that Labour fundraiser organised by the glamorous former breakfast TV star De Piero and the, er, less glamorous one-time union apparatchik and Brown spokesman Dugher. …

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