Just as it’s a coincidence that a lobbying firm, Hanbury Strategy, founded by a former Vote Leave buddy of Dominic Cummings, was handed contracts worth £640,000 without competitive tender. To say nothing of the £550,000 that went, also without competition, to Public First, the political consultancy whose two directors are former colleagues of Cummings’ patron Michael Gove. Just as it’s a coincidence that Kate Bingham, the “vaccine tsar”, is shelling out £670,000 of our money to a firm of PR consultants whose company secretary appears to be a longtime business associate of Cummings’ father-in-law.
None of this is as florid, or as blatant, as the abuse of office we watched unfold in the Trump White House. But that difference can blind us to what is right before our eyes. The Good Law Project’s Jolyon Maugham says there is a reflexive impulse to say, “This is England, this doesn’t happen here. But that is a terrible complacency.” As Trump leaves the stage, we can be complacent no longer. It can happen here – and it has.'
What a stench.