Alistair Carmichael and the Leaked Memo Aftermath

So, Alistair Carmichael admitted that he was responsible for the leak of the memo regarding Nicola Sturgeon’s preference of Cameron as Prime Minister. And, as you can imagine, the SNP horde have been going mental about it. To them, it’s proof once again that their great leader is infallible, and that the dirty unionists lied.

But can we just go over this whole thing in a little more detail?

Carmichael admitted that he leaked the memo, and accepted responsibility for the leak. He lied to Channel 4 when he said he had never seen the memo before it’s publication in The Telegraph. However, The Telegraph also reported that an inquiry into the memo leak shows that the memo was real, not a fake produced by Carmichael or one of his underlings. Carmichael leaked it, but he didn’t create it – however misunderstood they may have been, someone had genuinely believed the contents of the memo enough to write it down as fact.

Carmichael has admitted responsibility, and has refused his severance pay as a previous minister. He also said he would have resigned a ministerial post had he still got one. So is there any need for him to resign his post?

He did lie in the Channel 4 interview, when he claimed he hadn’t seen the memo before it’s publication in the Telegraph. However, the leak itself was pretty typical of things politicians do to try and get one over on one another. He didn’t create a fake memo.

Unlike Alex Salmond, whose White Paper and numerous speeches during the Scottish referendum referred to a letter from the EU commission regarding Scotland’s continuing EU membership, which, after several Freedom of Information requests, Nicola Sturgeon eventually admitted did not exist. And it wasn’t the first time Salmond had admitted to lying about official letter.

So, the SNP are being hypocritical, yet again. It doesn’t excuse Carmichael from lying, but calling for his head (or, more realistically, his seat) is just a power play – they’ve carried on regardless themselves often enough after lying.

Whilst I agree politicians who lie should feel the wrath of the electorate (like Nick Clegg and his pals have during the election), I don’t think Carmichael should be forced to resign. He has lost a lot of money in penance (the best way to hurt a politician IMO), and I think that is enough for the crime he actually committed.

Next time (because let’s face it, there will be a next time) the SNP get caught blatantly lying, let’s remind them of this, ok?


The Newspaper Review

This is going to be the first one in a series of posts where I share a variety of newspaper articles from a variety of online news sources that I feel have been particularly interesting from this week. Comments are much encouraged!

  1. The Telegraph’s rather amusing and enlightening roundup of the SNP’s first week in parliament.
  2. Interesting discussion of the changing role of the Church in Ireland in the light of the referendum result in The Independent.
  3. The Guardian’s analysis of the EU referendum and how much the result will be affected by who is allowed to vote.
  4. Cameron’s meeting with Juncker and the move for closer Eurozone ties by France and Germany discussed in The Scotsman.
  5. An interesting poll in this article from the Shetland Times regarding Alistair Carmichael and the infamous memo.
  6. Another one from the Guardian, this time on what EU reform really means.

Got any particularly interesting articles from this week? Opinion pieces? Add them in the comments.