Monday, 9 June 2008

Boris Johnson's team spin out latest Gilligan attack

Members of Boris Johnson's 'transition team' have been involved in the promotion of a new report, which is heavily critical of both Ken Livingstone's character and his legacy.

With their City Hall job descriptions and salaries as yet undisclosed to the public, at least two members of the team sent out and promoted a new Policy Exchange report entitled 'The Million Vote Mandate.' 

The report, released today, includes a highly personal attack on the last Mayor from journalist Andrew Gilligan.

In his introduction to the report, Dylan Sharpe a member of the 'transition team' until last week, says that:

'The opening chapter of the report, written by award winning Evening Standard journalist Andrew Gilligan, analyses the positives and negatives of the Livingstone era'

Which all sounds fine and sensible until you read what is actually an incredibly vitriolic and personal attack on a man who Gilligan clearly still holds a grudge with. 

In his chapter called 'a question of style,' Gilligan uses his own questionable style to compare Livingstone to a Tourettes sufferer who is both 'astonishingly and casually unpleasant' and 'a rather nasty person'. 

For Gilligan, the last Mayor was a 'bully' and a 'divider,' who drew on 'narrow but deep pools' of support. That these were pools made up of blood is not made explicitly clear but by then the monstrous image is complete. 

But when it comes to Gillagan's chum 'Bozza' on the other hand, his analysis loses its punch. There is some rather sparse advice on not trying to please 'special interest groups' but for the main part Gilligan just wants Boris to 'simply to be nicer to people.' Which as long as he doesn't call on Gilligan to be sacked, shouldn't be too hard to fulfill. 

The whole report has been marketed and signed off by inHouse PR, who were the company originally charged with promoting Boris's election campaign. 

Several members of that company and attached campaign team have since been given as yet undisclosed roles and salaries in Boris Johnson's administration. Some of these are now thought already to have left City Hall, although quite who and at what cost is not clear.

But when it comes to 'special interest groups' there is no group more especially interested in Boris's tenure than this narrow band of policy wonks, campaign team members, spinners, fixers and personal enemies of the last Mayor. 

And with their role and salaries as yet undisclosed, we cannot be clear exactly what their real special interests are in the governance of London.


Bozza and the associated mess said...

Whatever it is they're doing alright out of it that is for sure. Gilligan is certainly doing well out of it. I had been wondering what had happened to him as it goes as he has barely been in the Evening Standard for a while and as far as I can see. I didn't realise he was now part of 'the team'.

I am not suggesting that there is any kind of financial relationship between Boris and Mr Gilligan of course. Well none apart from all the drinks that Boris probably owes him by now :D

Anonymous said...

Do you know where we can download this report?

The Tory Troll said...

It isn't on the policy Exchange website yet as far as I can see, but it looks like Conservative Home have uploaded it now:

Anonymous said...

There are questions of politically restricted posts with some of them like Kate Perrior who is a councillor.

The Tory Troll said...

I think that depends on what her salary at City Hall is, but unfortunately we don't know what that is yet.

Bobbin said...

Gilligan constantly undermines himself by so obviously taking it all so personally. If he's not careful he's going to set himself up as the next Richard Littlejohn, without the charm that is.

stuart_graham said...

No there is a difference - Gilligan is the one who tries to give the impression that he is sophisticated.