POLITICS
20/12/2017 22:29 GMT

Damian Green Sacked After Sleaze Row - HuffPost Verdict

Theresa May’s right-hand man has effectively been sacked for breaching the ministerial code.

DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS via Getty Images
Damian Green's resignation is the third from Theresa May’s Cabinet in just a matter of weeks

K E Y   P O I N T S

  • Damian Green forced to quit after breaching the ministerial code of conduct
  • Cabinet Office inquiry found Green had lied about knowing of the existence of porn on his computer
  • Probe found deputy prime minister had made ‘inaccurate and misleading’ statements
  • Concludes: ‘Plausible’ evidence he had sexually harassed an activist
  • Kate Maltby had accused Green of touching her knee and sending inappropriate texts
  • Green sent Maltby a text message after she appeared in a corset in a newspaper
  • Maltby’s family not surprised Green was found to have been ‘untruthful as a minister’
  • Police officers allege porn was found on a computer seized from his office in 2008
  • Resignation is the third from Theresa May’s Cabinet in just a matter of weeks
  • As First Secretary of State Green deputised for May in Prime Minister’s Question time
  • Green has for weeks vehemently denied he had done anything wrong

S N A P   V E R D I C T

 From HuffPost UK Politics Executive Editor Paul Waugh

As she makes it to the end of 2017, it’s a measure of Theresa May’s current strength in the job right now that she can afford to sack the man who is Deputy Prime Minister in all but name.

Damian Green chaired nine crucial Cabinet sub-committees, covering everything from immigration to social reform to key Brexit policies. More importantly, he was one of the few people the PM could trust since the departure of her key chiefs of staff after the snap election fiasco.

Yet Green’s exit, cruelly dubbed ‘Grexit’ by his critics, underlines just how Brexit now dominates everything May does. It is precisely because she has successfully completed Phase 1 of talks with Brussels that she is free to fire such an important minister.

Insiders say that the PM was determined to send out a strong message that sexual harassment – and crucial in this case is that Green failed her new test of making women feel ‘uncomfortable’ - will not be tolerated.

She will also have wanted to make plain that no one, even a close ally and a friend from Oxford 40 years ago, gets any special favours from Theresa May.

B E S T   L I N E S 

It is... with deep regret, and enduring gratitude for the contribution you have made over many years, that I asked you to resign from the government and have accepted your resignation Theresa May
I regret that I’ve been asked to resign Damian Green
We are not surprised to find that the inquiry found Mr Green to have been untruthful as a minister Colin and Victoria Maltby

W H A T  N E X T?

The resignation is the third from the Cabinet in just a matter of weeks following the departures of Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon, over sex harassment, and International Development Secretary Priti Patel over undeclared links to Israel.

However, Theresa May is not expected to replace Green until the New Year, according to government sources.

While Green’s statements about claims that porn had been found on his computer may have been found to be “inaccurate and misleading”, at least one was still live on his Twitter feed at time of publishing.