The media are leading with the story about the resignation of the Tory Party's co treasurer, Peter Cruddas.
Allegedly he was soliciting for donations of £200K or more, in exchange for dinner invitations with the Prime Minister and George Osborne.
He was filmed allegedly telling undercover reporters that making a large donation would be "awesome for your business", and that "things will open up for you".
All very spivvy maybe. However, quite why the media are so excited by this "revelation" is rather baffling me.
For if you go to the Tory Party's own website you will see that they openly offer dinner with Cameron, and others, in exchange for monetary gifts eg:
The Leader's Group
Annual membership: £50,000 Chairman: Howard Leigh
The Leader’s Group is the premier supporter Group of the Conservative Party. Members are invited to join David Cameron and other senior figures from the Conservative Party at dinners, post-PMQ lunches, drinks receptions, election result events and important campaign launches.
The only difference being that the site does not ask for the £200K that Cruddas was allegedly soliciting.
Here is the text of his resignation statement (which ignores the fact that the Tory Party does offer paid access to Cameron et al):
“I only took up the post of principal treasurer of the party at the beginning of the month and was keen to meet anyone potentially interested in donating.
“As a result, and without consulting any politicians or senior officials in the party, I had an initial conversation with Zenith. No further action was taken by the party.
“However, I deeply regret any impression of impropriety arising from my bluster in that conversation.
“Clearly there is no question of donors being able to influence policy or gain undue access to politicians.
“Specifically, it was categorically not the case that I could offer, or that David Cameron would consider, any access as a result of a donation.
“Similarly, I have never knowingly even met anyone from the Number 10 policy unit. But in order to make that clear beyond doubt, I have regrettably decided to resign with immediate effect.”