A lesson in soundbites from lobbyist-turned-Labour MP

Labour backbenchers keen to rise up the ranks, take note of this sensational quote from lobbyist-turned-spinner-turned-Labour MP Michael Dugher in today’s Telegraph.

A former lobbyist for the IT firm EDS, Dugher was recently responsible for Gordon Brown’s press relations before becoming MP for Barnsley East on a reduced Labour majority.

Commenting on the news that the Tories are holding a fund-raising dinner at their forthcoming conference at which donors won’t have to declare their identities, he fulminates:

“This is cash-for-access, plain and simple. For all the Conservative talk of new politics, this is the same old Tory sleaze. Selling access to government ministers at £1,000 a head is just grubby.”

See? There may be a lively debate to be had about politicians and money – how to fund political parties, should they they be dependent on public or private money, blah blah blah – but that can be left to the likes of Conservative Home.

Instead, keep it simple. Be bold – they won’t use your quote if you sit on the fence. Try to use a few emotive words (sleaze is always a good one get in there).  Maybe even ask the journo what he would like to hear to ensure that you don’t say the wrong thing!


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