Left Watch

« Labour borrows ANOTHER slogan from the BNP | Main | The very definition of champagne socialism »

Andrew Rawnsley's revelations about Gordon Brown

We'll update this thread as and when we get the revelations:

Sunday 8pm: Nick Robinson blogs: "It is one thing to be accused of bullying by a journalist with a book to sell who has to rely on anonymous sources. It is another for someone who runs an anti-bullying helpline to allege that they have been called by staff working directly with the prime minister." Read the whole thing.

Sunday 7.15pm: Following revelations on BBC News [see 6pm update], a Conservative Spokesman said: “This development suggests that there could be a cover-up at the heart of government over the Prime Minster’s behaviour.”

Sunday 6pm: Just breaking over at the BBC and leading news bulletins: "Several people in Gordon Brown's office have contacted an anti-bullying charity, its boss has told the BBC. Christine Pratt said "three or four" calls had been made to the National Bullying Helpline in recent years." Watch video.

WeHaveNever More posters here.

9.45pm: From The Observer: "Sir Gus O’Donnell, the cabinet secretary, became so alarmed by the prime minister’s behaviour that he launched his own investigations when he received reports of Brown’s bullying of staff. O’Donnell then gave the prime minister a stern “pep talk” and ordered him to change his behaviour. “This is no way to get things done,” he told Brown. The revelation that the prime minister’s behaviour was so extreme that it triggered a warning from Whitehall’s most powerful official will shock the political world and is bound to lead to claims from his opponents that he is not fit for another five years in office as a general election draws near... O’Donnell was so disturbed by the effect on those in Downing Street that he took it upon himself to try “to calm down frightened duty clerks, badly treated phone operators and other bruised staff by telling them ‘don’t take it personally’.”"

They're out to get me!: "When briefed that November about the loss of confidential data discs, containing the personal details of more than 20 million people, he leapt across the room and grabbed Gavin Kelly, his deputy chief of staff, by the lapels of his jacket. Brown snarled into the official’s face: “They’re out to get me!”"

Bad language: "A senior adviser on foreign affairs, Stewart Wood, found himself on the end of a similarly shocking volley of verbal abuse when he attempted to brief the prime minister about a Downing Street reception for European ambassadors. “Why have I got to meet these fucking people,” he yelled at Wood. “Why are you making me meet these fucking people?” Brown then roughly shoved aside the stunned adviser. Rawnsley also recounts how an angrily impatient Brown became so furious with a Number 10 typist that he turfed her out of her seat and took over the keyboard himself."

My initial verdict: Not that much new here. The Mail on Sunday's spoiler from late last month did seem to have it all.

Channel 4's Ed Fraser has Twittered: Rawnsley alleges Brown received an unprecedented reprimand from the head of the civil service for abusive behaviour to staff. Earlier today, Brown said that he had never hit another person.

Tim Montgomerie