DAILY MAIL COMMENT: Don’t play judge and jury – keep to the facts

Fresh from their disappointment that the Prime Minister had escaped further police fines over Partygate, the Boris-loathers are in paroxysms of hysteria over the impending publication of Sue Gray’s report.

The Left-wing media is insinuating that Mr Johnson tried to nobble the senior civil servant’s inquiry into No10 gatherings.

He not only inappropriately forced a secret meeting with her to discuss her findings, they breathlessly report, but he left her ‘horribly isolated’ as she investigated lockdown breaches.

Leave aside that neither claim is true (indeed, after the ill-disguised briefings the press officer dealing with the report was let go abruptly and without explanation).

The Left-wing media is insinuating that Boris Johnson tried to nobble the senior civil servant’s inquiry into No10 gatherings

How do commentators who suggest Miss Gray was ‘got at’ square that with their earlier insistence that her integrity and independence were unimpeachable?

The report is likely to damage Boris politically. Legally, though, it’s trivial.

Remember, Scotland Yard had a team of top detectives combing over every scrap of evidence at enormous cost, yet considered one paltry fine sufficient for Mr Johnson.

So Miss Gray shouldn’t play judge, jury and executioner, but keep her report simple and factual, and resist the temptation to editorialise or print gratuitous photos.

She should stick to highlighting No10’s failures to maintain the high standards rightly expected by the public – and the improvements that need to be made.

Then we can put this interminable brouhaha behind us and move on to issues that really matter.

Fuel for thought

For all but the most obsessed, the iniquities of Partygate are a mere bagatelle compared to coping with the worst cost of living squeeze in a generation.

Amid fears that skyrocketing energy bills will plunge two in five households into fuel poverty, the Government must explain how it can help those facing genuine hardship.

A windfall tax on energy giants to help struggling families should not ordinarily be the answer. Such levies deter long-term investment and clobber pensions.

But Rishi Sunak’s plan to target only those firms not investing vast profits in new infrastructure seems innovative.

Britain’s shambolic energy policy has played a part in this nightmare. Fearing the eco-lobby’s rage, successive governments have run down nuclear, abandoned North Sea oil and gas, and shelved fracking.

Now we are beholden to unreliable renewables and turbulent global markets – and the chickens have come home to roost in the form of eye-watering bills.

Investing in domestic energy will eventually give consumers a much bigger windfall.

On track for turmoil

With the militant rail unions plotting to sabotage the recovery with a summer of mass walkouts, Grant Shapps is right to threaten tough laws to curb strikes.

Using fiery rhetoric as predictable as it is depressing, hard-Left union barons say this is an attack on the working classes.

It is in fact the exact opposite. In trying to shut down the national rail network out of political spite, the unions are jeopardising countless jobs and livelihoods.

It’s the Transport Secretary’s duty to stop these Marxist wreckers (and Labour paymasters) making the lives of ordinary workers infinitely worse.

  • As commissioner, Lord Hogan-Howe oversaw arguably the most disgraceful period in Scotland Yard’s history. Innocent men were ruined during the bungled probe into a fantasist’s allegations of a VIP paedophile ring. Yet the PM is reportedly batting for his discredited chum to lead the National Crime Agency. If this is the best man for the job, police leadership is in an even worse state than we feared.

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