— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) September 22, 2015
Could this be damaging to Osborne’s succession chances?
One aspect of this which has a betting implication is what the Ashcroft revelations will do to the next CON leader markets?
Is recent months, particularly since the July budget, the sentiment has moved very strongly to the Chancellor, George Osborne. I wonder whether some of the backlash provoked by the tabloid frenzy could impact on him because, after all, Osborne was also a member of the Bullingdon club at Oxford and has had his own share of bad publicity.
It probably does not help Boris Johnson either.
Neither of the other two favourites in the betting markets are white males – Theresa May and Sajid Javid. Maybe if there is an early contest then this would boost their chances.
My own view is that Cameron’s successor could be someone who is not really in the frame at the moment.
All of the above is froff, though, and takes attention away from the most serious political allegation relating to when David Cameron knew of Lord Ashcroft’s tax status which is what the Guardian is focusing on. It was interesting yesterday that this is what SNP leader, Nicola Sturgeon, chose to raise.
So far we await to see how the official leader of the opposition, Jeremy Corbyn, exploits what would seem to be a heaven sent situation.
Let’s see what the Mail will be doing in part 3 tomorrow.