Jeremy Hunt put 'on probation' over Murdoch bid row
David Cameron effectively put his Culture Secretary “on probation” yesterday, ahead of his evidence to Lord Justice Leveson.
In an apparent change of tack following days of negative publicity, the Prime Minister made clear that he would not wait for the Leveson Inquiry to report before deciding whether Jeremy Hunt had broken ministerial rules.
He also admitted for the first time that he had discussed News Corporation's takeover bid for BSkyB with James Murdoch while the Government was deciding whether to approve it.
But he insisted there had been no “grand deal” with Rupert Murdoch's media empire to wave through the takeover in return for support from News International newspapers.
Labour Shadow Culture Secretary Harriet Harman yesterday repeated her call for Mr Hunt to resign and added that she believed Rupert Murdoch was not a fit person to hold a broadcasting licence in the UK.
“I would say that should be examined independently and if I was examining it independently, I would say ‘no'... because of what went on in his organisation — widespread criminality.”