I wouldn't worry about the press Jacqui,
but Harriet and your man hating mates
aren't going to be very pleased
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith's political future was in jeopardy after it was revealed that her husband used her Commons expenses allowance to pay to watch softcore pornographic films.
Richard Timney, who works as Smith's Commons adviser, used part of the Minister's second-homes allowance to pay for the not so blue movies he watched on a subscription television channel.
Tory MP Philip Davies said last night that if the porn-movie claims were true, the Home Secretary would have to resign: Claiming that her sister's back bedroom is her main home is one thing but this could push her over the cliff. It is surely not
legitimate to use Commons' second-home allowances to buy blue movies. If this is true, I cannot see how she can survive.
Just three months ago, The Mail on Sunday revealed that Timney – who is paid £40,000 of public money a year as Smith's to run her Redditch constituency office – was behind a letter-writing campaign defending the Government in her local paper.
Timney had a series of letters published in the Redditch Advertiser backing Smith's identity card plans and attacking the Tories over schools, without revealing that he was married to the woman responsible for the policies.
The ACA allows MPs to claim for television subscriptions at their second home. Last year, under freedom of information requests, it emerged that Gordon Brown claimed for a Sky TV subscription and television licence.
Clair Lewis, national convenor for Consenting Adult Action Network (CAAN), today reflected on the irony of Jacqui Smith being caught out over
the porn habits of her own husband and issued an invitation to the Home Secretary and her husband to sign up to CAAN's statement of aims. This endorses the right of individuals not to be pilloried for legitimate sexual activity between adults.
CAAN statement of aims:
We believe in the right of consenting adults to make their own sexual choices, in respect of what they do, see and enjoy alone or with other consenting adults, unhindered and unfettered by government.
We believe that it is not the business of government to intrude into the sex lives of consenting adults.
Clair Lewis said:
It is ironic that Jacqui Smith, who has done more than almost any other politician to meddle in the private sex lives of consenting adults, should be placed in this position. We would hesitate to suggest it was richly deserved.
If public money has been misused, then Ms Smith and her husband must face the consequences: however, the sexual focus, whilst no doubt titillating, is really not relevant.
CAAN works to protect consenting adults from having their lives wrecked by this type of press voyeurism.
We shall therefore be contacting Richard Timney - and also his wife - to see if they would now agree that what adults get up to in the privacy of their own bedrooms is not the business of either government or an over-intrusive press, and whether they
would now be prepared to sign up to our statement of aims on this issue.