UK Culture Secretary accused of backing Murdoch bid25/04/2012 - 13:00:44
British Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt was today accused of backing News Corp’s bid to take over BSkyB, rather than judging the move.
His special adviser Adam Smith quit earlier today over his role in the affair.
Labour Party culture spokesperson Harriet Harman echoed calls for Mr Hunt to quit also.
Her claims came as the Culture Secretary made an emergency Commons statement, telling MPs he acted with “scrupulous fairness” throughout the long-running process.
But Ms Harman said: “This was a controversial bid. You could have refused to take it on but you didn’t.
“You could have referred it to the Competition Commission, but you didn’t.
“Your role was to be impartial, but you weren’t.
“Your conduct should have been quasi-judicial but it fell far, far short of that and short of the standards required by your office.”
She added: “The reality is, you weren’t judging this bid, you were backing this bid and so you should resign.”
Responding to Mr Hunt’s statement, she accused the Cabinet Minister of being responsible for the actions of his former advisor Mr Smith.
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