The suffix "gate" gets overused in politics and political media. Every minor embarrassment or cock up gets the word gate appended to it.
Even the least tuned-in to political history will know that the use of "gate" comes from the Watergate scandal that engulfed Nixon in the 1970s. I won't go into the details of the Watergate scandal, you can read about it here, but it grew out of a desperate attempt to re-elect Nixon using a dirty tricks campaign.
Watching the emerging Number 10 dirty tricks story I feel that the suffix "gate" may be appropriate for the first time in British politics. It indicates a desperate and morally corrupt administration, willing to do almost anything to get re-elected.
The thing I find amusing about this whole sorry episode is that it shows, once again, that Labour just don't get online campaigning. Iain Dale, Guido, ConHome, Dizzy, etc. are all independent of the Conservative party and form a powerful right of centre voice, indeed their very Independence gives them their authority and the ability to be much more direct in their attacks on the government, it's policies and actions. If Tim, Iain or Gudio screw up, break the law etc, it is their screw up not the Conservative party's, shadow cabinets or David Cameron's. Because of Brown's obsessive centralizing he will find himself at the heart of this maelstrom.
This won't just be embarrassing, as the Number 10 spinners are trying to claim, this will be terminal.
3 hours ago