Scene: A secret location in W**t K*******n
Date: Cannot be revealed for security reasons.
Present: Michael Gove, Sarah Vine, Nick Boles, Francis Maude, Simone Finn, Henry Newman, Henry Cook, Beth Armstrong.
Boles: “Michael, we have a cunning plan.”
Gove: “Go on!”
Maude: “First, you sign up to Boris’s campaign in blood.”
Finn: “Then, Sarah dashes off a batshit-crazy e-mail detailing our concerns about him -”
Gove: ” – Brilliant! – ”
Newman: “Which she sends by mistake, ho ho, to a bloke in PR who just happens to have the same name as me – ”
Gove: ” – Fantastic! – ”
Vine: “Which we just know he will leak to Sky News!”
Gove: ” – Wow! ”
Boles: “Which in turn will bolster your reputation for straight dealing, honesty, and being a man of your word – ”
Gove: ” – Absolutely! – ”
Maude: ” – Which you then confirm beyond doubt by knifing Boris in the back at the last moment! – ”
Gove: ” – Yes. Yes! – ”
Ghost of George Osborne (for it is he): ” – Thus boosting your standing with your colleagues, raising your profile with Party members, confirming your status as a man of principle, and, above all, putting a rocket under your chances of winning the leadership election. Not to mention making a lifelong buddy of Boris – just as you’re improving your lifelong friendship with Dave! ”
Gove: “Great! When do we start?”
– – –
Apologise to readers for the heavy-handed satire. But it is more or less the sum of the claimed Gove plot. Whatever one’s view of what he did last week, I’m not convinced that it stands up to scrutiny.