By Tim Montgomerie
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Andrew Mitchell has resigned.
Here is the exchange of letters between Mr Mitchell and the Prime Minister.
REPLY FROM THE PRIME MINISTER:
My own view is that Andrew Mitchell was right to resign. One month after the story had broken the media storm wasn't going away. David Cameron and the Coalition will no longer have this toxic cloud hanging over them because Mr Mitchell has fallen on his sword. Led by The Sun – which originally broke the story – there was a determination amongst newspapers to oust Mr Mitchell and he's now gone. What exactly he said to police officers at the Downing Street gates is disputed but he clearly acted intemperately and apologised. That apology was accepted by the police officer concerned but the militant Police Federation would not let go. Andrew Mitchell has paid a high price for seven seconds of temper and, sadly, he'll may well be popularly remembered for Plebgate rather than the many lives saved and enriched by the development policies that he fought so hard to secure over seven years as the party's development spokesman and then as Secretary of State for International Development. Some of us won't forget that impressive work, however. Thank you Andrew.