Tories put the boots - and stilettos - in to Baroness Warsi
It looks increasingly likely this morning that Warsi will have to resign to clear her name over expenses
TORY-SUPPORTING Daily Mail columnist Amanda Platell has put the stiletto heel into Baroness Warsi making it more likely she will have to quit as a Conservative party co-chairman 'to clear her name' over allegations of falsely claiming an overnight allowance of £165.50 a night.
Reviewing the papers on the Andrew Marr Show, the Aussie lady in the red dress blamed David Cameron for "parachuting" Warsi into government because he wanted to put the first Muslim in a British Cabinet.
Warsi swanned around a Downing Street garden party last Thursday hosted by Cameron and attended by Fleet Street hacks serenely unaware that the next morning she would be confronted with the allegations by The Sunday Times. This morning the whole of Fleet Street is calling for her to quit.
Platell said if Warsi did not know the rules after the expenses scandal "God help us". La Platell also pointed out Warsi had few friends in the Tory Party. Right on cue, they came out of the woodwork this morning to put the boot in.
Disgraced Tory peer Lord Hanningfield compared his own case with the allegations surrounding Warsi. He was sent to prison for a year for claiming the overnight allowance to stay in London while he was taken back to Essex each night.
"I don't want to say anything against Baroness Warsi, but as I said at my trial, 85 per cent of peers were claiming the full allowances," the former Conservative frontbencher told The Daily Telegraph.
Warsi claimed up to £165.50 a night while staying at a London house belonging to Dr Wafik Moustafa. She said she was entitled to the expenses because she had paid a "financial contribution" to her political aide, Naweed Khan, when both were non-paying guests at the house.
But Dr Moustafa, a GP, insisted in the Telegraph that he received no money and said he was "disgusted" that she had claimed taxpayers' money when he had simply been "helping out" the two party members by offering his free hospitality.
Warsi, who this morning referred herself to the Lords standards watchdog in an effort to stop the speculation, has also admitted failing to declare rental income from a flat she owns, but the expenses claim is the more damaging allegation. The BBC reported this morning Tory suspicions that she was stitched up because Cameron withdrew support for the Conservative Arab Network pushed by Egyptian-born Moustafa.
Platell, who once acted as a spin doctor for William Hague, may have the airs of one who would like to be a lady in the Lords, but over Warsi she has plenty of allies. Coming in the same week as Cameron is trying to stop Jeremy Hunt from being forced out because of his links to the Murdoch empire, Warsi looks like a lost cause.