'Horseplay' texts with Rebekah add to PM's embarrassment

Rebekah Brooks

'I cried twice,' Rebekah Brooks tells Cameron after speech; thanks for the 'unpredictable' ride, says PM

LAST UPDATED AT 09:52 ON Sun 4 Nov 2012

PRIME MINISTER David Cameron will come under renewed pressure this week to release all correspondence between himself and Rebekah Brooks after The Mail on Sunday published intimate text messages between the Prime Minister and Rupert Murdoch's former newspaper chief in Britain.

The two texts obtained by the Mail are among a cache of emails and texts handed over to the Leveson Inquiry but not released publicly.

In one, Cameron thanks Brooks for letting him ride one of her family's horses, saying it was "fast, unpredictable and hard to control but fun".

In the other, Brooks praises Cameron - then still in opposition - for his 2009 party conference speech. "I cried twice," she wrote. "Will love working together."

What the BBC called this morning the "playful and friendly tone" of the messages is a potential embarrassment to the Prime Minister because it reignites the issue of just how close he was to the Murdoch machine – and how friendly he was with a woman who is awaiting trial on charges of phone-hacking and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

The texts were sent in October 2009, soon after Brooks left the editorship of The Sun to become chief executive of News International and four months after she married Cameron's old schoolfriend Charlie Brooks.

The Observer says they put Cameron "on the spot" while The Sunday Telegraph called them a "further embarrassment" for the PM.

The Independent on Sunday goes a step further, claiming the PM's remark about the horse - "fast, unpredictable and hard to control but fun" - could be read as "suggestive". The Mail on Sunday immediately labeled them the "horseplay texts".

Notably, the Labour MP Chris Bryant has tweeted: "These new texts are the tip of an iceberg."

Bryant has been pushing the Prime Minister to make all his correspondence with Brooks public, claiming the reason he won't do so is because they are "too salacious and embarrassing for you". Bryan has now written to Lord Justice Leveson asking that he publish all the texts and emails between the pair.

A Downing Street insider told the Mail: "These new texts are of no great significance."

But taken in conjunction with previous exchanges between Cameron and Brooks, revealed when the Leveson inquiry was sitting, they make it hard for the Prime Minister to keep his distance.

Brooks herself claimed at the height of the phone-hacking scandal Cameron sent her a "keep your head up" message, and expressed his regret that he couldn't be more loyal to her in public. And on the eve of the 2009 conference speech, Brooks sent Cameron a message saying: "I am so rooting for you tomorrow and not just as a friend but because professionally we're definitely in this together."

The Observer says it understands "there may have been as many as 150 messages exchanged between the two over a number of months, many of which would prove to be a considerable embarrassment to the government".

Lord Justice Leveson is due to publish his report later this month. · 

Disqus - noscript

I have no doubt the majority of hard working people in this country cannot wait to see ALL the txt's between cameron and brooks. Maybe the disclosure of them will bring an end to cameron's political career, completely, as he, like thatcher, has to be hiding many skeletons in the cupboard.

For further concise, balanced comment and analysis on the week's news, try The Week magazine. Subscribe today and get 6 issues completely free.