Alistair Campbell appeared to have been caught off-guard by the
Mail on Sunday’s political editor Simon Walters when informed of the
paper’s intention to publish extracts from a book by Rosalind Mark, the
Blair’s former nanny.
One or two commentators theorised that Campbell’s ’relaxed acceptance’
disguised the fact that he was spoiling for a fight with the MoS,
perhaps seeking a pre-election showdown in the courts. Janet Daley of
the Daily Telegraph called it ’an attempt by a sitting government to
smear and intimidate the press’. The Times saw the MoS article as a
’desperate’ reaction to the Telegraph’s coup in getting the rights to
serialise Trevor Rees-Jones’ memoirs.
The media’s consensus was that Mark’s ’revelations’ - which no paper was
able to print because of the injunction - amounted to mere tittle-tattle
and as such were not in the public’s interest. Tony and Cherie Blair
gained credit for protecting their family, the nanny was portrayed as
naive and her literary agent Jonathan Harris as a shadowy figure.
Analysis and commentary by Echo Research. Cuttings by Durrants. More
information can be found at: www.echoResearch.com.