David Cameron bombarded Treasury ministers, officials and even Michael Gove with texts, phone calls and emails when lobbying for emergency funding for Lex Greensill’s finance house, it was revealed today.
The former Prime Minister signed himself “love Dc” on a note to chief civil servant at the Treasury, Sir Tom Scholar. He then sent a text to Mr Scholar with the sign-off: “See you with Rishi’s for an elbow bump or foot tap.”
The friendly messages developed a more frantic tone as he became worried that Greensill was being declined. “Tried to call but line busy. No worries,” he texted Sir Tom.
On April 2 he wrote: “One last point then and I promise I will stop annoying you.” But the next day, April 3, he was back, reacting with concern to the news that Greensill had been declined “Am genuinely baffled. … Can I have 5 minutes for a call. This seems bonkers. Am now calling CX [the Chancellor], Gove, everyone.
Mr Cameron then appealed to Michael Gove, the minister he once blamed most of all for disloyalty in the Brexit referendum campaign. “I know you are manically busy – and doing a great job by the way,” he told the former ally he fell out with while in Government. “But do you have a moment for a word. All good wishes, Dc.”
To Treasury minister John Glen, he said: “We think there is a very simple mistake being made here which I can explain briefly.”
He sent multiple texts to Mr Sunak, enclosing a long briefing note and stressing: “Ready to speak whenever you are free.”
The details of Mr Cameron’s missives were revealed for the first time by the Treasury Select Committee this afternoon ahead of Mr Greensill being questioned by MPs about the lobbying operation and the supply chain finance deals that he introduced to Government.
Mr Cameron has denied breaking any code of conduct or government rules and the government has repeatedly said the outcome of his discussions on Greensill’s proposals for access to a Covid-19 loan scheme were not taken up.