Tory MPs have reacted to reports top civil servant Sue Gray is set to join Keir Starmer as his chief of staff, with one Boris Johnson ally branding her partygate report a “stitch up”.
Gray has quit her civil service job and is reportedly set to join the Labour leader’s team.
Nadine Dorries, former culture secretary and a close ally of the former prime minister, said the move to Starmer’s office was “not surprising”.
She wrote on Twitter: “Whilst writing [the] report, she used QC who tweeted out pro Labour, anti government tweets whilst Alistair Campbell heaped praise upon her.
“Her communications assistant briefed against Johnson from day one. The Gray report was a stitch up of [the] PM and cabinet secretaries.”
It comes as the Cabinet Office confirmed the news of Gray’s resignation.
A spokesperson said: “We can confirm that Sue Gray has resigned from the post of second permanent secretary in the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC).
“This was accepted by the department permanent secretary and cabinet secretary with immediate effect.
“We will not be commenting further on individual personnel matters. We are reviewing the circumstances under which she resigned.”
A Labour source told CityAM the news had prompted excitement among party staffers.
While critics suggested the decision raised questions over civil service impartiality.
Robert Colville, director of the Centre for Policy Studies (CPS), wrote on Twitter: “How do you go from being a core, senior member of government – at the heart of discussions about all kinds of sensitive matters – to the leader of the opposition office?
“At least Jonathan Powell was working in an embassy, not the heart of government. To say nothing of how this makes the investigation into Partygate look.
Sky News reported yesterday that Starmer was considering her for the job, and the Labour Party has not denied the claims.