It has emerged that the Conservative MP running the party's byelection bid in today's Corb by-election has been secretly filmed by Greenpeace apparently supporting the campaign of a rival candidate.
Chris Heaton-Harris, who is campaign manager for the Tories in Corby, was recorded saying he encouraged an anti-wind farm candidate to join the election race against the Tories, adding: "Please don't tell anybody ever."
The footage, covertly recorded by the environmental group Greenpeace, captures the MP saying the independent anti-wind farm candidate, James Delingpole, had announced his candidacy as part of a "plan" to "cause some hassle" and drive the wind issue up the political agenda.
He is also filmed claiming he helped Delingpole by providing him with "a handful of people who will sort him out", including the deputy chairman of his own constituency party, who had stood down and then became the anti-wind candidate's campaign agent.
According to Wikipedia ..
Delingpole maintains that man-made climate change is not as extensive as is widely asserted and links mainstream scientific projections with "the atavistic impulse which leads generation after generation to believe it is the chosen one: the generation so special that it and it alone will be the one privileged to experience the end of the world; and the generation so egotistical that it imagines itself largely responsible for that imminent destruction".
In a BBC Horizon documentary, "Science under Attack", Delingpole responded to an assertion made by Paul Nurse that there is a scientific consensus in relation to global warming by stating that the idea of a consensus is unscientific. In response to Nurse's question as to whether he had read any peer-reviewed papers, he maintained that as a journalist "it is not my job" to read peer reviewed papers, but be "an interpreter of interpretations".
Delingpole claimed in July 2011 that "There has been no global warming since 1998". He repeated this claim in a Sky News discussion in November 2011 with Guardian contributor Julie Bindel.In A statement Chris Heaton-Harris, said
In an article published on his Telegraph blog on 25 January 2012 Delingpole objected to environmentalist organization Friends of the Earth charitable status because it is "quite clearly a viciously misanthropic, anti-capitalist political organisation funded by deep-green ecoloons who given half the chance would have us all living in Maoist peasant collectives while they busily bombed our economy back to the dark ages"
"The quotes attributed to me range from factually correct statements to me bragging about things beyond my control, which has so often before been the failing of politicians. The implication that I choreographed any sort of 'secret plan' is simply not the case and I apologise if that is the impression given.
"It can hardly be said that my wanting to "put this on the agenda" is new. I have spent years fighting on-shore wind, getting over 100 MPs to sign a letter to the prime minister, securing debates and raising questions in Parliament and touring the country speaking to anti-wind groups.
"It is a subject I am passionate about and will continue to work on until communities across my constituency, Northamptonshire and the country have the protection they deserve."
Guardian 13 November 2012
The former deputy chairman of Heaton-Harris's constituency party, Trevor Sherman, had indeed resigned his post on 15 August. He remained a member of the Tory party and was described by Delingpole as "a superb election agent".
The Conservative councillor who set up Delingpole's campaign website was Donna Edmonds. She said she did not believe there was a conflict of interest because she "knew all along" that Delingpole would pull out.
Guardian 13 November 2012
The suspicion was is that "the plan" was to use Delingpole's candidacy to shift government policy on wind farms, primarily through the energy minister, John Hayes. Heaton-Harris said: in the interveiw
"Next week hopefully John Hayes, James Delingpole and I will have a meeting somewhere."
Delingpole eventually withdrew from the race after Hayes declared in an interview with the Daily Mail that "we can no longer have wind turbines imposed on communities."
Hayes was appointed Minister of State for Energy at the Department for Energy and Climate Change.on 4 September 2012
On 6 September 2012, Delingpole announced he would be standing in the upcoming Corby by-election on an anti-wind farms platform.
He may have had some prior knowledge of Hayes appointment and with claims that suggesting that Chancellor George Osborne was behind the about-turn.and was the driving force behind anti-wind farm agenda, by father-in-law Lord Howel. It may be that this may even go deeper than dirty tricks or as Better Nation points out potential electoral fraud.
The Tories are set for a heavy defeat in Corby but lose or win we ned an investigation in to this including if any electoral law has been broken.
But the first action must be for David Cameron to withdraw the Tory whip from Chris Heaton-Harris, and sacking John Hayes