Editorial: A few too many Shapp practices?

 

Share
Related Topics

Grant Shapps has been the chairman of the Conservative party for only a month, yet he will launch the Tory conference next week with an official investigation hanging over his head. The Advertising Standards Agency is launching an inquiry into a website founded by Mr Shapps (now transferred to his wife), questioning the authenticity of online testimonials for the software which (under the pseudonym Michael Green) the Tory chairman claimed could make his customers $20,000 in 20 days.

Mr Shapps is no stranger to controversy. He has faced criticism for using a pen name to sell various products, including his book, How To Bounce Back From Recession. It has also emerged that he appeared at a Las Vegas business conference as Mr Green. And Google is reportedly of the view that the company he co-founded, now run by his wife, violates its code of conduct by selling software banned by the search engine for breaking copyright rules.

Nor does the list end there. Computers traced back to Mr Shapps's office were found to have edited his own Wikipedia entry – a practice widely frowned upon. References to a by-election in which he seemingly impersonated Lib Dem rivals online were removed from the page; and it was also shorn of the details of a mortgage broker, an estate agent and a commercial property developer some of whom had made donations to Mr Shapps's private office when he was Minister for Housing. (He later claimed his account had been hacked.) There have also been accusations from Lord Prescott that he was involved in a smear campaign.

Not only has Mr Shapps denied all such accusations of improper conduct. He is also nowhere accused of breaking the law. But the drip-drip of embarrassing allegations reflects badly on his character nonetheless. There is a growing sense that Mr Shapps is someone who is not entirely straightforward, which can only raise questions about his suitability for the position to which he has been elevated.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Technical Architect - Surrey - £35k-£45k DOE - Permanent

£35000 - £45000 Per Annum Excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd:...

ASP.NET Developer - Cheshire - £35k - Permanent

£30000 - £35000 Per Annum Excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd:...

Senior Infrastructure / Network Engineer (VMware, Windows, LAN/WAN)

£40000 - £50000 Per Annum + excellent benefits: Clearwater People Solutions Lt...

Primary teaching jobs in Thetford

£1036224 - £1513056 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Randstad Educatio...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Daily catch-up: Gordon Brown’s finest hour, a letter from Quebec and the problem of anti-politics

John Rentoul
 

i Editor's Letter: The campaigning is over. So now we wait...

Oliver Duff Oliver Duff
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week