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

Systems Administrator (SharePoint) - Central London - £36,500

£35000 - £36500 per annum: Ashdown Group: Systems Administrator (SharePoint) -...

Biology Teacher

£90 - £160 per day: Randstad Education Birmingham: We are currently recruiting...

.NET Developer / Web Developer / Software Developer - £37,000

£30000 - £37000 per annum + attractive benefits: Ashdown Group: .NET Developer...

Biology Teacher

Main Pay Scale : Randstad Education Leeds: Biology Teacher to A Level - Female...

Day In a Page

Read Next
Girls were by far the most worried about their appearance, the survey found  

English children are among the unhappiest in the world – we are failing them

Natasha Devon
 

Daily catch-up: eurogloom, Ed in Red and Cameron’s Wilsonian U-turn on control orders

John Rentoul
'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes': US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food served at diplomatic dinners

'I’ll tell you what I would not serve - lamb and potatoes'

US ambassador hits out at stodgy British food
Radio Times female powerlist: A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

A 'revolution' in TV gender roles

Inside the Radio Times female powerlist
Endgame: James Frey's literary treasure hunt

James Frey's literary treasure hunt

Riddling trilogy could net you $3m
Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

Fitbit: Because the tingle feels so good

What David Sedaris learnt about the world from his fitness tracker
Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Saudis risk new Muslim division with proposal to move Mohamed’s tomb

Second-holiest site in Islam attracts millions of pilgrims each year
Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering