Leveson Inquiry: Will Cameron regret Leveson?


He set up the Leveson Inquiry.

He said there could be no more last chances for the press.

He said the test of any change was whether it satisfied the victims.

And yet David Cameron has rejected the central recommendation of Lord Justice Leveson - that a new law is essential to underpin a new stronger press regulator.

Minutes after he did so the prime minister swapped places and a smile with his deputy Nick Clegg who took the unprecedented step of making his own separate Commons statement saying that only a new law could guarantee the independence of any regulator.

Given that that is the view shared by the Labour leader, Ed Miliband, there is now in theory a pro-Leveson parliamentary majority made up of Labour, Liberal Democrat and dozens of Tory MPs who don't agree with their leader.

However, even though they could defeat and embarrass David Cameron that coalition could not force a new press law into being (since it is the government that controls the parliamentary time needed to pass legislation).

The prime minister knows he has given his opponents yet another stick to beat him with. He also knows, however, that the press are firmly on his side.

His hope is that the pressure he is under will be relieved when/if newspapers swiftly set up the new regulator they've been working on - adapted to meet the principles set out in today's report. One of his allies told me "It will happen".

Until it does, David Cameron will have plenty of time to wonder if picking up the phone to Sir Brian Leveson was really such a good idea.

Nick Robinson Article written by Nick Robinson Nick Robinson Political editor

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  • rate this

    Comment number 180.

    I usually make a hys comment on most stuff but this Levvyson thing is so pointless I have nothing to say

    Can't even be bothered taking the mickey it's so pointless

    Can they not just put this enquiry onto an x-factor type show and everyone has a vote at the end as to whether they give a hoot

  • rate this

    Comment number 179.


    With the exception of FoI, yes, thats exactly what they mean.

  • rate this

    Comment number 178.


    Agree - maintaining the status quo is not an option, they will revert to type as soon as the spotlight moves on.

  • rate this

    Comment number 177.

    Having watch the Daily Politics on Friday, I think Milliband may be regretting Leveson. The point was made that Milliband said that he agreed with all of Leveson. This means that he accepts that there is no evidence of collusion between Hunt and Murdoch. There were other points as well. Milliband could end up looking like an opportunist in his response.

  • rate this

    Comment number 176.

    Why is Cameron against the Leveson Report. Could it be because
    he feels the Press would savage, further, his tattered image ??
    Self protectionism.

  • rate this

    Comment number 175.

    Please do not throw centuries of free press away simply to stick the boot into Cameron .

    At any other time milliband and co would be falling over themselves to defend a free press . But that means nothing now there is an opertunity to cause trouble .

  • rate this

    Comment number 174.


    "...Look, after 13 years of half-wit knee-jerk legislation..."


    What, like the Land Registration Act 2002, Human Rights Act 1998, TUPE2006, Freedom Of Information, Commons Act 2006, Antisocial Behaviour, Civil Procedure Rules etc., you mean?

  • rate this

    Comment number 173.

    Bankers, newspaper editors. Both self serving.
    The editors must have guessed some sort of regulation was a strong possibility. They had months to come up with something and they failed. It will take 6 months before they come up with something. A year later they will say that they haven't got it to work and then 'spin' for which ever party promises to do least about the press in the next election.

  • rate this

    Comment number 172.

    I don't believe in having a restricted press, its a slippery slope.

    That doesn't mean I'm involved in some conspiracy with newspaper owners.

    I'm sure the government of the time would have loved to have covered up the expenses scandal, perhaps with these reforms they would have succeeded.

  • rate this

    Comment number 171.

    David Cameron did not kow what he was getting himself into when he started Leveson which turned into a monster run by partisan vested interested who hated the Murdoch press and wanted to get rid of it.

    We do not want a state regulated press in this country far too dangerous.

  • rate this

    Comment number 170.

    This isn't about press freedom. It is about press support for the Tories in 2015.

    Same old cosy corruption.

  • rate this

    Comment number 169.


    Not sure it's always and necessarily 'hypocrisy'. Or that's a little harsh shall we say.

    If you're a big sports fan, for example, if watching things like live golf and tennis and football and cricket and pretty much you name it as regards as-it-happens sport, if that's a sizeable and important part of your life, then Sky TV is almost as necessary as a warm winter coat and running water.

  • rate this

    Comment number 168.


    "What policies would you have recommended to deal with the situation?"
    Wasting money we don't with poor value for money, using borrowed money financed by a ponzi scheme economy funded primarily by banks operating as casinos would have been a good start. Glad you liked it, as we'll be paying for it for a very long time.

    Gordy has gone. Get over it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 167.

    Do you know what I find funny about all of this, is the hypocrisy of the general public.

    Murdoch this, Murdoch that, blah blah blah. Yet more than a few of them go back home to watch Sky TV which is about 40% owned by News Corp.

    If you dont like him...STOP GIVING HIM DAMN MONEY THEN!!!

  • rate this

    Comment number 166.

    No 20

    Well please dont vote for the nasty party next time! Labour may have run out of steam before but better having people who at least pretend to understand how normal people live

  • rate this

    Comment number 165.

    No145 Percy,
    You seem unhappy with 'the last three years of the previous government'
    Most people seem to agree that the government at the time were dealing with the effect of the worst global economic crisis since the 'Great Depression'. Can you remember the G20 meeting in London?
    What policies would you have recommended to deal with the situation?

  • rate this

    Comment number 164.

    'SagaRegs' are the optimal solution - obviously - but in the meantime let's just focus on the art of the short-term possible and go with Lord Leveson.

  • rate this

    Comment number 163.


    "A quick look in the newsagents suggests all the newspapers think DC has made the right decsion......"

    ... and a quick visit to the Bernard Matthews farm suggests that there's no support for Xmas amongst the turkeys.

  • rate this

    Comment number 162.

    146 AndyC555

    My concern is that the press will continue with the shocking behaviour such with the McCanns, Jeffries and phone hacking. I also want the press to be free be able to invesitgate things such as MPs expenses. Freedom with Responsibility I suppose. But how do we best achieve this ? Leveson? Leveson-Lite? Underpinned regulation? SagaRegs? I'm not sure. Press self regulation has failed.

  • rate this

    Comment number 161.


    The risk of misusable statute isn't an argument for not legislating. It's an argument for legislating only where necessary. Leveson's conclusion is that such is the case here. The vast majority of people outside of the vested interests (being the press itself plus the conservative party) seem to agree.


    Six! Congratulations! You've BEEN busy wouldn't be inaccurate either.


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