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Mark Oaten has been forced to resign as the Lib Dem Home Affairs Spokesman, as he has some, erm, Home Affairs of his own to take care of, after some Away-from-Home Affairs to be reported in tomorrow’s News of the World.
The 41-year-old father of two allegedly had an affair with a 23-year-old rent boy. If you’re going to screw up your career, I guess you should do it in style – and a homosexual affair with someone half your age is about as far as one can credibly go, I guess.
Some will no doubt claim that it’s unfair he’s had to resign over something which says nothing about his professional competance, and I have some sympathy with that point of view. But it’s just not a realistic stance to take in today’s society, sadly. He had to resign, because he would never be allowed to talk about the issues.
More surprising is that he gave a classic non-apology in his statement, of the type perfected by New Labour:
I would like to apologise for errors of judgement in personal behaviour and for the embarrassment caused, firstly to my family but also to my friends, my constituents and my party.
He apologises for errors in judgement – that is, getting caught – and the embarrassment it caused, but not actually for the incident itself. Which is surprising, because I thought he’d be the kind of guy to give a grovelling apology practically for being born. But then, I guess he’d have had to resign as an MP as well if he’d gone down that route, so perhaps it’s not so surprising.
On something of a sidenote, it’s been an amazing couple of weeks for the NoTH – Sven allegations last week, more promised this week, a journalist in the Palace, and Oaten allegations this week. Certainly not bad going on their part.
One Springeresque final thought on Mr Oaten: His website hasn’t been updated yet. It says
It’s been an eventful past couple of weeks … I’m looking forward to a quiet weekend with my family before making any decisions on what the future may hold.
Somehow, I doubt he got his wish.