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Downing St refuse to answer questions on whether Hunt misled the Commons

by - Former Political Correspondent

The Prime Minister's spokesman was asked several times whether Jeremy Hunt had misled the Commons when he said the only contact he had had with Fred Michel was at official meetings. It's transpired there were informal texts between the two men.

The PM's spokesman refused to answer the question directly. Instead he repeated that Mr Hunt set out his position to the House on April 25 in light of evidence that had been publsihed on April 24. (These were the texts between Michel and Hunt off the back of James Murdoch's evidence to Leveson.)

The spokesman said the key issue is Hunt's conduct in relation to the BskyB bid and that it's clear he took independent legal advice. When asked if the PM still has confidence in Mr Hunt the answer was 'yes'.

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News Corp lobbyist compares Cable and Hunt

by - Deputy Political Editor

Fred Michel maintains the better and more helpful communication with Jeremy Hunt's office was "normal". He contrasts that approach with the one he was used to at Vince Cable's office at the Department of Business (before Dr Cable was stripped of responsibility for the £8 billion takeover).

"We (BSkyB) were of the internal view that (the process) should not stop us from putting arguments to advisers and officials," Fred Michel told the Leveson Inquiry.

Was Dr Cable right to ban any communication with BSkyB - or was it proper that Jeremy Hunt allowed free flowing communication between his adviser and News Corporation? That could be a question only Lord Justice Leveson can answer.

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