This is a file note made by the Chief Electoral Officer first thing on 30 August 2005. There are four important things to note:
1) It is 18 days before the election
2) The CEO has quite clearly informed Labour that who pays for it doesn’t matter
3) To be deemed an “advertisement” it does not need to specifically call for the party vote.
4) Labour admitted that in 2002 their pledge cards and brochures did carry an authorisation statement – something they now call a mistake.
Now readers may wish to reflect on what probably happened internally within Labour after receiving this phone call. From my experience of parties and campaigns I would say that there would be an emergency conference call or meeting within hours of being notified that the Chief Electoral Officer was concerned about the lack of authorisation of a major part of a campaign.