Chuang confirmed she was in a relationship with Brown when he acted as a referee

As fun (and necessary) as it is to mock for his appalling behaviour, it is important not to let that distract from the more important issue of whether has abused his role as Mayor to help his mistress.

There has been some uncertainty about whether they were in a relationship when he agreed to be the referree for her for a Council CCO job. There is no more, after the Sunday interview:

IAN: And what about your application for the job, um, at the art gallery? Were you in a sexual relationship with him when you applied for that job and he wrote the reference?

BEVAN: He’s one of five referees that have put on to the list.

IAN: At the time, though, Bevan, at the time when he wrote the reference, was he in a relationship with you? A romantic one, mean?

BEVAN: Yes.

IAN: He was? Yeah, and at the time when it went forward to the shortlist, was he still there?

BEVAN: Yes.

IAN: But you did use your relationship with him — and it was a romantic relationship — to help gain, get backing for a job, did you not?

BEVAN: Um, he was a referee for the art gallery job, and probably you can say that. mean, I have got— I’ve got the job, and, of course, the referees are important. Um, and, yeah, that could be the advantage, but obviously have lost more now than I gained.

Brown maintains he did nothing wrong in writing her a reference, because he has written them for other people.  His failure to admit any lapse of judgement around the reference is disturbing. The difference is he was not in a relationship with the other people. Helping your mistress get a job is different to helping an acquaitance get a job.

Also what is important is that it was for a job at a Council CCO. The influence of a Mayoral reference will be far far greater at a CCO, than say in the private sector.

Labour insisted Nick Smith resign over him writing a letter on behalf of a friend. Strange that they don’t seem to think the same standard should apply to politicians who are Labour Party members.

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