Smith sheepish on lobbying delay

Angela E Smith said she hoped to get the government response out soon
Angela E Smith said she hoped to get the government response out soon

By staff

The government hopes to publish its response to calls to shake up regulation of the lobbying industry within the next three weeks - after having failed to do so for months.

Cabinet Office minister Angela E Smith was summoned to give evidence to the Commons' public administration select committee more than three months after her department should have responded to a report on lobbying.

The original report, released in January, attacked existing regulation of the lobbying industry as "little better than the emperor's new clothes" and called for reforming the system of the "revolving door" between government and businesses as a result.

With the government showing no signs of releasing its response committee chairman Tony Wright called Ms Smith to explain herself.

"I'd like to get the response to you as soon as possible. I really want to get it out before the recess," she said.

Ms Smith was brought into the Cabinet Office as the minister dealing with lobbying last month after Tom Watson resigned his post.

While clearly reluctant to be drawn on her views before issuing the official response, she did reveal she was "not entirely persuaded by the case for a mandatory register".

Parliament rises for the summer recess on July 21st.


Politics @ Lunch

Friday lunchtime. Your Inbox. It's a date.