Having hounded David Blunkett out of office, then feigning sorrow at his passing, the Daily Mail has got its claws into Ruth Kelly, the new Education Secretary, and it’s quite subtle stuff.
Political commentator Peter Dobbie’s praise for her Catholic-based principles is supportive on the face of it, but read between the lines. “Ms Kelly has failed to turn up for votes on gay marriages and has made it clear that the age of consent in relationships is non-negotiable. She is anti-abortion and opposes stem cell research.”
You can take one of several messages from that: she lets her religion get in the way of rightful legislation; that her political ambition doesn’t allow her to express her beliefs; that she is a zealot not a representative of the people she represents in Bolton West. Damning with great praise indeed.
Elsewhere is Ruth’s photo alongside the headline “Ruth Kelly’s link to Da Vinci Code religious group.” She may (or may not) be a member of Opus Dei, but the link has been made. Time will tell as to how the notion is used to undermine her position.