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How Boris Johnson’s Partygate tormentor Sue Gray is now enmeshed in her own row

The Partygate investigator who has caused a political storm by taking a senior job with Sir Keir Starmer tried to prevent Rishi Sunak from vetoing Nicola Sturgeon’s controversial new trans law, The Mail on Sunday can reveal.

A leaked email shows that at the time Sue Gray was reportedly negotiating to become Sir Keir’s chief of staff, she argued within Whitehall that she was against the London government’s plan to block Scotland’s new gender recognition law found it ‘difficult’.

The bill made it easier to change gender and was supported by Labor in Scotland.

The move by Ms Gray, who led the Partygate inquiry into Boris Johnson’s behavior in Downing Street during the pandemic, has drawn the wrath of supporters of the former prime minister, who say it proves the inquiry was a ‘cynical joust’ of his political opponents.

Within hours of news about Ms Gray leaked on Thursday, Labor MPs Harriet Harman – who is investigating whether Mr Johnson misled Parliament about the parties – released a preliminary report saying that violations were “for the would have been obvious’ to Mr Johnson at the time.

A leaked email shows that at the time when Sue Gray (pictured) was supposed to be negotiating to become Sir Keir’s chief of staff, she argued in Whitehall that she had rejected the London government’s plan to pass Scotland’s new gender recognition law found it ‘difficult’ to block.

MPs will cross-examine Mr Johnson the week of March 20. If the committee finds him contemptuous of parliament, he could face sanctions, including suspension. London seat.

Last night, a friend of Johnson’s said that “it was obvious Sue Gray was fifth columnist all along,” while another called her “Sue Red.”

This paper has found that senior Downing Street officials in Mr Sunak’s administration, in addition to those working for Liz Truss and Mr Johnson, have been privately expressing their concerns about Ms Gray for some time – to the extent that in January an official surreptitious photo of Mrs Gray with an unidentified man at a breakfast meeting in a hotel close to Trafalgar Square to try and establish if she was in contact with Labour.

Others have speculated that Mrs Gray, who was the Cabinet Office’s second permanent secretary, could be ‘Redthroat’, the senior civil servant at the heart of the Downing Street operation suspected of leaking sensitive information to Labour, who the party then passed on to friendly media.

The stories include Mr Johnson’s plans to override the Brexit deal during negotiations with the EU, which were leaked during a delicate phase of the talks, and revelations about the renovation of his No. 10 flat, lobbying squabbles and his opposition to Covid lockdowns. A Tory source said: ‘She has also led the nominations team in the Cabinet Office, which means she has to decide who gets what important jobs. Candidates often have to indicate their political preference.’

No. 10 was in a debate in December over how to prevent Ms Sturgeon from introducing a bill to lower the age to 16 for children to apply to change their sex.

After Mr Sunak agreed he could invoke section 35 of the Scotland Act, which allows a veto over Scottish laws, Ms Gray emailed those discussing the legislation, saying: ‘I found reference to S35 difficult, but I found even more difficult the words about stopping the Bill. But as you say, this seems to have been agreed.’

A minister involved in the talks says: ‘It was strange. We tried to stop a piece of legislation that was dangerous for women and children and one of the top officials in the country tried to stop us. We couldn’t understand why.’

Mrs Gray and Sir Keir have known each other for over ten years and Mrs Gray’s son, Liam Conlon, has posed for photographs with him.

Mr Conlon, president of the Labor Party Irish Society, was photographed with Sir Keir in April 2020, the year before Ms Gray was appointed to lead the Partygate inquiry. They were pictured together again on March 14, 2022, two months before her report was fully published.

Mr Conlon also wrote on Twitter in November 2019 that he attended a football match with Ms Harman.

Sir Keir has declined to say when he approached Ms Gray to take over as Chief of Staff.

MPs will cross-examine Boris Johnson over the partygate scandal in the week of March 20

MPs will cross-examine Boris Johnson over the partygate scandal in the week of March 20

Former Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “It is time for an urgent inquiry into her relationship with Labour, Keir Starmer and whether privileged and confidential personal ministerial information has been illegally shared.”

A friend of Johnson’s said: ‘As a former Labor deputy leader, Harriet Harman is an openly biased judge. Going public, she says she thinks Mr Johnson “misled” MPs, saying he had “lied repeatedly”.

“This is a political show trial with an excessive bias that would make Stalin blush.”

Another friend said, “We thought we were working with Sue Gray, but it turns out she’s Sue the Socialist – Sue Red. If Boris had known she was going to be Starmer’s chief of staff, he never would have appointed her.’

Tory MP Jonathan Gullis said: ‘These further revelations show that Sue Gray appears to have had a significant connection with Labor for longer than any of us can imagine. It gives a bad impression that some officials will act as Labor henchmen. There must be an urgent investigation.’

Ms Gray declined to comment. But a friend said: ‘Sue worked as a civil servant with conscientiousness and great integrity for more than 30 years. She fearlessly gave advice and was respected by colleagues and leading politicians.’