The Observer today has a front page story about Ashcroft’s involvement in William Hague’s trip to the US. But even given my concerns about Ashcroft, I fail to see the evidence produced as particularly worrying. We know that Ashcroft has flown members of the shadow Cabinet around before—David Cameron even took a flight back from the 2007 Rugby World Cup final in Paris on an Ashcroft plane. It also doesn’t strike me as particularly shocking that a Tory vice-chairman should attend some meetings on a visit to the US by his party’s foreign affairs spokesman.
Having said that I would be strongly opposed to Ashcroft taking any job in a Tory government until he has clarified his tax status. No one should be sitting in the legislature--let alone serving in the government--unless they are prepared to say that they are resident in this country for tax purposes.