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David Meller: This Presidents Club trustee has already quit as a Director in the Department for Education; he won’t want to be penalised any more by an organisation – the Tory Party – that receives his donations.


Theresa May can’t show much anger towards the Minister for Children and Families for attending the un-family-friendly Presidents Club event because it might affect the Conservative Party’s revenue stream.

Two trustees of the disgraced organisation are major donors to the Tories.

If Mrs May kicks up a big fuss about it, they might decide to withdraw their financial support – and that would never do, would it?

In fact, Bruce Ritchie recently had dinner with Theresa May, which suggests that he has exerted influence on Tory policy in the past… Oh, but that never happens with these dinners, does it?

David Meller has already quit as a Director in the Department for Education, and will undoubtedly feel that he has already suffered enough (never mind what the hostesses at the club went through); he won’t want any more backlash either.

Sacking Mr Zahawi would present too clear a message that the Tories disapprove of the kind of establishment run by these two men.

And nobody donates to people who have attacked them.

… Or am I mistaken?

Charity Commission records show that the Presidents Club has three trustees – David Robert Meller, Harvey Soning and Bruce Ritchie.

Two of them are major Tory donors. Meller and Ritchie have given the Tories £222,273 – almost £70,000 of it in the past two years.

David Meller, who has just resigned as a board member at the Department of Education over the scandal, has given £18,773 to Tory HQ and individual MPs.

Bruce Ritchie has given some £203,500 to the Tories, according to Electoral Commission records.

His last donation was £50,000 – the minimum donation necessary to be part of the Tories’ Leader’s Group, which entitles members cash for access meals with Theresa May and Cabinet ministers.

A document published by the Conservative party shows Ritchie dined with the PM less than a year ago.

Source: Two Presidents Club trustees are Tory donors – and one recently had dinner with Theresa May | Political Scrapbook

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