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Keep walking, Amber Rudd: Has she even bothered to read the files she’s carrying in this image?

First she said there were no deportation targets, in the wake of the Windrush scandal.

Then she said there were targets after all – she just didn’t know about them.

Now we see that Amber Rudd did know there were targets – she just lied to us all that she didn’t.

(Or she was so derelict in her duty that she signed off on the Home Office report mentioned below without reading it – an unforgivable sin for a secretary of state in the UK government.)

Read:

“Amber Rudd’s insistence that she knew nothing of Home Office targets for immigration removals risks unravelling following the leak of a secret internal document prepared for her and other senior ministers.

“The six-page memo, passed to the Guardian, says the department has set “a target of achieving 12,800 enforced returns in 2017-18” and boasts that “we have exceeded our target of assisted returns”.

“It adds that progress has been made on a “path towards the 10% increased performance on enforced returns, which we promised the home secretary earlier this year”.

“The document was prepared by Hugh Ind, the director general of the Home Office’s Immigration Enforcement agency, in June last year and copied to Rudd and Brandon Lewis, the then immigration minister, as well as several senior civil servants and special advisers.”

It took Ms Rudd more than eight hours to respond to the leak. She did so with a series of late-night tweets that suggest she is determined to keep going, despite having broken the Ministerial Code in such a serious way that she should have resigned already.

Here they are, together with a few comments on them by notable figures:

Jonathan Ashworth: “Hopeless. For goodness sake just resign.”

David Lammy: “Was it in your ministerial Red Box? Did you sign it off without reading it? If not does your office sign off documents regarding deportation without you reading them? Is deportation insufficiently important? What other documents does your office sign off without you reading them?”

Peter Stefanovic: “If a Labour Home Secretary had failed to read an internal Home Office report linking a rise in violent crime to a fall in police numbers, failed to spot systemic issues in Windrush scandal & was not aware of specific removals targets you would call on them to resign. TIME TO GO!”

Ms Rudd has her supporters. They are the usual suspects:

Here’s an interesting point, though – if Ms Rudd resigns, or is removed by her prime minister, she’ll have a chance to supplant Theresa May:

Interesting thought – and one to which we may return on Monday, or shortly thereafter, depending on what Ms Rudd says in her statement… if she lasts that long.

The Labour Party appears to be split (as usual) on the subject. Diane Abbott – the Shadow Home Secretary – tweeted: “1.3.c of the Ministerial code: “Ministers who knowingly mislead Parliament will be expected to offer their resignation to the Prime Minister.””

Sadly another branch of the Parliamentary Labour Party – the part that, I don’t know, joins a lying fellow member to form what is essentially a lynch mob for a fellow party member who has done nothing wrong but happens to be a member of an ethnic minority – had something else to say.

Miserable. Labour – the Labour that represents the interests of the whole of the UK rather than its members’ selfishness – has no common ground with anybody in the Conservative government. Not a single one of them. And those of us who know that had some hard words for Mr Woodcock and his ilk:

Fortunately Mr Woodcock belongs to an incresingly sidelined and irrelevant gang.

And Ms Rudd’s day is over. Whether she realises that today, tomorrow, on Monday or any time after that, won’t make muuch of a difference.