Murdoch admits: there was a "cover-up"

News Corp head admits News of the World disguised phone-hacking.

An increasingly foul-tempered Rupert Murdoch has made several revelations during his testimony to the Leveson inquiry. But one, more than any other, stands out: his admission, for the first time, that the News of the World did "cover-up" phone hacking.

Here's that quote in full:

I do blame one or two people for that who perhaps I shouldn't name for all I know they may be arrested. There is no question in my mind maybe even the editor, but certainly beyond that someone, took charge of a cover-up which we were victim to and I regret.

Pressed by Robert Jay, QC, to say from where the “culture of cover-up” emanated, Murdoch answered: "the person I'm thinking of was a friend of the journalists, a drinking pal and a clever lawyer.

“And this person forbade people to go and report to Mrs Brooks or to James. That is not to excuse it on our behalf at all. I take it extremely seriously that that situation had arisen.”

News Corp chief Rupert Murdoch, his wife Wendi Deng and son Lachlan leave their London home earlier today. Photograph: Getty Images.

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.

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Tony Blair won't endorse the Labour leader - Jeremy Corbyn's fans are celebrating

The thrice-elected Prime Minister is no fan of the new Labour leader. 

Labour heavyweights usually support each other - at least in public. But the former Prime Minister Tony Blair couldn't bring himself to do so when asked on Sky News.

He dodged the question of whether the current Labour leader was the best person to lead the country, instead urging voters not to give Theresa May a "blank cheque". 

If this seems shocking, it's worth remembering that Corbyn refused to say whether he would pick "Trotskyism or Blairism" during the Labour leadership campaign. Corbyn was after all behind the Stop the War Coalition, which opposed Blair's decision to join the invasion of Iraq. 

For some Corbyn supporters, it seems that there couldn't be a greater boon than the thrice-elected PM witholding his endorsement in a critical general election. 

Julia Rampen is the digital news editor of the New Statesman (previously editor of The Staggers, The New Statesman's online rolling politics blog). She has also been deputy editor at Mirror Money Online and has worked as a financial journalist for several trade magazines. 

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