cabinet secretary

Jim Pickard

Philip Stephens, the FT’s chief political commentator, reveals in his column this morning that a confidential paper is circulating in Downing Street suggesting that the government should consider in advance “if not a fully worked up Plan B then at least a series of possible stimulus measures that could be implemented were the economy to stall“. The paper is written by the cabinet secretary.

Here is a link to the column, which lays out some of Sir Gus’s suggestions to ministers.

Jim Pickard

Channel 4 have the tale tonight that Sir Gus O’Donnell wanted to quit in May but the coalition persuaded him to stay to ease the transfer. It’s a telling insight into the high reputation of the cabinet secretary (known as “GOD” for his initials) within Whitehall.

Sir Gus could now stay on for another year or two, by when he will be 60. In Channel 4′s phrase, “he does not intend to see out the next Parliament”. Read more