Andy Coulson resigns as Downing Street Communications Chief, but he never should have been appointed

>David Cameron’s Communications Director Andy Coulson has resigned his job. He had been under growing pressure, as the New of The World phone hacking scandal refused to go away. This shouldn’t be much of a surprise to anyone, VN commented earlier this week that we thought he was on his way out.

David Cameron has said he is “disappointed” by Coulson’s decision, he also tried to convince him to stay. Cameron should though be questioning his own judgement in appointing Coulson in the first place. It isn’t that Coulson wasn’t qualified, or talented, – he was both, supremely so – it is just that this was always going to be an issue. In a new Conservative party, and a new Government, Coulson was the embodiment of an old and dangerous story. He may have resigned from the NOTW, but the actions of his journalists while he was in charge was still an albatross around Coulson’s neck.

Lots of names are being floated around for his replacement, including Guto Harris, George Pascoe Watson, and the BBCs James Langdale. Cameron’s office will have to work out how to regain the balance that was struck between Andy Coulson and chief policy wonk Steve Hilton that helped the party to appeal to a wide cross section of voters.

This resignation was a problem waiting to happen. You cannot have the person who is meant to craft your story being the story, and David Cameron should have known better.

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