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David Cameron’s business transactions are getting attention

LONDON—Until last month, David Cameron was known for a major event: In a referendum held in June 2016, the United Kingdom voted against the European Union, triggering a political controversy. The earthquake overthrew his position as prime minister.

Now, Mr. Cameron is on the headlines of other news: the collapse of a fast-growing Anglo-Australian financial company. His lobbying on behalf of Greensill Capital did not seem to violate any laws, but it added another stain to the already incompatible legacy.

With the help of Mr. Cameron, who worked for the company, Greenhill̵

7;s contacts with senior British officials sparked a boisterous debate about the rules of lobbying by the former leader. Critics say this is far from enough. This also brings a recurring theme in the UK into a new focus: the challenging afterlife of the British Prime Minister.

From Margaret Thatcher (Margaret Thatcher) to Tony Blair (Tony Blair), the residents of 10 Downing Street often struggled after leaving the office and suddenly transitioned to private life, which left them without the shackles of power and clarity There is almost no financial support for its public role. Analysts say this can cause trouble for politicians who are used to privilege and influence.

According to the “Financial Times” report, in Mr. Cameron’s case, he started working for Greensill Capital in 2018, and the paper stated that he would receive no more than US$70 million in stock options. The failure of the company made those people worthless. The newspaper also reported that Mr. Cameron traveled to Saudi Arabia with the company’s founder Lex Greensill, where the two were stationed with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (Mohammed bin Salman) Together.

The Times of London reported that Mr. Cameron sent a text message to Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak, urging him to approve a loan to the supply chain financing company Greensill. Mr. Sunak did not act as required, but there are still questions as to why the company can obtain so many access rights.

Mr. Cameron did not respond to a request for comment sent through the book publisher HarperCollins, which has been forwarded to his office.

The collapse of Greensill has caused widespread repercussions around the world, and the business empire of the steel tycoon Sanjeev Gupta, the most harmful in Britain, has aroused great repercussions in the UK. Given the huge stakes involved, Mr. Cameron may eventually only play a cameo role in global dramas. The restrictions on lobbying by former officials apply to outside lobbyists, not those who work as employees of the company.

Bronwen Maddox, director of the Institute of Government, a think tank in London, said: “He didn’t break any rules. That’s the problem.” The influence seems to be wrong. After the prime minister leaves office, more clear rules need to be formulated over a longer period of time.”

Despite all the doubts about Mr. Cameron’s dealings (not to mention his miscalculation of Brexit), he did not cause many people in Britain to remain hostile to Mr. Blair with the support of the Iraq War. Many media reports have portrayed Mr. Cameron as a decent person with poor judgment.

Ms. Maddox said that his case emphasized: “The UK should do more to help prime ministers live a better life.”

Unlike the former president of the United States, the former president of the United States has taxpayer-funded offices and can be busy building a presidential library on his own, while the prime minister has almost no way of soft landing after leaving the office. The ups and downs of British politics mean that many people have been defended and become the helm of nuclear power for a while. Next, exiled to the backyard of the parliament.

A few hours after Mr. Cameron announced his resignation, the British voted by a narrow margin to leave the European Union. This was the result of his opposition. When he appeared in Congress for the last time, he announced: “I was the future”. This was his mocking of Mr. Blair. At that time, Mr. Cameron was the new leader of the Conservative Party and Mr. Blair was the Prime Minister of the Labor Party. This is a creepy scene. The minister is in the twilight of his career.

“The Guardian” columnist Simon Jenkins said: “When you are in politics, every day is exciting or overflowing.” “Then you go out, almost always because of a big mistake. You can do nothing, nothing can do. “

Mr. Cameron was 49 years old when he left office. He wrote a memoir and reported an advance payment of £800,000 (US$1.1 million). He joined multiple boards of directors and became the president of Alzheimer’s charity. He regularly plays tennis in a club near his home in West London. In 2017, Mr. Cameron’s wife Samantha started her own women’s fashion business.

Mr. Cameron is a highly educated graduate of Eaton and Oxford University, and his father is a stockbroker. Mr. Cameron got rich by traditional standards. But his wealth is not as good as that of Blair. Blair has accumulated real estate and established a profitable consulting business. Mr. Blair’s fundraising activities have also attracted criticism, especially his work on behalf of the authoritarian government of Kazakhstan.

Mr. Cameron’s friends described him as prosperous in the speaking circle and didn’t care about his financial situation. In a “diary of a congressman’s wife”, Sasha Swire, the wife of former Conservative MP Hugo Taikoo accounted for rumors in the social circle of the Conservative Party. Taikoo wrote, in 2017, Samantha’s Business “is taking off, and Dave is making a lot of money.”

Ms Taikoo added: “He said that every time he looked for a loophole to hide it, he would realize that George had closed it and laughed.” He was referring to George Osborne, he was Came Mr. Lun’s Minister of Finance.

However, the earning power of the former prime minister is much lower than that of the former president. Barack and Michelle Obama signed a $65 million multi-book deal with Penguin Random House and signed a multi-million dollar production contract with Netflix. Bill and Hillary Clinton’s revenue from 2007 to 2014 was $139 million, mainly from speeches and books. George W. Bush’s speech also earned tens of millions of dollars in revenue.

Jenkins said that just like the president, the prime minister is accustomed to interacting with very wealthy people, leading them to question “Why should they become former prime ministers when they could have become a wealthy tycoon?”

Not everyone who vacated Downing Street is struggling. Ms. Maddox said that John Major is arguably a senior politician commentator, more successful than when he took office. Theresa May, following Mr. Cameron, resigned in 2019 after failing to reach a Brexit deal. She stayed in Parliament as a backbench member of the Conservative Party and stepped up the debate at a critical moment.

Charles Moore, the author of Mrs. Thatcher’s biography, said: “This is the right informal system.” “If you can’t get a majority in the House of Commons, then you’re out. It’s democratic, and then you should With a little help from the immediate transition, walk your own way in the world.”

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