But what Elliott couldn’t spin was this: according to his own account of the report, Vote Leave, the official referendum campaign that was partly funded with taxpayers’ money, looks to have committed what may be one of the biggest incidents of electoral fraud in Britain in more than a century. Back in March, when the Observer reported on compelling new evidence provided by Shahmir Sanni, a Vote Leave whistleblower, Gavin Millar, a QC at Matrix Chambers, an expert in electoral law, told us that this was of a scale and seriousness that simply hasn’t been seen in Britain in modern times.
Arguably, you need to look to the 19th century to find a parallel – a deliberate, premeditated overspend of nearly 10% of the entire campaign budget. But what we saw in the referendum surpassed what happened then in sophistication and complexity, if not scale. Because more than a century ago, a series of hugely corrupt elections led to a reform of our electoral laws: laws designed to control spending in our elections and which – with some updates – have largely stood to this day. But which simply no longer work.
Because when it is understood – it’s already been revealed of course – that the Remain campaign did as much an worse, what then?