The refusal of Prime Minister David Cameron to order an inquiry into the conduct of his culture secretary demonstrates that he is "incapable of doing his duty", Labour leader Ed Miliband has alleged.
On 30 April 2012, after Speaker John Bercow granted an urgent question on the conduct of Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt during the attempted takeover of BSkyB by News Corporation, Mr Miliband told MPs why he believed Mr Hunt was in "clear breach" of the ministerial code.
Firstly, Mr Hunt had failed to take responsibility for the actions of special adviser Adam Smith, Mr Miliband said, because Mr Smith had lost his job over the extent of contact between his department and News Corp as it pursued its takeover bid but Mr Hunt was still in his post.
Secondly, Mr Hunt had misled the House of Commons when he said that he would publish all the exchanges between the department and News Corp, because the Leveson Inquiry had revealed previously unpublished communications.
Finally, News Corp had been handed details of a Commons statement by Mr Hunt before it had been revealed to MPs.
Mr Miliband demanded to know why "the prime minister stands by and does nothing" in response to this evidence.
But Mr Cameron dismissed the claims as "weak and wrong", arguing that Labour was guilty of using the "Leveson inquiry for party political purposes".
He vowed to "take action" if new evidence emerged of a breach of the code, but said that on the strength of the arguments he had heard so far he had concluded that a separate investigation into Mr Hunt's conduct would "duplicate" the inquiry and was "neither necessary nor right".
Mr Cameron's position was met with incredulity from opposition backbenchers, with former Home Secretary Jack Straw arguing that Mr Hunt's behaviour demonstrated a "palpable dereliction of duty".
The PM received a string of supportive comments from his own MPs.
Former Conservative cabinet minister Peter Lilley pointed out that the independent adviser on ministerial interests did not have evidence-gathering powers.
Tory MP Nicholas Soames declared that it would be "wrong to rush to judgment".
But Lib Dem deputy leader Simon Hughes said that he now believed referrals to the adviser on ministerial interests should be done "independently and not at the discretion of the prime minister of the day".