Fighters and Quitters

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It is often said that the first rule of politics is never to resign. It seems, however, that Britain’s leaders have all too often failed – or refused – to heed this sage advice. Fighters and Quitters charts the scandals, controversies and cock-ups that obliterated dreams of high office: from the ex-minister who faked his death in the 1970s, to Geoffrey Howe’s plot to topple Margaret Thatcher in the 1990s, Chris Huhne’s journey from despatch box to jail cell in 2013 and up to Damian Green’s demise in the `Pestminster’ furore of 2017. Then there are the sex and spy scandals that heralded doom, from peers busted in bed with prostitutes, to MPs caught cavorting in public parks and, of course, the infamous Profumo affair. Who jumped and who was pushed? Who battled to keep their job and who collapsed at the first hint of pressure? Who returned, Lazarus-like, for a second act? From humiliating surrenders to principled departures, Fighters and Quitters lifts the lid on the lives of the politicians who fell on their swords.