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William Hague dragged into Lord Ashcroft row

Former Tory leader William Hague has tonight been dragged into the Lord Ashcroft row amid suggestions that he has been aware of the deputy chairman's non-domicile situation for "a few months". There is also concern that at the time of Lord Ashcroft's peerage he gave assurances to William Hague which was interpreted as a willingness to become domiciled in the UK, hence liable to UK tax on worldwide earnings - something which did not happen.

While the vast majority of the UK population has shown relatively little interest in Lord Ashcroft's finances there is no doubt that the Labour Party will attempt to continue embarrassing the Conservatives for many days to come. It is the fact the situation has gone on for nearly a decade which is the greatest embarrassment to David Cameron and William Hague but at the end of the day it is worthwhile remembering that Lord Ashcroft has broken no laws and has a clean tax bill with regards to his UK earnings.

It will be interesting to see what revelations emerge from the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrat Party, both of which have members and donors who themselves are non-domicile in the UK. Lord Mandelson in particular is taking a big risk by continuing to question the position of non-domicile political figures.

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