A deleted Times article alleged Boris Johnson tried to gift Carrie a £100K Foreign Office job

If you were wondering whether the government would be on its best behaviour in the run-up to this week’s two crucial by-elections, the answer seems to be a resounding NO.

The New European reported on a political story published on page five of the Times that was pulled from subsequent pressings and from the website.

Here’s how the story – first touted in Lord Ashcroft’s biography of Carrie Johnson, First Lady: Intrigue at the Court of Carrie and Boris Johnson – appeared in the paper.

“The Johnsons have not taken legal action over the book.”

The Times journalist who wrote the piece, Simon Walters, is confident his report was accurate.

The mystery of why the story of Johnson’s alleged attempt to misuse public funds in the same way he was accused of doing with his other mistress, Jennifer Arcuri, has vanished from the Times calls into question the freedom of the press – a point picked up by some tweeters.