Kalvis Jansons (the chap who created the Gordon Brown resign petition on the No 10 petitions website which is now at over 70,000 signatures and rising) has e-mailed me this morning with some interesting information.
Apparently no new petitions are being allowed to be launched on the Number 10 website until Gordon Brown returns from his holiday on the 7th September (see below)
In case you can't read it, the text says:
Notice: Submission of new petitions will be closed until 7th September while the Prime Minister is away from Number 10. You can still sign any petition during this time.
That seems very odd to me. Whilst he is away, great decisions of state are being looked after by in turn Harriet Harman, Peter Mandelson, Alistair Darling and Jack Straw (on a sort of week long stand-in PM work experience job timeshare basis as far as I can tell). Yet none of them are deemed capable of giving the nod to petitions for the No 10 site.
I know that since the success of the Brown petition, Kalvis has had problems when enquiring about other petitions he would like to start. It seems like the No 10 operation has tightened the petitions criteria up in recent months.
If I was being mischievous I might suggest that the reason for the restriction above could be that Brown perhaps does not entirely trust his colleagues not to give the nod to even more embarrassing petitions....