Political scandals in the United Kingdom are commonly referred to by the press and commentators as " 'sleaze ". Sleaze A number of British political scandals in the 1980s and 1990s created the impression of what was described in the British press as "sleaze": a perception that the then British Conservative government was associated with political corruption and hypocrisy. This was revived in the late 1990s due to accounts of so-called "sleaze" by the Labour government. Party cash In particular, the successful entrapment of Graham Riddick and David Tredinnick Tredinnick in the affair|"cash for questions" scandal, the misconduct as a minister by Neil Hamilton Hamilton (who lost a consequent libel action against "The Guardian"), and the convictions of former Cabinet member Jonathan Aitken and former party deputy chairman Jeffrey Archer for perjury in two separate cases leading to custodial sentences damaged the Conservatives' public reputation. Persistent rumours about the activities of the party treasurer Michael Ashcroft furthered this impression. At the same time, a series of revelations about the private lives of various Conservative politicians made the headlines. Back to Basics John Major's Back to Basics to Basics campaign backfired because of media focus on its moral aspects, where they exposed "sleaze" within the Conservative Party and, most damagingly, within the Cabinet itself. A number of ministers were then revealed to have committed sexual indiscretions, and Major was forced by media pressure to dismiss them. In September 2002 it was revealed that, prior to his promotion to the cabinet, Major had himself had a long-standing extramarital affair with a fellow MP, Edwina Currie. "An end to Tory sleaze" Sleaze in the Labour Party Since their coming to power in 1997, controversies affecting the Labour Party (UK)|Labour Government such as David Blunkett's affair with Spectator editor Kimberly Fortier and financial scandals involving senior ministers and officials shifted the focus to sleaze within the Labour Party (UK)|Labour Party. There was some perception that sleaze may be endemic in Politics of United Politics as a whole. List of scandals 1890s *Liberator Building Society scandal, in which the MP Jabez Balfour was exposed as running several vast fraudulent companies to conceal colossal financial losses. Balfour fled to Argentina, but was eventually arrested and imprisoned. 1910s * Marconi scandal of insider trading by Rufus Isaacs, 1st Marquess of Reading|Rufus Isaacs, the Master of Elibank, and David Lloyd George, in which Herbert Samuel was falsely implicated. (1912) *Shell Crisis of 1915, which led to the fall of Herbert Henry Asquith's government during the Great War. 1920s *David Lloyd George|Lloyd George and the honours scandal. Honours sold for large campaign contributions (1922) * Zinoviev Letter (1924) 1930s * James Henry Thomas|Jimmy Thomas budget leak (1936) 1940s * Hugh Dalton budget leak (1947) * John Belcher Belcher corruptly influenced - led to Lynskey Tribunal 1950s * Crichel Down and the resignation of Thomas Dugdale (1954) * Suez Crisis (1956) 1960s * Soviet agent John Vassall working for Minister Tam Galbraith (1962) * Profumo Affair (1963): Secretary of State for War John Profumo had an affair with prostitute Christine Keeler (to whom he had been introduced by pimp and drug-dealer Stephen Ward) who was having an affair with a Soviet spy at the same time. 1970s * Corrupt architect John Poulson and links to Conservative Home Secretary Reginald Maudling, Labour council leader T. Dan Smith and others (1972-4): Maudling resigned, Smith sentenced to imprisonment. * George Patrick John Rushworth Jellicoe, 2nd Earl Jellicoe|Earl Jellicoe and Antony Lambton|Lord Lambton sex scandal (1973): Conservatives, junior defence minister Lambton is arrested for using prostitutes and Cabinet minister Jellicoe also confesses. * Labour MP John Stonehouse's faked suicide (1974) * Harold Wilson's 1976 Prime Minister's Resignation Honours|Prime Minister's Resignation Honours (known satirically as the "Lavender List") gives honours to a number of wealthy businessmen whose principles were considered antipathetic to those held by the Labour party (UK)|Labour party (May 1976) * Peter Jay's appointment as British Ambassador to the United States|U.S. by his father in law, the then Labour Party (UK)|Labour Prime Minister James Callaghan. At the time Jay was a journalist with little diplomatic *"Rinkagate": Liberal Party leader Jeremy Thorpe was arrested and tried for allegedly paying a hitman to murder his homosexual lover, model Norman Scott, while walking his dog on Exmoor; the hitman only shot the dog, Rinka. Thorpe was forced to resign due to his clandestine gay affairs, but was acquitted of conspiracy to murder. 1980s * Joseph Kagan, Baron Kagan, earlier ennobled by the Labour Prime Minister Harold Wilsons.