DAMIAN Green became Britain’s second-most powerful politician on June 11, as Theresa May’s government hung by a thread.
It marked a stunning comeback for the man fired by David Cameron from the ministerial middle ranks in 2013.
His connections to the PM extended back to their days at Oxford in the late 1980s, when his now wife Alicia was in Mrs May’s geography class.
Mrs May turned to the ex-BBC journalist at her lowest ebb, emotionally destroyed from her election blow-up.
She limped on to the autumn party conference season — when news of disgraced Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein was initially greeted as a welcome distraction.
But the fall of sexual harassers in the wake of Weinstein was the clock that started ticking on Mr Green.
Three weeks later The Sun revealed a secret WhatsApp group of Tory women warned of sex pests and sleazy ministers at Westminster.
Days later a spreadsheet of Westminster bad boys named Mr Green as being “handsy” and cited previously-denied claims he had joined a website for extra-marital dating.
It sparked a week of chaos in Westminster that led to MPs on all sides of the political divide being suspended and investigated for sex sleaze.
On November 1, Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon was the first to quit amid a slew of claims he was inappropriate to women.
That night a nuclear chain reaction that would end Mr Green’s career was sparked by a Tory activist.
Kate Maltby, 31, claimed Mr Green — a family friend — touched her leg in a bar and sent her sexually suggestive texts about her in a corset.
She said he told her his wife was very understanding before he “fleetingly” brushed her knee.
Claims by friends of Mr Green she may have mistaken his hand for a tablecloth fell apart when it emerged the pub had bare tables.
The next weekend Mr Green’s long-running vendetta with old hands from Scotland Yard reignited.
Coppers went public to say they had found porn on his office computers while looking for evidence that he was behind damaging government leaks.
But Mr Green said the claims were untrue and had never been put to him.
It was this aggressive public statement, tweeted late at night, that was to seal his fate.
When he began to change his story, many suspected his days as a minister were numbered. Seven weeks of probing by Whitehall sleaze watchdogs found his denials to be untrue.
The coppers forced to apologise after being found to be heavy-handed during the raid had got their pound of flesh.
In the end, it was not the original misdeed that ended Mr Green’s career but the lies he told to cover them up.
He had left his old friend with very little choice.
A comeback over almost as fleetingly as it began — in one of the strangest political resignations of the modern age.
DAMIAN Green’s sacking comes after months of turmoil this autumn — stemming from his arrest while a shadow minister nine years ago.
NOVEMBER 27, 2008: Mr Green is held for nine hours on suspicion of conspiring to commit misconduct in a public office. His home and offices in Kent and Parliament are searched.
OCTOBER 31: Tory activist Kate Maltby, 31, accuses Mr Green of fleetingly touching her knee. He says the accusation is completely false.
NOVEMBER 2: Pals of Damian Green claim Ms Maltby may have mistaken his hand for a flapping tablecloth.
NOVEMBER 3: It is revealed there are no tablecloths at the pub in Waterloo where the incident reportedly took place.
NOVEMBER 4: Mr Green says the suggestion that porn was found on his computer in 2008 was completely untrue.
NOVEMBER 6: Ex Met chief Bob Quick calls on Mr Green to retract “hurtful” allegations he lied about the porn find.
NOVEMBER 11: Mr Green says “no allegations about the presence of improper material on my parliamentary computers have ever been put to me or the parliamentary authorities by the police”.
NOVEMBER 17: He changed his story again to say he never viewed porn on computers removed from his office.
NOVEMBER 18: The Sun reveals the porn would have been illegal had it been discovered weeks later.
DECEMBER 1: A spokesman insisted Mr Green had never changed his story, saying: “From the outset he has been clear he never watched or downloaded pornography on computers seized from his office.”
DECEMBER 20: Green is summoned by the PM at 6.30pm and ordered to resign after the Cabinet Office report found that statements made on November 4 and 11 were inaccurate and misleading and fell short of the ministerial code.
The report also found Ms Maltby’s account to be plausible but could not reach a conclusion.
https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.thesun.co.uk%2Fnews%2F5185697%2Fharry-cole-comment-rise-and-fall-of-damian-green-resignation-porn-scandal%2F&text=Harry%20Cole%3A%20The%20rise%20and%20fall%20of%20one%20of%20PM's%20oldest%20pals%20Damian%20Green” target=”_blank” title=”Click to share on Twitter