Here’s the Fear for Osborne

Back in July the government won a vote to send £9 billion to the IMF by just 28 votes, the tightest margin yet for the Coalition government. Despite the best efforts of the whips some thirty-two Tory MPs rebelled against the government. With Osborne’s pledge today to increase British contributions to the IMF before the cash is sent on its way to Greece, an even trickier vote lies ahead:


Labour voted against the government last time and Guido can see no reason why they would change their vote next time. If you add the 81 EU rebels on the Tory benches to Labour’s vote the government will be defeated. There is some obvious panic in the Treasury as the realisation has dawned that if Ed Balls marches Labour through the no-bailout door followed by the Tory rebels, the government will lose. Excluding minor parties it will be 339 votes to 282 against more bailout cash.

There are more Tory €uro-rebels than LibDem MPs, yet it’s Clegg and the swivel-eyed Europhiles with their hands on the tiller…

Labour MPs’ Pilgrim Fightback
Called Union-Busting Tory MP “Prick” and “Twat”

It’s taken Labour a week to come up with a semi-coherent defence of taxpayer funding for trade unions. John Healey has taken to LabourList, on behalf of their paymasters, to defend the practice. The gist of his argument is that union reps do good things therefore it is a good thing. It completely fails to take into account that regardless of what good they do, why should we pay for it rather than the unions: representation of the workers is the key reason people pay to join unions, and their union subscription fees should be used to cover it. Any work time spent on union activity should be invoiced back the union. Anything else is back door corruption and a multi-million pound political subsidy from the taxpayer to the Labour Party.

But at least some in Labour Party seem to be trying to engage properly, which is more than can be said of the union heavies on Labour benches. When Aidan Burley’s adjournment debate speech rattled them last Wednesday, instead of constructive arguement, the Tory backbencher was shouted down, heckled and jeered by amoungst others Tom Blenkinsop, Ian Lavery and Steve Rotheram. All MPs with strong union funding ties.

When the mace went up after the debate, the tension was not dispelled. Lavery, who is PPS to Harriet Harman, called Burley “a prick” – something he did not deny when Guido asked him about it, simply saying instead that “I’m not denying anything… I’ve got no comment to make.” Guido has four witnesses willing to go on the record saying that Steve Rotheram said “You just love winding people up, don’t you, you twat”. An allegation that Rotheram vehemently denies:

“…in fact I was the peacemaker on the night (Blessed are the Peacemakers eh!) I admit that when another Member made a disparaging comment about Mr Burley I did say sarcastically to him that there wasn’t a Court in the land that would find against the accusation . I also told him that he wasn’t going to wind me up when he was shouting towards me “what are you going to do about it” in an aggressive tone. … I have spoken with my legal representative and will defend myself against this accusation and will have more than 4 Members to support what I ‘actually’ said.”

Guido guesses he’ll have to see Steve in Court then…

Ed ♥ Ellie 4 Ever

Tuesday night saw the Aneurin Bevan Memorial Lecture in Parliament, with Ed Balls taking to stage. Having been unable to convince any of his Shadow Cabinet colleagues to take on Labour’s famous-for-Twitter foghorn Ellie Gellard as a Political Adviser, she’s instead writing his speeches, despite her being officially recorded as a staffer to Kerry McCarthy. Guido hears that it wasn’t for want of trying though…

Gellard has maintained a behind the scenes profile despite ruining Labour’s manifesto launch May 2010. Regular readers will remember her “Gordon is fantastic” speech unraveling in minutes after it emerged that she had previously called for his resignation in less than flattering terms. Since then Gellard has been the Team Balls cheerleader and her loyalty was rewarded on Tuesday with Balls heaping praise on his young admirer:

“I am not going to start this lecture by quoting from the current generation of Labour greats who have paid tribute to Nye Bevan – but by quoting from one of the next younger generation of Bevanites. Because I have been helped in researching this lecture by a young Bristol graduate, Ellie Gellard, the young woman who Labour chose to introduce Labour’s last manifesto in a new hospital in Birmingham. And the name on Twitter she goes by? ‘Bevanite Ellie’.”

And then again:

“That is why, I argued, Nye Bevan deserves the title of Labour’s greatest hero. And what greater tribute to the great man than that he is still a hero today – his name evoked by a new generation to describe their approach to politics. Ladies and gentlemen – just ask Bevanite Ellie… Thank you”

Enough to make a young girl blush…

A Very European Coup

Papandreou is said to be on his way to meet Greek President Karolos Papoulios to offer his resignation.

Greece will apparently get an emergency coalition government.

Knifed for daring to give the people a say…

Watson Criticises Sam & Dave’s £30,000 Refurbishment
Labour MPs Tom & Iain Claimed £100,000 for Lavish Flat

Former Minister for Dirty Tricks Tom Watson thinks he can redeem his past sins on the back of pummelling Murdoch. The media are too terrified to say a negative word about him, so not for the first time it falls to Guido to highlight some hypocrisy ignored by the craven Old Media. A Labour Party press release in Watson’s name yesterday bleated:

“At a time when David Cameron is squeezing the income of millions of hard working families, he has decided to show off his grace and favour accommodation which he has lavishly and unnecessarily refurbished at the taxpayers’ expense. £30,000 of taxpayers’ money was reportedly spent on refurbishing the flat – more than most workers earn in a year… This is blatant hypocrisy and shows just how out of touch Cameron is.”

What our Tommy fails to mention, “wilfully” you might say, is that the refurbished flat will last far longer than Cameron’s premiership and will remain the property of the people. Unlike someone else’s lavishly fitted out residence…

The personal flat that Watson shares with fellow former Minister Iain Wright has seen them claim over £100,000 for refurbishments and such like for their pad including their shares of the legal costs involved in buying it, as well as the fees to buy the freehold. Unlike the PM he will be able to sell and keep the profit from his taxpayer feather-bedded nest. Interesting to note that Watson is suddenly willing to bring Cameron’s family into play. Given that the Watson clan have collectively taken £300,000 off the taxpayer you might wonder whether Tom is really one to be criticising anyone…

Osborne Backtracks

With the Greek government splitting on the referendum promise last night, today’s G20 summit is going to be even messier with the prospect of a snap Greek election now not out of the question. Papandreou says the referendum is about how the bailout, and the conditions that come with it, could be fed to the Greeks.

What is clear is the European political elite wants more bailout cash…

Two weeks ago Osborne told the Commons:

“Britain chose not to join the euro and the British Prime Minister has fought hard to get Britain out of the bail-out fund to which the previous Government signed us up. I want to make it clear that whatever the Commission President says, British taxpayers will not be contributing to the eurozone’s bail-out of Greece—full stop.”

Yet overnight we learn that Britain is gearing up to give more money to the IMF in a futile effort to try to keep Greece in the Euro. Surely this is a change of tune from just last week when Osborne said:

“Britain will not be putting money into the bail out fund either directly or through the IMF… the IMF exists to support countries, it does not exist to support currencies. The IMF contributing money to the eurozone bail out fund, no; Britain contributing money to the eurozone bail out fund, no. That is Britain’s clear position.”

We’ll be sure to believe you next time you make Britain’s position clear, George.

George Osborne to Parliament two weeks ago…

“Let me be clear, whatever the Commission President says, British taxpayers will not be contributing to the €urozone’s bailout of Greece. Full stop.”



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