Friday, December 9, 2011

Guidogram Going Out Shortly

Subscribing to the Guidogram makes sure that you get emailed Guido’s weekly round up of the week. Thousands of Westminster followers get it every week, John Rentoul never misses it. Join him and subscribe to the Guidogram, free, to keep in the loop. It is going out shortly…

You’re either in front of Guido, or behind…

He’s Got Some Nirj

Flamboyant Tory MEP and all round nice guy Nirj Deva is standing for President of the European Parliament. Given he was born in Sri Lanka and was only the fourth Asian-born person to be elected to the Commons, as well as being  the first Asian-born Tory MEP, some of those names supporting his bid look a little odd:

Despite standing on a multicultural platform, Nick Griffin is backing him. This isn’t all the people supporting Deva, (each grouping would have a different form,) but Guido hears the Tories are threatening New Europe Online, who broke the story, demanding they take said scan down. All very odd…

Friday Caption Contest (Talk to the Hand Edition)

Lobbyists’ Umbrella Group Splits

We have in the past covered the lobbying world’s attempts at self-regulation. The most ardent opponent of a statutory register was Francis Ingham of the widely discredited PRCA trade body, he was instrumental in getting rival lobbying and spin trade bodies CIPR and APPC to join up under the UK Public Affairs Council banner to voluntarily produce a joint register of lobbyists. Guido suggested it might be simpler to just require lobbyists to wear leper’s bells.

Ingham has now performed a volte-face and come down on the side of a statutory register.  His email to Elizabeth France, the first and probably last Chairman of the UK Public Affairs Council landed in Guido’s inbox this morning:

From: Francis Ingham

Date: Fri, 9 Dec 2011 10:44:04
To: Liz

Subject: RE:

As it happens Liz, I was about to email you the text below. Happy to talk if you’d like:

Dear Liz

It is with regret that I write to inform you that we are resigning with immediate effect from UKPAC.

I understand that this will be unwelcome news, and I apologize for that fact.

My Board has concluded that a statutory register is the correct public policy choice for the Government to make. It has also concluded that on the basis of UKPAC’s performance over the past year, UKPAC simply is not a credible body to hold that register.

We have come to this conclusion with regret and after considerable debate. The continued inability of UKPAC to deliver a timely, comprehensive and accurate register is an embarrassment to the whole industry. Having founded UKPAC alongside the CIPR and APPC, and having spent a considerable amount of time and money supporting it, we regret the fact that it has failed, but we are clear that this failure is manifest and irreversible.

We have today written to the Cabinet Office, making them aware of this decision, and urging them swiftly to introduce a statutory register, held by an independent body, to run in parallel with the Codes of Conduct that exist already within the industry. We will also this morning be notifying the press, and sending them a copy of this formal note of resignation.

I should like to thank you for the effort you have put into UKPAC over the past year, and personally wish you well in the future.

Yours sincerely

Francis Ingham

Francis Ingham
Chief Executive

Self-regulation looks dead. They brought it on themselves…

Brillo’s Rave

The Right People are Upset

Ben Brogan reports the French fury:

“…the French are very angry – one French diplomat says that Britain is acting “like a man who wants to go to a wife-swapping party without taking his own wife”. So too are the Europeans. The FT quotes an EU official who says “this is going to cost the UK dearly – they have antagonised everyone”

Jon Snow is watching everything he believes in slip away:

The LibDem MEPs are raging:

And the man who failed to build alliances in his own family thinks people want to hear his view:

Needless to say the Guardian is incandescent. What a lovely morning…

Europe Isolated


Seen Elsewhere

Liz Kendall For Leader | Indy
Bashir Booted Out By Respect | Respect
Americans Try Haggis | Guardian
Page 3 and the Art of the Self-Pity Statement | Guardian
Steven Woolfe For UKIP Leader? | Asa Bennett
Mohammed — in Pictures | Speccie
Leon Brittan’s Accusers Must Show Their Evidence | Dan Hodges
New Saudi King Renames Roads While Body Still Warm | TechnoGuido
In Davos, Carrying a BlackBerry is a Status Symbol | Business Insider
New Labour in Peep Show Quotes | Telegraph
Here is What a 7 Way Debate Sounds Like | BBC


Find out more about PLMR AD-MS


George Galloway says of his former Respect candidate the UKIP MEP turned Tory, Amjad Bashir…

“Clearly Bashir does not have any real political principles or commitment, only naked opportunism and self-interest. He represents the revolving door principle in politics. The Tories are welcome to him because he will cause them embarrassment. Fortunately Respect was able to act before he did it to us.”


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