Tuesday, July 29, 2014

HuffPo Bizarrely Equates Help for Heroes With Gaza Campaign

The political direction of HuffPo is becoming more niche every day, Mehdi Hasan divides his time between broadcasting on the Qatari government funded Al Jazeera channel and setting the tone of HuffPo UK’s coverage, which schizophrenically runs bikini-clad starlet stories next to Middle East coverage with a consistently anti-Israeli line. Last week they managed to combine the two issues by running a story attacking IDF soldiers’ girlfriends for sending selfies of themselves posing in their underwear with “I love IDF” slogans…

Al-HuffPo is covering itself in glory again this morning with a bizarre attack on the Help for Heroes charity for wounded soldiers. After England cricketer Moeen Ali was told he would be facing investigation for wearing “Free Palestine” and “Save Gaza” wristbands yesterday, a Mehdi minion writes for Al-HuffPo

“The ICC [International Cricket Council] should be braced for accusations of hypocrisy after they became the latest institution to embarrass themselves over the Gaza conflict. England bowler Stuart Broad revealed their Test shirts against India featured the “Help for Heroes” – the charity formed to help those wounded in Britain’s current conflicts – slogan.

In 2011, the England national football team were initially denied permission by Fifa to have poppies emblazoned on their home strip for a November friendly with Spain. Eventually, Fifa backed down and agreed a compromise with the Football Association that allowed the players to feature poppies on their black armbands to mark Armistice Day.”

The key difference being that the poppy campaign and Help for Heroes are charity campaigns to raise money for wounded soldiers and war heroes. “Free Palestine” is by definition a political statement. Not to mention that poppies and Help for Heroes support soldiers from the country for which Ali plays, rather than another country. Al HuffPo say the ICC should be “braced for accusations of hypocrisy”, but from whom?

Ruffley Resignation Raises Recall Row

The Recall measures announced in the Queen’s Speech would mean MPs on the Standards Committee, not local voters, will decide whether disgraced politicians should be booted out. David Ruffley’s announcement last night that he would be standing down at the election shows why it is crucial that parliament passes a proper Recall bill, not Nick Clegg’s fudge. 

Who pushed the Ruffley story and forced him to fall on his sword? Not his fellow MPs on either side of the House, who were either silent or actively trying to keep him out of trouble. The people saw things differently though…

Ruffley went mainstream because of the admirable work of women both inside and outside of the Tory party; from the Dean of St Edmundsbury’s devastating letter calling for him to quit; to the voices of women’s groups both locally and nationally, to the petition that amassed more than 40,000 signatures organised by an outraged woman. Guido understands 15 Tory women were going to publicly and openly protest Ruffley’s candidature tomorrow, some of them high profile. They were under immense pressure not to go ahead from within the party.

Ruffley will remain as the MP for Bury St Edmunds for ten months, earning more than £50,000 from his salary and pension contributions courtesy of the taxpayer when he should arguably be leaving parliament immediately. He cut a deal with the Tories and remains on board the gravy train. A Recall Bill that lets MPs decide whether their fellow MPs will face a vote is not going to work. David Ruffley shows more than ever why we need a proper Recall Bill to democratically boot out morally bankrupt politicians once and for all…

You can see all Guido’s stories about how the Ruffley story unfolded in full here.

Tories Map Ed’s Inadequacy in Labour Quotes
Interactive One Nation of Labour Criticism

This morning as Labour continue their summer assault the Tories are reminding everyone of the Labour Party’s own doubts about Ed Miliband with a new website, JustNotUpToIt.com:

justnotuptoit

The interactive map is populated with pins, click on a pin and a local Labour critique of Ed pops up. The map is, to coin a phrase, Ed’s One Nation Labour in their own despairing words. Have a browse here

Monday, July 28, 2014

BREAKING: David Ruffley to Stand Down at Election

UPDATE:

Chief Whip Michael Gove said:

“David Ruffley MP has given a huge amount to Parliament both on the Opposition Front Bench and as an outstanding member of the Treasury Select Committee. I am sorry that he will be standing down at the General Election in May 2015, but fully respect his reasons.”

UPDATE: 38,000 Sign Petition Calling for Ruffley to Resign

Senior members of David Ruffley’s Suffolk Tory association say they see nothing wrong with having a man who assaulted his girlfriend remain as their MP.

Do you disagree?

Then sign this petition calling for Ruffley to resign.

At the time of going to pixel over 33,000 others already have.

Add your voice here

UPDATE 5:00pm: 38,000 have now signed.

UKIP Steal Council Seat In Miliband’s Doncaster on 20% Swing

Guido would call Doncaster Miliband’s ‘backyard’, but given the Labour leader barely spends any time there, he will stick with ‘Ed’s constituency’. Either way UKIP are in the ascendency in Ed’s constituency, as proved by Thursday’s stunning Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council by-election that saw a 20.5% swing away from Labour in Edenthorpe.

UKIP took 41% of the vote to Labour’s 38%.

Suddenly Farage’s plan to hold UKIP conference in the area does not look so brazen…

Top Tory: Nothing Wrong With an MP Who Assaults His Girlfriend

Seven million listeners will have heard Jeremy Vine’s Radio 2 phone-in on David Ruffley this lunchtime, many in Bury St Edmunds. The discussion was most notable for the bizarre comments made by Bernard Sergeant, an important local Conservative figure. Asked if Ruffley should resign, Sergeant laughed and replied: “We do have these odd female organisations that look for equality and I think they’ve got it these days.” Pressed further by Vine on whether “you can have as a candidate a man who beats up his girlfriend”, Sergeant replies: “Well why not?”

Guido wondered if that is the official line, before he remembered there isn’t one…

Spooks and Tories Jet Off on Israel Junket

Fair to say the Conservative Friends of Israel trip this week might not be ideally timed. The latest conflict has not deterred a hardy half-dozen politicians, including former spy boss Baroness Neville Jones and Jack Lopresti, the army commando turned Tory MP, from jetting off to see what is going on for themselves. Also heading off on the junket are Edward Garnier, Andrew Percy, Guto Bebb and Bob Blackman. All expenses paid, natch.

It’s Official: Guido is a Feminist

Guido was tickled this morning by the words of Andrew Speed, the chairman of Bury St Edmunds Conservative Association, who has dismissed critics of David Ruffley as “minority feminist groups”. Guido has always believed that this is a minority feminist blog…

That said, you have to wonder what Refuge, the country’s leading domestic violence charity, think about being labelled “minority feminists”. Not to mention the growing number of Westminster staffers up in arms. Let alone the members of Ruffley’s own local party who are increasingly losing patience with their MP…

Bercow Faces ‘Cash for Access’ Accusations
Speaker Accepts Donation From Sally’s Security-Cleared Pal

John Bercow is facing accusations of ‘cash for access’ after Guido revealed he has accepted a donation from a businesswoman to whom he gave a parliamentary pass. Farah Sassoon, who is a close friend of Sally Bercow and is well known for her booze-fuelled exploits with the Speaker’s wife, was granted clearance by the Bercows allowing her to bypass parliament’s security checks. Handy for Farah, since she is a significant donor to the Labour Party; giving them £40,000 through her hotel reservations company.

What did the Speaker get in return for giving Farah unfettered access to parliament? Surely the £5,000 donation from her company Trust Reservations Ltd this month is completely unrelated. If this were any other MP this would provoke allegations of cash for access. Though surely Bercow as Speaker is squeaky clean and beyond reproach…


Seen Elsewhere

Polling Averages Trend | PoliticalBetting.com
Speaker Faces Questions Over Pass for Donor | Sun
Tory MPs’ Visit to Israel Condemned | Guardian
Labour Was Too Slow for the Squeezed Middle | FT
Papers Pan Cam’s Immigration Pledge | ConHome
Deane of St Edmundsbury? | Times
Pay Volunteers and They Become Cheap Labour | Jill Kirby
UKIP Fundraiser Was Jailed for Running Brothels | Times
Bercow Faces Probe Over Pass Mystery | Mirror
Harman Breaks Rules on Paying Staff | Express
Labour Whinge About Sandi Toksvig Joke | Mail


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John McTernan told Channel 4 News

“You can’t make an omelette without breaking a few eggs, you don’t win in politics without breaking legs.”



Rob Wilson says:

Without Predujice

Darling

What time will dinner be ready this evening?

Yours

Rob Wilson MP

In the interests of me I am placing a copy of this email in the public domain.


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