BBC Radio Suffolk have just announced that the under pressure David Ruffley has cancelled a long-standing appointment to be interviewed tomorrow (Friday) due to a “diary clash”. They confirmed half an ago that when contacted earlier in the week the diary clash had not been noticed. Suffolk voters will be disappointed at not being able to hear him explain his police caution. He won’t be able to avoid the media during an election campaign…
Nettle-sucker Helen Goodman has strayed from the Labour line on the reshuffle. She really hates Tories…
UPDATE: It’s gone.
A Labour Party spokesperson said:
“The Labour Party’s view is that David Cameron’s promises on increasing the representation of women are a sham. He said a third of all his ministers would be women. Fewer than one-in-four are. It is David Cameron who has failed.”
That doesn’t really add weight to Goodman’s apology.
I was wrong in what I tweeted about Tory women ministers and I apologise to them unreservedly.—
Helen Goodman (@HelenGoodmanMP) July 17, 2014
Guido has seen some terrible party fundraising emails in his time, but this one takes the biscuit. Most people on these mass marketing lists probably won’t open this email – purporting to be from Labour’s General Secretary – but it is highly likely that they will read the subject line. Rule one: never, ever repeat the charge.
From: Iain McNicol
Date: 17 July 2014 10:19:10 BST
Subject: FW: CONFIRMED: Labour want to raise your taxes
I don’t usually forward emails from Grant Shapps but this has made me so incredibly angry that I had to share it with you. It’s simply packed full of lies.
Have a read of it. If it makes you as angry as it made me, here’s something you can do — donate to our campaign fund so we can fight back.
As the election approaches, we face a choice: either we let our politics descend into smears and lies, or we give voters the fair, honest campaigns our country and our democracy deserve. The Tories have made it clear which side they are on.
General Secretary of the Labour Party
While dismissing a “Grant Shapps” email about the Harman tax row – sent yesterday to Tory members – as a pack of lies, Labour’s response offers absolutely no rebuttal and instead forwards the charges to tens of thousands of potentially wavering voters.
Axelrod wouldn’t put up with this shi..
Trinity Mirror to merge Sunday Mirror and Sunday People editorial teams, eight senior roles "may be affected"—
Mark Sweney (@marksweney) July 17, 2014
Next step is to introduce a single newsroom structure across all national news brands, ie: include Daily Mirror.—
Mark Sweney (@marksweney) July 17, 2014
The People’s Nigel Nelson is the longest serving political editor on Fleet Street. Where does this leave him?
Looks like the only thing anyone was drinking at breakfast was awkward juice…
David Cameron is to announce plans that threaten to pull Britain out of the European Court of Human Rights, Guido understands. Axed Home Office minister Damian Green wrote a paper preparing the government for a move towards withdrawal prior to him losing his job at this week’s reshuffle. Guido is told that the departure of Dominic Grieve as Attorney General paves the way for the government to toughen its stance on the ECHR. Nick Robinson was apparently the desired conduit…
Harriet Harman has bitten, writing to David Cameron accusing him of lying about her tax rise comments on LBC:
Dear Prime Minister,
You claimed at Prime Minister’s Questions today that “yesterday Labour announced – in an important announcement – that it is now their policy to put up taxes on middle income people”. This is not true. It is a lie.
In fact, as you surely know, since your own party circulated a transcript later, I had made a straightforward defence of our system of progressive taxation – the idea that people on higher incomes should – and do – pay more in tax overall than people on lower incomes. The full quote is here:
“But I would say Henry one of the things that I would argue that might, should probably make a really big difference to you is having a really good health service. Because you don’t want to have to pay for health insurance. You don’t want to have to pay to go private to get really good healthcare system. And I think that is not just for working class people it’s for middle class people as well. And the same with education, you know, really good school system that helps people from lower income families and middle income families as well so I think that actually the idea that there are some things that help people on low incomes and other that help people on middle incomes. Yes I think people on middle incomes should contribute more through their taxes. But actually they need those public services like the transport system.”
Harriet Harman, LBC, 14 July 2014
It is utterly clear that this is not a call for higher taxes, but a defence of a system which has previously commanded wide support, in which people on middle incomes contribute more than people on lower incomes.
While the principle of progressive taxation has been undermined in recent years, by your Government’s decision to raise VAT and to cut the top rate of tax for the highest earners, even you had not seriously questioned it until today.
Our politics, and the quality of public debate, requires that all participants, however much they may disagree, take part in good faith.
Harriet Harman MP
Deputy Leader of the Labour Party
Does anyone seriously believe Labour won’t raise taxes?
For some reason Harman left this part of the transcript out of her letter, presumably because it included another uncosted spending pledge:
“Well I think that is a very interesting point actually Henry because sometimes people feel that they pay in a lot over a long period of time working hard but when they suddenly need unemployment benefit if they lose their job that actually it is nowhere near enough to actually make them feel that it was worth it for them to contribute. And one of the things that we are talking about is making a higher rate the longer you’ve worked to recognise the contributions you’ve paid in if you lose your job.”
How are they going to pay for that, another bankers’ bonus tax?
The Speaker didn’t take too kindly to being reminded of the time he launched a four-letter tirade at the Clerk of the House by Michael Fabricant this afternoon. The chamber was stunned to silence and poor Bercow didn’t know quite how to respond as the expletive made its way into Hansard:
A Clinton-esque reply from Bercow, giving himself just enough wriggle room. Of course Fabbers was technically wrong that Bercow told Robert Rogers to “*.*.*.* off”. Guido understands the full quote was: “F**k off Robert, can’t you see we haven’t finished yet…”
The finishing touches to the reshuffle are being announced by No.10 this afternoon:
Anne Milton has been promoted to Government Whip.
Andrew Selous has been appointed PUSS at the MoJ.
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon is PUSS at DCLG.
Lord Ashton of Hyde has been made a whip in the Lords.
A Bold Plan to Reform Welfare | Ruth Porter
Clinton’s Busty Mistress Nicknamed ‘Energizer’ | Mail
Photo Analysis of Miliband’s Obama Visit | Buzzfeed
Dave Shouldn’t Have Moved Gove | Michael Howard
Bercow’s Nightmare | Alex Wickham
Miliband Abandons Britain to Meet Obama | Sun
Tequila-Quaffing Chat Show Plonker Clegg | Quentin Letts
Pragmatists v Romantics | Rachel Sylvester
I’m Sorry | Colin Brazier
Blair Was a Gradualist Prime Minister | Janan Ganesh
Why Blair Will Worry Ed | Steve Richards
Owen Paterson lifts the lid on the Green Blob:
“I received more death threats in a few months at Defra than I ever did as secretary of state for Northern Ireland.”