Friday, September 7, 2012

Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss

If Grant Shapps’ first press release is anything to go by, not much has changed in the Party Chairman’s office over at CCHQ. Tory spinners are keen to point out that he has been kicking some arse in his first few days. Unhappy with the thumb-twiddling Corby campaign that he has inherited, the new Chairman has been sending out overly optimistic memos to all approved candidates compelling them to come and meet him on the front-line this weekend. “He’s not giving them much of a choice, it’s a clear sign of a new regime at CCHQ.” Same old lines being pumped out though…

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Sour Grapes For Corby Tories
Potential Candidate Not Posh Enough

Talking of Corby, Guido is picking up growing disquiet among local Tories – and not just because they are expecting a kicking in November. Corby Conservative council leader David Sims went rogue last week, slamming both Louise Mensch and the Tory campaign in his constituency:

“I will give her my full support but it’s going to be difficult. We can expect a protest against Louise, as we have to admit that she wasn’t seen as a great MP. There will also be a protest against the Government and, while the other parties have been campaigning, we have been twiddling our thumbs.”

It turns out Sims has more than enough reason to be angry. Guido hears that he was specifically asked to put himself forward for the prospective candidate shortlist by CCHQ as someone who was in-touch, well-respected and local, only for party bigwigs to tell him in no uncertain terms that he was no longer welcome. A source on the ground whispers to Guido that Sims was told that the Tory hierarchy wanted someone who could ‘identify with the Tory faithful from East Northamptonshire’. In other words the former bin-man was not posh enough…

Wind of Change in Corby

Writing in today’s Speccie James Delingpole has confirmed that he will run in Corby after all. Not for UKIP as previously touted, but as an anti-wind farm candidate:

“The stench from the wind industry and its many leech-like hangers-on is overpowering and it’s a disgrace that so few people are speaking up for the thousands of victims affected by it. But I am. I hereby announce my intention to stand in the Corby by-election as the anti-wind farm candidate. Not in my back yard. And not in yours either!”

5% to keep your deposit…

UPDATE:

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Bookies Slash Odds on Tory Corby Win With Strauss

Ladbrokes are offering 50/1 that Strauss steps up to the crease and is made the Tory candidate for Corby, with the former England captain 16/1 to beat Andy Sawford and win the seat. A Ladbrokes spokesman said: “If the Tories send Strauss into bat in Corby their odds of securing the seat will tumble“. Only KP running for the LibDems could stop him…

UPDATE: The punters are piling their cash on Strauss for Corby and he is now 25/1 to be the Tory candidate.

UPDATE II: Odds have been slashed again – now 16/1.

Corby Tories Back Strauss in Local Media

The local press in Corby like the idea of Andrew Strauss knocking Labour’s Andy Sawford for six, as does one local Conservative councillor they have quoted:

‘Corby borough councillor Rob McKellar said: “I couldn’t rule out voting for Andrew Strauss as a Conservative candidate if the rumours were to be true. I would like our next MP to be somebody who lives in the constituency and who has Corby and East Northamptonshire at heart.

But that is not to say a high-profile candidate couldn’t achieve this, while raising the profile of the area at the same time.”’

Howzat?

Andrew Strauss Could Stump Labour in Corby

Many have been wondering why England captain Andrew Strauss has quit international cricket. While it’s probably has more to do with his bad couple of years at the crease and major dramas in the dressing room, it’s well known that Andrew is a Tory and rumoured that he has an interest in moving into politics. He raised £25,000 for the party at a 2011 fundraiser…

With the Tories struggling to find a candidate for the Corby by-election, perhaps it’s time for Strauss to serve again.

Selection meeting is this Friday, could he rise from the Corby ashes?

UPDATE: Strauss has retired not only from international cricket, but from Middlesex too. Coincidently Corby the tourism website says “the area has a long cricketing tradition.”

UPDATE II: Others are circling:

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Labour’s Corby Candidate Conservative Conference Confusion

After getting caught short on the French riviera, Labour’s Corby candidate Andy Sawford will take a barely-earned break from the campaign trail next month. To speak at the Conservative Party conference.

Sawford will have a day’s respite from Tom Watson when he gives a speech to his lobbyist pals in his capacity as chief executive of well-funded think tank LGIU:

Don’t Menshn the by-election…

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

By-Election Watch: Lobbyist Reunion in Corby

Labour’s Corby campaign might have posed problems for Tom Watson and his team over the last few weeks, but there were smiles all round yesterday as two former public sector lobbyists enjoyed a reunion in the sun. The highlight was Labour chief whip Rosie Winterton posing with party candidate Andy Sawford as she opened Labour’s new campaign bunker. Cosy.

Yorkshire mafia footsoldier Winterton is a former employee of Connect Public Affairs, a lobbying firm with close links to the Labour Party. Connect currently employs ex-Unite trade unionist Tom Denney, Yvette Cooper’s former adviser Caroline Gordon, David Blunkett’s ex-researcher Emily Wallace and Gill Morris, described as “the best connected Labour lobbyist in the business“. Another former employee of this merry band of lefty lobbyists? One Andy Sawford…

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Labour Corby Campaign Cock-Up

Last week Guido revealed that Labour campaign chief Tom Watson had been busy massing the troops in Corby as party bosses seek to avoid a repeat of their Bradford nightmare. Watson might have dragged half of Labour HQ’s staff with him to Louise Mensch’s old constituency but their plan to hit the ground running has got off to a slow start. Back on the 9th August a helpful tweeter alerted Labour’s holidaying hopeful Andy Sawford to the fact that he had yet to set up a website for his campaign. Sawford promised he would get on the case:

Almost a week later Labour have sent out a press release encouraging constituents to visit their candidate’s brand new website, but when they do this is what they find:

Guido wonders what Watson and co have been up to the past six days…

Friday, August 10, 2012

Piri Piri Mili

Guido has already reported the efforts to which the Labour Party are going in order to hit the ground running in the Corby by-election. There is only so far the back-room operation can take things though.

Out on the stump events, and indeed pictures say it all…

Guido’s favourite anecdote so far is the report that Ed asked a group of teenage girls: “what can politicians do for you?“, to which they replied: “Get us a Nandos in town!“.

Finally a policy!


Seen Elsewhere

UKIP Reshuffles | James Forsyth
David Ruffley’s Future Under Discussion by Tories | BBC
The LibDem’s Jewish Problem | Jeremy Brier
Israeli Ambassador’s Letter to Clegg | Twitter
What Became of Cameron’s Big Society Network? | Indy
SpAd Reshuffle | PR Week
Clegg Under Pressure to Expel Ward | Telegraph
Labour’s Teachers Trained in the Art of Brainwashing | Jago Pearson
R.I.P. John Blundell, Former IEA Director General | Atlas
UKIP Hasn’t Gone Away | ConHome
Ward: I’d Be a Terrorist if I Lived in Gaza | Breitbart


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Sarah Vine writes of Esther McVey…

“McVey told Grazia that she hasn’t married or had children because she ‘never found anyone to wind her biological clock’ … If I remember rightly, half the current Cabinet would have cheerfully ‘wound her clock’ if she’d given them a glimmer of a chance.”



Flight Watch says:

Russia Today is a cauldron of bullsh*t. The only people that take it seriously are deluded conspiracy theorists. Other RT journos have resigned citing the same reasons.

It’s about as believable as Press TV, KCNA of North Korea or the Daily Mirror.


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