Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Cast Iron Dave’s Pie Crust Promises

David Cameron, September 2007:Today, I will give this cast-iron guarantee: If I become PM a Conservative government will hold a referendum on any EU treaty that emerges from these negotiations.”

David Cameron, January 2013:  “If elected in 2015, a Conservative Government will hold an in-out referendum on a new settlement with the EU – stay in the EU on these new terms; or come out.”

David Cameron, 2010 manifesto: “We will raise the inheritance tax threshold to £1 million to help millions of people who aspire to pass something on to their children.”

David Cameron, yesterday: “[Inheritance tax is] something we’ll have to address in our manifesto. I believe in people being able to pass money through the generations and pass things on to their children.”

Why should we believe you this time, Prime Minister?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Labour Demand Answers Over Conflicted No. 10 Trade Envoy

Following Guido’s story about the PM’s trade envoy to Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan Charles Hendry taking a job with an oil company working in those two countries, Labour MP Sheila Gilmore has tabled two written questions to the Prime Minister demanding answers:

To ask the Prime Minister, whether the appointments of the hon. Member for Wealden as a) a consultant to Vitol Group and b) a Senior Adviser to Atlantic Supergrid Corporation Ltd were considered by the Advisory Committee on Business appointments, and whether any conditions were imposed by the Advisory Committee on either appointment.

To ask the Prime Minister, whether he considers there is any conflict of interest between the hon. Member for Wealden’s position as the Trade Envoy to Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan, and his paid employment as a consultant to Vitol Group.

Guido predicts Hendry will say his work with Vitol has nothing to do with Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan. Though given two of its main oil production interests are in two of the countries Hendry is trade envoy to, there are serious doubts about whether he can continue to do his government job without a conflict of interest arising. Is Hendry asking us to believe his role as trade envoy was not considered at all by Vitol when they decided to part with £60,000 for him to do 18 days’ work?

Monday, March 17, 2014

Tory Wars-i: Sayeeda Declares War on PM

The Speccie this evening reports that Dave laid into Gove at the weekend over his not unfair criticism of the PM’s old Etonian clique. Apparently “he was torn a new one and given a right royal bollocking”, and the PM told him he was “bang out of order”. Bit awkward then that Sayeeda Warsi is due on ITV’s The Agenda later tonight and has just done this:

“Michael was making an incredibly serious point that it can’t be right that the 7% of kids who go to independent school end up at the top tables, not just of politics, but banking, and law, and every other profession, and that what Michael wants to create is a first class, world class state system which means that in future years you will have more pupils from state schools, people like me, around the cabinet table, and in that I fully support Michael Gove.”

You gonna take that, Prime Minister?

Flappy Dave

Downing Street have worked hard to brush away the tennis and wine loving PM’s ‘chillaxing’ image, especially after a No. 10 aide once revealed Dave spent “a crazy, scary amount of time playing Fruit Ninja on his iPad”. They won’t be pleased to hear then that the PM has discovered another addictive iPhone game. Travelling back from an tech event in Germany recently, digital Dave learnt a few things on the plane from British entrepreneur Ben Medlock, who invented the SwiftKey app: “I introduced him to cult hit Flappy Bird. I’m proud to report he didn’t beat my score.” Practice makes perfect…

Thursday, March 13, 2014

WATCH: Israeli Journalist Calls Dave ‘Gordon’

Trip went well then…

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

MEPs Plot to Spike No.10’s Choice for EU Commissioner

Despite Downing Street getting to choose the candidate for EU Commissioner, the European Parliament has to approve their pick. Guido understands Number 10 is preparing for the possibility that the PM’s first choice will be spiked by MEPs as revenge for the British vetoing the 2011 treaty. So Dave faces a dilemma. Does he put forward his first choice as normal and risk seeing them vetoed, or does he hold back who he actually wants at the risk of a decoy first nomination scraping through? Andrew Mitchell will be watching closely.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Dave’s Barrister Brother Backed Legal Aid Cuts Strike

As Guido revealed in yesterday’s Sun column, Dave’s barrister brother was sympathetic to Friday’s strike over Government cuts to the legal aid budget that will leave some junior lawyers paid less than the minimum wage. Alexander Cameron’s case was not sitting on the strike day so he did not picket. But a source at his London chambers tells Guido: “He would not have gone to court even if his case had been sitting.”

Leaked Tory Candidates List Confirms Dave’s Women Problem
Less Than 1 in 3 Names on the List are Female

Guido has obtained the top-secret Conservative Party parliamentary candidates list – and it doesn’t look like the Tories’ “women problem” will be going away. As Guido revealed in yesterday’s Sun, less than a third of the names on the list are women, just 31%. This despite Cameron’s promise to get more women on board and him privately blaming Tory associations for not selecting female candidates, though actually it is CCHQ who have approved twice as many men as women for selection. Even then the overwhelming majority of safe seats which have already chosen candidates have been won by men. Labour’s Michael Dugher is scornful, he tells Guido: “Female Tories will still be in a minority and David Cameron has broken all his promises to do anything about it.” Stay tuned for more revelations from the leaked Tory candidates list…

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Business Turns on Tories

James Brokenshire’s first big speech as immigration minister went well then. First he landed the PM in it by accusing the “wealthy metropolitan elite” of encouraging mass immigration by employing cheap foreign nannies. Just like Dave did.

Now business leaders have piled in, Institute of Directors boss Simon Walker says of Brokenshire’s speech:

“It is feeble and pathetic to hear yet more divisive language from politicians on immigration.”

So Brokenshire has managed to alienate his boss and get business to turn on the Tories in one move. Slow clap.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Labour Point Finger at Llewellyn

Following Guido’s story this morning that Patrick Rock was subject to a second sexual harassment complaint from a junior Downing Street staffer, Labour have written to Cabinet Secretary Jeremy Heywood asking:

  • In total how many sexual harassment allegations have been made against Mr Rock, on what dates were they made, and in each case how were they dealt with and what was the outcome?
  • Was there a formal process for dealing with the sexual harassment allegations against Mr Rock, and what was the involvement of the Prime Minister’s Chief of Staff, Ed Llewellyn, in that process?
  • What other officials were involved? In your judgement, is it right for a political appointee to handle a sexual harassment complaint made by an official about another political appointee?

Firming up Labour sources this morning taking aim at Cameron’s chief of staff and Rock’s close friend, Ed Llewellyn. Don’t expect a reply any time soon…


Seen Elsewhere

What Will Happen if Scots Leave? | David Aaronovitch
Why Are Radicals Like Carswell Leaving Tories? | BBC
Danczuk: Rotherham Abuse Imported From Pakistan | Telegraph
Ashya King Case Shows How Authorities Get it Wrong | ConHome
The Carswell Show | Jon Craig
Cops Seized Journalist’s Phone to Out Whistleblower | Press Gazette
Chuka’s £2,500 Tax Avoidance Donation | Times
Another BBC Stitch Up? | David Keighley
Divided, Pessimistic Tories Expect Defeat | Alex Wickham
Labour Suspends Rotherham Council Members | Sky
PM Used Terror Crisis to Deflect From Carswell | Rachel Sylvester


VOTER-RECALL
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George Osborne rejects the Ice Bucket Challenge from Ed Balls:

“I’d rather pay the money to charity and pour cold water on his policies.”



Owen Jones says:

We also need Zil lanes.


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