Wednesday, May 15, 2013

1.6 Mi££ion Reasons For Ed to Back a Referendum

Miliband’s decision to cast Labour as the anti-referendum party will have upset one multi-millionaire donor in particular. John Mills is the founder of the JML shopping channel and the most prominent Labour leaning co-chairman of Business for Britain, he is also the major backer of the new Eurosceptic Labour for a Referendum group.

He has called for “soul-searching and internal review” of Labour’s Europe policy, in no uncertain terms:

“While we differ on other policy areas, David Cameron should be congratulated for laying down markers on how the EU needs to change along the lines of flexibility and fairness to boost competitiveness… 

Mills gave £1.6 million worth of shares in his company to the Labour Party in January this year. Finally Ed finds some non-union support, with an agenda of his own…

UPDATE: Friends of John Mills say he is a Eurosceptic, however Labour for a Referendum is Euro-put-the-issue-to-bed-ist.

Glad we cleared that up…

Monday, May 13, 2013

No Such Thing As a Free Lunch

As Guido reported in his Sun on Sunday column, the Labour triumvirate of Tom Watson, John Spellar and Michael Dugher are being remarkably tight-lipped about what was discussed over lunch with Lord Ashcroft last week, and who picked up the tab. A friend points out that “Tom Watson’s credit card hasn’t been seen in 25 years” and Spellar is a notoriously “careful with his money” Yorkshireman. Presumably that means Aschroft made his first donation to the Labour Party by footing the bill.

And it’s paying off: the flirting continues this morning, with Ashcroft gleefully retweeting Watson’s digs at Gove and Watson laying on the praise for Ashcroft’s polling. It seems Watson can be bought off with food…

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Labour Expenses Piggy Tries to Run Again

Expenses trougher and Labour’s former Enfield North MP Joan Ryan has some nerve. In a letter to her local Labour Party seen by Guido, Ryan begs them for her support, saying she wants to run again in 2015: “we have to select the best candidate to win for Labour in Endfield North… now I’m asking for your support to become Labour’s parliamentary candidate”. Apparently with a straight face, she insists “had it not been for the changes to parliamentary boundaries we would still have a Labour MP in Enfield North”.

Definitely nothing to do with the fact that during the expenses scandal Ryan was exposed as having claimed £4,500 for work on her second home, having to pay back over £5,000 in mortgage interest the following year. Her wikipedia page was mysteriously edited at least ten times from inside the parliamentary estate in an attempt to remove details of her expenses indiscretions. For some reason no mention of any of this in Ryan’s letter. And certainly no apology. Her local party have given her short shrift so far, the final selection meeting is tomorrow…

UPDATE: Ryan’s ex-agent Chris Deacon has come out against her plans for a return:

“I think the membership feels that for us to win we need a fresh, new candidate to take the party forward.”

Friday, May 3, 2013

Reality Dawns For Ed’s Friends

As the extent of Labour’s thoroughly underwhelming day becomes clear, Ed’s friends are turning on him. George Eaton at the Staggers encapsulates the feeling:

“After a troubled month, which saw the first hints of a Tory recovery since the 2012 Budget, Ed Miliband needed a strong set of results to give him some political breathing space. But while far from disastrous, his party’s performance will only revive the question: why isn’t Labour doing better? Its main centre-left challenger is locked in government with a right-wing Conservative Party, the economy has barely grown since 2010 and the Tory brand has been comprehensively retoxified. Yet Labour still appears incapable of generating popular enthusiasm among those who should be embracing it. Rather than assuaging Miliband’s malaise, today’s results will only deepen it.”

The Beeb’s projected national share gives Labour just a 6% increase since the dark days of Gordon in 2009. As Mark Pack shows, Labour are the biggest losers from UKIP’s surge…

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Chuka Trashes His Past

Two-faced Chuka Umunna has been getting on his high horse about how terribly unfair private schools are at the Times CEO Africa summit today:

That would be the same Chuka Umunna who was deputy head boy of £4,700-a-term independent day school St Dunstan’s College. The same Chuka Umunna who says being privately schooled by the likes of Anthony Seldon “had a massive impact on me” as he began to “fly academically”. The same Chuka Umunna who says he wouldn’t rule out sending his own children to a private school. Presumably the local comp is a bit too trashy…

Cash for Equestrians
Steve Rotheram Swaps Questions for Racing Freebie

Whiny Steve Rotheram likes asking questions in the House about Aintree. He also likes free boozy days out at Liverpool’s premier race course. His question in 2011 was particularly friendly, by chance of course:

“As people will know, Aintree has world class facilities and race meetings. Does the hon. Gentleman agree that the levy [for bookies to help fund horse racing] is important even to racecourses at the top end so that they can continue to improve the racing that they offer, which will then attract tourism to cities such as Liverpool and contribute wider economic benefits to the sub-region?”

Earlier this month Rotheram was generously handed another two tickets for lunch and racing at Aintree worth £800. Guido awaits his next gushing question…

Monday, April 29, 2013

Awkward Ed Miliband Guru Moments

In yesterday’s Sun column Guido revealed an awkward moment Ed Miliband would be proud of for his American campaigning guru Arnie Graf. Hoping some of his Obama community organising magic would rub off this side of the Atlantic, Labour sent Graf door knocking with Tessa Jowell. When she later invited him along to her surgery, he was not so keen, awkwardly asking whether she might like to go with someone closer to her. Maybe a friend or family member for a hospital visit, Graf optimistically suggested. America and Britain, still divided by a common language.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Mary Creagh’s Lectures in Dodgy Attack Lines

Idiot of the day goes to Richard Benyon, the Environment minister and richest current MP who told poor families to stop wasting food this morning. You could always rely on Labour foghorn and Shadow Environment Secretary Mary Creagh to shoot herself in the foot with her response, however:

“Mums struggling to feed their families don’t need lectures on wrapping cheese from a Tory Government which has created a cost of living crisis with its failed economic plan.”

Roll back four years and then Labour DEFRA man Hilary Benn had a rather different attitude:

“As a nation we waste around £10 billion of food each year – a third of what we buy. Part of the problem is how food is labelled. Some 370,000 tonnes of food are chucked out each year after passing their ‘best before’ dates, despite being perfectly good, safe and edible. When you buy something from the supermarket it should be easy to know how long you should keep it for and how you should store it. Too many of us are throwing things away simply because we’re not sure, we’re confused by the label, or we’re just playing safe.”

Presumably it’s just Tories who aren’t allowed to lecture people, right Mary?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Galloway Endorses Physically Impressive Red Ed

Gorgeous George is enjoying himself this morning:

red ed“I want to see Ed Miliband as prime minister and the sooner the better. I thought he was quite impressive, physically and intellectually. I respected his father very much. He said we should do this again. Possibly now we never shall. I have always said that I love the Labour Party a lot more than those who led it. If Labour became Labour again, everyone on the left, including me, would have to reconsider their attitude. I’m too socially conservative for the Lib-Dems, but Vince Cable’s instincts on the economy are better than Ed Balls’. Ed Balls is the City’s man.”

That faint sound you can hear in the distance is Ed praying that he shuts up…

UPDATE:

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Imagine If Bryant Were Still a Tory

Chris Bryant caused a stir on Newsnight last night with a clumsy comment on immigration. Perhaps he was harking back to his days as a member of the Oxford University Conservative Association:

“It would be nice sometimes when you go into a British hotel if the receptionist was British.”

One might have thought Bryant would choose his words more carefully given the vigour with which he jumps on “offensive” comments from his opponents, such as  “pantomime dames”. Imagine the enormous hoo-haa Labour would be kicking up right now if Bryant were still a Tory…

Vid via @liarpoliticians

Seen Elsewhere

Boris is Right About Grammar Schools | Conservative Women
‘Obsolete’ Cable | Speccie
Why are Tories so Upbeat? | Alex Wickham
Clear Public Interest in Newmark Sting | Mirror
Boris Invites Farage to Join Tories | Guardian
RAF Too Run Down to Fight Islamic State | Con Coughlin
Osborne’s Personal Cuts Regime | Quentin Letts
Whoever Wins is Cursed | Janan Ganesh
Dave Will Never Be Forgiven if Ed Becomes PM | Trevor Kavanagh
What is Dave’s Big Message? | Tim Montgomerie
Voting UKIP Only Helps Ed | Boris


VOTER-RECALL
Find out more about PLMR


Mark Reckless told UKIP…

“We are more than a star on someone else’s flag.”



cynic says:

Can anyone help me? I went on holiday a week ago and returned to find someone has pulled out the stake and Gordon Brown is back and acting as Prime Minister. What did I miss? Has there been a snap election?


Tip off Guido
Web Guido's Archives

Subscribe me to:






RSS


AddThis Feed Button
Archive


Labels
Guido Reads
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,477 other followers