Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Lembit for London

There is a LibDem establishment campaign to prevent Lembit Öpik becoming their candidate for London Mayor. This is a mistake. The LibDems are likely to be annihilated in the Mayoral race if they put forward a nonentity candidate.

With Lembit they will get media coverage in what will be a battle of strong personalities, without him they will be ignored. Like Boris and Ken, Lembit has single-name recognition, he is media friendly and will hold his own in hustings. If the LibDems choose anyone else they will be shooting themselves in the foot.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Nick Agrees With Dave

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Why the Leicester LibDem Was “Resigned”

Just six days after being selected to fight the Leicester South by-election for the LibDem’s Parmjit Gill declared:

“Given much reflection and after talking with my family, it is with regret that I have decided to stand down as a candidate for the by-election. I remain committed to the people of Leicester and am proud to represent the Liberal Democrats, but I have a very young family and I fear the toll that fighting the by-election with all the commitment and dedication it deserves would be too much.”

Gill was the MP for the seat after the 2004 by-election, but lost it in the 2005 election. Despite being a MP for just under three hundred days, he managed to rack up a huge £185,089.00 in expenses. A glorious £682.98 per day on top of his salary.

But it gets murkier. The internal LibDem Returning Officer for the 2005 General Election selection process, won by Gill obviously, sent the following memo to Cowley Street. It mysteriously reappeared in the comments section on LibDemVoice in the last couple of days:

“I think it is apparent that there are a large number of members, mostly if not wholly from the Sikh community, who have a strong personal loyalty to Parmjit Gill, even though some of them don’t seem to like him very much, and may not actually share the aspirations of other members. There are some anomalies in the membership: there were two dead people (who had been dead for over a year) on the list of 88 members whose subscriptions were renewed by telephone last April using Parmjit Gill’s credit card. There are also two people who have, according to Sumal Fernando, given him a signed statement, which he has passed to me, which states that they are not Liberal Democrats and have never been members of the Party, but their names are on the same list. There is some suspicion that some members are not in possession of membership cards, and have not themselves paid a subscription.”

Or maybe he just completely forgot he had a young family before he put himself up for selection again…

UPDATE: Word is that the powers that be at Cowley Street told Parmjit to “quit or be fired”.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Laws and Gove Find One Voice

Yesterday’s Spectator event “The Schools Revolution, One Year On” was an opportunity for Gove to try to sell the rapid strides he has made in education reform. It was also an opportunity for David Laws to further his attempts at a political rehabilitation. Despite fighting each other in the shadow education briefs for their respective parties, one  year on and Laws was tripping over himself to “welcome, the necessary and important advances” that Gove has made.

In the delegate pack Laws continued to gush about the Education Secretary’s agenda, concluding;

“I cannot as a liberal justify preventing people from establishing schools to serve the public, within the same constraints of access and funding which are granted to other state-funding schools. So I wish the Free Schools movement, as well as the Academies movement, all the very best for the future.”

Gove was clearly inspired by the LibDem assessment, adding his thoughts;

“I cannot as a liberal justify preventing people from establishing schools to serve the public, within the same constraints of access and funding which are granted to other state-funding schools. So I wish the Free Schools movement, as well as the Academies movement, all the very best for the future.”

If Gove were to get the call up to the FCO it seems there is an identikit ready to step into his place…

Monday, March 14, 2011

LibDem Kitty Killer More Than a Mere Candidate

The LibDems were strangely silent about their former PPC Mike Dixon being sent down for barbaric and savage attack on his family pet. Could it be that they were somewhat embarassed that Dixon played a key role in overseeing candidates for many years as an executive of the Parliamentary Candidates’ Association?

A sandal wearing source whispers that dangerous Dixon had a long track record of approving weird choices of oddball candidates and blacklisting seemingly sane or impressive ones over petty personal grudges. No wonder he slipped through the net. Dixon claims one of his areas of interest is “police crime”, something he can spend the next four months thinking about…

Quote of the Day

Saturday, March 12, 2011

LibDem PPC is Kidderminster Cat Killer
Brutal Killing Frenzy Gets 4 Month Jail Sentence

Mike Dixon, the weirdy-beardy LibDem PPC for Kidderminster, has been convicted of killing Tipsy, a family pet cat. Tipsy was left to die in a pool of blood after Dixon bludgeoned her to death in an angry frenzied attack with a walking stick. Examining vet Darren Jennings found Tipsy’s skull was shattered into 10 pieces, with 20 millilitres of blood in her stomach, telling magistrates that “There is no doubt this cat suffered serious pain and distress from the attack. Death was not instantaneous.”

When sentencing, magistrate Brian McCluskie said:

“Mr Dixon this was a prolonged and awful attack on an animal – the result of your inability to keep your temper that resulted in the family pet being bludgeoned to death. The pet did not die quickly. You caused a death too horrific to contemplate.”

RSPCA inspector Steve Morall who worked on the case said: “This was a callous, brutal attack and we are pleased that the court has sent a clear message to Mr Dixon.” Sentenced to four months in jail, he hung his head as he heard his conviction before he was handcuffed and led away.

Hat-tip: Kidderminster Shuttle

Guidogram: LibDem Killer Convicted

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Above the Laws

Ever since he walked in May, a David Laws imminent return story has been the mark of a slow news day, however this one is different – there is actually some detail.

The Mail and the Indy have been tipped off to Nick Clegg’s private talks with David Laws about the possibility of a return to a new “Mr Fix-It” position in the Cabinet Office, which would avoid the need for a reshuffle.

A fixer is much needed, but it’s almost as if the coalition big-wigs have decided he is innocent before the Standards and Privileges Committee has made a determination. What about due process? A cynic might think there is an establishment stitch-up going on to clear someone who paid his boyfriend £40,000 of taxpayers’ money, other MPs have gone to jail for less.  Laws has been under investigation for nearly ten months. If it was all so innocuous, why has the inquiry taken so long?

UPDATE: Latest betting on the return of Laws here.

Monday, March 7, 2011

The Tim Farron Scandal Breaks

There was much speculation about a scandal breaking last month that involved LibDem President Tim Farron. Guido thinks he might have uncovered it. After being outed on EyeSpyMP as a first class train traveller last night, Farron confessed his sins:

First Class travel ban? What ban…

Were you expecting something else?

UPDATE: As a commenter “Tax Payer” points out:

“He’s claimed £6,513 so far this year for rail travel, which is one of the highest. Looks like he doesn’t manage to get a ‘super cheap’ ticket very often.”


Seen Elsewhere

Liz Kendall For Leader | Indy
Bashir Booted Out By Respect | Respect
Americans Try Haggis | Guardian
Page 3 and the Art of the Self-Pity Statement | Guardian
Steven Woolfe For UKIP Leader? | Asa Bennett
Mohammed — in Pictures | Speccie
Leon Brittan’s Accusers Must Show Their Evidence | Dan Hodges
New Saudi King Renames Roads While Body Still Warm | TechnoGuido
In Davos, Carrying a BlackBerry is a Status Symbol | Business Insider
New Labour in Peep Show Quotes | Telegraph
Here is What a 7 Way Debate Sounds Like | BBC


Find out more about PLMR AD-MS


George Galloway says of his former Respect candidate the UKIP MEP turned Tory, Amjad Bashir…

“Clearly Bashir does not have any real political principles or commitment, only naked opportunism and self-interest. He represents the revolving door principle in politics. The Tories are welcome to him because he will cause them embarrassment. Fortunately Respect was able to act before he did it to us.”


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