Thursday, September 13, 2012

Lobby Demand Revamped No.10 Press Briefings

With Steve Field leaving his post as the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman now is as good a time as any to shake things up at No.10. Guido has long campaigned for reform of the Lobby, and there was some intriguing movement today as political hacks called for Downing Street press briefings to be revamped. Lobby members slammed Field for refusing to answer questions, highlighting his infamous “I don’t do politics” line and also calling for the briefings to be held on camera. Guido has been saying that for years…

So far No.10 has yet to decide on who will replace Field, with the Treasury’s head of press Jean-Christophe Gray hotly tipped to take over. Watch this space…

Monday, September 10, 2012

Free Thinking Lobby

First there was the man from the Sun:

Then the chairman of the Lobby:

And then the man from the Mirror:

Is there an echo in here?

Monday, July 16, 2012

Michael White Owes Guido An Apology

The controversial Downing Street Second Email System story is back in the news. In 2007 in the middle of Blair’s Loans for Lordships crisis and the arrest of Downing Street officials by police searching for evidence, Guido alleged that there was a second, unofficial, email system in Downing Street used to send off-the-record emails. The Mail on Sunday ran with the story, the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesman under questioning from the Lobby denied its existence at two briefings. Guido demanded that the PMOS issued a correction, none was forthcoming. Shortly after on Newsnight, back in his more camera-shy days, Guido repeated the allegation. Michael White in no uncertain terms sided with the PMOS saying Guido’s story was untrue, based on the word of PMOS rather than any research.

Under questioning about this subject by MPs on the Public Administration Select Committee Blair’s Cabinet Secretary Gus O’Donnell also claimed “There is no second email system inside No 10.” Damian McBride two weeks ago confirmed the existence of a second email system in Downing Street. Michael will surely want to correct his naive mistake…

Monday, June 4, 2012

QotD

Labour Uncut observes the Lobby’s tweeting groupthink…

“while twitter generates pressures that make the lobby more politically independent of their employers, paradoxically, it makes the individual journalists much more alike. The tenor and judgement of tweets reacting to events are remarkably similar across the lobby.

One thing you will never see: two lobby journalists tearing into each other on twitter. Bloggers, yes. Lobby, no.

The net impact of twitter has been to embed an even higher level of groupthink amongst the political journalists, and most important of all, to make this hive-mind view public, on a minute by minute basis.”

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Going for Gove

Gove’s articulate and feisty performance at Leveson has won him plenty of friends this afternoon:

Word is that he would never run against Osborne in a leadership election, but with more performances like today…

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

PM’s spokesman says…

“I’m scouring back copies of the FT to see where Peston’s next scoop is coming from.”

Friday, November 25, 2011

Simon McGee Going to Spin at Transport

Another day and another poacher turning game-keeper. Guido hears that Simon McGee of the Sunday Times is off to spin for the Department of Transport as their Head of News. This is the latest in a series of hack-to-government transfers that has included Gabriel Milland, formerly of the Express, going to Education and the Times’ Sam Lister going to Health. It also emerges today that Michael Tait, who was the sympathetic Political Editor of the Scottish Daily Mail, has gone to spin for Ruth Davidson, the new leader of the Scottish Conservatives. And which other Political Editor, very friendly with Craig Oliver, is desperate for a senior Head of Comms job at pretty much any big department?

Captain of the Shippers

The Mail’s deputy political editor Tim Shipman is the new Chairman of the Parliamentary Press Gallery.

He will no doubt install a little more fun in the normally stuffy organisation, while embodying its amour-propre outlook.

His Lobby colleagues’ spoof Twitter account for him is a must follow.

Drinks all round.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Gobby Saved by Twitter, Serjeant at Arms Humiliated

Good news for the BBC’s Paul Lambert following the ridiculous decision by the Serjeant at Arms to ban him after he filmed her embarrassing failure to prevent the breach of security during the testimony of the Murdochs. Gobby’s pass has been restored after Louise Mensch raised a point of order regarding the banning of the BBC’s Gobby and a Twitter campaign to #SaveGobby took off. Why on earth was he banned in the first place? This is a public building, paid for at great expense by the public. You would have thought after the battle for opening up MPs’ expenses they would have learnt. Parliamentarians are our servants, they work for us and the Serjent at Arms would do well to remember who is the boss…

Gobby Out of the Lobby

Paul Waugh has the full story, but it seems the BBC’s roving fixer Paul Lambert, affectionately named Gobby for his polite and considerate questioning style, has had his parliamentary pass removed after he chased the Murdoch pie tosser through the estate, filming him in cuffs.

As if the Commons authorities and security didn’t humiliate themselves enough in front of the world’s media, now they are trying to pass the buck. Instead of kicking out hacks for broadcasting their embarrassing failings, perhaps the men in tights should be pointing fingers at their own ranks. Maybe they didn’t want Gobby shouting “Are you going to resign Serjeant at Arms…?” 


Seen Elsewhere

Next Year’s Election Will Be the Dirtiest Ever | Speccie
Chicken Salmond Runs Away From Sun Cabbie | Sun
Scary No Messages Don’t Add Up | Sun
Feminist War on Children | Laura Perrins
An English Parliament is Inevitable Whatever Happens | Alex Wickham
Union All But Over Even if Scots Vote No | Janan Ganesh
Unionists Outgunned | Times
Unionists Outgunned | Times
Labour Will Lose Commons if Scotland Votes Yes | Times
Miliband Blanked Gordon | Damian McBride
Cameron Surrenders Keys to Union | Rachel Sylvester


VOTER-RECALL
Find out more about PLMR


Gyles Brandreth writes in his memoirs:

“Sunday, May 10, 1998

Early start: appearing on Breakfast With Frost, to be broadcast from 11 Downing Street. The Chancellor [Gordon Brown] is grouchily amiable, but so earnest — and still biting his fingernails to the quick.

After the show, he took us upstairs to his flat. He lives above No 10, while Blair and family are in the No 11 duplex, which is bigger and more like a proper house.

I was intrigued that, when he took us into his bedroom, the Chancellor rather ostentatiously opened the built-in wardrobes, as if he wanted us to see the women’s frocks that were hanging in there.

They looked quite large, but I don’t think they belong to Gordon. I assume they belong to his girlfriend [Sarah Macaulay, who he later married].

I presume he was keen for us to know that he has one — and that she’s not a ‘beard’. I don’t think he does anything without calculation.”



The British media are Hunts says:

Now the SNP know how UKIP voters feel all the time.


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