Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Labour Are On a Roll

With Miliband and Balls twisting the knife by going to Greggs for lunch, Cameron’s claims to have had a pasty at Leeds station are looking increasingly dodgy:

It’s shaping out to be a terrible week. And it’s only Wednesday…

UPDATE: PM’s spokesman says “maybe it wasn’t even Leeds”.

Baldamort to Brum

Michael Crick has finally caught up with what Guido told you in Daily Star Sunday on 11 March:

LEAVING the Treasury after Labour’s General Election defeat, the Birmingham MP Liam Byrne famously left a note for his successor which simply read: “Dear Chief Secretary, I’m afraid to tell you there’s no money left.” After the uproar this joke caused, Byrne, right, kept his bald head down as a backroom figure for Ed Miliband. Dubbed “Baldamort” by David Cameron, he wants to escape what could be a long opposition. We hear Byrne is being encouraged by the likes of Alan Johnson to seek Labour’s nomination as the candidate for Mayor of Birmingham. Labour sources seem almost certain he will throw his hat in the Bull-ring. With Brum having a budget of £3.5billion, though, that note might yet come back to haunt him.

It doesn’t say much for the leadership when the person in charge of the policy review for the Labour Party has had enough and is ready to jump ship. A bit like the Chairman of the Parliamentary Labour Party quitting to go and be a police commissioner… 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Ed Commits To Transparency, Yet Still No Rudd Dinner List

Ed just told ITV News: “I’m very happy to be open and transparent about what we’re doing.” A nice platitude. And another promise. Now for the action:

Time to cough up who was at this dinner and whether any “wonga” was involved…

Monday, March 26, 2012

Time For Ed to Come Clean Too

Ed is about to take on Francis Maude over donor transparency and private dinners. Perhaps then Ed Miliband would like to tell us what he was chatting about in the Rolls Royce with Mr Assem “Pharoah” Allam who has just bunged him £100,000. Ed should not forget his televised promise to Guido to come clean:

As Ed prepares to stand up and lecture Cameron on shady dinners with rich business donors, Guido thought he would give the Labour leader a gentle reminder of his promise to publish a list of attendees at a suspiciously “private and off the record” dinner held for him at the home of lobbyist-spinmeister Roland Rudd in October:

As Guido reported at the time, Rudd has some charming friends:

“…known clients include Murdoch, the Daily Mail, not so environmentally sensitive miners like Rio Tinto and African Barrick Gold. Rudd’s client list includes Boots and easyJet, owned by predatory asset stripping private equity companies, the most aggressive takeover group in the world KKR – the original “Barbarians at the Gate” – investment banks like Deutsche Bank and Standard Chartered, UK taxpayer bailed out banks like Royal Bank of Scotland and Greece’s bankrupt Alpha Bank. Glencore the rogue commodities trading operation run out of Switzerland retains Rudd.

Labour’s current favourite targets the big energy companies like ENI, Shell, EON and Centrica could have been sat round the table with Ed. Embarrassingly UK Uncut favourites Vodafone may have passed the port to Ed and given Rudd represents Wonga, which the Labour Party’s Stella Creasey campaigns against, there will be extortionate interest if they were there.”

The time is long past for Ed to come clean about donors as well…

Picture via Hull News & Pictures Ltd

Friday, March 23, 2012

Leaked Labour HQ Letter Shows Staff Anger Over Charles Allen
+ Row Set to Flare Up Again Over More Job Appointments
+ Labour Staffer Preparing Industrial Tribunal Against Leadership

Some of the  heat was taken out of the stand-off between the Labour high command and their unhappy HQ staff last week by a promise that all future jobs would be advertised internally. The row over the appointment of a new Labour Party Executive and a reorganisation of the party structure reached a peak with HQ staff calling in the unions to try find a solution. Guido has now got hold of a letter from the Joint Trade Union Committee (GMB and Unite), to the Labour’s General Secretary Iain McNicol outlining the complaints:

The new confused chain of command and  in particular the ex-Goldman Sachs adviser turned Labour Chief Exec Sir Charles Allen comes in for serious criticism, as does Ed’s leadership on this and his team’s handling of the whole process. Now the row looks set to boil over again. Despite a promise from Ed’s Chief of Staff Tim Livesey that all future jobs would be advertised, Guido can reveal this lunchtime that various senior positions have been filled without due process. Staffers claim that there were not even interviews for the following jobs:

  • Mr Paul Harrington – Head of Field Operations
  • Mr Joe Derrett- Head of Press for Ken Livingstone’s Campaign
  • Ms Veronica King – Press and Campaigns Officer for Ken Livingstone
  • Ms Anneliese Midgley – Head of Events and Visits for Ken Livingstone

Guido hears that at least one Labour staffer is preparing to take the Party to an industrial tribunal…

Wee Dougie’s New Number Watcher

Eyebrows have been raised by the replacement Douglas Alexander has chosen for his departed spinner Steve Van Riel. You would have thought that as shadow Foreign Secretary he would have brought someone in with some actual foreign policy experience, but instead the one time campaign manager to David Miliband has chosen Michelle Napchan. She’s a pollster…

Officially the line is that Napchan will be helping to craft Labour’s message by focus grouping on issues like Europe. However, given that Wee Dougie was one of the few figures able to flit between the Blairites and the Brownites, he is a key unity figure in Ed’s Shadow Cabinet and the slightest hint that he is on manoeuvres gets people talking. One Labour spinny-type suggests that he has studied how Brown did things from the shadows: “he’s building his own private operation, his own army”.  Another Labour source was not so sure though: “The only army I see Douglas Alexander building is one with Action Men”. If there is ever a move against Ed, Guido would put good money on the “unity” man being involved

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Miliband Hugs Ken Close
Labour’s Private Polling Shows Ed More Unpopular than Ken

Despite there being well over a month until polling day, it seems that Ken is going to new and extraordinary lengths to provide his gaffe-of-the-day. This morning he went all Al Gore on us and told the BBC that: “When I was leader of the GLC I said to Mrs Thatcher we needed broadband linking every home and City in the country.”  He must have kept his 1980s internet connection top secret…

After yesterday’s ‘rich Jews won’t vote Labour‘ gaffe, Ed has, once again, been forced to defend his candidate, claiming that Ken “doesn’t have a prejudiced bone in his body”. Guido hears from his sources that Labour’s own private polling is doing the rounds and shows that the only person more unpopular in London than Ken is Ed Miliband. At this rate they are going to go down together…

While the leadership and their cheerleaders in the unpopular parts of the blogosphere bury their heads in the sand, and least one Labour figure has found some balls: former MP turned GLA candidate Andrew Dismore has described Ken’s latest bile as “rather offensive”. It’s a shame others don’t have a spine…

Ken has also been rambling today:

“He told the Standard he will use “amazing charm and subtlety” to get New York-style independence for the capital. Mr Livingstone, 66, added: “I would actually declare independence and run the whole city. They can’t even run hospitals in London. Everything government does in London it gets wrong. If you look at the city of New York, the mayor runs the benefits system, some of the prisons even, and the healthcare and schools. I’ve watched all my life, irrespective of which government… ministers trying to run hospitals from Whitehall. It’s just too big, too complicated.”

Presumably he wrote his magic money tree manifesto with these changes in mind? Or was he on the sauce again?

UPDATE: Talking of Ken’s love of the sauce, this is rather good:

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Oops They Did It Again
BBC Budget Coverage Brings You David Miliband

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Labour HQ has ‘Lowest Morale in 20 Years’

Earlier Dan Hodges reported:

On Monday a meeting was held at Labour’s soon-to-be-vacated Victoria Street headquarters to which staff were informed of the latest stage of the party’s internal reorganisation. Descriptions of the event range from “disaster”, through “multi-lane pile-up”, to “carnage”. “I’ve never in all my life seen anything like it,” said one shocked observer. “Normally people are quite restrained. But it all came pouring out”.

Patrick Wintour also wrote up the disaster in the Guardian, calling it “stormy”. Guido had the leaked names of the new Directors of the Party last Friday and this went down very badly. Now it is clear why: the Party machine are not on board with the changes. According to one source in the room, Simon Jackson, whose policy role has been filled by Torsten Henricson-Bell took the invitation to “speak frankly” very literally:

“If you think that our problems are structural or organisational then you are kidding yourselves… If you think we are somehow divorced from the politics then you are being ridiculous…”

Cue much clapping from the staff. Another disgruntled staffer pointed Guido to the words of Hilary Perrin, a party figure for some two decades, who apparently claimed that in all her time in the party she had never known morale so low.

General Secretary Iain McNicol was apparently very apologetic that the news of the new directors had leaked before the announcement. He also said that no one was being sacked, but then in David Brent style, he could not promise that there would not be redundancies. Ed’s new Chief of Staff Tim Livesy gave the staff an ungodly dressing down for leaking to Guido: “this is not transparency, this is a breach of trust… this is a test.” A test he clearly failed given that the whole thing leaked in less than 24 hours…

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Something For Something Culture

What could be worse for a Labour leader than being busted missing a NHS rally, only to be spotted at the football? Well being photographed arriving in a Rolls Royce must be pretty high up the list…

Guido hopes that the £100,000 donation Ed tapped up from Assem Allam, the Hull AFC chairman, is worth these blushes. He’s isn’t sure what Ed’s fellow Leeds fans make of it all…


Seen Elsewhere

Comply or Die at Grauniad | MediaGuido
Labour Beats UKIP in South Yorkshire | LabourList
Mock the Week’s Weak Comedy | Nigel Farage
Can Jim Murphy Save Scottish Labour? | Guardian
There is Still Appetite for the Westminster Lunch | Jon Craig
Labour Turn Their Backs on Jewish Community | Dan Hodges
Chivalry is Not Dead | Laura Perrins
Jonathan Jones is a Tw*t | Iain Dale
Second Scotland Poll Suggests Labour Wipeout | Times
Paedo Probe Boss Urged to Quit | Sun
Keynesian Tories Won’t Eliminate Deficit | Tim Montgomerie


VOTER-RECALL
Find out more about PLMR


Zac Goldsmith: “The hon. Gentleman might like to know that today’s Guido Fawkes quote of the day is the one on drug laws that we have heard cited by a number of hon. Members.”

Mike Hancock: “I am delighted to hear that Guido Fawkes is talking about something other than me.”



“Digger” Murdoch says:

Is it just me, or is Nigel Farage just a top hat and a monocle away from being a Batman villain?


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 1,554 other followers