Sunday, September 28, 2014

LISTEN: Mark Reckless’ Voicemail to Grant Shapps

When he went on the Sunday Politics this morning, Mark Reckless probably didn’t expect he would be played a voicemail he left for Grant Shapps on Friday promising to campaign for the Tories in Birmingham. The following day he defected to UKIP.

“You can’t discuss these things in advance,” says Reckless…

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Mark Reckless Defects to UKIP

A dream for headline writers everywhere. On the eve of Tory conference Mark Reckless has defected to UKIP.

He was denying it less than 24 hours ago, but the clues were there in the Iraq vote:

And so to Birmingham.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday Caption Contest (Is This Thing On Edition)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Constitutional Reform: Another Tory Job for the Boys

Len McClusky attacked the ‘posh boys’ deciding the country’s future in a country house today and it turns out he wasn’t far off. ConservativeHome have the list of the Chequers constitutional lunch:

Guto Bebb
Nigel Evans
Dominic Grieve
Mark Hoban
Bernard Jenkin
Andrew Jones
Marcus Jones
Andrew Lansley
Peter Lilley
Bob Neill
John Redwood
John Stevenson
James Wharton
Heather Wheeler
Lord Strathclyde

Just one woman invited?

UPDATE: A Downing Street source points out that Mary Macleod and Margot James were also at the summit.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Labour Cynically Attack English Votes as “Politically Driven”

“We have heard the voice of Scotland and now the millions of voices of England must also be heard,” said David Cameron this morning, strongly suggesting that he will press for English votes for English laws and finally answer the West Lothian question. Within five minutes Labour had come out against the idea:

Very amusing of Wee Dougie to attack the plan as being “driven by politics”. Of course Labour’s opposition to English votes for English laws definitely isn’t driven by their cynical, anti-democratic need for Scottish MPs to pass legislation in England. Normal politics resumes…

Vid via @liarpoliticians.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Top Tories Vow to Fight Cash for Scots

Rail minister Claire Perry has become the highest profile Tory to threaten to scrap the £1,500-a-head subsidy English taxpayers pay to Scots in the event of a No vote. Perry says:

“Cool, calm analysis, not promises of financial party bags to appease Mr Salmond, are what is needed from tomorrow and onwards. [A No vote must not result in] a whole raft of goodies on offer for Scotland that will be paid for by us south of the border to try to appease the Yes voters.”

John Whittingdale agrees:

“I for one would be very concerned at the idea that my electorate would continue to subsidise the Scots even after they have been given all these powers to raise even more money.”

As does backbencher James Gray, who writes in his local paper:

“I do not agree with the ‘Devo Max’ proposals which the three party leaders seem to be offering. Talk about feeding an addiction. The more you give them, the more they want.. The Barnett Formula, under which every Scottish citizen gets £1,500 per year more spent on him/her than their English counterpart must be swept away with no delay. We want greater powers for the long-suffering people of England.”

The PM will be eternally grateful to them for airing their views on polling day…

Meanwhile, in Clacton…

UKIP’s by-election headquarters have come up with a novel way to motivate their men and women on the ground. Awarded to “the most heroic volunteers” at the end of each day is:

The arch-voice of the Tory left providing Carswell’s troops with their ammo and their inspiration…

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Tory MPs Sharpen Knives Ahead of Tomorrow’s Vote

24 hours before the polls open and we have the first MP to call for Dave to resign should Scotland vote Yes. Andrew Rosindell tells the FT, “if it goes wrong… the prime minister will have to decide what the honourable thing is to do”, while another Tory MP adds, “Everyone I speak to thinks his position would be untenable”. No.10 are so concerned that, the Times reports, Michael Gove did a ring-round of Tory MPs to gauge the mood, with one backbencher warning Dave faces a “rebellion on a scale not seen before”. The Sun says the PM faces a “dangerous revolt” even if Scotland votes No, with Tory MPs set to defy Cameron over his £1,300-a-head bribe for Scots under the Barnett formula. The Mail say he will face a “bloodbath” even in the event of a No vote, one Tory MP telling them the “panicked offer” means Salmond has won whatever happens. Tory conference is just two weeks away…

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

EXCLUSIVE:
Minister Funnels Expenses Cash to Firm Run By Former Agent

Energy minister Amber Rudd has channelled thousands of pounds of taxpayer cash to a Tory-linked company run by her former agent. Over the last two years Rudd has claimed £6,000 on expenses for “professional services” to organise several local jobs fairs in her constituency. The jobs fairs were organised by Events Office, a company run by Terri Lock, who is a Rudd’s former agent and a Tory council candidate in Hastings. Terri is married to Matthew Lock, former leader of Hastings Conservative group. Events Office seem to get a lot of business from the Tories, having organised a number of jobs fairs in the constituencies of other Tory MPs including Defence Secretary Michael Fallon and Charities minister Brooks Newmark.

Guido’s favourite Labour MP Karl Turner says:

“Amber Rudd has serious questions to answer about whether the rules have been upheld. There can be no question of funnelling taxpayers’ cash to cronies against the rules. I hope David Cameron will investigate the behaviour of his new Minister.”

Fishy…

TORY WARS: May / Oliver Airwaves Briefing Spat

As you read in last week’s Sun on Sunday or this morning’s Times, Theresa May is on the war path with the Number 10 operation, again. Rachel Sylvester reports:

‘Theresa May got into an argument with No 10 over the timing of a policy announcement. She wanted to reveal the government’s plans in the House of Commons, observing parliamentary propriety, but the prime minister’s office pressed her to give an interview to Radio 4’s Today programme instead. If she did not do so, she was told: “We will lose the next three hours.’

Now which expert spinner could that have been? 

As Guido reported ten days ago, “tension boiled over recently with Oliver going shouty-crackers and demanding the Home Secretary show him some respect.” It seems May’s idea of showing him some respect was briefing Rachel Sylvester.


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


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