SPEAKER WATCH: Little Prince Tightens Grip on Principality

The Speaker’s manouevres are starting to generate some resistance from the floor of the House, as we’ve recently seen in PMQs.

Now, news from the labyrinth of the Palace.

The Clerk of Clerks resigned recently (to get away from the Speaker’s abusive behaviour, observers said). And Bercow has ripped up the ad for his replacement.

The job description has been rewritten to downplay clerkly knowledge, ability, virtue – and to favour managerial skills, expenditure control, ICI-type experience and abilities.

This will make it easier for an outside professional to get onto the shortlist.

However, he or she will then be competing with others of enormous procedural knowledge.

How would a clever little Prince deal with that?

He would rig the membership of the Panel of Selection.

Last time, the Panel included the whole House of Commons Commission, the Leader of the House, the Chairman of Ways and Means and the Chairman of the Liaison Committee.

Now, rumour has it, Bercow is planning to boot the Commons Commission off his Panel for its recent rebellion (they voted him down 5-1 on one of his pet proposals).

It’s not entirely clear that the Chairman of Ways and Means is in his good books, if other rumours are true. The Chairman of the Liaison Committee? He may keep his place.

And as for the Leader of the House . . . Their mutual antagonism waxes and wanes.

He needs a clear majority and will use his powers of patronage to get it.

Judging from the composition of the Speaker’s Advisory Council on Public Engagement (the real-life parody of a TV parody of a real-life BBC) the Speaker’s choice of outside associates isn’t of the highest quality.

And that is the prize he is playing for: an chief executive he can push around, and a Clerk he can push around with impunity.




Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

Quote of the Day

No prizes for guessing who Andrea Leadsom is talking about:

“As you said last week, Mr Speaker, we have a responsibility to safeguard the rights of this House and as Leader of the House I seek to do exactly that, treating all members of parliament with courtesy and respect. I hope and expect all Honourable and Right Honourable members to do likewise.”

Sponsors

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.
Zarb Referred to Disputes Panel Zarb Referred to Disputes Panel
Kate Osamor Plagiarised Maiden Speech Kate Osamor Plagiarised Maiden Speech
Ken: Seumas Wrote My Tweets and Never Told Me to Stop Talking About Hitler Ken: Seumas Wrote My Tweets and Never Told Me to Stop Talking About Hitler
Young Voters Now Prefer May to Corbyn Young Voters Now Prefer May to Corbyn
Ruth and Gove Blast “Dour” Tories Ruth and Gove Blast “Dour” Tories
Ken Resigns from Labour Ken Resigns from Labour
New Tory Treasurer is Director of 7 Companies With Overdue Accounts New Tory Treasurer is Director of 7 Companies With Overdue Accounts
All-Remain Peston Show “Kerfuffle” All-Remain Peston Show “Kerfuffle”
Top Tory’s Firm Implicated in Russian Dirty Money Report Top Tory’s Firm Implicated in Russian Dirty Money Report
New Peerages New Peerages
Kate Osamor Plagiarises Barack Obama Speech Kate Osamor Plagiarises Barack Obama Speech
Corbyn’s New Peer Martha Osamor Defended Anti-Semites Corbyn’s New Peer Martha Osamor Defended Anti-Semites
Tower Hamlets Labour Council Bosses Award Themselves Vast Pay Rises Tower Hamlets Labour Council Bosses Award Themselves Vast Pay Rises
Corbyn-Backed Lewisham Candidate Loves Castro and Chavez Corbyn-Backed Lewisham Candidate Loves Castro and Chavez
‘Beijing Barry’ Takes £43,000 from China-Linked Firm ‘Beijing Barry’ Takes £43,000 from China-Linked Firm
Bercow Bullying Inquiry Blockers Bercow Bullying Inquiry Blockers
Irish Border Camera Problem Solved Irish Border Camera Problem Solved
Thornberry Talks Up Assad Thornberry Talks Up Assad
Three Labour Lewisham East Candidates Promoted Extremist Imam Three Labour Lewisham East Candidates Promoted Extremist Imam