Today’s Sunday Times features a tidal wave of allegations about sexism and inappropriate behaviour in Westminster, including licking the faces of researchers, groping, sending “dick pics”, warnings over the use of prostitutes, and having “noisy sex” in parliamentary offices. Can anyone be sure these claims are levelled at separate MPs?
One story certain to begin another Lobby hunt is that a “sexist of the year” award was handed out in No. 10. Despite Angela Rayner penning yet another letter to Boris asking about the allegations, the claim has been removed from The Times’ online story, as sources close to the event in question were quick to point out when questioned. So what’s going on?
Various sources point to the claim being both correct… and incorrect. Incorrect insofar as an award specifically called ‘sexist of the year’ was not handed out. We know an award ceremony happened in December 2021, with Jack Doyle addressing up to 50 people at the party. Guido understands while there may not have been an award specifically called “sexist of the year“, a tongue-in-cheek award along similar lines was handed out. It seems the story doing the round can’t make its mind up between ‘gender equality champion’, or ‘feminist of the year’. Guido won’t give away the in-joke behind the award – it’s pretty inoffensive and doesn’t deserve to damn the recipient.
Another source says the claim of Downing Street awards was not limited to that one Christmas party, with weekly plaudits handed out for things like ‘best rebuttal’. These awards included a ‘teeny tiny cup’ given to the team that had worked hardest or performed best that week. It’ll be difficult for any hack to get a scalp over the story – both the host and awardee have since moved on…