“We Know What You Are Doing…”

At first Guido thought Theresa May’s words in the City last night were a a warning to the ultra-Remainers trying to sabotage the democratic will of the people for Brexit. Turns out she was warning that other enemy of free democracy – Putin.

Top Downing Street Aide Touched My Breast in Number 10

Daisy Goodwin, creator of ITV series Victoria, says a senior Downing Street adviser put his hand on her breast when they met at Number 10 between 2010 and 2016. Goodwin tells the Radio Times the aide was a few years younger than her, so likely to be in his forties:

“The official, who was a few years younger than me, showed me into a room dominated by a portrait of Mrs T and we sat at a table carved, he told me, from one piece of wood. Then to my surprise he put his feet on my chair (we were sitting side by side) and said that my sunglasses made me look like a Bond girl.

At the end of the meeting we both stood up and the official, to my astonishment, put his hand on my breast. I looked at the hand and then in my best Lady Bracknell voice said: ‘Are you actually touching my breast?’ He dropped his hand and laughed nervously… I wasn’t traumatised, I was cross, but by the next day it had become an anecdote, The Day I Was Groped In Number 10.”

Former Downing Street aides have been speculating which of them can’t be left alone in a room…

Who Nicked Nelson? Parliament’s Lego Mystery

How are the parliamentary authorities marking UK Parliament Week? By setting up a big Lego model of the Palace of Westminster, Tower Bridge and Trafalgar Square, of course. But there’s something (or someone) missing from the diorama currently on display in Portcullis House. On Nelson’s column, there’s no Lord Nelson…

There are conflicting accounts as to when Nelson disappeared. One researcher pointed the finger at “leftists”, alleging that the model Nelson may be absent due to the controversy over the real statue’s supposed connotations. Guido hears excited staff are now plotting to replace the missing Nelson with their favourite little Lego men and women. If you have seen Nelson, get in touch anonymously…

Dent Coad Also Called Bailey ‘Ghetto Man Low Life’

Jeremy Corbyn is facing calls to take action against Emma Dent Coad after Guido revealed she called black Tory candidate Shaun Bailey a “token ghetto boy” and “scumbag”. It turns out that was not the only time. Guido has found this tweet from 2011 in which she again attacked Bailey, calling him “ghetto man” and “a low life”. There is no context that explains this away. If this was a Tory MP Labour would be calling on them to go…

Carwyn’s “Clique” Played “Mind Games” Against Carl Sargeant

Pressure continues to build on Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones as a slew of fresh allegations about the culture in his private office come to light. Carwyn’s former SpAd Steve Jones, who ran the First Minister’s media operation, accuses his “clique” of playing “mind games” against Carl Sargeant for years:

“The behaviour of some at the top of the Welsh Government was like nothing I’d ever seen before. It was pure poison. Ministers were undermined by senior advisers playing power games and seeking to exert unreasonable control over Government and the First Minister himself…

“Dealing with our Plaid Cymru partners in Government at that time, was considerably more straight forward than dealing with the clique surrounding Carwyn. The mind games being employed against Ministers – such as Carl – were at times an utter distraction from the serious business of governing Wales…

“It was clear that all this was getting Carl down. I told Carwyn that Carl was becoming increasingly unhappy. I suggested to him on more  than one occasion that he should simply go for a pint with Carl one night – to talk about things and get back to the kind of relationship they enjoyed before and during Carwyn’s leadership campaign. I don’t know if they ever shared that pint. In any case, it became increasingly obvious that Carwyn was either unwilling or unable to address the culture that existed within his office. He allowed it to develop, fester and grow.”

Carwyn’s current SpAds were seen out celebrating on the night of Carl’s sacking. Questions are now being asked in Welsh political circles about the role played by a number of Carwyn’s former SpAds in the Carl Sargeant case…

Shaun Bailey: I’m Shocked and Saddened By Hate-Filled Racist Dent Coad

Guido has spoken to Shaun Bailey about Emma Dent Coad’s racially charged comments calling him a “token ghetto boy” and a “free-loading scumbag”. He says Labour should consider suspending her:

“I am shocked and saddened by the hate-filled, racist article written by Labour MP Emma Dent-Coad which has surfaced this afternoon. During my time in politics I have dealt with prejudice and attacks from hard-line groups, including the BNP, but not once have I been labelled a ‘token ghetto boy’.

Her use of language, including the caption of ‘keeping it real’, is more akin to that of a white supremacist group than that of an elected politician and she should be ashamed. As someone who was born into a poor family in Ladbroke Grove, I am proud of my charity work helping deprived community groups in the area Ms Dent-Coad now represents.

Ms Dent-Coad has a long history of public intimidation. She should publicly apologise for these latest slurs – not just to me but to the wider black community – and the Labour Party should consider her position.”

Yet another Labour race row. And once again they are very slow to react…

UPDATE: Bailey tells LBC Corbyn should withdraw the whip:

Dent Coad Condemned For “Vile Prejudice” Towards Black People

Tory MP James Cleverly reacts to Guido’s revelations about Labour MP Emma Dent Coad’s racially charged comments:

“This is vile and unacceptable language, and once again highlights a distasteful prejudice towards black Conservatives that I’ve called out before. When will Labour deal with this?”

Women’s Equality Party candidate Nimco Ali adds:

“You Emma Dent Coad are a racist and as some who is the sister of a Tory black young man, you disgust me. My brother is a black Tory man and the left have acted like they owned him and I am so angry right now. I got the same BS for standing for WEP. She is a racist and should go.”

Doesn’t look good for Dent Coad. No comment from Labour, no Labour MPs defending her…

Labour MP: Black Tory Candidate is “Token Ghetto Boy” and “Scumbag”

Labour MP Emma Dent Coad labelled black Tory candidate Shaun Bailey a “token ghetto boy” and “free-loading scumbag” who is “not welcome” in her Kensington constituency, Guido can reveal. In a vicious 2010 blog post – which really is dripping with poison and hate –  Dent Coad labelled Bailey a “token ghetto boy” who was being “used” by the Tories and will never “fit in, however hard he tries”.

The abuse continued, with Dent Coad quoting two conspicuously anonymous “former neighbours” who she claims thought Bailey was “a free-loading scumbag” and “the most hated man in North Kensington”. Dent Coad concluded that if Bailey were to win his seat “he will no longer be welcome in North Ken”. Imagine the outrage if a Tory MP talked about a black Labour candidate in this way. Dent Coad has a new report out on inequality in Kensington today. She could start by looking at her own prejudices…

Kensington Tories Ask Voters: How Important is Grenfell to You?

Kensington Tories are continuing to handle Grenfell with their customary sensitivity. They’ve sent this questionnaire to voters asking “how important” the tragedy is to them on a scale of nought to ten: “0 – not important at all, 10 – very important”. What do you reckon…

H/T @mshapland

Hitler Row Labour Candidate: British Government Did 7/7 Bombings

Remarkably Labour still won’t comment on Guido’s story about their candidate Naz Khan defending Hitler and asking “what good have the Jews done?”. Even more extraordinarily they are keeping her as a candidate. Will they when they see this?

Above is a Facebook post which claimed the “government plotted 7/7 attacks to boost Iraq war support”, pushing conspiracy theories that “the four British Muslims involved were tricked by the authorities into taking part”. Naz Khan then commented below: “Thought provoking… an eye opener, not to believe everything in the news”. Not only is this person clearly anti-Semitic, she seems to believe it is possible the government carried out the 7/7 bombings. The sort of person Labour want as a candidate in Bradford…

H/T Harry’s Place

The Somersaulting Chancellor

It looks like the embarrassing NICs debacle in the Spring Budget isn’t the only somersault the Chancellor has done on self-employment. It appears the strong and stable Chancellor has actually been backflipping on the subject for over a decade. In truth Mr Hammond has performed more somersaults than the entire UK athletics team!

Despite waging a war on the self-employed for the last year – with everything from new dividends taxes to punishing changes to IR35 in the public sector – before that, it seems the Chancellor was almost sympathetic to the burgeoning self-employed sector. 

In 2001, for example, Hammond was singing a very different tune, telling a Westminster Hall debate: “We need to focus on the flexibility that microbusinesses and small businesses deliver because they provide a unique adjustment factor in the economy. One reason why the Government’s IR35 initiative has been so damaging and destructive is the fact that it has hit at the most flexible part of the economy.”

So where did the big key change come from? As he rightly said back in 2001, the flexibility of small businesses and the self-employed is a major advantage for our economy. And it’s not just flexibility: the self-employed are one of the UK’s most productive sectors, contributing over £255bn a year to the economy. So surely the last thing we want to do now, just before we drift into the uncharted waters of post-Brexit Britain, is stifle this vital part of our economy.

By pushing those punishing changes to IR35 into the public sector, Hammond has already driven huge numbers of contractors out and caused widespread disruption. The BMA have called it a ‘disaster for the NHS’, and it’s seriously damaged our flexible labour market. So the question now is: why are there reports he’s going to use the Autumn Budget to extend these disastrous changes to the private sector? Someone should remind the Chancellor before it’s too late about the danger of somersaults; one slip and you can fall flat on your face.

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Rich’s Monday Morning View

McDonnell Says Labour Should Move Out of Offshore Owned HQ

John McDonnell has suggested Labour should move out of their London HQ after Guido revealed it was owned by an offshore trust. Last week we told you how Labour rented their office in the Southside development in Victoria from an investment trust established in Jersey. The rent Labour pays goes offshore. Asked about it by John Pienaar this morning, McDonnell said Labour should end their dealings with their current landlord:

John Pienaar: Should Labour be renting property from an offshore related business?

John McDonnell: I don’t think we should have any dealings with offshore businesses until they pay their taxes, but to do that you have to have openness and transparency so you know exactly what’s going on, but also once you’ve done that then you can take legislative action to ensure all those companies pay their taxes effectively.

Pienaar: When it comes to the Labour Party you can decide now where you are going to rent your base?

McDonnell: That is exactly what we have been saying. We have been lobbying to say whatever company anyone is involved in, should be open, transparent and should be paying their taxes effectively.

When will they be moving out?

UPDATE: Unfortunately it looks like the lease runs until 2022. Hope they have a break clause…

Corbyn’s Record on Iran

Jeremy Corbyn says on the front page of the Observer that Boris is “shaming our nation” over Iran. Is this a wind up? Let’s take a look at Jezza’s record on Iran:

  • Accepted £20,000 for appearing on the Iranian state TV channel Press TV, even after the channel had filmed and broadcast a torture victim’s confession
  • Agreed with a Press TV caller that Britain’s national broadcaster were “Zionist liars”
  • Attended a Press TV / Khomeinist event just 11 months ago, while he was leader of the opposition, posing for photos with an extremist author
  • Attended the Iranian regime’s Al-Quds Day event calling for the destruction of Israel
  • Attended event during which the Iranian regime’s British representatives called for a boycott of Marks and Spencer and others in attendance chanted about gassing Tel Aviv
  • Dismissed western criticism of the Iranian regime as American desire for oil: “It does not take a late night conspiracy theorist to look at the map of the region and see where oil lies, where pipelines go, where the US bases are and which countries they do not have any influence over. That alone should make anyone very wary of the attacks on Iran”
  • Claimed Iran didn’t want nukes: “Iran has a civil nuclear power programme, which in law it is entitled to. This has been transformed into a nuclear weapon threat by the very power that has its own massive capacity to destroy, the USA”

Please, Jezza, tell us more about “shaming our nation”…

Gove: Iran is Responsible, Boris Critics Playing Into Their Hands

Bang on from Gove, who gave Marr a passionate defence of Boris in the wake of increasingly hysterical point-scoring by his enemies. Gove argued:

“It’s plain wrong for us to try to find fault with democrats when the real responsibility is to say to the Iranian regime: you are a serial abuser of human rights, you are the principal sponsor of terrorism, you have blood on your hands in Syria, your responsibility is to insist that this British citizen is at liberty. We play their game, we play into the extremists’ hands if we do anything other than show solidarity in the face of their abuse of human rights.”

Look at those losing their minds about Boris this week: George Osborne’s Evening Standard, the Guardian, the Mirror, the Times, Jeremy Corbyn, Sadiq Khan, ultra Remain MPs and journalists. They are ignoring that Richard Ratcliffe, Nazanin’s husband, has said: “It’s not in Nazanin’s interests to have the Foreign Secretary battling for his job”. And yet Boris’ political enemies are cynically trying to make the whole story about his career rather than Nazanin. They are more interested in attacking Boris than getting her home…

Khan Lies His Way Through Marr

Asked by Marr if he regretted his broken promise to freeze travel fares in London, Sadiq Khan said he was “really proud” that fares have been frozen. Does he think Londoners are stupid? During the mayoral campaign Khan pledged: “Londoners won’t pay a penny more for their travel in 2020 than they do today.” Under Khan fares then rose on travelcards, daily caps and monthly Oyster cards. It’s no good blaming the government – TfL advised him he could freeze all fares and even gave him a cost plan. Interviewers shouldn’t let Khan get away with this broken promise of Nick Clegg proportions, not to mention the extraordinary shamelessness of saying he’s “proud” about it…

Then Marr asked him about Uber. Khan said “I’ve never knowingly taken an Uber”. He really does think we’re stupid. In a 2015 interview with the BBC he described himself as an “Uber man”. It is baffling that Khan gets away with all these demonstrable untruths and broken promises, whether on fares, housing, police, trees, green energy or strikes. Is he really proud?

Saturday Seven Up

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You’re either in front of Guido, or behind…

Kelvin Hopkins: Kerry McCarthy Story Coming

Kelvin Hopkins has given another interview to Skwawkbox apparently preempting an imminent Guardian story making new allegations about his conduct. Hopkins says fellow Labour MP Kerry McCarthy has made complaints about him:

“I have been again been put under further pressure by two press organisations claiming to have received complaints about me from my parliamentary colleague, Kerry McCarthy MP. This has caused me immense personal hurt and utter dismay.

I have known Kerry McCarthy MP personally and professionally since about 1993. She was Chair of my Constituency Labour Party. She sat on a joint local Labour Party Agency Committee with me. We both stood as selection candidates for Luton North in 1995. She became a MP in 2005 and has been a member of the Shadow Cabinet. She is a person of substantial standing on the national stage and I counted her as a friend.

If it is true that my Parliamentary colleague and long time friend has made a complaint about me via the press, then I am deeply saddened by this. I cannot understand why a Parliamentarian of such experience and standing, who is also such a long term friend, would not have told me that she was unhappy with any aspect of our friendship rather than going straight to the national press.”

Story coming tonight?

UPDATE: Kerry McCarthy alleges she has received unwanted attention from fellow party MP since mid-1990s:

“None of it is very tangible. If I had told anyone, it would have just been like gossip, instead of a complaint – you’ve seen what it is. But it is really inappropriate.” 

Kelvin made overtures to her which were not rude, lewd or physical, just unwanted.

 

Pranksters Troll BBC Political Reporter with Sex Noises

Not big, not clever, not funny…

Labour Candidate: ‘What Good Have the Jews Done?’

Labour has shortlisted as a potential candidate a woman who posted online: “what have the Jews done good in this world?”. Nasreen Khan, a former RESPECT activist now a Labour member, is on a two person shortlist to fight a council seat in Bradford next year.[…] Read the rest

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Noel Gallagher on Brexit:

“In England, the Brexit thing, it’s like, I can’t believe there’s so much noise about it… It was put to the people as a vote, the people voted. That’s democracy. F***ing get over it.”

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