MPs to get Choice Between Deal or No Deal on Saturday

Jacob Rees-Mogg has announced that on Saturday’s sitting, MPs will be presented with a single motion, presenting a choice between Boris’s new negotiated deal and no deal. This will be entirely compliant with the provisions of the Benn Act, as by voting against the deal MPs would have given consent to leaving on the 31st without a deal. Genius in its simplicity…

UPDATE: Government has clarified it will, in fact, be tabling two motions for Saturday – deal or no deal – but will only move one depending how they feel the mood of the Commons feels

Rees-Mogg on Boris’ New Deal

The Leader of the Commons, fresh from his Cider bonaza last night, has been on his feet in the Commons this morning taking, among other things, questions on Boris’ new deal.

“It takes out the undemocratic backstop, delivers on what the Prime Minister promised he would do. In 85 days achieved something that could not be achieved in three years.

Every single member who stood on a manifesto saying that they would respect the will of the people in the referendum can support this with confidence.”

He’s a fan…

The In-Cider Scoop on Jacob Rees-Mogg


At a party in his Leader of the Commons office last night, Jacob Rees-Mogg played the part of a diligent host, with the Lobby being served glasses of his new, home-made cider from a jerrycan. Branded ‘Jacob’s Creek’ by a quick-witted Sebastian Payne…

When asked, Rees-Mogg confessed he had no idea how alcoholic the product was, and due to current law, he is unable to lobby for it to be stocked in the Commons’ Stranger’s Bar. Another good reason to pursue regulatory divergence after October 31…

Government Not Trusting Opposition With Votes During Conference

Conservative MPs have just been told by the whips that in order to go to Conference next week they will have to submit authorised absence applications (called ‘slips’). Looks like this leak has let slip their concerns…

Jacob Rees-Mogg joked last night that the Tories won’t trust Labour and Bercow to concoct a sneaky way to pass legislation while they’re in Manchester.

If only the Commons had a less duplicitous speaker…

UPDATE: A new email to MPs has been sent switching the first line from “we will need as many of you in London as possible” to “we will need as many of you in Manchester as possible.” No word on whether the first email was a mistake or this is a change of heart…

UPDATE II: Tory whips have clarified that Manchester is the priority for MPs.

Lib Dems Axe Candidate who Called for Boris’ Execution

A Lib Dem parliamentary candidate who called for Boris Johnson and other top ministers to be hung, drawn and quartered before being burned at the stake, has been axed by Jo Swinson. With Guido keeping you in the loop, he was always beheaded for deselection…

Galen Milne – who was due to stand in the Scottish seat of Banff and Buchan – made the comments on Facebook, where he also called Tory MPs “rats” and advocated a “final solution” to split the Tory Party.

Taking the graphic comments in his stride, earlier Jacob Rees-Mogg Tweeted:


Looks like Milne was the only one who lost his head after failing to get the hang of politics…

Mogg Skewers Sturgeon

Mogg responds to Sturgeon calling him a “tin-pot dictator“.

If the PM said Christmas Day was 25 December, Nicola Sturgeon would be outraged and shocked by that, so I wouldn’t worry too much about what the Scottish leader has to say.”

Rees-Mogg Explains His Style Guide

Jacob Rees-Mogg told Conservative Home‘s MoggCast this morning that his infamous style guide materialised when his new Leader of the House of Commons office asked how he liked his letters to be done.

“My Parliamentary team had drawn up a list of words that, when they were in letters, tended to get crossed out.”

The Twitterati (perhaps deliberately) misinterpreted the guide as something to dictate how staff should write in any situation, whereas in reality it was for letters to be drafted to go out under Jacob Rees-Mogg’s own name. Storm in a teacup…

Rees-Mogg also said he’s going to stand down as leader of the ERG when recess is over. Steve Baker to take over again?

Heidi Meets the Rees-Moggs on the Campaign Trail

Heidi Allen met the Rees Moggs – senior and junior – out campaigning in the Brecon and Radnorshire sunshine. She’s campaigning for the LibDems…

Jacob Rees-Mogg Burns Brake

Jacob Rees-Mogg’s first appearance at the Despatch Box has more than lived up to what people were hoping for. Tom Brake found out the hard way that trying to outwit the Moggster is no easy task…

McDonnell: Most Right Wing Cabinet in my Lifetime

The endorsements just keep flying in for Boris’s new Cabinet, it was John McDonnell’s turn on Peston last night to hail it as the “most right wing Cabinet in my lifetime” and predict that we’ll see some “pretty hardline neo-liberal policies come out”. High praise indeed from Britain’s most left-wing ever Shadow Chancellor. McDonnell astutely notes that they will be “differentiated certainly from the Labour Party”…

Whether it really suits Corbyn “down to the ground” is another matter, he may end up finding out sooner than he really wants. New Leader of the Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg told Peston a general election was not a “government objective” but was “impossible to rule out” given the Parliamentary arithmetic. The way Boris ruthlessly stamped his authority on the Cabinet yesterday suggests he is more than prepared to face down any potential rebels. With an election if necessary…

McDonnell couldn’t even say Labour would definitely back Remain, meanwhile Corbyn continues to wander round aimlessly calling for a general election while refusing to table a vote of no confidence in the new government. Labour’s Marxist leadership may be in for a sharp shock now they’re no longer getting an easy ride against May’s muddled centrism…

Jacob Rees-Mogg’s Innovative Housing Crisis Solution

Jacob Rees-Mogg has co-authored a paper for the Institute of Economic Affairs along with top wonk Radomir Tylecote on how to use freedom-based solutions to tackle the housing crisis. The package of solutions include cutting stamp duty, permitted development rights for individual streets, and importantly selectively re-classifying some ‘green belt’ designated land that achieves none of its official purposes. Harder for Tory grassroots to dismiss this when even Jacob Rees-Mogg is saying nimbyism has gone too far…

‘Green belt’ land includes large areas of scrubland and even brownfield sites. Building on just 3.9% of London’s green belt near railway stations would provide one million well connected new homes – replacing parts of the green belt that are not green or pleasant at all. This is a policy that would help fix one of the biggest problems facing Britain today, and it wouldn’t cost a thing…

Mogg Calls for EU Student Subsidies to Go to Students From Developing World Instead

Jacob Rees-Mogg has come up with the most interesting suggestion yet in the row over EU student subsidies after Brexit – instead of continuing to give subsidies to students from “some of the richest, most well-to-do countries in the world”, give them to students from the world’s developing countries instead. Global Britain is not just a slogan…

International students from outside the EU currently get slammed by the double whammy of huge fees with no access to student finance, making it far harder for students from poorer countries to come to the UK on merit. Funny how it’s the Remainers who would normally be the first to tell people to check their white privilege who are leaping to defend it now…

Tory Leadership Hopefuls: Who Are You?

We could be days away from a Tory leadership race if Theresa May loses a no confidence vote. The jostling for position on the Tory benches is becoming blatant. Leadership hopefuls are tapping up donors for support, assembling campaign teams and beaming as they glad-hand fellow MPs. With that in mind WPI Strategy commissioned a 2,000 head poll from Deltapoll with fieldwork done last week (25/26 March). They asked the public “Who would you recognise in the street?”

David Lidington would be recognised by 1 in 20 people – which seems on the high side. Liz Truss would be recognised by 1 in 14 people proving that not everyone is on Instagram. Dominic Raab will be disappointed that his brief profile raising period as Brexit Secretary means that 1 in 9 people claim they know his face. Then we get into potential leaders who do have some recognition with voters. Amber, Saj and Hunt are recognised by a quarter to a third of voters, Mogg (who is not running) and Gove are recognised by two fifths of voters. There is only one candidate who stands out with over three quarters of the public recognising him – Boris.

Rees-Mogg: I Won’t Back the Deal Unless the DUP are on Board

Theresa May’s promise to step down last night if the deal passes looks to have unlocked substantially more support for the deal – a clear majority of the ERG have now come over including big beasts Boris and IDS – although a hard core of around 20-30 diggers-in remains. They are “still looking for a ditch in which to die”, in the words of one MP there…

May’s biggest hurdle now is the DUP, who put out a fresh statement last night confirming they still could not support the deal, before Nigel Dodds brutally put down any suggestion that they could abstain instead of voting against it:

Jacob Rees-Mogg, who has now been branded everything from “traitor” to “eurofederalist” after saying it’s May’s deal or no Brexit on Monday, reiterated his position on Peston last night that he will still vote against the deal unless the DUP are on board. However, he does suggest how domestic law could be used to address the DUP’s concerns. Will it be enough? We’ll find out soon enough…

UPDATE: It’s still a no from the DUP according to Laura Kuenssberg “For avoidance of doubt, DUP will vote against agreement tomorrow, party source says”

 

Mogg Explains Why May’s Deal is Better than Remain

“Is this deal worse than not leaving? No. Definitely not.”

Mogg explained to ConservativeHome’s Mark Wallace that having a treaty obligation to the European Union is not a good position, but a much better one than membership of the European Union. Instead of EU law being superior to UK law, as with membership, under May’s deal the UK would be subject to international law rather than European law. It’s hard to disagree that May’s deal, bad as it is, isn’t a step in the right direction…

Mogg: It’s Mrs May’s Deal or No Brexit

Speaking to ConservativeHome yesterday, Jacob Rees-Mogg admitted that “the Prime Minister will not deliver a no deal Brexit.” Speaking about the “hierarchy of choice”, the ERG Chairman revealed he believes that “No Deal is better than Mrs May’s Deal but Mrs May’s Deal is better than not leaving at all. … Is this deal worse than not leaving? No, definitely not. If we take this deal we are legally out of the EU… Being legally out is of great importance. It restores our independence.”

Following last night’s votes, Brexit has never been in more danger of being lost. MPs seem likely to favour permanent Customs Union membership and seek to lock the UK in to many other of the worst facets of EU membership. MV3 is likely to be Brexiteer’s last best hope of starting the process of actually leaving…

Rees-Mogg: Bad Deal is Better than Remaining in the EU

Jacob Rees-Mogg sums up the incredibly difficult dilemma facing Brexiteers – if no deal is no longer an option, then is May’s deal better than no Brexit at all? Rees-Mogg told LBC:

“The deal is still a very bad deal, it doesn’t deliver on the promises of the Conservative Party manifesto and it doesn’t deliver on the referendum result in full. The question people like me will ultimately have to answer is, can we get to no deal instead? … I’m concerned that the Prime Minister in spite of her previous commitments is determined to stop no deal…

“No deal is better than a bad deal but a bad deal is better than Remaining in the European Union.”

He’s not wrong…

UPDATE: Rees-Mogg’s response to a caller saying that May’s deal is worse than Remain sets out the Brexiteer’s dilemma even more clearly. If the UK does not Leave now the political establishment will never allow Brexiteers to even have a sniff of the exit door in the future. The idea that we will get a better deal after a two-year delay is fantasy, Remainers will be fully in control of the process by then…

Remainers have successfully moved the debate entirely onto the economic relationship since the referendum – many Brexiteers seem to have forgotten that their key objective before the referendum was getting out of the political structures of the EU. Those who are saying they would rather Remain now need to think very carefully about their priorities…

Rees-Mogg: ERG Will Only Vote For Deal if Brexit Itself is Threatened

ERG chair Jacob Rees-Mogg has told Kay Burley that the ERG haven’t yet decided which way to vote on the new meaningful vote this evening. JRM says the ERG will be meeting at 5pm to discuss whether the threat of no Brexit is real or “phantom”. Only if Brexit is at risk altogether will they consider voting for what is still a “bad deal”…

ERG Splits On Latest Brexit Vote Overblown

Last night’s Brexit votes were notable less for what they were than the way Tory MPs voted on them. The Government ultimately accepted the new Cooper Amendment F which recommitted them to the timetable for a vote on delaying Brexit that May first offered on Tuesday, imposing a poorly organised three-line whip in favour of the amendment which led to chaos in the voting lobbies. Chris Grayling was spotted in the wrong lobby and the Prime Minister reportedly even had to ask a whip which way to vote…

Despite the confusion, over 100 Tory MPs directly defied the three-line whip to abstain or even vote against the amendment, not a remotely trivial number in itself. However the most interesting subplot that emerged was the split between the 88 MPs who abstained, and the 20 MPs who directly voted against it, including Esther McVey and Bill Cash. Could this be the start of the split between the hard core who will never vote for May’s deal under any circumstances and the group who could come round to it if enough concessions are secured by Geoffrey Cox? Even more significantly, does this signify the minimum number of Tory MPs who would vote for May’s removal in a vote of no confidence if she were to extend Article 50?

ERG sources have played down the significance of the split, the ERG were naturally opposed to the amendment but beyond that were not particularly fussed about whether to vote against it or simply to abstain, given its ultimate lack of significance. Guido also understands that reports of splits emerging between Boris and Rees-Mogg on the one hand and Steve Baker on the other have been much overblown – while Jacob did hint at a slight softening of his position on full-on treaty change to the backstop yesterday, sources close to the three have categorically dismissed reports of any splits emerging between them. Everything still hinges on what, if anything, Cox can bring back from Brussels…

The 20 MPs who voted against the Cooper amendment outright were:

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Jacob Rees-Mogg’s Brexit Song

Jacob Rees-Mogg has sportingly given a retweet to this well-made spoof video of him singing some fairly dubious lines about Brexit to the tune of Pulp’s Common People.[…] Read the rest

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