Tory MPs’ Brexit Party Tease

Fair to say that some Tory MPs seem more worried about the rise of the Brexit Party than others, Alan Duncan has gone into panic spinning mode against Farage, more level-headed sorts like James Cleverly are pointing out that the Tories should be asking why their voters are switching rather than vilifying them. Some don’t seem to be too upset at all…

Nadine Dorries praised Nigel Farage’s “fantastic interview” on Marr yesterday, Henry Smith told his local paper that Farage was a better leader than May. Lucy Allan hit back at Duncan’s Marr outburst, having already shared the Brexit Party’s election broadcast the day before:

It’s not the first time Allan’s approvingly shared Brexit Party content, while her Conservative-themed cover photo has also recently disappeared from her Twitter profile and ‘Brexit’ has appeared in her bio. Talk of defections is a bit premature but it’s hardly surprising that many Leave-supporting MPs are ashamed to be Tories right now…

Cleverly: We’re Not Planning for a General Election

But they are doing “sensible pragmatic planning”…

Tory MPs’ Awkward On Air Moment

There were amusing scenes on Victoria Derbyshire a short while ago as anti-May MP Andrew Bridgen gave a full interview standing alongside the pro-May James Cleverly, only to walk off air before the two could actually speak to each other. Tory Party unity on full display…

Cleverly: Obama Trumps Trump

Shadow Minister’s Bizarre Chicken Rant

Shadow Cabinet member Dawn Butler has been ratio’d for her bizarre rant against Jamie Oliver’s jerk rice. “Your jerk Rice is not ok. This appropriation from Jamaica needs to stop.” Guido appreciates a bit of Jamie Oliver bashing but this is beyond the pale.

Last night Tory deputy chair James Cleverly took Butler apart in a devastating thread highlighting how “We have always copied and absorbed elements from other cultures, it is a defining feature of British culture.”

Britain is a nation built on cultural appropriation. From the Romans to the Angles and Saxons, Normans, Vikings, and everyone else since.

Cleverly Rules Out Mayoral Bid

James Cleverly joins Justine Greening, George Osborne and Ed Vaizey in ruling himself out of the Tory mayoral nomination:

Which leaves the remaining runners and riders:

  • Shaun Bailey: London Assembly Member who is one of the few candidates with a backstory to rival Khan’s. Has been effective in his criticism of the mayor over knife crime. 
  • Syed Kamall: Time for a Brexiter mayor of London? Came second to Zac in the Tory nomination stakes last time round. Popular with true believers.
  • Kulveer Ranger: Another former Boris adviser who was very effective in City Hall.
  • Duwayne Brooks: Friend of Stephen Lawrence who was with him when he was murdered. Joined the Tories a couple of weeks ago and is being talked up by insiders. Has branded Sadiq “the worst mayor ever”One to watch.
  • Andrew Boff: Perennial candidate. Ladbrokes favourite…
  • Richard Tice: The businessman who co-founded Leave.EU is an accomplished media performer – readers will remember his punchy Question Time appearance. Would be bold to choose a Brexiter in London, though.
  • Rohan Silva: Former blue sky digital tech guru to Cameron and Osborne, Silva went on to found the Second Home workspace in Spitalfields. His name has been doing the rounds, he’s a Remainer but would be good for the youth vote and a more interesting candidate than some of those below. 
  • Munira Mirza: Former deputy mayor to Boris, she wrote compellingly for the Speccie a couple of months back about how stop and search is the best weapon in the fight against knife crime. The Tories have a real shortage of strong female candidates – indeed Mirza might be the only one.
  • Gavin Barwell: Was sniffing around last year when he thought things were falling apart in Number 10. Would someone who couldn’t hold Croydon be able to win London? There are local whispers that Barwell now has his eye on Bob Stewart’s 15,000 majority Beckenham seat instead…
  • Nick de Bois: Former Enfield MP. CCHQ took his advice on bringing the selection forwards. Has outlined how he would beat Sadiq here.

The big names shunning a doomed campaign…

UPDATE: Syed Kamall rules himself out too, “The announcement of hustings so soon means I cannot take part and still fulfil my role in helping to get the best possible deal between the UK and EU.”

Tory Stars Court Young Activists at Xmas Bash

Big turnout at a Christmas bash for young Tories in Westminster last night, where 100 enjoyed wine and mince pies, with another 200 on the waiting list. A dozen MPs came along to the venue on Smith Square; speeches from movers and shakers James Cleverly (who reminded the room of the role of young people in preventing a socialist government), George Freeman and Priti Patel were well received.

A lot of excited discussion about the future direction of youth movement within the party. Who knows, maybe the Tories might even have a youth-wing in 2018?

Kemi and Cleverly Call on Corbyn to Withdraw Whip From Dent Coad

Tory MPs Kemi Badenoch and James Cleverly have written to Jeremy Corbyn calling on him to investigate Emma Dent Coad and withdraw the whip:

Dear Jeremy,

We write to you as former members of the London Assembly, friends and colleagues of Shaun Bailey AM, and Members of Parliament.

The comments made by Ms Dent Coad in relation to Mr Bailey are unacceptable in any circumstance and particularly so from an elected representative. Your failure to condemn her comments is both disappointing and concerning.

Your silence is disappointing because it gives the impression that you are comfortable with the comments Ms Dent Coad made. It is concerning because it reinforces our belief that there are too many people in the Labour Party who see Conservatives from BAME backgrounds as “traitors” and, therefore, legitimate targets for abuse.

During the 2017 general election campaign, you claimed that “only Labour can unlock the talent of BAME people” a claim that was as inaccurate as it was insulting. This claim also betrays a belief that BAME people should feel indebted to the Labour Party. Indeed, just last night another of your MPs, Clive Lewis, claimed that you can’t be a Conservative and tackle racism – once again inaccurate and insulting.

Ms Dent Coad’s comments were made on social media and raise a number of questions that must be urgently addressed:

* Will you condemn the comments made by Emma Dent Coad?
* Why was Ms Dent Coad selected as a parliamentary candidate given these comments were made publicly before her selection?
* Will you now investigate this matter and do you intend to remove the whip from Ms Dent Coad during such an investigation?

Your party’s condescending attitude to BAME voters and candidates really must be addressed. Now is the time to do so.

Kemi Badenoch MP
James Cleverly MP

Kemi has also written an epic Twitter thread which Guido has reproduced below:

“I’m a black conservative. I don’t think every offensive comment is racism, but when I see real prejudice I have to call it out. Emma Dent Coad’s comments were profoundly distressing, and a toxic reminder of the struggle black people face daily in defeating stereotypes. The fact that she made them while an elected councillor is a disgrace. This is why it is still relevant to discuss today. The tragedy is that someone who holds these views is an MP, representing a sizeable black population, make no mistake, this is racism…

An assumption that there’s only one way to be black, and anyone who doesn’t conform is a “coconut” an “Uncle Tom” or a race traitor. It is a poisonous belief and destroys the lives of so many children. I once heard a black boy accuse another of “acting white”. Why? Because he wore glasses and liked reading. Imagine what it’s like being in a classroom where everyone thinks like that?

Where do such attitudes come from? From “Community leaders” like Ms Dent-Coad, who want to tell us what to think and how to behave. They haven’t given us permission to leave our ghettoes, be Conservative or make friends with posh white people. This was Shaun’s crime. This attitude traps many black children within imaginary boundaries they believe they aren’t allowed to cross. They end up living less than the very best lives they can.

I have read Clive Lewis’s awful remarks to Nimko Ali. Patronising and wrong-headed. Denying blacks a basic human right to support a party of their choosing. It’s the attitude I referred to in my conference speech -that you can’t be black and conservative. Emma Dent-Coad did NOT apologise for her offensive remarks, merely for Shaun being upset by them.

My message to young black people everywhere is please, please feel free to be who you want to be. Don’t let Labour’s stereotypes and low expectations hold you back and never let them treat you like black sheep who will always follow them.”

Well said. How will Labour respond?

“So, Boris Can Wait…” Tory Karaoke in Full

Tory conference finally saw the energy and passion it has been lacking this week courtesy of the InHouse Communications karaoke night. Partygoers witnessed peak Matt Hancock as he took to the stage to sing Happy Birthday to himself, before performing a high octane duet of Don’t Stop Me Now with Therese Coffey (watch above). James Cleverly and Kelly Tolhurst attempted Don’t Go Breaking My Heart before Clevz redeemed himself with a more impressive rendition of Twist and Shout, complete with memorable hip action. Will Quince demonstrated surprising depth as he had the room hand-waving to My Way. Nigel Evans gave us Delilah, David Mundell just about made his way through 500 Miles and a Brexit-backing cross-party trio of Paul Scully, Anne-Marie Trevelyan and Ian Paisley Jnr had the room rocking to Sweet CarolineThen it was the turn of the Lobby…

Faisal Islam took great pleasure in adapting the lyrics of Don’t Look Back in Anger to belt out “So, Boris can wait” – just the latest MSM smear. Dan Hodges and Glen Owen teamed up with Number 10 Sunday Lobby specialist Kirsty Buchanan to murder Mr Brightside. An emotional David Wooding, one arm raised aloft, sang You’ll Never Walk Alone, the only time he’ll be able to do that in Manchester. The night ended with Number 10’s Richard “Tricky” Jackson nailing You Raise Me Up. Hic…

Jezza’s Spectacular Ethnic Minority Gaffe

Jez is really not having a good day. He has now claimed that “only Labour can be trusted to unlock the talent of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic people”. It is going down spectacularly badly…

Only Jez can unlock the talent of ethnic minority people? What on earth is he thinking?

Cleverly Calls For Posthumous Honour For PC Keith Palmer

Tory MP James Cleverly, who had known PC Keith Palmer for 25 years and served with him in the Royal Artillery, calls for him to be awarded a posthumous honour for bravery. Theresa May appears to agree.

Say Can You See… Cleverly Singing

Guido thinks James Cleverly’s excuse for singing – in breach of parliamentary etiquette – lines from the Star Spangled Banner had something to do with the rockets referenced in the anthem being Congreve Rockets of the oyal Artillery. The House was acknowledging the 300th Anniversary of the Royal Regiment of Artillery and Corps of Royal Engineers. Cleverly still serves as a Lieutenant colonel in the Royal Artillery reserves and Mark Lancaster holds the same rank in the Royal Engineers reserves. Lancaster’s response was less melodic…

Campaign Report: Day 13

Leave message: James Cleverly says EU harms developing economies.

cleverly

Remain message: Farage can’t name many economic Brexit backers.

Cut through: OECD report claims Brexit will be a “tax”.

Leave social media count: 332,665 likes, 37,777 followers.

Remain social media count: 370,864 likes, 25,503 followers.

Odds: Remain 3/10 Leave 5/2

Latest poll: Remain 45% (-6%), Leave 38% (-2%) (Survation, phone). Poll of Polls is now Remain 54%, Leave 46%.

Tory MP on His Booze, Porn & Pot-Smoking Past

CLEVERLY

What is it about Braintree? Listening to sext-shame Brooks Newmark’s successor the Tory MP James Cleverly’s replies to a quick fire question session on Pienaar’s Politics this morning, Guido wonders if perhaps CCHQ should use them for selecting candidates. Cleverly admitted having looked at online porn; smoking cannabis and inhaling saying ‘that’s the point’ – as well having made himself sick with booze in the army. In the ‘snog, marry or avoid’ section he opted to ‘snog’ Theresa May, ‘marry’ Yvette Cooper – yes really, and ‘avoid’ Cameron biographer Isabel Oakeshott. Apart from questionable judgement, that should make for an interesting conversation for not-so-Cleverly with wife Susie. Pienaar quipped: “That will be all over the Daily Mirror tomorrow James.” Why wait?

UPDATE:

 

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Change UK MP Joan Ryan tells Change UK’s South West ‘rally’:

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*everyone holds out their hands in front them*

“That’s it, it’s there, the future is in your hands.”

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