Bercow Blasted for Blanking Blackford Boris Behaviour

Tory MPs were seething with rage after Bercow intervened to tell the SNP’s Ian Blackford to withdraw his description of Boris Johnson as “racist”, only for Blackford to double down on his remarks while Bercow turned a blind eye. Bill Wiggin furiuosly took the Speaker to task over his inconsistency, Bercow responds in characteristic fashion that he’s not a “delicate flower” and doesn’t feel “any concern”. Another big fat middle finger to Parliament…

Bercow’s Titanic Ego

The Sun’s leader column skewers the Speaker:

“a man so painfully self-centred he would have been in the first lifeboat off the Titanic”

Blunt’s Bercow EDM Published

“That this House notes that Erskine May states that “The chief characteristics attaching to the office of Speaker in the House of Commons are authority and impartiality”; further notes that it states that “Confidence in the impartiality of the Speaker is an indispensable condition of the successful working of procedure, and many conventions exist which have as their object not only to ensure the impartiality of the Speaker but also to ensure that his impartiality is generally recognised”; believes that it is impossible for this House to sustain belief in the impartiality of the right hon. Member for Buckingham; and therefore has no confidence in the Speaker.”

MPs can sign it here.

Another Benn Coup Rejected after Commons Vote Tied

The Commons remarkably tied – the first time since votes over Maastricht 26 years ago – with MPs split 310-310 over whether to allow Hilary Benn to take over Parliament again next week. Because all the previous times have worked so well…

To the surprise of many, Bercow actually cast his deciding vote against the coup – as convention to back the ‘status quo’ option strictly dictated he should do. Bercow himself acknowledged the principle for the Speaker “not to create a majority that does not otherwise exist”. Brexit never ceases to surprise…

Bercow’s Modern Minor Genital

The Speaker is becoming increasingly theatrical…

He is the very model of a modern minor genital,
His exclamations patronising, animal, imperial,
He is the Prince of Parliament, he quotes debates historical,
From Erskine May to made-up way, in order quite dishonourable.

G Fawkes, 2019.

Bercow Stitches Up Parliamentary Votes Yet Again

John Bercow has cooked up yet another Speaker’s Stitch-Up Special with his selections for tonight’s second batch of indicative votes tonight. Bercow selected only four Remainer motions for MPs to vote on tonight. They are more or less identical to the ones which were all rejected just five days ago:

  • C (Clarke) – Customs Union – already rejected 272-264
  • D (Boles) – Common Market 2.0 – already rejected 283-188
  • E (Kyle) – Second referendum – already rejected 295-268
  • G (Cherry) – Revoke Article 50  already rejected 293-184

Bercow refused to allow any Brexiteer motions including John Baron’s Motion A on a unilateral right of exit from the backstop. Despite this previously securing a majority in the Commons in the form of the Brady Amendment.

To be fair Joanna Cherry’s is slightly different from the one rejected last time. It now also contains the bonkers provisions of launching a formal public inquiry to come up with a new kind of Brexit, which might then be put to the public in a second referendum to give the Government permission to re-trigger Article 50 and try to re-negotiate it with the EU months or even years down the line. If it sounds mad it’s because it is – it was literally written by Jolyon Maugham

Bercow is now busy tying himself in knots trying to explain why he refused to allow the Government to use a secondary motion to bring back a Meaningful Vote, but will allow Hilary Benn and Oliver Letwin’s secondary motion to bring back identical Indicative Votes twice in just four sitting days. Of all the institutions which have lost the public’s trust over their attempts to subvert Brexit, none have been damaged more than the Office of the Speaker…

Bercow: “I Positively Salivated” Over Meeting School Children

Weird phrasing…

Bercow: Female MPs ‘Moaning On About Sexism’ as ‘Defence Mechanism Against Their Own Inadequacy’

The Telegraph’s Asa Bennett has dug up some highly revealing interviews with John Bercow from the paper’s archives, from one in 1986 where he said you should “mug your opponents” to another in 1998 when the newly elected MP boasted about his “licence to interfere” in the Commons. Nothing has changed…

In the same interview Bercow also attacked “whinging” Labour women, saying that those who complained about sexism were simply using it as “a defence mechanism against their own inadequacy”, before adding that “you don’t find the competent, attractive ones like Yvette Cooper moaning on about sexism”. Those same Labour MPs are today cynically turning a blind eye to his chronic bullying and abuses of power simply because he is helping them stop Brexit…

Bercow Gets Cricked By BBC

BBC News’ Joey D’Urso Cricked a grumpy Bercow this morning. Bercow shines in his usual dismissive, patronising, arrogant way…

16 Times Bercow Threw Away Precedent

John Bercow is enjoying hogging the headlines once again after his extraordinary statement yesterday throwing Brexit into significantly more turmoil by blocking a third meaningful vote. Bercow claims to be following precedent which stretches back to 1604. It’s funny because normally he’s more interested in tearing up precedent and riding roughshod over the solemn responsibilities of his office than following them. Guido takes you through some of his greatest hits:

  1. 6th February 2017: Dispensed with neutrality and attempted to bar the US President from addressing Parliament, without consulting the Lords Speaker, despite hosting numerous representatives of authoritarian regimes himself.
  2. 6th February 2017: Scrapped wigs for clerks
  3. 29th June 2017: Overruled convention on MPs’ ties
  4. 12th March 2018: Chaired debate on his own bullying despite his requirement for neutrality.
  5. 2nd May 2018: Used his position in an unfit way to call his patsy Julian Lewis to lavish praise on him
  6. 16th May 2018: Conspired with the Opposition to come up with arcane Parliamentary procedures to frustrate Brexit.
  7. 17th May 2018: Granted excessive numbers of SO24 debates, allowing Labour to bombard the Government to gain partisan support.
  8. 11th June 2018: Preferential treatment of one specific MP – Keith Vaz. Granted one of the most pointless urgent questions to Vaz over foreign military attack on third country while generally allowing Vaz more questions than any other MP.
  9. 13th June 2018: Bullied Claire Perry
  10. 6th November 2018: Stitched up Parliament’s bullying enquiry by ruling out taking action in individual cases to protect himself
  11. 7th November 2018: Misused his personal veto in order to block investigation into Keith Vaz
  12. 22nd November 2018: Bullied Andrea Leadsom out of the chamber
  13. 18th May 2018: Uses his position to reject standards probe into him calling Andrea Leadsom a stupid woman in the chamber.
  14. 9th January 2019: Overruled clerks’ advice to select the Grieve amendment in order to delay Brexit
  15. 14th March 2019: Refused to select the cross-party amendment B despite it having cross party support of 127 MPs, more than every other selected amendment put together.
  16. Ongoing: Refuses to honour his election to speaker pledge which notes he would serve for no more than 9 years in total.

Brexiteer MPs who have somehow got the idea that Bercow is trying to help them out in their quest to secure no deal are gravely mistaken. Bercow explicitly advised Remainer MPs how to continue their anti-Brexit machinations, telling them to table SO24 emergency debates which he will grant and then allow them to table amendments to, entirely breaching precedent again. Of course he will allow Benn, Cooper, Boles and Letwin to table their coup amendments as many times as they like to take over Parliamentary business, despite them having already been defeated twice. Breaching Parliamentary precedent once again…

It increasingly looks like the Government will simply table a Meaningful Vote motion anyway and dare Bercow to rule it out of order, or use a secondary motion of some sort to bypass his block. Former Commons Clerk Evan Paul Silk reckons it “should not be difficult for the Government to produce a motion that complies with it.” Steve Barclay said as much this morning. Guido takes no pleasure in seeing that his warning last year that Bercow will do everything he can to block Brexit is coming true…

Leadsom Slams Bercow For Lack of “Courtesy and Respect”

During an explosive session in the Commons this afternoon, Andrea Leadsom slammed Bercow for not treating colleagues “with courtesy and respect.” Naturally, he responded by ignoring her…

Bercow Blocks Third Meaningful Vote

Speaker John Bercow has thrown his biggest curve ball yet at the Brexit process, moving to block the Government bringing back another Meaningful Vote to the Commons. Bercow said the Government must now meet the test of “substantial changes” in order for a new meaningful vote motion to be tabled. His rationale for allowing MV2 was that it “could credibly be argued that it was a different proposition” from the first. Suddenly the Speaker has decided that he cares about Erskine May. Picking and choosing which parts of the constitution to respect as he pleases… 

However no-dealers’ celebrations at Bercow’s decision may be premature. May will now need to seek substantive changes from the EU to hold MV3. There is no guarantee that those changes will be in the right direction…

‘Bollocks To Bercow’ Stickers Appearing In Parliament

A co-conspirator has informed Guido that following Bercow’s flagrant partisan picking of amendments this afternoon, these creative stickers have been popping up around the Parliamentary estate. So far no one appears to have been brave enough to stick one on his car….

Bercow Refuses to Select Cross-Party Anti-Second Referendum Amendment Signed by 127 MPs

Speaker John Bercow has refused to call the cross-party amendment B rejecting a second referendum, despite the fact that it was signed by 127 MPs including the entirety of the DUP and had numerous Labour MPs as leading co-signatories including Caroline Flint, Gareth Snell and John Mann. Shameless…

Instead Bercow has selected four amendments more to his own liking:

  • Amendment I: the Benn/Letwin/Cooper ‘coup’ amendment allowing an entirely unaccountable minority of just 25 MPs to hijack Parliamentary business
  • Amendment H: Sarah Wollaston’s amendment calling for the PM to extend Article 50 for long enough to hold a second referendum
  • Amendment E: Another pointless Labour frontbench amendment
  • Amendment J: Chris Bryant’s amendment seeking to block the Government holding another meaningful vote next week

As MPs have pointed out, more MPs signed amendment B than all the other amendments put together. Are there any depths Bercow won’t plumb in his unrelenting mission to disgrace the office of the Speaker?

Onasanya Recall Petition Process Initiated

John Bercow has now formally given notice to the house that there will be a recall petition in Peterborough. Labour majority 607. It opens in ten working days from today…

Bercow Ditches The British Constitution

John Bercow has been notoriously cavalier with the British Constitution in recent months as his conniving against Brexit with Remainer MPs has continued to escalate. Guido can reveal an interesting discovery which might help to explain it…

A co-conspirator in a second-hand bookshop was pleasantly surprised to discover a copy of the authoritative text, The British Constitution, by pre-eminent constitutional expert Professor Anthony King complete with a personalised message on the inside cover from the late author himself. The message was to none other than Speaker John Bercow…

King optimistically wrote in 2009: “For John Bercow, Essex graduate and great reforming Speaker of the future – we all hope!” Oh, the irony…

Judging from the book’s near-pristine condition, Bercow doesn’t appear to have bothered spending much time reading about the constitution before deciding that he was bigger than it himself. Much like the real thing, Bercow simply decided to chuck the British Constitution away…

Bercow Selects Soubry Amendment for Debate

Bercow has called just three amendments to be debated and voted on today. Which will come as a small relief to everyone with Valentine’s plans tonight…

The specific wording of the Government’s motion itself has drawn the ire of the ERG and Remainers alike, as it means MPs would in effect be endorsing the Spelman amendment against no deal as well as the Brady amendment calling for an alternative to the backstop, although it would be purely symbolic. The ERG are likely to abstain although Guido understands that various reports that they have already come to a firm decision are slightly “premature”…

Guido gives you a quick rundown of what today’s amendments are:

  • A (Jeremy Corbyn): Fairly pointless Labour frontbench amendment calling for the Government to move another motion by 27 February. Which they have already committed to…
  • I (Ian Blackford): SNP amendment with Lib Dem support calling for the Government to immediately begin negotiations with the EU to extend Article 50. Looks like they already have been
  • E (Anna Soubry): Cross-party amendment from the usual Remainer suspects – calls on the Government to publish the most recent official Cabinet briefing document on the implications of a no-deal Brexit. Will be the closest vote but it won’t be legally binding…

Bercow sparing the People’s Vote campaign’s blushes for today by not selecting any of the no-hoper second referendum amendments…

Brazen Bercow Insists He Will “Help the House Decide” Which Way Brexit Goes

John Bercow has given a brazen interview to CNN unapologetically defending his support for “minority, dissident voices” fighting Brexit and his right to “help the House decide” which way the Brexit process goes, before declaring without a hint of irony that “sometimes the Speaker’s role is just to stand up for the institution of the House of Commons and the principle of Parliamentary democracy”. Overruling the clerks to force an amendment through for political reasons against the rules is a strange way of standing up for that institution…

Incredibly, Bercow also goes on a shameless rant about how “if the Speaker is the sort of person who’s going to be cowed or intimidated by a ministerial rant… that person isn’t fit to be Speaker. I hope I always treat people with respect…” This coming from a man with an extensive track record of bullying and intimidating his own staff who was found to be at the heart of Parliament’s bullying culture by the independent Cox Report. He only needs to look in the mirror to see what someone who isn’t fit to be Speaker looks like…

Bercow Selects Graham Brady’s Amendment

After much speculation as to whether he would choose to deliberately ignore it, John Bercow has decided to call Graham Brady’s amendment on modifying the Irish backstop, as well as all the other major amendments that were expected including Yvette Cooper’s Brexit blocker. Even Bercow didn’t have the temerity not to call such a pivotal amendment – and one with Government support…

This is the order the amendments will be voted on, starting at 7pm:

  • (a) Jeremy Corbyn – calls on the PM to rule out no deal while, predictably, keeping all options on the table
  • (o) Ian Blackford – notes that the SNP don’t like Brexit, calls for no deal to be ruled out and Article 50 extended
  • (g) Dominic Grieve – suspends normal Parliamentary procedure on six dates in February and March allowing MPs to hijack Brexit
  • (b) Yvette Cooper – suspends normal Parliamentary procedure on 5th February to allow MPs to bring a Brexit-blocking Bill in
  • (j) Rachel Reeves – calls on the PM to seek an extension to Article 50
  • (i) Caroline Spelman – notes that Parliament rejects leaving without a deal
  • (n) Graham Brady – calls for the Northern Ireland backstop to be replaced with alternative arrangements to avoid a hard border

Labour have so far indicated that they will back Grieve, Reeves and Spelman as well as Cooper. All of which are aimed at delaying and frustrating Brexit, the People’s Vote are even running sponsored ads on Twitter promoting them…

However, of all the amendments, only Grieve and Cooper have any legal effect as they would actively change the Standing Orders of the House, upending centuries of precedent. All the others, including Brady, are only statements of the Commons’ preferences. Brexiteers are not committing to back May’s deal by voting for Brady, but they will be bolstering the country’s negotiating position…

Government Entitled to Ask Queen Not to Give Assent to Brexit Wreckers’ Bills

Devastating argument from Policy Exchange this morning. Sir Stephen Laws QC – who was until 2012 the Government’s most senior lawyer on legislative and constitutional matters – says don’t assume that MPs could engineer a change to the law to postpone or cancel Brexit without persuading Government to acquiesce and participate in securing the change.[…] Read the rest

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