Shadow Ministers’ Elite Education Cost A Packet

Given Sir Keir spent most of PMQs trying to hammer the government over tax benefits for private schools – “trickle-down education” is apparently the soundbite of the day – Guido thought it was worth taking a look at those sitting on Starmer’s own frontbench. After all, the parents of 600,000 kids struggling to pay fees might be entitled to think it is some cheek to put VAT on the schools they themselves attended…

  • Keir Starmer attended Reigate Grammar School, which, as Guido reported, became a fee-paying independent school whilst he was studying there. When Keir joined in 1974, the school had been a state grammar for 30 years. In 1976, however, it went private – and according to their website of ‘notable Reigatians’ Starmer remained a student there until 1981. Today his old school charges £20,000 a year.
  • Party Chair Anneliese Dodds attended Robert Gordon’s College. The independent Aberdeen school currently charges fees of almost £14,000 a year…
  • Shadow Defence Secretary John Healey went to Guy Fawkes’ alma mater, St Peter’s School in York. St Peter’s School is an independent school where fees currently cost almost £20,000 a year…
  • Shadow Northern Ireland Secretary Louise Haigh was a student at Sheffield High School. Fees are currently almost £15,000 a year…·
  • Shadow Leader of Commons Thangam Debbonaire went to two independent schools – Bradford Girls’ Grammar School and Chetham’s School of Music. Bradford Girls Grammar School didn’t end its fee-paying status until 2011…

The backbenches are also packed with those more than familiar with private education: John McDonnell skirts over his days at St Joseph’s College. Jeremy Corbyn, the independent Member for Islington North tries to forget he went to a prep school until he was 11. Diane Abbott, Emily Thornberry and Shami Chakrabarti in the Lords all sent their children to independent schools. Still, “trickle-down education” is a nice headline…

mdi-timer 30 November 2022 @ 16:00 30 Nov 2022 @ 16:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Factcheck: Has Starmer “Served in Government”?

Labour’s Shadow Defence Secretary John Healey offered a surprising new piece of trivia on Politics Live this afternoon:

“I’ve served in government, so has Keir Starmer. We know the first duty of any government is to defend the country and keep the citizens safe…”

Starmer was elected in 2015 which, last time Guido checked, means he’s only ever served in opposition. He’s never been in government. What was it Sir Keir said about “honesty being at the heart of everything” Labour stands for?

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John Healey: No-Fly Zone Would Do “Too Little” to Protect Ukrainians
mdi-timer 6 March 2022 @ 09:21 6 Mar 2022 @ 09:21 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Shadow Defence Secretary Dismisses Diane Abbott as an “Entirely Marginal Voice”

TrotsApp’s deafening silence over Putin’s invasion last night hasn’t gone unnoticed, not least by those who happen to sit on Labour’s own frontbench. Shadow Defence Secretary John Healey this morning slammed Diane Abbott for her usual criticism of ‘NATO expansion’, and essentially blamed Abbott for falling for Russian propaganda. Abbott was the Shadow Home Secretary just two years ago…

Speaking to LBC’s Nick Ferrari, Healey said Abbott was

“…An entirely marginal voice. NATO is a defensive alliance, the aggression comes from Putin, we’ve seen that with 180,000 troops on Ukraine’s borders. And to fall for that is to fall for the Russian propaganda. The disinformation rather than the diplomacy that Putin has been pursuing in the last few months.”

When reminded of Abbott’s previous title, Healey simply said “indeed, and that’s changed. Keir Starmer is in charge now, Jeremy Corbyn is not a Labour MP…”. Diane is still happily in possession of the Labour whip, though.

mdi-timer 22 February 2022 @ 12:22 22 Feb 2022 @ 12:22 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Ben Wallace Accuses Armed Forces of Fighting “Illegal Wars”

During a feisty outburst against Shadow Defence Secretary John Healey, Ben Wallace accused HM Armed Forces of previously fighting “illegal wars”. This could end up being a resigning issue…

Arguing in the Commons, Wallace claimed much of the mess the government is currently trying to clean up today:

“is because of your [Labour’s] illegal wars, your events in the past”

The clearly unplanned outburst was met with an audibly loud intake of breath. It’s also worth noting that those “illegal” wars were voted for by many sitting Tory MPs, including the PM…

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have never been ruled to be illegal. It is certainly not the position of the current government that they were. Wallace lost his temper and has disrespected the fighting men and women of this country. He should at the very least apologise for his wrongful outburst…

Guido has asked the Ministry of Defence for an official comment on the Minister’s views.

UPDATE: You’ll never guess who actually voted for military intervention in Iraq as an MSP…Read More

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Shadow Cabinet Minister Calls For Centrist Seven to Face By-Elections

Shadow Secretary of State for Housing John Healey told newly defected TIG MP Angela Smith that she and her six colleagues should face by-elections. It’s time for a People’s Vote…

UPDATE: John McDonnell has also called for the Centrist Seven to face by-elections…

mdi-timer 18 February 2019 @ 12:41 18 Feb 2019 @ 12:41 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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