Johnny Mercer’s Cold Week Fact Check

Taking to Instagram yesterday, Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer highlighted his hard work on employment and homelessness – longstanding social issues facing ex-servicemen, which have proved stiff to tackle.

The honourable member also noted the weather in London this week, saying it had been a “busy but cold week”. Looking closely at the photo, however, it appears No. 10 has the heating on full blast. 

Given recent rumours about Mercer’s talks to defect to Labour, it’s no surprise to see Johnny leans to the left…

mdi-timer 8 December 2022 @ 16:55 8 Dec 2022 @ 16:55 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Johnny Mercer on Defecting to Labour

One of the many rumours doing the rounds in Westminster last night was whether any further Tory MPs might look at the dire state of the party’s electoral fortunes and copy Christian Wakeford in crossing the floor to Labour. Wakeford himself was seen holding court on cloud nine, and acknowledged said defection rumours, as Sir Keir visited the terrace to drink with MPs. Something a media source says has been happening increasingly frequently. 

How substantive are the rumours? Guido’s heard a few names over the past week, among them Johnny Mercer. In a new interview with Alastair Campbell, the former Labour spin doctor addresses the question head-on. The answers might not reassure Wendy Morton…

Campbell: Okay. Imagine they were to say to you, ‘Johnny, do you think we would be better off under Keir Starmer’s Labour or Liz Truss’s Tories?’ What would you say?

Mercer: [long pause]

Campbell: That is a long pause.

Mercer: I don’t know what to say. I’m not a libertarian. The Tories can go in that direction, but I don’t have to.


Mercer: What do you think I should do?

Campbell: Off the record?

Mercer: On the record.

Campbell: Well, you came into politics not knowing whether you were Tory or Labour. You decided Tory was closer to what you think. You’ve achieved a fair bit of what you wanted to, but you’ve been stiffed badly by one Prime Minister, and even worse by his successor. I think you’re more likely to achieve what you want to by going the whole hog and saying to people, ‘If I can get Labour to do this, I will back them and get other people to back them, too.’ That is what I would do.

Mercer: You would do that if you were me?

Campbell: I would. You’re not a tribal Tory. I admit to a vested interest here as a Labour supporter. But I really do believe the best way to achieve what you want is to get Labour to commit to what you’re asking for.

Mercer: That would certainly make my life difficult – if Labour committed to my defining reason for being in politics, while the Tories remained where we are.

Despite this eyebrow-raising interaction, Guido understands Mercer has no plans to defect, his preferred style being to go down with the ship. Can the Chief Whip be sure all Tory MPs hold the same noble view?

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Johnny Mercer Breaks Rank Over Benefits

Since returning to the backbenches Johnny Mercer has been quick to abandon his military discipline. Beyond accusing Liz of lying over promises of a Veteran’s cabinet post, he’s now held a Facebook live session where he made more offensive manoeuvres. He expressed his support of raising benefit payments in line with inflation, saying he will “fight hard in parliament” for the increase. Mercer is well aware of the consequences of his campaign, specifying “if that means I get kicked out of the Tory party, ok fine”.

Mercer’s barrages didn’t end there. He was non-committal when asked if the Tory party had a future, adding “we’ll have to wait and see”. He then took aim at those standing for leadership, saying “it blows my mind that some of these people think they can lead this incredible country”. Could Mercer go independent?

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UK’s Sexiest MPs Revealed

Illicit Encounters is back to once again (it’s becoming an annual tradition) answer the country’s most enduring question: who is the UK’s hottest MP? A survey of 2,000 Illicit Encounter users has concluded that Conservative MP Dehenna Davison – who won 29% of the vote – is the UK’s fittest female politician. Guido’s certain that this isn’t the only badge that Dehenna will wear with pride…

In second place was Labour’s Dr. Rosena Allin Khan, who scored 21% of the vote. Shadow Foreign Secretary Randy Nandy came in third place. Congratulations to all.

Co-conspirators will also be keen to learn that Johnny Mercer – who won 22% of the vote – was ranked the UK’s sexiest male politician. He tops Chancellor Dishy Rishi, who drops to second place with 20% of the vote. Boris Johnson comes in third place with a respectable 17%. All part of Building Back Bedder...

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[LISTEN] Mercer: Government is “Most Distrustful, Awful Environment I’ve Ever Worked In”

Mercer in his first post-sacking interview, with Times Radio:

“This is the most distrustful, awful environment I’ve ever worked in, in government. Almost nobody tells the truth is what I’ve worked out over the last 36 hours. And, you know, so so I don’t think anyone really can get on their high horse about trust and ethics and all the rest of it in politics, because as far as I’m concerned, most of it is a bit of a cesspit, I think we do have a clear commitment to follow through on our promises and do right by those who serve.”

Taking his sacking well…

Listen to the interview in full below:

Read More

mdi-timer 21 April 2021 @ 17:17 21 Apr 2021 @ 17:17 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Johnny Mercer Set to Resign

Sky’s Sam Coates is reporting Defence Minister Johnny Mercer is set to resign after hitting a road block on being unable to end vexatious historic prosecutions for veterans. On April 8th Mercer openly criticised ministers for “foot-dragging” and a slow pace of progress in passing the law. Six days ago the Lords blocked the government’s bid to pass the law. Speaking to constituents during a Q&A at the end of March, Mercer articulated his frustrations:

“It’s been a real up-hill battle because, as you will notice, politicians are really good about talking a great game when it comes to our military, but when it comes to actually doing something for them like voting to end repeat prosecutions of our service men and women they go running for the hills.”

“We are going to get something through, it’s not going to be everything everybody wanted”

Mercer has also been at odds with Sunak and government SpAds while in government. He could prove real trouble on the back benches if Boris doesn’t talk him down…

mdi-timer 20 April 2021 @ 11:48 20 Apr 2021 @ 11:48 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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