As expected, animated scenes in the Chamber this morning during the ongoing Afghanistan debate. Boris repeatedly yielding his time at the despatch box as several senior Tory MPs intervene, including John Baron, Tobias Ellwood, Mark Harper, and Theresa May. A difficult session already…
In tonight’s LIVE with LITTLEWOOD:
Joining host Mark Littlewood will be Conservative MP Mark Harper, Telegraph journalist Tim Stanley, TalkRADIO presenter Kevin O’Sullivan, trade expert Allie Renison and independent economist Julian Jessop. TUNE IN HERE.
Rare scenes of civil liberty unity on Question Time last night as every panellist came out against domestic covid passports, and a forced requirement by employees for workers to have the vaccine; with the far-left Nadia Whittome, hardline-centrist Layla Moran and CRG chair Mark Harper all opposing the floated measure for different reasons:
The founder and CEO of the Oakman Inns chain, also on the panel, said he would be “deeply uncomfortable” with enforcing the principle of ‘no jab, no job’ for his employees. It seems Covid has met a rival pandemic that’s spreading even more rapidly: common sense…
The Scottish Tories have demanded the Scottish Government publish daily numbers for doses administered in the vaccine programme. Oddly the UK’s Tory Government seems less keen on the idea. Today Covid Recovery Group chairman Mark Harper is putting pressure on the Government to also publish daily stats. Just as the Government publishes daily case and test numbers, it is not beyond the wit of man to publish vaccination numbers. Inoculating people, after all, is so much more important than testing them.
This is bang on. We need to see the same in England... https://t.co/ZUnRkCozb4— Mark Harper (@Mark_J_Harper) January 5, 2021
Despite claiming numbers would be published at a sluggish weekly rate, DHSC has not even managed to live up to that low ambition. The last day official statistics were published was 27 December. Ten days ago. The CRG is right and the Government should release the figures daily.
UPDATE: The Government capitulates. Boris has this evening announced that from Monday 11 January, vaccination statistics will be published daily.
Last week the AstraZeneca’s chief executive said the company can produce two million doses a week for the UK, undermining a favoured Government excuse of production problems. The rollout is on the Government. The Covid Recovery Group has today called on Ministers “to publish daily reports of progress so that MPs and the wider population can keep informed”, demanding that vaccination “become the central, overriding focus of government”. Bang on.
In the wake of the Oxford vaccine rollout today, Covid Recovery Group Chairman Mark Harper has released a statement saying the “Government must urgently set out exactly how the vaccination rollout will translate into a return to normal life for us all in 2021”. This can happen only if the UK accelerates to Israel-like efficiency. In his statement Harper went on to say:
“vaccinating the oldest and most at risk groups dramatically changes the impact of Covid – in terms of deaths, serious health consequences and admissions to hospital.”
The Health Secretary indicated that vaccinating everyone over 65 within seven weeks – by the third week of February – is feasible. Given that around 90 per cent of those who have died from Covid are over 65, their vaccination should be a clear threshold for when a substantial relaxation in restrictions can begin.”
A speedy vaccine rollout is something that for once all political factions can agree on. Sturgeon used her press conference this afternoon to clearly set out Scotland’s vaccination rollout timetable. No. 10 must end the current stuttering and excuse-making and pull their finger out….
As the leadership race draws to a close (less than a week to go now) MPs have started to follow in Amber Rudd’s footsteps and more openly pitch for Cabinet jobs. The most blatant of which being Mark Harper this morning…
Key to delivering Brexit will be getting Stormont up and running as well as ensuring a better relationship with the Republic of Ireland. For this, the next Prime Minister will need a serious, credible figure as their Northern Ireland Secretary. pic.twitter.com/nr7PQJxe43
— Mark Harper (@Mark_J_Harper) July 17, 2019
After his brief leadership pitch, the former Chief Whip is clearly looking to get back into the Cabinet, clearly aiming for the low hanging fruit role of Northern Ireland Secretary. Few want it and the incumbent is sure to be one of the first out the door…
Harper is also following in the video footsteps of Liz Truss who made a slightly more subtle pitch at the start of the month focusing on business. She’s now widely tipped to lead a souped up Business department. #LizForBiz
— Liz Truss (@trussliz) July 2, 2019
We’ll start finding out if these pitches are successful in just a week’s time…