Natalie Elphicke, Sir Roger Gale and Theresa Villiers Face Day’s Suspension from Commons

The Commons Standards Committee has found that Tory MPs Natalie Elphicke, Sir Roger Gale and Theresa Villiers should be suspended for one day over “an improper attempt to influence judicial proceedings”. Colonel Bob Sewart and Adam Holloway will also have to apologise to the House. The findings followed an investigation into their attempts to lobby judges ahead of a hearing in court of former MP Charlie Elphicke. They stupidly used Commons stationery to lobby the justices…

From the report:

The Members concerned had several avenues open to them by which they could legitimately have raised their concern over the issues at stake in the case. These included making representations to the court through the proper channels, as they were invited to do, and approaching the Government’s point of liaison with the judiciary, the Lord Chancellor. Despite having these alternative options, they chose to write privately to two senior judges to request their intervention in a decision that properly belonged to Mrs Justice Whipple and that would be made in accordance with the court’s normal processes. Their letters were, appropriately, disregarded and they were rebuked by the Lord Chief Justice. There is no suggestion that the Members concerned actually influenced the outcome of the hearing. But they sought to do so, and by acting as they did risked giving the impression that elected politicians can bring influence to bear on the judiciary, out of public view and in a way not open to others. Such egregious behaviour is corrosive to the rule of law and, if allowed to continue unchecked, could undermine public trust in the independence of judges.

We therefore agree with the Commissioner that, in sending their letters of 19 and 22 November 2020, Mrs Elphicke, Sir Roger, Mr Holloway, Col Stewart and Ms Villiers undertook an action which caused significant damage to the reputation and integrity of the House of Commons as a whole, or of its Members generally, and was therefore a breach of paragraph 17 of the Code.

We further conclude, as a consequence of the above, that, by using House-provided stationery in order to do so, Mrs Elphicke, Sir Roger, Mr Holloway, Col Stewart and Ms Villiers also breached paragraph 16 of the Code.

mdi-timer 21 July 2021 @ 09:27 21 Jul 2021 @ 09:27 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
EU Cookie Crumbles: Post-Brexit Deregulation Imminent

Last year, Guido set an important test for the Brexit-EU trade deal on regulatory sovereignty: would it allow the UK to repeal the EU’s stupid directive forcing websites to put up those annoying “Accept Cookies” banners? It seems trivial, yet this small annoyance is indicative of the hundreds of thousands of trivial and anti-business regulations that have unaccountably poured out from Brussels for decades, rubber-stamped by a servile parliament. If we can repeal the Cookie Law, Guido argued, that will indicate a far deeper sovereignty that allows us to do so much more. Six months later, it looks like the cookie button is finally about to crumble…

Buried deep in a new report published by the Taskforce for Innovation, Growth and Regulatory Reform – the group investigating how the UK can capitalise on its new regulatory freedoms post-Brexit – is a paragraph explaining why the ‘Accept Cookies’ request is a waste of time: 

“Both behavioural science and common sense tell you that putting a ‘tick to accept’ box in front of someone at the point they want to access a website or service does not generate genuine informed consent, it just means people are likely to tick ‘accept’ without thinking…a good measure of whether reform is successful will be the end of pointless cookie banners.

Finally, after five years of wrangling, the real Brexit victory is now imminent. Guido sends his warmest congratulations to the Taskforce leaders Sir Iain Duncan Smith, Theresa Villiers, and George Freeman, who should all be immortalised for their heroism if and when the pointless “Accept Cookies” buttons finally disappear. Guido has long-argued that you can and should set your privacy preferences at browser level, once, not on every site, every time. Boris says Downing Street will “publish a response [to the report] as soon as is practicable”. Guido waits with bated breath for the Prime Minister to fulfil his patriotic duty and show, by banishing the cookie, that Brexit really was worth it…

mdi-timer 16 June 2021 @ 13:00 16 Jun 2021 @ 13:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Guy News Special: “Ooohhh, Jeremy’s Racist” Chants at Jewish Groups’ Corbyn Protest

A Guy News special report from last night’s rally against Jeremy Corbyn in Parliament Square. Thousands of protesters gathered to demonstrate, with verbal clashes between Jewish groups, Labour moderates and a small but vociferous counter-protest convened by Corbynistas. An unprecedented protest of Jewish groups against a leader of a mainstream political party…

mdi-timer 27 March 2018 @ 14:55 27 Mar 2018 @ 14:55 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Villiers: Brexit Being Diluted
Brexit Minister: We’re Not Backsliding

Theresa Villiers expresses the concerns of Brexiteers that Number 10 is shifting away from a clean Brexit towards permanent alignment with the EU:

But Brexit minister Martin Callanan insists the UK will have the freedom to diverge in future:

If we don’t, what is the point of Brexit?

mdi-timer 28 January 2018 @ 12:09 28 Jan 2018 @ 12:09 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments