In a 4-dimensional-chess move no one saw coming, the People’s Vote campaign have written to the Electoral Commission asking that they be investigated over apparent dodgy donations.
A statement released to the press reads:
“The People’s Vote is asking the Electoral Commission to look into possible non-disclosure of donations under the organisation’s previous executive management.
The new interim management team, in place since beginning of November, has been conducting a fundamental review of the organisation’s systems, policies and processes.
In the course of this review we became extremely concerned donations may not have been declared to the Electoral Commission. We immediately made the Commission aware of this.”
Guido understands we are looking at six-figure donations undisclosed. The new People’s Vote regime under new campaign director Stuart Hand is upbeat, saying some 30 staff are toiling in Millbank Tower, that they have had £700,000 in donations since the election was called, at least a £100,000 of which has been funnelled to preferred candidates. That’s a lot of LibDem leaflets…
Former campaign director Patrick Heneghan is still “on a leave of absence” pending investigation of his alleged drunken cocaine and chill offers to young female staffers. As you do…
Where all this leaves former People’s Vote campaign chiefs James McGrory and Tom Baldwin is anyone’s guess. The Electoral Commission report will be interesting…
Roland Rudd invited People’s Vote staffers to a meeting with him in the Hilton next door to the Millbank Tower campaign HQ. Two heavies with a clipboard were guarding the corridor to the meeting room. The heavies refused entry to campaign veteran Shocking scenes…and despite trying to blag his way in got the “your name’s not on the list, you can’t come in” treatment.
UPDATE: According to reports, after a lively meeting with Roland Rudd this morning People’s Vote staffers voted to no confidence him and their new chief executive, Patrick Heneghan. A source in the room claims only 3 staff members (including Heneghan) supported the new Rudd regime.
Guido hears that Roland Rudd and Patrick Heneghan are currently boycotting their own People’s Vote meeting – called for 9 a.m. this morning – because Baldwin and McGrory are present and he refuses to address them.
The People’s Vote campaign staff are currently waiting for him to stop having a tantrum and address the meeting he called. Who could have anticipated the People’s Vote were capable of such incompetence…
UPDATE: Looks like the staff are turning against Rudd…
— Charlie Atkins (@kinsCharlie) October 28, 2019
UPDATE II: Rudd in classic coup behaviour, now broadcasting propaganda from a TV station – Sky…
UPDATE III: Tom Baldwin launches into a succession of snide comments against Rudd, claiming there was a “boardroom coup”… but denying there is any chaos.
Reading through the People’s Vote senior team’s private WhatsApp messages, Guido was struck by one particular exchange from the day Boris visited a prison and discovered where lags stuff Kinder Eggs in order to smuggle contraband into prison.
In the exchange, Head of Strategic Communications – hopes the prisoners give Boris “a warm welcome”, to which Director of Communications Tom Baldwin replies “He slipped in the shower”. Who knows what fantasy was going through Tom’s mind?
One unexpectedly joyous by-product of the change of policy by the LibDems, to ignoring the referendum result totally, is that over at the People’s Vote campaign Tom Baldwin wants to purge LibDem MPs. James McGrory, the former LibDem SpAd for Clegg, is trying to keep them on board. Anna Soubry is saying they must be purged. So much for plurality and a new kind of centrist politics. Chaos….
UPDATE: Anna Soubry, a founder member of the People’s Vote, has sent an email attacking the LibDems new position, she argues:
Simply to revoke Article 50 without a further referendum, as my Lib Dem colleagues believe and have adopted as their policy, is simply wrong.
Dressing up the policy in clever semantics about hypothetical and fanciful situations are lost on an electorate tired of politicians playing politics and not being honest with them.
The Lib Dem policy of ‘revoke without a referendum’ stokes fears that they have not learnt from the mistake of tuition fees; that they will again say one thing to win a vote but when in power will do something very different.
The British people need honesty and clarity. And we are clear – we need a People’s Vote – with a responsible “deal” versus Remain on the ballot paper. If voters chose to Leave then at least they will have given their informed consent to Brexit.
Tom Balwin has tweeted that our story is bollocks. Am assured that the question of the LibDem’s status with the campaign is being actively discussed in the office. Perhaps Tom should take the time to explain to campaign staff what the position is with regard to Chuka for example…
The Remain Campaign’s Director of Communications Tom Baldwin has written a real sob story for the Spectator in response to an article which pointed out a major error their recent report attacking the ‘Norway Plus’ option. Baldwin goes full holier-than-thou as he insists:
“We are determined to be an evidence-based campaign and will continue to contest claims for forms of Brexit that are clearly untrue…
“Everyone should owe it to the public to engage in that debate in a way that upholds the very highest standards of rigour and truthfulness.”
This is coming from a campaign that:
The “People’s Vote” campaign have no interest in what people have or haven’t voted for, they simply want to stop Brexit by whatever means that are available to them, desperate for a second chance to atone for losing a campaign that was massively stacked in their favour in the first place. They are free to campaign for what they like but trying to take the moral high ground like this really is shameless…