Rudd v Nokes on Windrush Deportations

Amber Rudd tells the Commons “I do not have any evidence” that any Windrush immigrants have been deported. She blames “some media companies” for the reports.

Yet Caroline Nokes told Channel 4 earlier: “Potentially they have been [deported] and I’m conscious that it’s very much in error and that’s an error I want to put right.”

Rudd is rather pathetically blaming the media for accurately reporting Nokes’ words, and simultaneously dumping on Nokes from the despatch box. Nokes looking in trouble…

What is Happening in the Commons This Afternoon

3:30pm: Windrush Urgent Question.

4:15pm: The PM will then be making her statement on Syria.

At around 6pm the govt is planning an emergency business statement to make time for a debate on Syria tomorrow. No details at the moment on the terms of the debate they are seeking – it could be a full-day debate possibly followed by a more substantive retrospective vote. That would explain why Tory MPs are on a three-line whip tomorrow.

Labour’s Alison McGovern is currently planning to apply for an SO24 emergency debate. If the Speaker granted McGovern’s debate any vote would be non-binding and merely on a motion that the House has heard the debate.

So at the moment it looks like we are heading towards a more substantive debate tomorrow. All subject to change… 

Rich’s Monday Morning View

Government Spokesman Shouts “Arse” at Despatch Box

The BBC’s Esther Webber brings us the moment government spokesman Lord Keen knocks over a glass of water at the despatch box and shouts “arse“. Good value for that pay rise

Jezza’s False Flag PMQs

The new and universal virtue signal in British politics is mental health. Our parliamentarians, ever creative only in their unparalleled cynicism and opportunism, have come to a ‘consensus’ on the issue, falling over each other daily to lay offerings at this now sacred altar. Mental health is the go-to, right-on, reverse gaslight: our politicians are increasingly using it to confuse us into crediting them with moral superiority, and most of all, to flaunt the limitless compassion for which they are renowned. It must be a coincidence that the policy area of mental health also boasts extraordinary and elastic utility as the political equivalent of Monopoly’s get-out-of-jail-free-card. Jeremy Corbyn deployed the issue today, allowing him to operate unfettered in full deflection mode – unchallenged on Russia, unchallenged on the anti-Semitism scandal, all despite the Prime Minister’s best fortnight in living memory – while simultaneously being protected from any accusation of cynicism. A quite Kremlin-esque false flag from Agent COB…

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PMQs: Watch Live

PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions?

Oral Questions to the Prime Minister
Q1 Mike Wood (Dudley South) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 28 March.
Q2 Peter Heaton-Jones (North Devon)
Q3 Nick Thomas-Symonds (Torfaen)
Q4 Trudy Harrison (Copeland)
Q5 Mike Amesbury (Weaver Vale)
Q6 Ruth George (High Peak)
Q7 Jim Shannon (Strangford)
Q8 David Morris (Morecambe and Lunesdale)
Q9 Ged Killen (Rutherglen and Hamilton West)
Q10 Chris Philp (Croydon South)
Q11 Alan Brown (Kilmarnock and Loudoun)
Q12 Lucy Allan (Telford)
Q13 Michelle Donelan (Chippenham)
Q14 Craig Mackinlay (South Thanet)

Q15 Edward Argar (Charnwood)

Comments in the comments…

Bully Bercow Brands Boris “Sexist”

Bercow says Boris is “sexist” for calling Emily Thornberry “Baroness Nugee”What would the Speaker call bullying female staff members then?

Woodcock v Corbyn and Williamson

As John Woodcock lays into Jeremy Corbyn in the Commons, Chris Williamson tells him to go and join the Tories. Keep an eye out for Woodcock cupping his ear…

Peers Get Pay Rise

Their noble Lordships have bagged a pay rise: their daily expenses allowance now stands at up to £305, a £5 increase on last year. The £305 daily rate does not account for the benefits gained from subsidised restaurants. It also does not include travel expenses which can be claimed separately. Lording it up…

Carry On Up the Commons: Pursglove’s Double Entendre

Pursglove: “Perhaps if she’s around later I might be able to give one to her.”

May: “Well, I’m very happy to say to my honourable friend that if he’d like to come and see me later…”

He was talking about coffee cups…

Vid via Alain Tolhurst

Question Asked in Commons Chamber

A man has proposed to his bride-to-be in the chamber of the House of Commons. In what may be an historical first civil servant Matthew Reville popped the question to Labour parliamentary aide Rachel Evans on the floor of the House late last Friday (when MPs were not sitting). Matthew tweeted a video showing the proposal with the caption “motion proposed on the floor of the House.” Congratulations to them both…

Parliament Changed Mail Screening Provider Before Suspicious Package Wave

Today saw the fifth suspicious package incident in Parliament in a week. Of course, MPs get letters from cranks and weirdos all the time. This wave of suspicious – thankfully non-harmful – substances leaking from inside mail is causing researchers genuine alarm. As Guido reported on Monday, police are probing any link to an anti-Muslim hate campaign. Guido can reveal another factor which may also be at issue. The gossip among staffers is that Parliament has recently switched to a new contractor to carry out mail screening. The budget for screening used to be shared with the Metropolitan Police until it was taken completely in house in 2015. Researchers say they have noticed a significant uptick in dodgy letters getting through. One said:

“It’s extremely disruptive. The company doing the external screening has got a lot to answer for.”

Further details about the contract are protected for security reasons. Whether MPs are working or evacuated, you’re still paying for it…

Putin Cackles as Watching Kremlin Activates Agent COB

At the Kremlin Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin settles into his golden throne to watch Prime Minister’s Questions and the accompanying statement. As a jack-booted servant flicks over from Russia Today, Vlad wonders aloud: “Who’s the thin old beardy bloke in the red tie?”

“That’s Jeremy Corbyn”, replies the trembling aide. “Who?” demands Putin, never more than a moment from a nuclear-level rage, or worse, offering to make an adviser’s tea. “You know, Mr President. Codename COB…”

The almond-eyed tyrant purses his lips then raises a smile. An FSB man never forgets a codename.

“Ah, da, da,” he whispers. “Activate Agent COB…”

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Bercow to Recuse Himself from Bullying Investigation Commission

Guido is hearing a rumour that Bercow will recuse himself from from chairing the House of Commons Commission investigation into bullying after coming under pressure and being threatened with a Point of Order coming up in the chamber. Presumably the Point of Order would ask him to rule on the righteousness of whether there was a conflict of interest in him being able to set the terms for his own investigation…

UPDATE: “Mr Speaker informed House of Commons Commission members this morning that he has decided to recuse himself from the agenda item concerning an Independent Complaints and Grievance Process. This item will now be taken first, with Tom Brake in the chair.” Tom Brake is a Bercow ally…

PMQs: Who’s Asking the Questions?

Questions to the Prime Minister

Q1 Vicky Foxcroft (Lewisham, Deptford) If she will list her official engagements for Wednesday 14 March.

Q2 Jack Dromey (Birmingham, Erdington)

Q3 Mr Virendra Sharma (Ealing, Southall)

Q4 Alex Burghart (Brentwood and Ongar)

Q5 Bill Esterson (Sefton Central)

Q6 Bridget Phillipson (Houghton and Sunderland South)

Q7 Kelvin Hopkins (Luton North)

Q8 Richard Graham (Gloucester)

Q9 Jeremy Quin (Horsham)

Q10 Andrew Selous (South West Bedfordshire)

Q11 Vernon Coaker (Gedling)

Q12 Leo Docherty (Aldershot)

Q13 Jo Platt (Leigh)

Q14 Neil Parish (Tiverton and Honiton)

Comments in the comments…

Update: Sally Bercow Insists on “Bollocks to Brexit”

Guido’s co-conspirator gets in touch to say that Sally Bercow has now put a poster in the car windscreen, embellished with an EU flag, claiming it’s her car and she can do anything she wants. The co-conspirator would send an updated picture if there were not policeman stationed around the car…

The Serjeant-at-Arms’ office has been calling all day demanding we remove the picture because – they now claim – it poses a safety risk to the Bercow family. Perhaps in reality it is the personalised number plate that gives the owner away?

UPDATE II:  In the comments Guido is reminded that Sally previously had a car with her own number plate:

So is this car really hers?

Bercow Says “Bollocks to Brexit”

The Speaker has his personalised number-plated car, parked in his personal parking spot, with his personal message in the window; “Bollocks to Brexit”. Bercow has let it be known that he might want to stay past his promised 2018 departure date “to oversee Brexit”. Bollocks to that, Bercow…

Commons Clerks Sceptical About MP-Led Bullying Inquiry

If MPs are goood at anything it is buck passing and blame swerving. An investigation by MPs chaired by the Speaker is not promising…

Bercow chairs the House of Commons commission – which will set the terms of reference for an “independent” inquiry. Even Caroline Lucas, who is sympathetic to Bercow, says: “I think at the very least he should withdraw from that decision and that the three deputy speakers might judge on that…There might also be a case for stepping back temporarily if an investigation is carried out.” Can you imagine any other situation where the accused is allowed to be in judgement or set the terms of the investigation? This is manifestly against natural justice.

Motion Calling For Independent Inquiry into Bercow Bullying

An Early Day Motion has been tabled calling for an independent inquiry into John Bercow following bullying allegations:

“This house calls for an independent investigation into the allegations of bullying made against Mr Speaker.”

Caroline Lucas has been granted her Urgent Question at 3:30pm.[…] Read the rest

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Quote of the Day

No prizes for guessing who Andrea Leadsom is talking about:

“As you said last week, Mr Speaker, we have a responsibility to safeguard the rights of this House and as Leader of the House I seek to do exactly that, treating all members of parliament with courtesy and respect. I hope and expect all Honourable and Right Honourable members to do likewise.”

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