Multi-Millionaire Remoaner Hung Out to Superdry

Smug multi-millionaire Superdry co-founder Julian Dunkerton is best known for giving one of this biggest donations in political history when he gave £1 million to the People’s Vote campaign last summer. Bizarrely the precondition for the donation was that it was all spent on polling. Given his net worth of over £400 million he won’t be missing it any time soon…

Unfortunately he didn’t follow his own advice to remain when it comes to his business – he flounced out of Superdry last year but has now taken to begging the board to put him back in as a director. Superdry have told him in no uncertain terms that he is not wanted back. At all.

“The board unanimously believes that Mr Dunkerton’s return to the company, in any capacity, would be extremely damaging to the company and its prospects.”

The board also said his leadership style does not fit with the “open-minded collaborative culture, values and operation of the company”. The bitter battle shows no signs of letting up – now he has accused the board of destroying £1.2 billion of shareholder value, in return they said he has no “credible plan” and are digging in with their unanimous opposition to his reappointment. Bye!

Leadsom Slams Bercow For Lack of “Courtesy and Respect”

During an explosive session in the Commons this afternoon, Andrea Leadsom slammed Bercow for not treating colleagues “with courtesy and respect.” Naturally, he responded by ignoring her…

Bercow Blocks Third Meaningful Vote

Speaker John Bercow has thrown his biggest curve ball yet at the Brexit process, moving to block the Government bringing back another Meaningful Vote to the Commons. Bercow said the Government must now meet the test of “substantial changes” in order for a new meaningful vote motion to be tabled. His rationale for allowing MV2 was that it “could credibly be argued that it was a different proposition” from the first. Suddenly the Speaker has decided that he cares about Erskine May. Picking and choosing which parts of the constitution to respect as he pleases… 

However no-dealers’ celebrations at Bercow’s decision may be premature. May will now need to seek substantive changes from the EU to hold MV3. There is no guarantee that those changes will be in the right direction…

Hammond’s Top SpAd Poppy Trowbridge Leaving Treasury

Philip Hammond’s top SpAd Poppy Trowbridge is set to return to the private sector later this Spring after almost three years in the Treasury. Poppy joined from Sky News although she is yet to reveal where she will be going after she leaves HMT. Her colleagues in the Treasury have known for a while that she intended to leave after the Spring Statement and Brexit Day, although the details of her departure are yet to be finalised amid the ongoing political drama. Given the looming Brexit delay it could be a while yet before she makes it out…

Porn Laws Catch Public With Their Pants Down

New polling by YouGov has revealed that a whopping 76% of the public are completely unaware of the tossing tax, set to come into force in just two weeks time. This massive Government power grab is going to catch people completely unawares…

Disconcertingly, the majority of people who watch porn “most days” do not know about the policy and could end up in a sticky situation as prime targets of countless fraudsters asking for their credit card details amongst the confusion. People may then be too embarrassed to report the scammers…

When told about it, people who watch porn at least once a week oppose it by 56% to 38%. A majority of 18-24 year olds oppose the policy, although this flips as respondents get older, with three quarters of pensioners supporting the policy. Those who are most supportive of the tossing tax are the people who didn’t grow up with the internet…

Brexit Can Be Stopped, No Deal Brexit is Unlikely, So Take the Certain Choice

Eurosceptic MPs have had a lot of thinking to do over the weekend. Do they hold their nose and vote for May’s less-than-perfect deal, or do they roll the dice again and run the risk of losing Brexit altogether? Some Brexiteers believe if they just sit tight Britain will automatically leave the EU next week. ERG supremo Chris Howarth – a hero of the long fight for Brexit – argues that it’s a “certainty” that so long as the ERG MPs hold their nerve that the UK is “leaving the EU on 29th March without a permanent backstop.” Guido would love that to be true, it is however a triumph of optimism over reality. Before MPs make their mind up, they need to face up to the political reality of where we are…

Let’s look at Howarth’s arguments in turn, because they are at the heart of the divide among Brexiteer allies:

  • There isn’t enough time to stop us leaving on 29th March.
  • The Commons won’t back a second referendum
  • The PM’s deal will never pass
  • The PM won’t want to seek a long extension if her deal is rejected a third time

Howarth argues these are certainties, Guido disputes that:-

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Labour on Venezuela, Then and Now…

Shadow minister for policing Louise Haigh claimed on Politics Live today that “No one’s suggesting that we move to North Korean or Venezuelan levels of interference and state control of the economy.” Except Guido can remember one or two people who suggested exactly that. Seumas will be wanting a word…

Fiona Onasanya’s New Fightback Video: I’m Still Innocent

Two months ago Fiona Onasanya was found guilty in a court of law for perverting the course of justice. After serving just one month of her three month sentence, she then had her appeal comprehensively refused by the Court of Appeal two weeks ago. None of this has deterred her from making a new video insisting she is still innocent…

Rather than accepting any responsibility or the verdicts of the criminal justice system, the disgraced former Labour MP blames hostile “news articles and television articles” for her conviction, complaining that her mission to be Peterborough’s “voice of change in the corridors of power” has been “somewhat overshadowed” by her conviction. You don’t say…

Even more bizarrely, she has decided to make her appeal to the voters of Peterborough in front of a backdrop of the New York City skyline. Is she even allowed to be there under the terms of her parole? The recall petition opens tomorrow…

Shadow Scotland Minister Says Labour Defections Were “Necessary Cleansing”

Labour’s Shadow Scotland Minister Paul Sweeney has said that that the defections of several MPs from the Labour Party were part of a “necessary cleansing” of the party. Which one of his colleagues does he think needs to be “cleansed” next?

Sweeney attacked the TIGgers as “self-centred careerists” and said that “there’s a necessary cleansing that has to happen in the margins”. These are people who have left the party in protest at the endemic anti-Semitism within it…

Ian Austin, who also quit the party over anti-Semitism, but did not join the TIGgers, summed it up:

No comment from Labour on what they’re going to do about it…

Trimble: UK Has Secured ‘Substantive Changes’ That Limit Backstop Impact

Good Friday Agreement architect Lord Trimble and Northern Irish constitutional expert Lord Bew have made a fresh intervention in the backstop debate, authoring a new paper, Nothing has changed? It has actually, for Policy Exchange today. Nobel Peace Prize-winning Trimble and Bew conclude that, despite the fact that there has been no textual change to the backstop itself, the Government’s Strasbourg concessions did deliver “substantive changes that will affect and limit the impact of the Irish backstop.” They agree that “the UK Government is now correct in asserting the right, in extremis, to appeal to international law under the Vienna Convention”…

Crucially, the paper explains that the EU has accepted “that the protection of the Good Friday Agreement may be entirely independent from the functioning of the Irish backstop.” Allowing the UK to leave the backstop without breaking its Good Friday Agreement obligations…

Trimble is a committed Brexiteer and Unionist, he has even gone to the lengths of launching a legal challenge against the Government to challenge the legality of the backstop under the Good Friday Agreement. The fact that he is now satisfied that there have been enough changes to limit the potential negative consequences of the backstop may well go some way to reassuring other Unionists and Brexiteers…

Rees-Mogg: Bad Deal is Better than Remaining in the EU

Jacob Rees-Mogg sums up the incredibly difficult dilemma facing Brexiteers – if no deal is no longer an option, then is May’s deal better than no Brexit at all? Rees-Mogg told LBC:

“The deal is still a very bad deal, it doesn’t deliver on the promises of the Conservative Party manifesto and it doesn’t deliver on the referendum result in full. The question people like me will ultimately have to answer is, can we get to no deal instead? … I’m concerned that the Prime Minister in spite of her previous commitments is determined to stop no deal…

“No deal is better than a bad deal but a bad deal is better than Remaining in the European Union.”

He’s not wrong…

UPDATE: Rees-Mogg’s response to a caller saying that May’s deal is worse than Remain sets out the Brexiteer’s dilemma even more clearly. If the UK does not Leave now the political establishment will never allow Brexiteers to even have a sniff of the exit door in the future. The idea that we will get a better deal after a two-year delay is fantasy, Remainers will be fully in control of the process by then…

Remainers have successfully moved the debate entirely onto the economic relationship since the referendum – many Brexiteers seem to have forgotten that their key objective before the referendum was getting out of the political structures of the EU. Those who are saying they would rather Remain now need to think very carefully about their priorities…

Rich’s Monday Morning View

Hammond: ‘Physically Impossible’ to Leave on March 29th

The veiled threats from tin-eared Hammond this morning are not going down at all well with Brexiteers. Putting one of the least-trusted Remainer Cabinet ministers out on broadcast just before a crucial vote is hardly the best way to rally support for it…

Hammond: “I Don’t Think” I Told Anyone I Was Going to Abstain

Worst non-denial ever…

Hammond Refuses to Rule Out More Cash For DUP Support

Hammond repeatedly refuses to rule out the DUP “delivering again” for Northern Ireland. Of course the cash will be going to Northern Ireland itself, not the DUP. Not that it will stop metropolitan elite commentators from sneering at one of the UK’s most underinvested regions getting a boost…

Boles: Defecting to TIG Without By-Election Would be “Ratting” on my Constituents

Nick Boles refreshingly upfront after his decision to quit his local Conservative Association yesterday. Not that the other TIGgers had any such concerns…

Corbyn Would Vote Leave in Second Referendum “If We’ve Got a Good Deal”

This will go down well with his Europhile base…

Corbyn Can’t Say He’s ‘Enthusiastic’ About a Second Referendum

Corbyn dancing on the head of a pin to avoid saying he’s enthusiastic about having a second referendum…

Fox: Country Has Brexit Fatigue

Fox has a point, the direction in opinion polls is not encouraging for Brexiteers…

McVey: Rules Have Changed, It’s This Deal or No Brexit

Esther McVey, who resigned from the cabinet in protest at Theresa May’s Brexit deal, has said she will now “hold her nose” and back the deal in the third ‘Meaningful Vote’ this week because “the rules have all changed”.[…] Read the rest “McVey: Rules Have Changed, It’s This Deal or No Brexit”

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