Lib Dem Lord Lester Set For Record-Breaking Suspension For Sexual Harassment

Liberal Democrat peer Lord Lester is set for a record-breaking suspension from the House of Lords after Lords’ Privileges and Conduct Committee recommended that he be suspended for three and a half years until June 2022 for sexual harassment and “corrupt inducement” to sexual relations. It will be the longest Parliamentary suspension since the Second World War…

Lester was forced to resign as a Lib Dem spokesman after allegations that he had demanded sex from a female campaigner in return for help to pass legislation. The investigation upheld the complaint “on the basis of the strong and cogent evidence of the complainant and her witnesses.” The fact that it happened 10 years ago was not used as an excuse not to pursue the investigation…

LibDems Holding Emergency Finance Meeting Tomorrow

We recently reported that as a result of cashflow crisis LibDem HQ was slashing 25% of staff. In a highly unusual move Guido understands there is to be an emergency meeting of the Lib Dem board and the finance subcommittee to discuss party finances tomorrow evening (Tuesday). It is almost unheard of for there to be such a joint meeting.

Cable’s low-wattage leadership is proving disastrous and the imminent prospect of a well funded centrist, pro-EU rival with glitz and glamour from Chuka, David Miliband or, errr, Chris Leslie is another deterrent to donors. Whereas in the past £700,000 could have been loaned in an emergency by a rich backer in need of an honour, they are less likely to support a dead parrot of a party. Never a good idea to write off the Liberals, a rival party however could be the final nail in the coffin that was built for them in 2015 by Lynton Crosby…

Cable’s Exotic Spresm

Guido was surprised to learn that Vince would be using the phrase “erotic spasm” in his big speech today. Sadly under the pressure, Vince couldn’t quite perform.

Turns out he just wasn’t tough enuss…

Gina Miller Friendzones Lib Dems

Gina Miller was offered a plum slot on stage at the Lib Dem conference, but took the opportunity to reveal that not only is she not a Lib Dem, she’s merely a “friend”. She went on to say “we need a strong third party, just as much as we need a strong opposition, and a strong Government.” Ouch…

Miller expressly ruled out becoming the party’s next leader amidst nervous laughter from around the conference hall. When the star attraction of your conference won’t even commit to you, you know you’re in trouble… 

Not content with only breaking Lib Dem hearts, she also mouthed off about the ‘People’s Vote’ campaign run by former Lib Dem spinner James McGrory, saying it had failed to communicate with the public. She even went as far as to say that she “didn’t like” the phrase “People’s Vote” because it was too vague, before tearing into one of the Remainers’ other favourite catchphrases:

“All of you around here, stop saying ‘stop Brexit’. It’s really not helpful.”

Another day like this and it’ll soon be the Remainers saying “Stop Gina Miller, she’s really not helpful”…

Rich’s Monday Morning View

Diane’s Pitch For Leadership

Diane Abbott appeared to be appropriating some Lib Dem language at her immigration speech today, by using their “exit from Brexit” slogan in the middle of her remarks.

After Vince set out his retirement plans, the Lib Dems are looking for a new leader. Angling for the top job, Diane?

Lib Dems Unplug Cable

The Lib Dems have run into technical difficulties in their streaming of Vince Cable’s big speech today, where he was set to announce the plan for his stepping down as leader of the party. This was to be the Lib Dems’ big democratic push at opening up and modernising the party, setting out plans to allow supporters to join for free and vote in future leadership elections. This mishap is not a good look for a new tech savvy movement…

“Due to technical difficulties, we can’t go live right now. We’ll post Vince’s speech here soon.”

Calamity Vince hasn’t been having the best of luck with getting his message out recently. This is the second time in a week he has been unceremoniously unplugged, after the BBC cut off his question at PMQs on Wednesday. He’s gone from stalling to Mr. Has-been…

Gina Miller: “No Intention of Going Into Official Politics”

“No intentions” is not of course a definitive negative and writing your memoirs long before retiring often anticipates a run for office. However it looks like the LibDems will have to find someone else to replace Vince Cable…

Cable Confused on TTIP

Vince Cable reckons that under any post-Brexit US-UK trade deal the Americans would be:

“Looking for [their] private sector to have a bite of NHS contracts. That’s what they wanted when negotiating TTIP and that’s what they’ll want after Brexit.”

He went on about it again at PMQs yesterday. Classic scaremongering from Vince, another example of Remainers weaponising the NHS. Downing Street said yesterday:

“The UK’s public health sector is protected by specific exceptions and reservations in all EU trade arrangements and, as we leave the EU, the UK will continue to ensure that rigorous protections for the NHS are included in all trade agreements it is party to.”

It’s also a real change of tune from Vince. Back in 2014 when he was bashing UKIP for opposing TTIP, he said he was “genuinely baffled” by fears that the US private sector could get involved in the NHS under any trade deal. Directly contradicting what he says now. Who’s right, 2014 Vince or 2018 Vince?

Tom Brake’s Epic Legatum Whinge Backfires

Guido knows poor old Tom Brake has been driven mad by Brexit. But this letter he has written to David Davis complaining about meetings between DExEU officials and the Legatum Institute is hysterical even by his standards. Brake fumes:

“I am writing to you following information I received that the Legatum Institute has had multiple meetings with officials from the Department for Exiting the European Union. Following an FOI request, it was revealed that the Legatum Institute has had six meetings with your department in the last twelve months.  Six meetings, with a little known think-tank, in the middle of Brexit negotiations, when many companies severely affected by Brexit will not have had anything like that level of access is astounding… it is clear that the Legatum Institute has a reputation for advocating for a Hard Brexit.  Please confirm what level of dialogue your Department had with think tanks which advocate a softer form of Brexit during that same period.”

So Brake thinks Legatum are “Hard Brexit” baddies and that giving them access is “astounding“? He should probably tell his fellow LibDem Paddy Ashdown, who attends roundtable discussions at Legatum. Or LibDem peer Baroness Bowles, who sat on a Legatum panel a few weeks ago. The long list of other prominent Remainers who have “given access” to Legatum recently include Andrew Adonis, the government’s infrastructure commission chief who is one of the chief opponents of Brexit. Are they all part of some sinister Brexiteer conspiracy? Tin foil hat time for Tom…

LibDems Learn to Speak English

The LibDem conference agenda is out, and this is scheduled for the first morning:

“09.25-10.10 Policy motion: Learning to Communicate in English”
It’s felt like Sir Vince has been speaking a different language for years…


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Quote of the Day

Trevor Kavanagh’s analysis of the Brexit process…

“Thanks to Mrs May and her useless Chancellor Phil Hammond, this will not come without pain. But we escape with imagination and true British grit or we will be boiled alive.

It means on this centenary Remembrance of our struggle against tyranny, we risk ceding non-military victory in Europe to the undemocratic forces of an unaccountable totalitarian regime.”

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