LibDem Candidates Pledge: ‘I Do Not Want to Be A Councillor’

An embarrassing email to the entire Vauxhall LibDem mailing list pleading for ‘paper candidates’ to stand in unwinnable wards at the local elections. The begging note went out to anyone who had once signed up their email address. A co-conspirator responded and was forwarded a paper candidate application form despite not even being a LibDem. The email reads:

“I offer myself as a paperless candidate for the coming Lambeth Borough Council elections. I do not want to be a Lambeth Councillor. If I am selected as a council candidate I will not campaign for my election in this ward. I will not campaign for any other candidates for the ward in which I am selected. I will not encourage the local party or any person to campaign in this ward.”

Not winning here…

Innovative LibDem Bar Chart

Everyone loves a LibDem bar chart. Usually they just misrepresent previous election results to talk up their chances of success this time round. On the face of it, this leaflet in Carholme, Lincoln is much the same, showing the LibDems in first place but in a battle with Labour. You have to squint to see the graph actually shows, hilariously, “the number of times the parties have been in touch”. The LibDems came last in the Carholme ward last time. Taking misleading LibDem bar charts to the next level…

Dodgy Green-LibDem Pact Back On As £250,000 Bung Remains Unexplained

One of the murkiest dodgy deals in recent electoral history is back on in Richmond. Readers will remember how the Green Party was offered a £250,000 inducement not to run against Zac Goldsmith in the 2016 by-election – a blatant bung that the Electoral Commission said would have been a criminal offence. In the 2017 election the Greens initially selected a candidate, Andree Frieze, and said she would run. That was until the LibDems stood down their candidate against Caroline Lucas in Brighton – and Frieze dropped out in Richmond to return the favour. Lucas farcically told the Daily Politics she couldn’t “remember the name” of the person who offered the £250,000 bung. They have never explained the inducement, essentially covering up a potential criminal offence…

Now a joint Green-LibDem leaflet has gone out in Richmond explaining the parties “have decided to work together and not compete with each other” and telling voters to vote for two LibDem candidates, Penny Frost and Gareth Richards, and one Green, Frieze, in May’s local elections. Here is the joint imprint:

There are serious questions here to which Richmond voters deserve to know the answers. Who offered the £250,000 bung? Why did Caroline Lucas claim she “can’t remember” the name of the person who offered it? Why did she never disclose the name as she promised Andrew Neil she would? Why did the LibDems claim there was no deal in 2017 despite the Greens admitting there was? What deal has been made this time round that they are keeping from Richmond voters? Remarkable they’ve got away with refusing to come clean on all this…

Sutton LibDem Campaign Brake Down

LibDem co-conspirators in Sutton tell Guido the party mass produced a glossy leaflet designed for mail drops before the local election spending period. Having stockpiled the expensive leaflets, the LibDems only started to deliver them once the controlled spending period had started. Doh!

To make matters worse, official council email addresses appeared on the leaflets, rather than political ones. They have had to suspend their council email accounts and thousands of the flyers face being pulped…

The brains behind the campaign? It’s being run out of Tom Brake’s office. This morning Brake tweeted “check out Sutton LibDems. I just joined” – before deleting it. A hat-trick of campaign cock ups enhances Brake’s reputation for competence once again…

Lol-ney Out at LibDem HQ

Guido hears Sarah Olney is leaving her plum job as head of “special projects” at LibDem HQ. It is the third job change in nine months for Olney after she lost her seat last year, then lost her job as Vince Cable’s chief of staff after just six weeks in the role. The “special projects” gig was a four-day week yet paid several times more than other LibDem HQ staff, something which, well, did not help morale. It’s fair to say Olney did not succeed in turning around the dire state of affairs at HQ. She was also forced to reimburse the taxpayer £2,000 after breaking expenses rules. Olney had leaving drinks at the Two Chairman last week, a source says: “About five people went, fortunately she forgot to book and she got crowded out by Formby. Probably the worst staff member HQ has ever employed and that’s not a high bar”. Heads up Richmond residents: word is she is threatening to spend more time back in your constituency…

Ex-LibDem Colleagues Raise Doubts Over “Walter Mitty” Observer Whistleblower

Former LibDem colleagues of the Observer’s data harvesting whistleblower have some interesting stories to tell. The party will not comment on staffing matters but a LibDem source says Chris Wylie was employed on a fixed-term contract which was not renewed. It is fair to say they were unimpressed with his work. One former colleague recalls: “We did not renew his contract because he is a compulsive bullsh*tter and doesn’t know what he’s talking about”. The Observer reported that their man was “working inside government with the LibDems as a political strategist”. Yet Sean Kemp, who really did work inside government with Nick Clegg, recalls:

Former LibDem spinner Ben Rathe offers this verdict:

Kemp and Rathe are two of the most trusted and respected former spinners in Westminster.

This afternoon Guido revealed how Wylie had personally offered to harvest data for Vote Leave, despite now describing the practice as “grossly unethical”. Did Carole Cadwalladr and the Observer not think to check any of this?

Cable Embarrassed as EU Leaders Deny Signing LibDem 2nd Referendum Statement

Oh dear. This morning the LibDems press released that eight EU prime ministers had agreed to back Vince Cable’s call for a second referendum:

Except they hadn’t:


The LibDems need some new hires quick.

Fake LibDem Newspaper Lies to Richmond and Twickenham Voters

Guido has previously reported on how the LibDems produce fake newspapers to hookwink voters – well, this is the most egregious example yet. Residents in Richmond and Twickenham have had a copy of the “Richmond & Twickenham Gazette” through their doors today. It has the appearance of a real newspaper, carrying multiple news reports attacking the government and splashing on a “story” criticising the Tory-controlled Richmond council. Let’s have a look at some of the “reporters” writing for the Gazette…

Piers Allen is described as the paper’s “Social correspondent”, with his byline on an apparent news report attacking the government on poverty and carrying a quote from a local LibDem saying the story is a “damning indictment of the Tory party”. Piers Allen is not a journalist. He is the co-chair of Twickenham & Richmond LibDems and a local LibDem councillor. 

Next the paper runs a story by its “Europe correspondent”, Alicia Bridges-Westcott, writing glowingly about how Vince Cable is “fighting to give you the final say on the Brexit deal”. Guess what? Alicia Bridges-Wescott is not a Europe correspondent. She is the campaign manager for Twickenham & Richmond LibDems. 

It gets worse. A report by “Health correspondent” Simon Drage runs a quote telling readers that “heartless Tory cuts” have caused an “NHS in crisis”. Forget that NHS spending has increased under the Tories. Simon Drage is not a health correspondent. He is the Seat Strategy & Intelligence Officer at LibDem HQ.

Finally we have a story from Jonathan Cardy, apparently the Gazette’s “Finance correspondent”, reporting how the Tories are spending money that could be spent on hospitals on Brexit. It will not surprise you to learn that Jonathan Cardy is not a finance correspondent. He is a LibDem councillor in Richmond.

The only admission that this newspaper is a pack of lies comes in this imprint at the bottom, which confirms it is published by Twickenham & Richmond LibDems. A fake newspaper with fake news and fake journalists – the LibDems are infamous for being the dirtiest campaigners but this is a new low…

Cable Doubles Down on Brexit “White Faces” Slur

BBC: You made a comment about all the white faces in front of you. But the fact is you said people who voted for Brexit, an awful lot of them were white. 

Cable: That is the case, and that it was a nostalgia for that world, and I think there’s a couple of bits of evidence which support that. I mean, first of all, some of the most effective propaganda at the time, you may remember Farage’s advertisement where queues of dark faced people and that was how the arguments about immigration was presented. The – you know – I spent a lot of the referendum campaign going round, you know, mostly in sort of prosperous country areas, they weren’t deprived areas of the North and the overwhelming reason people were giving for voting the way they were, and they were predominantly older groups, were about immigration and when people thought about immigration they weren’t predominantly thinking about people from Eastern Europe. 

Vince Cable unapologetic about his attempt over the weekend to suggest the 52% are a load of old racists…

LibDems Fundraising For Sheffield Hallam By-Election

Latest on Jared O’Mara: the LibDems are using “rumblings” of a “highly likely” by-election in Sheffield Hallam to raise £20,000 for their candidate there:

“In January, the party launched a by-election fund, spurred by rumblings about a Sheffield Hallam by-election. That by-election is still highly likely – and we need your help. We’re just £20,000 short of our goal. I’ve been to Sheffield to help our fantastic candidate, Laura Gordon. Let me tell you, she will make a fantastic MP – and be a worthy successor to Nick Clegg. Let me also tell you, if this by-election happens, we’re in with a real chance. The reception on the doors was absolutely brilliant and the team there, with support from HQ is ready to go.”

Members of O’Mara’s local Labour Party had been calling for him to stand down in time to hold a by-election on the same day as the May elections. To be fair to Jared he has actually managed to turn up for a handful of votes in the last few weeks. Still hasn’t managed his maiden speech though…

Leaving Here: LibDem Press Office Exodus Causing Chaos

Whatever happened to the LibDem press office? Not long ago it was known for its punchy quotes, decent stories, occasionally funny tweets and ability to shoehorn the party into journalists’ copy even though they have little of any news value to offer. Lobby hacks are noting that these days they seem to have disappeared:

In recent months the LibDem press office has lost its three top spinners Phil Reilly, Jasper Gerard and Paul Haydon. The new LibDem head of media is Rosy Cobb, formerly a policy adviser with no experience in the press office. The word on Great George Street is that their other two senior spinners Christine Longworth and Dave Shaw are considering leaving for better jobs elsewhere. There is so much churn that the new faces are unknown even to HQ colleagues, let alone the Lobby. Essentially the LibDem press office has no one who can speak to journalists. Is there anyone left at LibDem HQ who can sort this mess out?

“Do You Want Some C*ck?” Jo Swinson’s #MeToo Moment

Reminder that the LibDems are in no way exempt from the Pestminster scandal

Vince’s New Year’s Resolution: Work Less, Sleep More

Vince Cable is leading the LibDems into oblivion and party staff know it – just read these concerned briefings against him over the last few days. There has been an exodus from HQ, with head of press Jasper Gerard, spinner Paul Haydon and head of digital Michael Wilkinson all off. The salaries on offer are very low and some jobs are having to be re-advertised as no suitable replacements have applied. Knives are out for Cable, whose dreary leadership is being blamed across all sections of the party. So what has Vince told Politico is his New Year’s resolution?

“To work less and sleep more.”

That should do it… does he even want the job?

Olney Charged Taxpayer £2,000 For Party Political Letters

Sarah Olney has been found guilty of breaching the Members’ Code of Conduct after the Standards Commissioner ruled she spent nearly £2,000 of taxpayers’ money on letters which solicited donations to the LibDems. Olney billed voters £1,941.63 to send over 3,000 of her constituents letters which told them to visit a website which was “explicitly published and promoted by the party and on which financial support for the party was solicited”. She has apologised and agreed to reimburse the taxpayer. Worth remembering what the LibDems told us when Guido first reported the story: “This is an utterly spurious allegation without any basis. We are confident this complaint will be rejected at the first opportunity.” Turns out the Standards Commissioner did not agree…

LibDems and Open Britain Fined For Referendum Spending Breaches

Remain campaigners have been fined by the Electoral Commission for breaking the rules on their spending returns:

The LibDems: failed to provide acceptable invoices or receipts for 80 payments with a total value of more than £80,000. They’ve been fined £18,000.

Open Britain: failed to deliver a complete and accurate spending return, including three missing invoices. They’ve been fined £1,250.

Guido will have more on Remain campaign referendum fraud in the coming weeks…

Tom Brake: Media Aren’t “Patriotic” Enough

This is what the LibDems said when Andrea Leadsom called on the media to be more patriotic:

“This is a sinister threat to the free media. How dare Andrea Leadsom tell the press what they should think, this isn’t a George Orwell book. She needs to apologise for these comments and realise what she said was frankly stupid.”

Yet today top LibDem Tom Brake says the right-wing press

“… Don’t have the patriotism or honesty to point out the failings of a Conservative govt. and its approach to Brexit.”

So when Brexiteers call for patriotic coverage they’re “a sinister threat to the free media” but when Tom Brake does it it’s fine?

LibDems Livid at Olney’s £68,000 Salary For Four Day Week

There is near mutiny in LibDem HQ after party staff discovered Sarah Olney is being paid £68,000 for a four day week. When Olney quit as Vince Cable’s chief of staff after just six weeks, she was given a cushy non job as head of “special projects”. LibDem sources in the office are bewildered as to how Olney fills her days, she doesn’t appear to do any work and the only email staff remember her sending is the HQ “Hero of the Year” award, which in previous years was done by the PA. Most of the aides in LibDem head office are on £20,000-£30,000, there is outcry among the troops that Olney is on triple their wages for what is ostensibly a nothing job, and for which she only does a four day week. Members’ subs being well spent…

UPDATE: The LibDems have launched an investigation to find who leaked details of Sarah Olney’s salary to Guido. Our mole in the office says it is being carried out by the party’s head of fundraising Emma Cherniavsky. Good luck…

Top Rennard Ally New LibDem CEO

LibDem staffers are kicking off over Lord Rennard’s close friend Nick Harvey being appointed as their new CEO. Harvey has been in charge on an interim basis and has today been given the job permanently, though his appointment is causing consternation among the troops due to his closeness to the pervy peer. Sources say Harvey was a character witness for Rennard during the internal inquiry into his behaviour. It has been pointed out that Vince Cable only ruled out Rennard having a spokesperson role, and word is that Harvey wants to find a way for him to be involved behind the scenes in the campaigns team. Just ten days ago Jo Swinson was demanding Rennard be kicked out of the party. No action has been taken since…

Young Liberals Condemn Cable For Defending Rennard

The LibDems’ youth wing has condemned Vince Cable’s defence of Lord Rennard yesterday. Cable told the BBC he didn’t regret having the pervy peer help out on his campaign and rather unwisely told LibDem women to “move on”. Unsurprisingly that has gone down like a cup of sick with the Young Liberals:

“We at Young Liberals are disappointed to hear Vince Cable defending Lord Rennard’s involvement during his election campaign this year. Alistair Webster QC, who conducted an earlier investigation into the Rennard allegations on behalf of the party, made a statement saying “let me be clear from the outset that the evidence suggests that Lord Rennard’s behaviour has caused distress to a number of women, so much so that they came forward several years after the event in question”.

As part of Young Liberals Policy, Lord Rennard is banned from attending all Young Liberals events, and our members can refuse to work with him without fear of disciplinary action.”

LibDem insiders say the truth is doddery Cable is totally out of touch with the modern world on sexual harassment and doesn’t understand why LibDem women have a problem with Rennard. They say Vince has to be strong-armed into making any critical noises about Rennard and had to be talked down from giving him an official job. LibDems have been depressed by Cable’s tin ear on this issue…

Cable: I Don’t Regret Having Rennard on My Campaign

Vince Cable has told BBC 5 Live’s Emma Barnett that he does not regret having Lord Rennard help out on his campaign in Twickenham in June. Confronted with Guido’s story that Rennard was in Vince’s campaign office on polling day, went leafleting outside Twickenham station and posed for photos with Cable and his constituents, Cable admitted:

“He did come as a volunteer.

[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



Tip offs: 0709 284 0531
team@Order-order.com

Quote of the Day

Wes Streeting speaking in the anti-Semitism debate says Jewish leaders

“will be horrified by the response of our frontbench to this debate today”

Sponsors

Guidogram: Sign up

Subscribe to the most succinct 7 days a week daily email read by thousands of Westminster insiders.
Adam Spliff Institute Celebrates 420 Adam Spliff Institute Celebrates 420
Nick Timothy Leaves Twitter Nick Timothy Leaves Twitter
Owen’s Descent Continues Owen’s Descent Continues
Producer of Labour’s Race Row Election Broadcast Tweeted About “Jewish Kapos” Producer of Labour’s Race Row Election Broadcast Tweeted About “Jewish Kapos”
UK Tech Investment Surges 115% UK Tech Investment Surges 115%
Corbyn Forgets Israel Independence Day Corbyn Forgets Israel Independence Day
Thornberry: I Don’t Accept Russia Blocked OPCW Inspectors Thornberry: I Don’t Accept Russia Blocked OPCW Inspectors
Convicted Charity Thief Canvassing for Labour Convicted Charity Thief Canvassing for Labour
Anti-Brexit Bias of Former Top Civil Servants Anti-Brexit Bias of Former Top Civil Servants
Labour Candidate Deletes Website and Twitter Account Amid Anti-Semitism Row Labour Candidate Deletes Website and Twitter Account Amid Anti-Semitism Row
Bully Bercow’s “Medicament” Slurs Bully Bercow’s “Medicament” Slurs
Government Loses Lords Customs Union Vote Government Loses Lords Customs Union Vote
Gallery Guido’s PMQs Sketch: Mission Accomplished Gallery Guido’s PMQs Sketch: Mission Accomplished
Labour Candidate’s Think Tank Defended Ken and Jackie Walker Labour Candidate’s Think Tank Defended Ken and Jackie Walker
May: Labour Took Decision on Windrush Landing Cards May: Labour Took Decision on Windrush Landing Cards
Owen Jones Calls Out Labour Nepotism Owen Jones Calls Out Labour Nepotism
Ruth Smeeth Reads Anti-Semitic Abuse from Corbynistas Ruth Smeeth Reads Anti-Semitic Abuse from Corbynistas
Three Billboards Protest Against Labour Anti-Semitism Three Billboards Protest Against Labour Anti-Semitism
Unemployment Rate Lowest Since 1975 Unemployment Rate Lowest Since 1975
Maitlis on Pointless Syria Vote Maitlis on Pointless Syria Vote