Bercow Won’t Fly England Flag for Belgium Game Tonight

Bercow confirms that the Cross of St George will not fly above Parliament for the Brexit derby tonight, but it will for future World Cup games. Beaten to it on Whitehall… 

Hands Rinses Bercow

A subtle demolition of Bercow by Greg Hands:

“Mr Speaker, we all need to keep our election pledges, and that, Mr Speaker, applies whether we made those pledges one year ago or nine years ago.”

He lied…

Sally Bercow: We’re Not Packing Our Bags Yet

Welcome back to Twitter to Sally Bercow, whose return has been verified by her lawyer David Allen Green. Sally is picking up where she left off, starting with a vocal defence of Brexit-hating rebels Dominic Grieve and Lord Moat:

Plenty of tweets and retweets accusing Number 10 of lying about Brexit and Theresa May of “dangerous, anti-democratic nonsense”:

She is also clearly enjoying trolling Bercow critic James Duddridge and insists the Speaker isn’t going anywhere:

Good to have you back, Sally…

SNP Leader Kicked Out of Commons

The SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford deliberately gets himself suspended from the Commons with a naff stunt at PMQs. The rest of the Nats then walked out in protest as Bercow floundered and completely lost control. Oh well. Bye!

Claire Perry Accuses Bercow of “Sexist and Demeaning” Behaviour

John Bercow is facing yet more allegations this afternoon, with Tory minister Claire Perry accusing him of “sexist and demeaning” behaviour and having a “women problem”. Perry says a dozen colleagues from all sides of the House are backing her after the incident yesterday. How long will the Speaker keep getting away with it?

UPDATE: Perry’s letter via The Sun.

UPDATE: Bercow has replied, dismissing Perry’s claims and instead inviting her for a “clear the air cup of tea”. Extraordinary…

Bercow’s New Anti-Brexit Car Sticker: “Don’t Blame Me, I Voted Remain”

Back in March, Guido revealed John Bercow had a Bollocks to Brexit sticker in his car window – not a very impartial message for the Speaker to be promoting. This morning Bercow has new sticker on his car. This photo was sent in by a co-conspirator, it says: “Don’t blame me, I voted Remain”. 

Click to enlarge

Sally doubling down?

Bercow Confesses: I Did Call Leadsom Stupid

The Speaker admits:

“I used the word stupid in a muttered aside. That adjective simply summed up how I felt.”

Doesn’t address whether he used the sexist term “stupid woman”. Doesn’t apologise. Not a good look…

Lobbyist Sheerman’s Shameless Bercow Mansplaining

Guido knows it is well into rosé hour on a sunny Friday afternoon, but Labour dinosaur Barry Sheerman is being particularly incoherent over on Twitter. Sheerman began by launching a bold defence of the Speaker and calling for Leadsom to resign instead, only to be called out for mansplaining by Ruth Davidson:

Sheerman then got very confused about the basic facts, suggesting the Leadsom-Bercow row happened in a private meeting and not in the Commons:

He then made up a fake “inside source”:

Sheerman was the first serving MP to register as a lobbyist. He abuses his position to shill for products directly linked to his lobbying activities. This mad conflict of interest should obviously not be allowed to happen, Sheerman has got away with it because the Speaker has not cracked down on him. Now Sheerman is returning the favour, as pro-Bercow Labour MPs continue to make a mockery of parliament’s response to bullying. Step away from the keyboard, Barry.

PM: Bercow’s Behaviour “Unacceptable”

Number 10 twist the knife into Bercow:

“PM has seen the alleged remarks and clearly thinks they are unacceptable. If a complaint is made then it should be fully investigated.”

Could the Speaker’s time finally be up?

WATCH: Moment Bercow Flipped Out at Leadsom

This is the moment John Bercow allegedly called Andrea Leadsom a “stupid woman” and “f***ing useless” on Wednesday. In an extraordinarily bad-tempered rant, even by the Speaker’s standards, Bercow eyeballs Leadsom and admonishes her in a particularly aggressive manner. Leadsom is so unimpressed at Bercow’s macho behaviour that she deliberately looks away and refuses to make eye contact. When you watch the video, you can see this visibly infuriates the pint-sized Commons ref, whose bluster builds into an almost deranged crescendo. When the Speaker finishes, the camera pans out. At this point Bercow turns to the left, clearly gesticulates towards Leadsom and appears to say something. An eye-witness tells Guido that Bercow said a number of words, one of which was definitely “outrageous”. Bercow does not deny that he also called her a “stupid woman” and “f***ing useless”. 

The Speaker has previously flat out denied all the recent bullying allegations against him. Guido understands he has not denied this one because he fears footage will emerge proving he did say it. Footage in the Commons is controlled by the Parliamentary Broadcasting Unit. There is always a camera on the Speaker, the PBU will have had the footage, as yet they are not being forthcoming about helping to clear up what was said. As with all parliamentary bodies, all roads lead to the Speaker, so the PBU will be under immense internal pressure to cover this up. This week MPs on the Standards Committee voted to block an investigation into Bercow. He is being protected by the system. Anyone who comes by the footage can leak it to Guido in confidence here

Bercow Cynically Shoring Up Labour Support

John Bercow has remarkably granted an emergency SO24 debate to Labour on money resolutions based on exact same Urgent Question he granted to Afzal Khan last week. This is highly unusual behaviour from the Speaker – it is a repeat that allows Labour to bash the government using an emergency measure for what is objectively not an urgent issue. Tory sources say it as ridiculous that Bercow would even hear the application yet alone grant an SO24 debate. That is not the only curious decision the Speaker has made recently… 

There was a very big showing on the Tory benches at Business Questions today. Bercow was faced with more questions from the government side than just about ever before. For the first time in years, he chose to cut Business Questions short.

Then there was his grandstanding during the Points of Order after PMQs yesterday. Bercow delivered a long rebuke to Chris Grayling, accusing him of an “abuse” of parliament by failing to give Labour enough warning about his statement on the East Coast Main Line. Bercow issued a direct warning to the government, referring to his nine years in the Commons and, with classic hyperbole, boasting about how they can’t “stop me”. The Labour benches loved it…

“I hope that that message is heard loudly and clearly on the Government Front Bench, at the highest level, by the people in particular by whom it needs to be heard. If I have to make the point again on future occasions, and to use the powers of the Chair to facilitate the rights of this House in other ways, no matter what flak emanates from the Executive, I will do so in the future, as I have ​always done over the past nine years, and no one and nothing will stop me doing my duty by the House of Commons.”

A pattern is emerging. Yesterday morning Guido revealed Bercow had worked with Labour and advised them on how they could use a humble address motion to attempt to force the government to release private papers on Brexit. This behaviour from the supposedly impartial Speaker left Tory MPs understandably livid.

So what is he doing? Bercow is reliant on the support of Labour MPs to keep him in his job. His position will only truly come under threat when Labour MPs decide to pull the plug. Over the last few weeks, following the bullying revelations and the emergence of Harriet Harman as a possible successor, Labour’s historic support for Bercow has come into question. It appears Bercow is now, more than ever, granting Labour spurious SO24 debates, Points of Order and even advising them on how to use arcane parliamentary procedures to whack the government, in an attempt to shore up the support he needs on the Labour benches. Why would Labour want to get rid of the Speaker if he grants them everything they ask for and uses his position in the chair to facilitate partisan attacks on the government? Bercow and Labour are undermining the impartiality of the office of Speaker to help him stay in post…

Bercow Bullying Inquiry Blockers

These are the three MPs on the Commons standards committee who blocked an investigation into John Bercow’s bullying. Tories Christopher Chope and John Stevenson and Labour’s Kate Green voted to prevent the standards commissioner Kathryn Stone from launching an inquiry into the Speaker, following a complaint by Andrew Bridgen. The Times reports that a majority of the six lay members on the committee backed an investigation, but only MPs get a vote. Bridget Phillipson and Gary Streeter backed a probe but were outvoted by the three blockers above. 

This is a peak example of the problem with MPs on the standards committee marking their own homework. Bercow faces bullying allegations from multiple victims – Kate Emms, David Leakey, Angus Sinclair and Robert Rogers – the lay members say he should be investigated, and yet the politicians who have known the Speaker for years let him off the hook. Makes a mockery of parliament’s claims to be reforming how it deals with bullying…

Bercow Worked With Labour on Humble Address

Labour’s latest Brexit hypocrisy comes in the form of their attempt to force the government to reveal its negotiating hand in the Commons tonight. Back in 2016, Keir Starmer promised he would never seek to compel the government to disclose confidential Brexit papers:

“I fully accept that the Government will enter into confidential negotiations for a number of months and that producing a plan should not undermine that process. This is not the first time that I have said that; I have said it repeatedly…. I do… accept that there is a level of detail and of confidential issues and tactics that should not be disclosed, and I have never said otherwise”

Seems he has changed his mind.

Tory MPs and ministers are livid with John Bercow’s role in Labour’s Brexit games. A senior Whitehall source says it was Bercow who first told Starmer about the possibility of using a humble address motion (an arcane parliamentary procedure explained here) to force the government to reveal the papers: “It wouldn’t be happening without him“. Tory MPs are asking why the impartial Commons Speaker, who had a “Bollocks to Brexit” sticker in his car and publicly backed Remain, has been actively coming up with ideas to help Labour’s attempts to undermine Brexit. Bercow’s behaviour on this is riling Tory MPs as much as any of the other revelations about the Speaker over the last few weeks…

Bercow Insists He’s Staying

At business questions Tory MP James Duddridge asked the government whether there would be time for a debate on the qualities required in the next Speaker. Modest, calm, dignified, cool under pressure, punctual, that kind of thing…

Scandal-hit Bercow suggested he is staying put and couldn’t resist delivering a personal slap-down to Duddridge. He said:

“I very gently say to the Honurable Gentleman in terms which are very straightforward and which I know he will be fully able to understand… the Honourable Gentleman will recall I indicated my willingness to continue in the chair in June of last year…”

Things have somewhat changed since then, Mr Speaker.

MPs Cry For “More” Lindsay Hoyle

Let Bercow be in no doubt as to what the Commons thinks of him: MPs cried “more” as Deputy Speaker Lindsay Hoyle stepped in for today’s PMQs. 43 days ’til Bercow promised to stand down…

50 Days Until Bercow Promised to Go

Back in June 2009, when he became Speaker, John Bercow promised he would serve “for no more than nine years in total”. 9 years would be June 22 this year, or 50 days from now.

Will he last that long?

Former Black Rod: Bercow is Unfit For Public Office

Major development via Politics Home, who have former Black Rod David Leakey saying John Bercow’s behaviour is “unworthy of someone in such public office” and does not “stand up to the standards expected in public life”. He reveals that “lots of people” were “terrified of the Speaker”:

“On one occasion he quite suddenly erupted in a rage, banging the table and being extremely and personally rude to me, including calling me an anti-Semite. He did apologise to me for that specific remark afterwards, but not for his other highly personal insults, and it is intolerable.

“His rage erupted, as on a previous occasion, and the red mist suddenly descended: it was quite disproportionate and unreasonable by any standards.

“His explosive and intemperate behaviour is legendary, objectionable and unworthy of someone in such public office – conduct which may not stand up to the standards expected in public life. There were lots of people who were, frankly, terrified of the Speaker.”

It is starting to look like Bercow is going to have to go.

Bercow Calls Patsy Julian Lewis to Praise His Treatment of Staff

Absurd spectacle in the Commons as John Bercow calls his pal Julian Lewis to make a patsy point of order asking the Speaker to confirm just how much his staff love him. Bercow takes the opportunity to say the “great majority” of his former staff left on good terms. As he and Lewis know, that isn’t the point. How many of Bercow’s former staff did not leave on good terms? And why? This is not the behaviour of an innocent man…

May Calls For Bercow Investigation

Theresa May’s spokesman has said the PM wants the bullying allegations against John Bercow to be investigated. As things stand parliament’s ongoing inquiry will not look into claims against the Speaker. Bercow is accused of:

  • Shouting at and undermining his former private secretary Kate Emms, who had to be signed off work with PTSD.
  • Bullying, swearing and throwing a phone at his former private secretary Angus Sinclair.
  • Told the former Clerk of the House Robert Rogers to “f**k off”, subjecting him to regular temper tantrums.

Surely he should be suspended while the allegations are investigated?

New Bercow Bullying Victim: I Was Paid £90,000 to Stay Silent

Bombshell fresh bullying allegations against John Bercow this evening reported by Newsnight.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

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