Hoyle Promises to Rip Up Bercow’s Remainer Reforms

New Speaker Sir Lindsay has confirmed he will ban MPs trying to tear up the Commons rule book in future, and reverse Bercow’s reforms that allowed Remain MPs to block Brexit. Against the advice of constitutional experts at the time…

Speaking on Nick Robinson’s Political Thinking Podcast, Hoyle said his approach will make it much harder for a future House of Commons to resist the government of the day; specifically around whether MPs can amend business motions that set the way in which the Commons structures its debates.

Looking to restore public trust in the role of the Speaker, he has promised to tidy up, clarify and close the loopholes of the Commons rulebook, so “nobody could accuse the Speaker” of anything. Is it any wonder remainers wanted Harriet ‘continuity Bercow’ Harman to win on Monday…

Shailesh Vara Drops Out of Speakership Race

Shailesh Vara has dropped out the speakership election just hours before MPs are expected to start voting.

In a Tweet confirming the move, Vara said he didn’t want to split the vote and would be backing Lindsay Hoyle.

Following Vara’s pulling out, and Sir Henry Bellingham withdrawing on Friday, there are 7 candidates remaining on the ballot paper this afternoon:

  • Chris Bryant
  • Harriet Harman
  • Meg Hillier
  • Lindsay Hoyle
  • Eleanor Laing
  • Edward Leigh
  • Rosie Winterton

We should know by 8pm tonight…

Henry Bellingham Withdraws from the Speakership Race

Sir Henry Bellingham has withdrawn from the speakership race.‬ His concession letter emphasises the importance of cross-party support. Whispers are this is a tacit endorsement of Lindsay Hoyle, who is expected to pick up most of Bellingham’s second preference votes…

Read his letter to MPs in full here:

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Hillier Targets MP Staffers in Speakership Campaign

Labour MP Meg Hillier – who is currently running to replace Bercow as Commons Speaker – has taken the unprecedented step of writing to MPs’ staffers promising to address the prevalent bullying problem in parliament. Conveniently, the biggest obstacle to resolving the issue will be leaving his post very shortly…

In the email, Hillier writes

“I am running because of my concerns about the slow progress in tackling the culture of bullying and harassment that is still too prevalent in Westminster.

Whether you are employed by the House or by an individual MP, we should be nurturing the talent that chooses to work to support Parliament in its important work. All too often staff have been let down.

I fully support the establishment of an independent complaint mechanism and sanctions for those who act inappropriately. But more than that we need to see a wholescale shift in culture.

I did not want you to think that I am talking about you and not with you. I am speaking to trade unions and staff association representatives.”

Hillier is also pledging to begin representing staff on the Speaker’s Committee on IPSA and the House of Commons Commission. Like all good lobbyists, she’s realised MPs’ staffers are an effective place to start… 

Nine Year Old Enters Race To Replace Bercow

News has come to light that a very short man, perhaps prone to temper and who enjoys ignoring the advice of his elders is interested in running to be the next speaker of the Commons. It’s not John Bercow who plans on standing again, however, but a nine-year-old constituent of Michelle Donelan’s who received a letter from Oscar today asking to be made Speaker. In response, Michelle wrote, “I think it’s great that Oscar has taken such a keen interest in politics… should we give him a trial?”.

Already, the keen kid has his second MP backer, Guido can reveal, as Andrew Bridgen tells us that Oscar’s appointment “would be a definite improvement, and even a nine-year-old can spot it!”

Sadly for Oscar, only MPs can become Speaker and since The Representation of the People Act 1969 only people ages 18 and above can stand as MPs, so Guido can’t add Oscar to our Speaker runners and riders list. Although there is technically nothing stopping him from becoming ennobled and becoming Lords Speaker…

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?[…] Read the rest

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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.[…] Read the rest

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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.[…] Read the rest

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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.[…] Read the rest

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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.

[…] Read the rest

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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.[…] Read the rest

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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…[…] Read the rest

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