Bercow Hosted & Welcomed These Human Rights Abusers to Parliament

Yesterday Guido reported how John Bercow ignored human rights abuses in Kuwait when the country’s Emir addressed parliament in 2012. Today we reveal the full litany of Bercow’s effusive praise for human rights abusers.

In September 2012 Bercow welcomed President Susilo Yudhoyono of Indonesia to address parliament. The Speaker said at the time:

“Mr President, it is a huge pleasure as well as a considerable honour for me, on behalf of both Houses of Parliament, to welcome you here today… It is also a huge privilege to introduce you personally. I do not know if there is an equivalent Indonesian expression for the phrase ‘Renaissance Man’ which we use to identify people with many attributes, but if it exists then it surely applies to yourself.”

Human Rights Watch says President Yudhoyono “left behind a toxic legacy of rising religious intolerance and related violence”, condemning “the Yudhoyono government’s sorry record” on human rights. Yudhoyono’s feared police force was “actively complicit in incidents of harassment, intimidation or violence against religious minorities”. His government was complicit in the “violation of the rights and freedoms of the country’s religious minorities”. Bercow said it was a “huge privilege” to introduce Yudhoyono to parliament.

In October 2014 Bercow welcomed Singapore’s President Tony Tan Keng Yam to speak to parliament. Male homosexuality is illegal in Singapore. Human Rights Watch has condemned President Tan’s record on “limiting rights to freedom of expression, assembly, and association using overly broad legal provisions on security, public order, morality, and racial and religious harmony”. Bercow smiled and shook hands with President Tan as he introduced him to speak to parliament.

In October 2015 Bercow told China’s President Xi Jinping it was “my pleasure” to have him to address parliament. China is an authoritarian state, according to Human Rights Watch its government “systematically curtails a wide range of fundamental human rights, including freedom of expression, association, assembly, and religion”. Bercow lavished praise on the human rights abusing leaders of Kuwait, Indonesia, Singapore and China, yet bans Trump to grab headlines…

Bercow Welcomed Emir of Kuwait Despite Travel Ban and Dire Human Rights Record

John Bercow has blocked “racist, sexist” Donald Trump from addressing parliament despite welcoming leaders of countries with dire records on equality and human rights. In November 2012 Bercow allowed the Emir of Kuwait His Highness Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah to address parliament. The Speaker told the Emir:

“Your Highness it is my privilege to welcome you here to our Parliament for this important stage of your state visit. Your presence here today is a welcome reminder of the many intimate ties that exist between our nations and our peoples”

According to Human Rights Watch Kuwait has a poor record on women’s rights:

“Women continue to face discrimination in many aspects of their lives, and large legal gaps remain in protections for women. Kuwait has no laws prohibiting domestic violence, sexual harassment, or marital rape.”

It is also illegal to be gay in Kuwait and according to the International Air Transport Association the country also bans Israeli passport holders from travelling there. Bercow did not oppose the Kuwaiti Emir from speaking in parliament…

Bercow Declares War on Trump

John Bercow tells the Commons he “strongly opposes” inviting President Trump to address parliament during his state visit. Applause for the Speaker from the Nats and praise from Dennis Skinner. Sure the President will react to this provocation in a calm, measured manner…

UPDATE: Nigel Farage responds to Guido: “For Speaker Bercow to uphold our finest parliamentary traditions, he should be neutral.”

Clerks’ Wigs Scrapped to Make Commons “Less Stuffy”

Tory MPs sounded their disapproval as the Speaker announced that Commons clerks will no longer have to wear wigs. Bercow says he wants to free clerks of the requirement to wear the ceremonial syrup to make the chamber seem “less stuffy and forbidding” to the public. The weekend papers reported that clerks find the wigs “too itchy“. The changes come in after the next recess. Jacob Rees-Mogg’s manifesto for the Speakership to include immediate reinstatement? 

UPDATE: Watch MPs fail to keep their hair on as Bercow makes historic wig announcement…

UPDATE II: Tory MPs Geoffrey Clifton-Brown and Sir Gerald Howard protest the Speaker’s decision, dubbing it an “executive order”.

Bercow Caught on Hot Mic Calling Fallon “Stupid”

The Speaker thought his mic was off at the end of the Trident urgent question, when he told a clerk:

“To pick a fight with the chairman of the select committee is a rather stupid thing to do.”

The chairman of the select committee is Julian Lewis, Bercow’s best friend. Michael Fallon had just ignored Lewis’ request to attend the Defence select committee tomorrow. Seems the Speaker was calling Michael Fallon stupid…

Bryant Running for Speaker

The worst kept secret produces the worst non-denial. Chris Bryant wants to succeed Bercow as Speaker. His problem is that his abrasive character and sharp tongue are unlikely to encourage the necessary Tories to back him…

Vaz and Bercow Get the Party Started

Surreal moment in the Commons as Vaz congratulates Bercow on his and Sally’s anniversary, before asking if had a “party” last night. Remember, the Speaker and Vaz are close

Corbyn and Bercow’s Football Chat Caught on Mic

The Speaker probably sniffing around for another freebie.

H/T @estwebber

Skinner Kicked Out of Commons For Calling Dave “Dodgy”

Not the first time Skinner has used that particular phrase to describe the PM. This time he was named by the Speaker for refusing to withdraw…

The Nose Have It: Bercow Digs For Britain

He knew the camera was on him, too. Shameless.

Bercow Bans PMQ on Green Taxes

The Speaker’s bad temper continued at PMQs, where he bizarrely banned Tory MP Chris Philp from asking, entirely reasonably, if green taxes have contributed to the steel industry crisis. Curiously, Bercow ruled this had “nothing to do with government policy” and prevented the PM from answering:

Except, it demonstrably does. The Telegraph, Mail and even the Wall Street Journal have all run articles this week about how green taxes have impacted on the steel industry. The PM was unimpressed. That’s two weeks in a row that Cameron been prevented from landing a blow by the Speaker…

Bercow: Javid “Discourteous and Incompetent”

You might have thought the Business Secretary’s statement on steel job losses is an appropriate use of Commons time. Not so, according to John Bercow, who says Sajid Javid went on for too long. Here is the extraordinary dressing down:

Earlier Bercow swiped at the Chinese by noting “the Indian PM is representative of a great democracy”. What’s bitten him today?

Return of Awkward Ed

Creeping into the Commons just behind Nick Clegg to be sworn in as the MP for Doncaster last week, old habits died hard for Ed Miliband. Going in to shake John Bercow’s hand, Awkward Ed managed to knock over the Speaker’s glass of water right in front of the government benches. There is some confusion as to where exactly the spilled drink ended up, with one eye witness claiming it landed all over the former Labour leader’s crotch. The Speaker’s Office have declined to comment. You’ll miss him now he’s gone…

Tory / Bercow Love In Continues

New Tory Party Deputy Chairman Rob Halfon has told The Sun he wants to change the Tory party logo from an tree to a ladder:

“We are the party of the ladder, it was Churchill who first said that. The ladder symbolises everything we’re about. If you’re in poverty we’ll get you into work, if you’re in work we’ll cut your taxes. If you want to own your home, we’ll help you do that too. It’s not just leaving people to climb up it themselves, we hold that ladder for them.”

Re-elected Speaker John Bercow will be pleased, he chose the symbol for his coat of arms:


Though crueller Tories at the time said it represented his social climbing…

Speaker Re-Elected Unopposed

Was it Sally wot swung it?

UPDATE: Cameron’s kind and generous welcome:

Official: No Move Against Bercow Next Week

The Prime Minister told the 1922 Committee this morning that the government would be re-electing John Bercow when the Commons convenes next week.

Apparently Dave said “I think we’ve got more on our plate than the Speaker”.

Intriguingly, Bercow has more on his plate at the moment too. Namely being cuckolded by his cousin.

#GUIDO4BUCKS: Blogger to Challenge Speaker at Election

After ten years of sniping from the sidelines, Guido has decided to up his game. This website has never been John Bercow’s biggest fan, but now it is time to throw down the gauntlet…

When he was a lowly backbencher, Bercow maxed out his expenses. He has done little to reform his ways as Speaker. A running total is over half a million in clothes and limos…

Bercow told the Commons last week that he was ‘not going anywhere’, but Guido intends to see him on the ground in Buckingham. The nomination papers are in, the deposit is paid. Bring it on, shorty…

The 33 Tories and LibDems That Beat the Government

33 government votes handed the day to Labour. 23 Tories:

David Amess
Bob Blackman
Peter Bone
Graham Brady
Conor Burns
Christopher Chope
Tracey Crouch
Philip Davies
David Davis
Cheryl Gillan
Zac Goldsmith
James Gray
Adam Holloway
Bernard Jenkin
Jeremy Lefroy
Edward Leigh
Julian Lewis
Jack Lopresti
David Nuttall
Jacob Rees-Mogg
Sir Richard Shepherd
Martin Vickers
Charles Walker

And 10 Liberals:

Malcolm Bruce
Lorely Burt
Duncan Hames
David Heath
Martin Horwood
Dan Rogerson
Bob Russell
Jo Swinson
Stephen Williams
Simon Wright

Enough to vote down Coalition II…

EXCLUSIVE: Bercow Called for Secret Speaker Ballot in 2000

In October 2000 there was a row about the how the Speaker of the House of Commons was elected, with Tony Benn demanding a ballot for the role. A plucky backbencher weighed in, telling the BBC, that he believed this ballot should be conducted in secret:

“In view of growing concern that the government whips will seek to browbeat people into voting for a preferred candidate, can we have guidance on the possibility of ensuring that the election will be conducted by secret ballot?”

His name? John Bercow…

Bye Bye Bercow

Look who just turned up to the Speaker’s House:

Someone doesn’t appear to be optimistic about the way things are going…

Via Josh Crossley
[…] Read the rest

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