Spinning Politicians: Trade Body Condemns Davidson Hire, Condones Lord Myners

The hiring of Ruth Davidson by Tulchan Communications has been condemned by Francis Ingham, Director General, of the trade body PRCA

“It is simply wrong for lobbying agencies to employ legislators. The possible conflict of interest in doing so is clear, and damages the reputation of both our industry, and of the political process. PRCA members are prohibited from employing parliamentarians – and with good reason. Unlike the vast majority of its competitors, Tulchan is not a PRCA member. But in the public interest, we would nonetheless urge them to reconsider this appointment.”

Tulchan is headed by former Tory party Chairman Lord Feldman, who is also a member of the House of Lords. Another active member of the House of Lords is Lord Myners. Myners is also chairman of Edelman UK, one of the world’s largest PR firms, which is also a leading member of the PRCA.

When Guido asked the PRCA how they reconciled their biggest member being chaired by a parliamentarian, the spinner for the spinners at first said it was different because Myners was unelected, Guido pointed out Myners was still a parliamentarian, the spinner than argued that it was a ceremonial role, Guido than explained that Lord Myners actually makes and votes on laws and his role is not ceremonial. The spinner than said he would ask Francis Ingham to get back to Guido…
UPDATE: Francis Ingham gets back to spin “There is an enormous gulf between a non-executive director who has been made a Peer as an honour, and an MP or MSP whose full time job is to be an elected politician.” Lord Myners votes and makes laws. Not sure how that is alright because he only does it only part-time – it also means PRCA members are employing parliamentarians – which is supposedly against the rules.

Edelman get in touch:

“Paul Myners does not advise clients nor does he do public affairs work for Edelman. He is a cross-bench peer who chairs Edelman’s Advisory Board, which gives strategic advice and provides external challenge to the UK management team. This is entirely within the PRCA rules.”

All within the rules. That has a familiar ring to it.

mdi-timer 24 October 2019 @ 16:30 24 Oct 2019 @ 16:30 mdi-comment Comments
Teneo Hire Royal Spin Doctor

Remember thatpoo done it story? Spin merchants Teneo today announced they’ve hired Sally Osman, former Director of Royal Communications. Good hire. She knows about keeping people on the throne…

mdi-timer 20 June 2019 @ 16:15 20 Jun 2019 @ 16:15 mdi-comment Comments
Hunt’s Shameless Brunei Spin

In a timely bit of virtue signalling spinners for Jeremy Hunt have managed to successfully plant a story in The Times making it look as if the Foreign Secretary cancelled a fundraising event at the Dorchester hotel last week because its owner, the Sultan of Brunei introduced a law that sets the punishment for homosexual activity as stoning to death. That’s not what attendees of the dinner were told…

Attendees received an email from the Conservative Party’s Treasurers’ Team saying that the dinner had only been postponed, as “the current Parliamentary timetable” meant that MPs could have to be in Parliament that evening. Hunt still tried to take credit…

The dinner was due to take place on the evening of Tuesday 2nd April, before widespread attention was drawn to Brunei’s new penal code. It was postponed before Ellen DeGeneres posted her viral tweet calling for the Dorchester Hotel to be boycotted. The Government took until 4th April to make a statement. Protests outside the Hotel did not begin until 6th April. Either Jeremy Hunt was incredibly prescient in predicting the boycott movement, or he is happy to jump on any passing bandwagon for political gain…

mdi-timer 8 April 2019 @ 10:37 8 Apr 2019 @ 10:37 mdi-comment Comments
Seumas is Getting Slicker

An out of character tweet this afternoon from the man who on Sunday was asked by Andrew Marr if he was an anti-semite. Is it too cynical of Guido to note the timing of this followed on from Palestinian flags being waved en masse in the conference hall – in breach of conference rules – and then a vote condemning Israel and freezing arms sales to a key military and intelligence ally in the war on terror? Seumas is getting slicker…

The optics of that flag waving are not great with many voters outside Gaza. It will take a lot more than a few tweets to convince British Jews that Corbyn’s Labour Party isn’t hostile…

mdi-timer 25 September 2018 @ 18:23 25 Sep 2018 @ 18:23 mdi-comment Comments
Brandon Taps Remainer Ally For CCHQ Comms Role

This morning Politico Playbook had this on the Tory party’s search for a new Director of Communications, after the CCHQ press office was left severely depleted by a raft of departures:

“Party Chairman Brandon Lewis has already tried to lure one prominent female lobby hack with the promise of a whopping salary and a deputy of her choice … but the offer was turned down. The hunt goes on.”

Guido hears attention has now turned to the PR world to find a new Tory spin chief. Brandon Lewis wants Caroline Preston from comms agency Stonehaven to take over as he seeks to install key allies ahead of a coming leadership contest. Preston was a former head of broadcasting for David Cameron at Number 10, who then worked at the heart of the Remain campaign. Preston features regularly in Craig Oliver’s book, where Sir Craig talks about working with her to keep Theresa May off the screens on referendum night, and gives her a special acknowledgement at the end alongside other prominent Stronger In staff. Guido hears the Tories are keen to ensure the job is taken by a woman as they do not have many in key roles at the CCHQ boys’ club.

Brandon is trying to build a power base at Matthew Parker Street – the word is he genuinely considers himself a leadership contender and wants to stuff CCHQ with his allies in time for any contest. Party chairman is theoretically a formidable platform for a leadership candidate thanks to the face time you get with members, and it seems Brandon seriously sees himself as the Remain candidate. Good luck to Caroline if she gets the gig, Brandon certainly needs all the spin help he can get after pair-gate…

UPDATE: Re that Politico gossip above, Guido is told Preston is the only person to which CCHQ has given a formal offer.

mdi-timer 6 August 2018 @ 15:12 6 Aug 2018 @ 15:12 mdi-comment Comments
May Insists Pairing Scandal “An Honest Mistake”

Not sure fibbing that you didn’t tell MPs to break their pairs, and then admitting you did when caught red-handed, can be described as either “honest” or a “mistake”. Ministers and Tory MPs requiring pairs in future will have grave fears about how things are going to play out under the current chief whip…

UPDATE: Tom Watson:

“It is unbelievable that the Prime Minister has repeated the desperate and blatantly untrue excuses made by her Party Chair and Chief Whip. This is a serious issue that goes beyond efficient administration in the House of Commons. This is about public trust in politics. At such a crucial time for our country, people expect candour and decency, not cowardice and dishonesty.”

mdi-timer 20 July 2018 @ 12:14 20 Jul 2018 @ 12:14 mdi-comment Comments
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