From Sky News: A proposed law to make “upskirting” a specific criminal offence has been blocked by a Tory MP.
The Voyeurism (Offences) Bill was stopped in its tracks when #Christchurch MP Sir Christopher Chope objected to it being given a second reading in the Commons.
The bill, which was proposed by Liberal Democrat MP Wera Hobhouse and supported by ministers, was expected to get the nod through the Commons on Friday.
Blocking its progress only requires one MP to shout “object” when the title of a private member’s bill is read out.
From The Independent: Boris Johnson, Tory foreign secretary, is under fire after calling for his own “Brexit plane” to help him drum up trade around the world when the UK leaves the EU.
[Read article on Independent website…]
From The Independent: A former Conservative parliamentary candidate who quit the party over its treatment of black and minority ethnic communities has said that, as the son of two refugees, he was “unable to look at himself in the mirror”.
[Read article on Independent website…]
From i News: A Tory MP has questioned whether the NHS should fund vital life-extending drugs for the elderly.
[Read article on i News…]
From The Independent: The Muslim Council of Britain has written to the Conservative Party calling for an urgent inquiry following “more than weekly occurrences of Islamophobia from candidates and representatives of the party”.
[Read full article on Independent website…]
From Political Scrapbook: Wannabe Tory leader Adam Afriyie has claimed it is “impossible” to raise a family on £67,000 — suggesting instead that MPs should not be given a salary and audited expenses but an “allowance” of up to £225,000 to spend however they want.
In an interview with Chat Politics, the Windsor MP — a multimillionaire through technology businesses — says: “It is almost impossible to operate on the salary that is given to MPs if you come from a middle income family.”
[Read full article on Political Scrapbook…]
From Evolve Politics: 18 Conservative councillors and council candidates have been suspended from the Tory party within the last month alone for alleged racism and abuse.
Despite the wall-to-wall coverage from the likes of the BBC of Labour’s struggles with anti-Semitism, the right-wing press has been extremely reluctant to report the sheer scale of racism and abuse emerging from the Conservative Party.
Following former Tory Minister Baroness Warsi exposing the fact that there are now “weekly occurrences of Islamophobic incidents” within the Conservative Party, the Muslim Council of Britain demanded that the Tories begin an inquiry into the racism epidemic engulfing the party – a demand which the Tories have flat-out ignored.
The BBC and the right-wing media have, for whatever reason, completely failed to bother reporting the story.
[Read full article on Evolve Politics…]
The wife of a minister in Vladimir Putin’s government donated £160,000 to the UK Tory party for a game of tennis with Boris Johnson.
Andrew Marr says to Boris Johnson in this video: “Labour says that part of the hesitation in this is that you as a party have been taking far too much Russian money.”
From LabourList: Today Andrew Neil used Tory MP Steve Baker’s spot on the BBC’s Daily Politics to slam the claims of Conservative MPs that Jeremy Corbyn “sold British secrets” and “betrayed his country”.
Following the Sun‘s “Commie Corbyn” story, which claimed the Labour leader met with a communist spy in the 1980s and suggested he briefed them on British politics and matters of state security, defence secretary Gavin Williamson said Corbyn “cannot be trusted” and accused him of “betrayal of this country”.
Neil repeatedly asked Steve Baker, “do you think he has betrayed his country?”. Steve Baker repeatedly refused to answer the question.
Tory vice-chair Ben Bradley was forced to delete his tweet stating “Corbyn sold British secrets to communist spies” after the leader of the opposition threatened legal action. On Twitter security minister Ben Wallace compared Corbyn to Soviet spy Kim Philby.
“Your security minister has compared Mr Corbyn to Kim Philby. Kim Philby was a traitor – at the time if he’d been found guilty he would have been hanged! That’s an outrageous smear to say of the leader of the opposition,” said Neil.
He concluded: “The real scandal, Mr Baker, isn’t what Mr Corbyn has supposedly done or not done. It’s the outright lies and disinformation that your fellow Tories are spreading.”
[Read full article on LabourList…]
From Political Scrapbook: Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and shadow Chancellor John McDonnell have published their tax returns for the third consecutive year today. They showed Corbyn earned £136,762 from MP’s pay, his salary as leader of the opposition and pension, while McDonnell made £87,353 from MP’s pay and pension.
The amount earned by the leaders of the opposition pale into insignificance when compared to the sums raked in by top Tories from their side jobs alone. The register of MPs’ interests shows:
- Jacob Rees-Mogg, who is now favourite to become the next Tory leader, made £173,854 in the 2016/17 tax year from Somertset Capital, the investment firm he runs with Tory donor Dominic Johnson.
- Nadine Dorries earned £144,000 over the same period for working 12 hours-a-week for a publishing company. She was previously forced to apologise for failing to declare her £82,000 ‘I’m a Celebrity’ appearance fee.
- Michael Gove was paid £150,000 for writing a column for the Times before rejoining the Cabinet.
- John Redwood, who wants to scrap workers’ rights from the EU, is being paid £183,600-a-year for a 75 hour-a-quarter commitment to an investment advisory firm.
- Andrew Mitchell, who doesn’t know how much the rate of the minimum wage, is making £156,000-a-year from four separate side jobs.
- Nicholas Soames, the grandson of Winston Churchill, is raking in a whopping £222,168-a-year from three different side jobs.
- And Nadhim Zahawi, the Children’s Minister who attended the Presidents Club gropefest, made £148,000 for just five months work as the Chief Strategy Officer for an oil firm before leaving the role in December.
From Daily Telegraph: Conservative MP Harriett Baldwin, who was last week promoted to Minister for Africa in the reshuffle, attempted to claim a £50 donation to a local hospice as an expense.
[Read full story on Telegraph website…]
From Daily Mirror: Ben Bradley, the Tory MP who called for the jobless to have vasectomies, also said it would be “incredibly sensible” to relocate people on benefits hundreds of miles from home.
[Read article on Daily Mirror website…]
From The Guardian: A Conservative MP who has been appointed as a party vice-chairman once suggested that unemployed people should opt for free vasectomies rather than continuing to have children they could not afford to support.
In a blogpost, Ben Bradley claimed that the country would be soon “drowning in a vast sea of unemployed wasters” if workless families had four or five children while others limited themselves to one or two.
From Daily Mirror: Theresa May has refused to appoint a diverse panel to the Grenfell Tower inquiry, it emerged today. It is feared that the retired Court of Appeal judge lacks first-hand experience of the complex cultural factors underpinning the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
[Read full article on Guardian website…]
From The Guardian: Diane Abbott has written to the home secretary, Amber Rudd, to ask why she has been refused permission to visit the controversial Yarl’s Wood immigration removal centre despite at least a dozen requests over more than a year.
The shadow home secretary said getting access to the centre in Bedfordshire, which has regularly seen concerns raised about inappropriate treatment of highly vulnerable detainees, was a necessary part of her job.
Yarl’s Wood, where foreign nationals are detained before being deported, faced criticism last month after the chief inspector of prisons, Peter Clarke, said he had found increasing numbers of women held there despite evidence they were victims of torture, rape and trafficking.
Clarke said he was concerned to find that the Home Office had refused to accept that rape came within the legal definition of torture.
In July a Kenyan asylum seeker won a court victory, with the Home Office found to have acted unlawfully by locking her in a “punishment room” at Yarl’s Wood for an excessive time.
From BBC News: Damian Green, one of Theresa May’s closest allies, has been sacked from the cabinet after an inquiry found he had breached the ministerial code.
He was “asked to quit” after he was found to have made “inaccurate and misleading” statements over what he knew about claims pornography was found on his office computer in 2008.
He also apologised for making writer Kate Maltby feel uncomfortable in 2015.
[Read full article on BBC News…]
From Unearthed: Liam Fox’s department for international trade has signed agreements with the US which will make it much more difficult to find out what is being discussed in early-stage US-UK trade talks.
Liam Fox’s department last week quietly released an exchange of letters between the UK and the office of the US trade representative agreeing to mark exchanged information, papers and discussions as either “sensitive” or “confidential”, with both sides also agreeing to keep the information “held in confidence” for four years after the conclusion of the talks.
This has led to concerns from politicians and campaign groups that the talks could pave the way for the UK to accept lower US standards on issues including animal welfare, chemical and pesticide usage, and other practices.
[Read full article on Unearthed…]
From The Guardian: A row is brewing between a Conservative MP and some of his Lancashire constituents after he suggested that claims by teachers about extreme poverty at local schools were untrue.
A report by ITV earlier this week went viral after it showed schools where teachers said they had to wash their pupils’ uniforms because their families couldn’t afford to pay the electricity bills.
But David Morris, the MP for Morecambe & Lunesdale, responded to the reports: “These claims are not those being experienced by myself or the jobcentre in the area.”
He later told ITV: “I’ve not got issues with the report that you’ve run, I’m just questioning the validity of it … [the schools featured] have very strong links to Momentum, and to be quite frank, all the indicators from Ofsted say that the child poverty at that school is absolutely no different to any other in the country.”
Amid claims that Morris has blocked people online who have questioned his statement, Morecambe residents are using the hashtag #blockedbydavidmorris and have started a Facebook group to air their grievances.
From Evolve Politics: Tory-led Norfolk County Council has come in for stinging criticism after councillors decided to award themselves an 11% pay rise just hours after voting through swingeing cuts to children’s services in the area.
Not only will Norfolk’s councillors see their allowances rise by over £1000 a year, the Tory councillors also decided to backdate their own pay rise from May, meaning they will each pocket an extra £400 on top.
The decision was made despite the fact that the council had argued Norfolk would need to make cuts of £125m to vital services over the next four years.
Councillors will see their already-generous allowances rise from £9,401 to £10,500. Council leader Cliff Jordan – who proposed the bill to increase pay – will see his allowance rise from £27,495 to £31,700, increasing his total allowance by £102 a week.
[Read full article on Evolve Politics website…]