Tory minister resigns after sending constituents explicit messages

From The Guardian: Andrew Griffiths, the minister for small business, has resigned from the government after being found to have sent more than 2,000 explicit messages to two women in his constituency.

The Conservative MP for Burton, and Theresa May’s former chief of staff, released a statement saying apologising for what he had done, after the texts were put to him by the Sunday Mirror.

In the statement, the 47-year-old junior minister said: “I am deeply ashamed at my behaviour which has caused untold distress to my wife and family, to whom I owe everything, and deep embarrassment to the prime minister and the government I am so proud to serve.

He said he would be seeking professional help to address his unacceptable behaviour sending sex texts. “I do not seek to excuse my behaviour and will be seeking professional help to ensure it never happens again.

[Read full article on Guardian website…]

Tory MP Michael Fabricant has apartheid-era South African flag on his mantelpiece

From Channel 4 News FactCheck: Michael Fabricant has been captured on video standing in front of what appeared to be the flag of apartheid South Africa on the mantelpiece of his parliamentary office.

South Africa used the tricolour design between 1928 and 1994, and it was flown throughout the apartheid era, when South Africans were forced to live separately along racial lines and non-white citizens were openly discriminated against.

The flag became a symbol of the apartheid system and was regularly set on fire by protesters in a show of defiance.

Earlier this year, the Nelson Mandela Foundation called for the old flag to be banned from public display after became a feature of demonstrations by white farmers in the country.

The foundation said: “These displays demonstrably compound the pain experienced by millions of black South Africans who suffered under apartheid and continue to struggle under its legacy.”

Asked why he had an apartheid-era South Africa flag on his mantelpiece, Mr Fabricant replied on Twitter: “It’s alongside an old soviet-era USSR Hammer & Sickle flag – just out of shot. The cameraman can confirm. They are places I went on work visits in the 1980s. I am neither a Communist nor a supporter of apartheid.”

[Read full article on Channel 4 News website…]

Sayeeda Warsi calls for inquiry into Islamophobia within Tory party

From The Guardian: Sayeeda Warsi has called on the Conservatives to launch a “full independent inquiry” into Islamophobia in the party and warned the Tories were pursuing a politically damaging policy of denial about the problem in its own ranks.

The former Conservative party chair accused incumbent Brandon Lewis of a “woefully inept” response to recent complaints and added that MP Zac Goldsmith should receive “mandatory diversity training” following his unsuccessful attempt to beat Sadiq Khan to the London mayoralty.

Writing for the Guardian, Lady Warsi said: “I’ve been warning my party of its ‘Muslim problem’ for far too long,” and said that elite indifference to the issue meant the Tories were stuck with a political strategy that amounted little more than “fuck the Muslims”.

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Proposed “upskirting” law blocked by Tory MP

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.

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Fallon resigned for lunging at female journalist and trying to kiss her on the lips in 2003

From The Observer: The dramatic circumstances of Michael Fallon’s sudden resignation as defence secretary last week can be revealed by the Observer.

The cabinet heavyweight’s shock departure on Wednesday followed a phone call from the journalist, Jane Merrick, who informed Downing Street that he had lunged at her and attempted to kiss her on the lips in 2003 after they had lunched together.

The revelation was the tipping point for No 10, which the Observer understands had been compiling a list of alleged incidents involving Fallon since claims against him were first made. Read more

Tory MP Michael Fabricant says drunk MPs should not be accused of rape or sexual assault

From Evolve Politics: Michael Fabricant, the Tory MP for Lichfield, has controversially suggested that politicians who are drunk should not be accused of committing serious sexual assaults such as rape.

Speaking to BBC Newsnight, Fabricant said that people who commit acts of sexual assault should be considered ‘blameless’ if ‘everyone was sloshed at the time’.

Whilst admitting that ‘you sometimes get’ drunk people being accused of committing sexual assault, Fabricant went on to say ‘we’ve got to be very careful that we don’t get into that situation’ – blaming a ‘growing witch hunt mentality’ for the recent allegations of sexual assault.

The MP also dismissed recent allegations of sexual assault as just rumours.

[Read full article on Evolve Politics website…]

Tory government awards “Tampon Tax” proceeds to anti-abortion charity

the pool tampon taxFrom The Pool: The Tory government has confirmed that a portion of the money raised from the so-called Tampon Tax will go towards anti-abortion charity Life. Despite outcry from MPs and a number of petitions, the charity will receive a quarter of a million pounds of a £12m total shared with other women’s charities.

[Read full article on The Pool website…]

Tory member of House of Lords: Pollution is making people transgender

tebbitFrom Pink News: Lord Tebbit, a Tory member of the House of Lords and a former Chairman of the Conservative Party, has claimed pollution is making people transgender.

Lord Tebbit, a former Thatcher minister and Chairman of the Conservative Party, is a long-running opponent of LGBT rights.

The 86-year-old peer spoke out this week in an article in the Telegraph.

[Read full article in Pink News…]

Tory MP says a memorial to men who were executed for being gay is “totally inappropriate”

From Evolve Politics: A Conservative MP has described a memorial for people who were executed for being gay as ‘totally inappropriate’.

Andrew Bridgen, Tory MP for North West Leicestershire, lashed out after the exhibit was unveiled by the National Trust at Kingston Lacy house in Dorset earlier this week.

The memorial was inspired by the tragic life of the former owner of the National Trust property, British explorer and former Tory MP William John Bankes – a man who was forced to flee the country after authorities discovered he was gay. Read more

Jacob Rees-Mogg opposed to same-sex marriage and abortion – even after rape

From The Guardian: Jacob Rees-Mogg, the Conservative grassroots’ favoured candidate to succeed Theresa May, has said he is against same-sex marriage and opposes abortion even in cases of rape.

Rees-Mogg, who is a father of six, said he was “completely opposed to abortion” and said he believed life began at the point of conception. “With same-sex marriage, that is something that people are doing for themselves. With abortion, that is what people are doing to the unborn child,” he said.

Asked whether he would be against terminations in all circumstances including rape, he replied: “Afraid so.”

[Read full article on Guardian website…]

Norman Lamont: Austerity isn’t something you can get bored of “like too many repeats on TV”

From Huffpost: Theresa May must not abandon austerity just because cabinet ministers think voters have turned against it, Lord Lamont has said.

The former Conservative chancellor told BBC Radio 4′s Today programme this morning that public spending cuts were not something people could just get bored of like “too many repeats on TV”.

“What concerns me there is seems to be growing in the Conservative party and among ministers a feeling that because the electorate disliked austerity that this is the message that has come back and therefore it ought to be discarded,” he said.

27 times the Tory Party have had a racism problem

[From the Daily Mirror…]

1. The time David Cameron went to apartheid South Africa
2. When Boris Johnson described black people as “piccaninnies”
3. When the magazine edited by Boris Johnson published an article claiming ‘black people have lower IQs’
4. The councillor who posted a picture of a gorilla alongside a critical comment about an Asian Labour councillor on a blog
5. The councillor who said Romanians would ‘stick a knife in you’
6. The MP who said members were treated like Jews in Nazi Germany after the expenses scandal
7. The councillor who complained about ‘foreign names’ among parliamentary candidates
8. The councillor who moaned there were “too many P***s” in his town
9. When Lord Tebbit told Baroness Warsi to be quiet after she spoke out about Islamophobia

[Read article with full descriptions on Daily Mirror website…]

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