Tag Archives: candidate

Will YOU call on Labour’s would-be leaders to support the People’s 10 Pledges, rather than the Board of Deputies’?

Labour’s remaining leadership candidates: will you ask them to reject the demands of a group that represents, at best, a minority of a minority and ask them to embrace a wider, better version?

A blogger who posted her own alternatives to the ’10 pledges’ – demands the Board of Deputies of British Jews tried to foist on the Labour Party – has won the support of thousands of readers.

This Site reported on Kay Green’s alternative pledges here – and she acknowledged the boost in a follow-up piece, calling for action to make Labour’s would-be leaders take notice.

Here are her main points:

Here’s a link to OUR Ten Pledges Don’t lose it.

  1. Send a link to your chosen leadership candidates, and ask them what they think.
  2. Send a link to your MP, and ask him/her if they endorse them.
  3. Send a link to Jennie Formby, and ask her to tell the NEC we prefer them.
  4. Send a link to ALL the NEC members!
  5. Present OUR Ten Pledges to your CLP as a motion to the NEC.
  6. Ask your CLP to put them forward as a motion for conference (and/or women’s conference).
  7. Present them to your Trade Union branch, socialist society or local assembly, and ask them to recommend them to the Labour Party.
  8. Send them to your favourite lefty blog or newspaper (mine’s the Morning Star) and ask them to write about them.
  9. Share this blog on different social media, and in your favourite groups, and ask them for more ideas about how to promote OUR Ten Pledges in the Party.
  10. Promise yourself you’ll never forget that leaders can be led. Whoever becomes leader, and whatever they may personally sign up to, if a membership of half a million are clear and politely persistent about wanting something different, different will happen.

And do please keep in touch. If you do any of these ten things, or if you think of other things to do, please pop back to the Ten Pledges blog post and leave a comment to let everyone know.

They may have knocked Jeremy Corbyn out (for now) but they can’t kill the movement he inspired unless we decide to do nothing.

What are you going to do?

Read the full article here: YOU have the power – Kay Green

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More than half Tory candidates in NE England live hundreds of miles from their constituencies

Aren’t candidates in general elections supposed to live in – or at least near the constituencies they want to represent?

According to Pride’s Purge, many of the Conservative candidates in North East England live hundreds of miles away, in the south.

They are strangers who have no idea of the issues facing people in the North East – placeholders put there to do Boris Johnson’s bidding instead. So why would anybody vote for them?

The article states:

“The Tories … are probably hoping no-one has noticed that more than half of their candidates – 13 to be exact – live hundreds of miles away from the constituencies they’re hoping to win and represent:

Newcastle Central
– Tory candidate Emily Victoria Payne lives 275 miles away in Westminster
Newcastle East
– Tory candidate Robin Gwynn lives 294 miles away in Surrey
Newcastle North
– Tory candidate Mark Guy Lehain lives 230 miles away in Bedford
North Tyneside
– Tory candidate Dean Spencer Carroll lives 232 miles away in Shrewsbury
South Shields
– Tory candidate Oni Boghene Oviri lives 310 miles away in Croydon
Blaydon
– Tory candidate Adrian Norman Spencer Pepper lives 278 miles away in Westminster
Gateshead
– Tory candidate Jane Emma Macbean lives 266 miles away in Chesham
Easington
– Tory candidate Clare Ambrosino lives 278 miles away in Hammersmith
North Durham
– Tory candidate Ed Parson lives 285 miles away in Sevenoaks
North West Durham
– Tory candidate Richard John Holden lives 100 miles away in Clitheroe
Houghton and Sunderland South
– Tory candidate Christopher John Charles Howarth lives 274 miles away in Kensington
Sunderland Central
– Tory candidate Tom D’Silva lives 298 miles away in Kingston
Washington and Sunderland West
– Tory candidate Valerie Margaret Allen lives 162 miles away in Warrington

“Probably not all that surprising that a posh, southern-England based party like the Tories finds it impossible to persuade real north-easterners to represent them.”

And if real north-easterners don’t want to represent the Tories, then real north-easterners don’t want to vote for them. Right?

Source: More than half Tory candidates in North East live 100s miles away from constituencies | Pride’s Purge

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Nigel Farage admits he was offered a peerage 48 hours before Brexit U-turn

Nigel Farage: You know the saying – everything before the ‘but’ is meaningless.

This is revealing:

Nigel Farage claimed he was offered a peerage 48 hours before blinking first in his Brexit stand off with Boris Johnson.

The Brexit Party chief was forced to scrap plans to stand candidates in hundreds of seats amid mounting warnings he risked scuppering EU withdrawal.

He claimed he was offered a peerage on Friday night – just two days before his screeching U-turn boosted the Prime Minister.

Mr Farage says it had no effect on his decision:

But he denied the Christmas bauble was behind his decision – and vowed to snub the offer.

But is he protesting too much?

Source: General election: Nigel Farage admits he was offered a peerage 48 hours before Brexit U-turn – Mirror Online

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Tory attitude to people in hard times is clear: Candidate says they should be ‘put down’

Francesca O’Brien: “Put down”.

It doesn’t take a genius to work out that if a new Conservative election candidate thinks people on benefits should be ‘put down’, they all do.

Why else would they have selected Francesca O’Brien to be Tory candidate for the Gower in Wales?

According to The Guardian: “In [Facebook] posts that have since been deleted, she wrote in January 2014: ‘Benefit Street..anyone else watching this?? Wow, these people are unreal!!!’

“In response to a friend’s comment, she wrote: ‘My blood is boiling, these people need putting down.’

“In further comments under her post, O’Brien apparently endorsed a friend’s suggestion for ‘twat a tramp Tuesday’ to ‘take your batts [sic] to the streets’.”

This is the “caring Conservatism” that David Cameron promoted back in 2010 – the kind that has put hundreds of thousands of people in early graves.

As shadow education secretary Angela Rayner said, ““his is absolutely disgusting and reveals the cruelty at the heart of the Tories’ benefits cuts. Universal credit was deliberately designed to punish people who are out of work.

“Many of us have relied on social security support at some point in our lives and it is nothing to be ashamed of. This person is not fit to be an MP and Boris Johnson should remove her as a candidate.”

No she isn’t – but if she were to go, then the Tories would have to apply the same criteria to their other candidates, and would probably end up with nobody to fight their campaign!

The Guardian article suggested that the comments “are likely to anger the thousands of people in Gower who rely on benefits. They will also strike a blow to the Conservatives’ hopes of winning the seat, with the constituency being a key marginal”.

Ms O’Brien has now apologised for the comments – because they have been brought to public attention? Why did she not apologise before? If she disagrees with them, why did she publish them?

She said, according to the BBC: “These comments were made off the cuff, a number of years ago.

“However, I accept that my use of language was unacceptable and I would like to apologise for any upset I have caused.”

Not exactly oozing with sincerity, was she?

So there you have it, folks.

If you want to sink your local Tory’s chances of re-election, dig up their comments on social media or find another way to reveal their true character. It’s what they say in unguarded moments that reveals what they really are.

Source: Tory candidate wrote people on Benefits Street should be ‘put down’ | Politics | The Guardian

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Haters attack Jewish candidate lined up to replace Louise Ellman in Liverpool – because she is pro-Palestine?

Jo Bird: Bigoted witch-hunters are conducting a hate campaign to sabotage her chances of being a Labour Parliamentary candidate – but the facts are against them.

Appointing a Jewish person to replace Louise Ellman as Labour’s candidate to represent Liverpool Riverside in the next general election might seem the most natural thing in the world.

Ms Ellman quit the party acrimoniously ahead of a re-selection trigger vote that she seemed certain to lose, after she accused members of her local party of anti-Semitism. When she quit, she threw a few more un-evidenced anti-Semitism accusations at party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

So it would seem good politics to nominate another Jewish party member to replace her – if only to show that the party is not institutionally anti-Semitic, or whatever today’s buzz-phrase from the witch-hunters happens to be.

Apparently not.

The favoured choice, you see, is Jo Bird – and she’s not the kind of Jewish Labour member the witch-hunters would ever approve.

For a start, she’s pro-Palestine.

It should come as no surprise, therefore, that her party membership was suspended earlier this year on a trumped-up charge. Now the witch-hunters and bigots are trying to influence Labour against selecting her on the basis of this false claim…

… and Twitter is giving them exactly what they deserve.

The most inflammatory salvo against Ms Bird came from Karen Pollock who, as chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, should know better. Note from her tweet that she was referring to an article in the Jewish Chronicle, which has been instrumental in stirring up hatred against innocent people in the past.

The paper libelled This Writer in 2018 and was forced to publish a grudging correction after I took the matter to press regulator IPSO.

Note also that she omitted the fact that Ms Bird is Jewish.

Here’s Ms Pollock’s astonishingly ill-advised tweet:

The hypocrisy of the claim – especially as fuelled by the Jewish Chronicle, is clear:

Oh, and Ms Bird herself has made a video explaining the circumstances of her suspension:

The conclusion is clear: if there is any anti-Semitism going on here, it is being perpetrated by the Jewish Chronicle, Ms Pollock, and anyone else who wants to attack Ms Bird:

Well said, Ian and Sparky.

This Site wishes Ms Bird success in her campaign to replace Louise Ellman. It seems to me that it would be a huge step forward in the fight against racism and anti-Semitism.

EXTRA: I note that Rachel Riley is on the record as having attacked Ms Bird over the words that triggered her suspension. I wonder if Ms Riley had the courage – and the honesty – to apologise for the mistake after the councillor was exonerated?

Ms Riley is currently suing me for libel – another trumped-up charge. Details of how to support my fight against her lawsuit are below.

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Trigger ballots to decide if Phillips has to fight to remain an MP

Jess Phillips: It’s time for her to go.

Labour Party members in the Birmingham Yardley constituency are to vote on the future of MP Jess Phillips.

She is facing a ‘trigger’ vote to decide whether she should face a challenge to her right to be their Parliamentary candidate in the next general election.

According to Skwawkbox, “Yardley reportedly only has some five hundred Labour members… Ms Phillips is said to have been working hard trying to cultivate their favour.

“Phillips’ neighbour, Roger Godsiff, was ‘triggered‘ earlier this week, with Barking MP Margaret Hodge suffering the same result the week before.”

Ms Phillips is highly controversial. This Site published an article earlier this week, sympathetic with staff at her office after they were targeted by a man banging on the windows and shouting “fascist”.

He seemed unhappy that she had made a speech about the un-Parliamentary language used by Boris Johnson regarding his aborted prorogation.

But I have little sympathy for Ms Phillips as a person and neither do readers of This Site, as evidenced by comments on that previous article.

“Jess Phillips is a fine one to bemoan the violent language currently being used in Parliament,” stated ‘TimFrom’. “She made an early contribution to the trend in 2015 when, in response to talk of Labour MPs back-stabbing Jeremy Corbyn, she proudly proclaimed she’d oh-so-bravely knife him ‘in the front’.”

Mark C added: “I really have very little time for Jess Phillips and her ‘I’m just a working class woman made good bab’ persona. I found myself in an unimpressed minority in regards to her recent impassioned speech at the fate of those expelled from the Tory party – why so het up about the Tories when many within the Labour party have been expelled on trumped up charges that she has often supported?

“And I feel her ‘I don’t understand parliamentary process’ comment is, at worst a wilful and calculated part of that ‘ordinary woman’ act and, at best, pure unadulterated ignorance at the job she is elected to perform.”

Others have criticised her for supporting Ruth Smeeth at the hearing of Labour’s National Constitutional Committee that led to the entirely inappropriate expulsion of anti-racism campaign Marc Wadsworth on a charge relating to anti-Semitic racism. Ms Smeeth had lied about him.

And This Writer came under fire for calling her “mouthy” – with critics claiming I was using sexist language, even though I and others apply that term freely to men, women and groups.

So, while Ms Phillips’s place as a candidate may now be in doubt, This Writer certainly hopes that members of Yardley CLP remove her from the list in the very near future.

There should be no place in the Parliamentary Labour Party for her.

Source: Phillips facing trigger ballots on Monday | The SKWAWKBOX

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Tory rebels are set to call Dictator Johnson’s bluff

He THINKS he’s the law: Dominic Cummings, the Leave campaigner now seen as Boris Johnson’s top henchman, warns Tory rebels including David Gauke, Philip Hammond and – is that Theresa May or Ken Clarke? Michael Gove cheers him on while Dictator Johnson, wrapped in a Union Flag like a good ultra-nationalist fascist, watches from the background in this cartoon by Morton Morland.

Tory MPs who say they will not support Boris Johnson’s “no deal” Brexit may stand as independent Conservatives if he goes through with his threat to withdraw the whip from them – effectively expelling them from his party in Parliament.

The Dictator’s warning is already seen as an empty threat by many, as he would lose his majority in Parliament if he goes through with it.

And if BoJob’s government falls as a result, then he will not be leader and will be unable to follow through his threat to stop them standing as Tory election candidates.

So it could be crippling to him that as many as 20 Tory MPs are preparing to defy him:

The Mirror report, to which the tweet links, states that potential rebel MPs had been expecting to attend a meeting with Mr Johnson today (September 2), but this was cancelled after David Gauke appeared on a TV interview and said he was prepared to stand as an independent candidate in a future election, in the “national interest”.

BoJob said he would hold a “summit” meeting with Philip Hammond instead, but it seems unlikely that this will mollify the potential rebels.

The Dictator’s ultimatum means MPs who were cabinet ministers just six weeks ago may find themselves ejected from the party they used to lead in a matter of days – including, possibly, former prime minister Theresa May.

Also in the firing line are Philip Hammond, David Gauke and Dominic Grieve.

Some leading members of the Johnson camp have – astonishingly – claimed that nobody will be deselected at all, in what seems a transparent attempt to deflect attention away from what’s going on – particularly with reference to the apparent rebel ringleader, David Gauke:

It has been suggested that James Cleverly’s tweet may be deleted soon, so let’s just repeat its claim: “THERE IS NO DESELECTION MECHANISM IN THE CONSERVATIVE PARTY. We have had these Leave EU stories amplified by the press for months and no Conservative MP has been deselected. David Gauke is a great MP and a huge asset to our party.”

The threat from the Johnson camp has already been likened to a Stalinist purge, with some commentators pointing out that the only reason the mass media aren’t using those words is because it is happening in the Conservative Party and not Labour:

Indeed, the fact that Labour has not purged any MPs is being used against the Johnson regime:

But the most clear comparison is with Adolf Hitler – against whom Dictator Johnson has actually made himself appear the less acceptable figure:

Some have even adopted the optimistic view that this crisis could finish the Conservatives for good:

https://twitter.com/SurreyAmps/status/1168171760522604546

This Writer would not go that far. Conservatives are resilient and seem to have the survival instinct of the mythical hydra; cut off their head and two more will take its place.

And they are wily, too. Where the stick seems ineffective, Johnson and Cummings may try to apply the carrot and bribe their wayward colleagues back into line.

But the possible loss of his majority could represent a quantum leap forward in the battle against Boris Johnson’s bid to become the UK’s dictator.

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Labour lowers requirement to trigger selection of new Parliamentary candidates

Labour’s ruling National Executive Committee has reduced the required number of votes needed to trigger the selection of new Parliamentary candidates.

The decision means constituency Labour parties may more easily rid themselves of MPs who members feel no longer have the good of the party at heart.

This may include those who have spoken out against party leader Jeremy Corbyn because they do not share his political views, rather than over any wrong-doing he may be perceived to have carried out.

It may also include those who have deliberately attempted to hinder Labour’s electoral chances while Mr Corbyn is leader.

But the rule change also means members of the party’s right-wing may take advantage too – in order to remove supporters of Mr Corbyn and/or his policies.

Skwawkbox (quoted below) suggests that all those who wish to ensure the Parliamentary Labour Party more adequately resembles its left-wing membership need to get organised now, contacting their CLP secretaries to ensure they can make the necessary arrangements, and This Writer agrees.

The full procedures document can be downloaded here.

Labour members eager for the opportunity to choose a new parliamentary representative now have a green light to start the ‘trigger’ process – and some will face a lower hurdle to successfully force a full selection contest, after the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) agreed a change to the application of the ‘one in three branches’ trigger threshold.

In Labour’s new trigger rules, one in three member branches must vote for a selection contest in order to ‘trigger’ one.

However, the total from which ‘one in three’ will be calculated will be of those branches participating in the vote’, not of all branches in the CLP. Moribund branches therefore cannot be used by supporters of MPs hoping to avoid a selection contest to raise the bar.

Source: Excl: green light for triggers as Labour NEC lowers bar further | The SKWAWKBOX

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Former suspended council officer is new Brecon and Radnorshire Brexit Party contender

Desmond Parkinson: The new ‘rainbow man’ of Mid Wales politics.

Well, this is embarrassing – for This Writer and for the Brexit Party.

Nigel Farage’s company-posing-as-a-political party has been threatening to stand a candidate in the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election – but when it did, so few people noticed that I got the wrong end of the stick and wrote a story about something involving him that happened 13 years ago, by mistake.

The genuinely amusing aspect of this is that nobody noticed. I only discovered the mistake when my source contacted me at around 2.30am to tell me they thought I’d got the timeline muddled up.

(I must, of course, take this opportunity to sincerely apologise for the mix-up, which was due to me being sent background information about the gentleman in question by my source, without any links to the announcement.)

So the story is that the Brexit Party’s candidate for Brecon and Radnorshire is a “rainbow” man who has flitted between hard right-wing parties after quitting a council job from which he had been suspended.

Desmond Parkinson is a former police chief superintendent and former national assistant secretary of the Police Superintendents’ Association of England and Wales. While in these roles, it seems he did score some notable achievements – it is said that he was responsible for the creation of the Sex Offenders Register and also championed a successful campaign to ban handguns following the Dunblane tragedy in 1996.

And he was said to have fought to overturn the double jeopardy law, thereby enabling the convictions of Gary Dobson and David Norris for the murder of Stephen Lawrence. One wonders what he thinks of Marc Wadsworth, the anti-racism activist who campaigned for justice for the Lawrence family but was subsequently and falsely accused of anti-Semitism by the Labour Party.

He was employed by Telford and Wrekin Council as a senior licensing officer in 2004 but was suspended from that position in 2006. Neither the council nor Mr Parkinson himself would comment on the reasons for his suspension, according to the Shropshire Star.

He resigned as a council officer the following year, it seems, and I have been able to find no further information about that matter.

He next appeared six years later when – in 2012 – he stood as Conservative candidate to be the West Mercia Police and Crime Commissioner, losing to Independent Bill Longmore.

Then – in 2016 – he sought election as the UKIP candidate to be Dyfed-Powys Police and Crime Commissioner, losing to Plaid Cymru’s Dafydd Llewelyn. It seems he also campaigned as a UKIP candidate for election to the Welsh Assembly at the same time.

The following year, he switched parties to become a Conservative candidate for a Welshpool Town Council seat in 2017.

Now he has switched loyalties again – to the Brexit Party.

Can you really trust someone who changes his allegiance with the wind? Someone who was suspended from a position of responsibility with a local authority for reasons unknown, and quit before it was possible for the public to find out what those reasons were?

According to the BBC, Mr Parkinson said the by-election was a “matter of integrity” and people had been “let down” by the Conservatives.

Fine words. A man who forged expenses claims (Chris Davies – who was re-selected as Tory candidate against all reason) being criticised by one who left his licensing job under a cloud – and both have been members of the Conservative Party, which tends to indicate that that organisation will let anybody in!

And what does it say about the Brexit Party when it takes in Tory cast-offs?

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POLL: Does anybody care about all these Tory leadership hopefuls and their druggie pasts?

Andrea Leadsom: She’s the fourth Tory leadership candidate to admit having smoked “weed”.

Can somebody please tell me how having taken drugs in the past makes someone a better candidate to be the leader of the Conservative Party – let alone prime minister?

Jeremy Hunt was the first; he admitted taking a cannabis lassi (it’s a kind of drink made in India).

Then Rory Stewart said he took opium at a wedding in Iran, prompting speculation in some quarters that he was pre-empting a revelation – possibly by a rival.

And then the floodgates opened.

Boris Johnson took cocaine and cannabis at college. Can anybody say they’re surprised?

Dominic Raab has had cannabis, and so has Andrea Leadsom.

And Michael Gove took cocaine. In his confession, he went on at length about the drug’s harmful effects (“drugs damage lives”) and about his feelings on the subject now (“it is something I deeply regret”). This caused more rancour than the straight confessions of the others.

Green MP Caroline Lucas said it was “rank hypocrisy” to admit to “mistakes” while “backing policies that perpetuate harm”.

Crispin Blunt, chairman of the all-party parliamentary group for drug policy reform, said: “Michael has delivered a politically-crafted and deeply unconvincing hand-wringing statement of regret for committing a victimless crime. He should have used the opportunity to join a vital and urgent policy debate.”

Ex-Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron pointed out that all six “continue to back policies that send less fortunate folk to prison for the same thing. It’s disgusting”.

And current Lib Dem leadership hopeful Ed Davey observed: “They might all be historical confessions but the way this Tory leadership is going it’s like they’re all off their heads.”

That certainly appears to be the conclusion of the satirists, who have been having great fun concocting fictional pasts for other MPs. I particularly enjoyed the idea of Jacob Rees-Mogg having used camphorated tincture of laudanum with his nanny in 1899.

And apparently Larry the Downing Street Cat has admitted a continuing fondness for catnip. Well, why not?

In the interests of full disclosure, This Writer is happy to admit a long history of substance abuse including cocktails of diesel, metal polish and (when I can get it) Uranium-239. We journalists run on heavy fuel!

But there is a serious question here.

The issue of illegal drugs has been a major political football for decades. Remember the “war on drugs”? The lives of millions of people have been affected – many ruined – by organised drug-pushers; Michael Gove wasn’t wrong about that. And many people have been punished – sometimes jailed – simply for possession of certain substances.

And the hypocrisy of the mass media should also be taken into account. Remember the thunderous furore after Diane Abbott drank a mojito on a train? In comparison, we get hardly a whimper after people who may become prime minister confessed to serious historical crimes.

Against this background, it is right to question the attitude of these confessors. Let’s have a poll:

Source: Tory leadership hopeful Andrea Leadsom becomes 6th candidate to admit drugs past – Mirror Online

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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