Tag Archives: Prime Minister

What was the object Boris Johnson had in his ear during Prime Minister’s Questions?

The offending article: it isn’t a shadow – it’s a device. Was somebody feeding Boris Johnson answers via this earphone [Image from the eagle-eyed Skwawkbox]?

Was Boris Johnson wearing an earphone in his right ear during Prime Minister’s Questions today (June 3)?

If so, who was on the other end and what were they saying to him?

Mechanical aids are forbidden to the PM when he is taking his questions from other members of Parliament. He is expected to be fully briefed before he enters the Commons Chamber – not while proceedings are taking place.

The people of the UK should certainly expect the Speaker’s Office to carry out an investigation into the nature of the device and the purpose to which it was put.

If Johnson needed help, then it shows he isn’t even capable of carrying out the most basic duties of a prime minister.

In that case, it will be time for a vote of ‘no confidence’.

Source: Breaking: Johnson caught using ‘earpiece’ in PMQs – SKWAWKBOX

UPDATE: Skwawkbox is now showing video evidence which suggests Johnson was not wearing a device in his ear. It seems the appearance of a dark object in his right ear, in the image above, is only indicative of the void between it and his left ear after all. But what do you think?

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Criminal evidence on Vote Leave handed to CPS. Will Boris Johnson go to Number 10 – or jail?

How can Boris Johnson show his face on the election trail when he may face criminal charges as part of the Vote Leave campaign?

That is the big question. Some may deny it – but they’ll be the ones who say Labour is a disgrace for being investigated by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission over trumped-up allegations of anti-Semitism. Hypocrisy?

It is true that Mr Johnson will be among those implicated in the criminal evidence that has been sent to the Crown Prosecution Service by the Metropolitan Police after a 16-month investigation.

Vote Leave has denied any wrongdoing but the formal referral by the police means they are seeking advice on how to build the case against that organisation, and where they need further evidence to advance the prospect of charges being brought.

In practise, this means any actual prosecution is still a long way away.

But the timing could not be worse for Mr Johnson.

It links his – and chief adviser Dominic Cummings – to possible criminal charges at a time when he is trying to pretend he is trustworthy enough to lead the United Kingdom.

And of course, this is also a time when he has failed to achieve Brexit on the date he said he would.

Worse still, it comes after the Met dropped an investigation into rival Leave campaign Leave.EU, fronted by Arron Banks, due to a lack of evidence. The fact that an investigation against Mr Johnson’s team is still ongoing is even more damning in contrast with that.

Most damning of all is the fact that Mr Johnson is trying to fight a Brexit election based on a campaign won through potentially criminal activity. He is harming the integrity of the electoral system by continuing to stand as a candidate.

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Now Johnson risks contempt of Parliament by refusing to release prorogation communications

Boris Johnson: If we had to judge a man by his gestures, this would give us an accurate understanding of his opinion of us.

Boris Johnson’s government is refusing to publish details of communications between Boris Johnson’s aides about the suspension of Parliament.

MPs voted for their release earlier this week, amid concerns that Mr Johnson misled the Queen to induce her to prorogue Parliament, and that the decision to call for prorogation was made earlier than he had claimed.

We already heard earlier today (September 11) that the prorogation was unlawful – although the Tory government is to challenge that ruling in the Supreme Court next week.

I mentioned reasons this was important in tweets earlier today (September 11):

This information came from Scottish solicitor Clive Wismayer, before you start thinking I’ve developed a rudimentary form of intelligence.

According to the BBC:

Cabinet minister Michael Gove said the information sought by MPs was “unreasonable and disproportionate”.

It would breach the rights of the nine advisers concerned, including Boris Johnson’s chief aide Dominic Cummings.

To do so, he added, would “contravene the law” and “offend against basic principles of fairness”.

But does it?

You see, when there’s a possibility that these people have been involved in a huge offence against democracy, one has to wonder whether these people are the ones trying to “contravene the law” and “offend against basic principles of fairness”.

In such circumstances, I’m not particularly bothered about breaching the rights of the nine advisers concerned, and I think it should be up to the courts to decide if the information sought was “unreasonable and disproportionate” – in the light of the information that their documents divulge.

The refusal to provide the information, in the face of Parliament’s expressed demand, seems the most suspicious act possible.

And as it is a direct refusal to honour the wishes of Parliament, it seems Boris Johnson is content to add contempt of Parliament to the six defeats heaped on him between the moment Parliament re-convened on September 3 and the moment it was unlawfully (as matters stand at the time of writing) prorogued.

He – and all his advisers – could be in serious trouble here.

Source: Parliament suspension: Government refuses to publish No 10 communications – BBC News

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Still think the Queen had no choice but to prorogue Parliament? Think again!

The Queen: It seems she has failed to do her duty in the most unacceptable way.

Craig Murray’s aim is not the same as mine in this – he’s after Scottish Independence and I think the countries of the UK are still better together – but he makes excellent points in his article (link below).

He says the Queen was wrong to appoint Boris Johnson as prime minister because her duty is to appoint whoever can demonstrated that they have the support of the Commons – and he has not done so.

Now, in proroguing Parliament for him, she is offering him the chance to delay the moment when we find out he can’t muster up that support.

This is because his flagship policy is “no deal” Brexit – and Parliament has rejected this policy, time and time again.

The course of the Queen’s actions suggests a specific plan – one which puts her in an extremely questionable position.

The Queen has appointed a Prime Minister who does not have the support of the House of Commons and then has conspired to prevent the House of Commons from obstructing her Prime Minister. That is not the action of a politically neutral monarchy.

Whatever happens in the future, this should end the role of the monarchy as it is currently described.

Source: The Queen’s Active Role in the Right Wing Coup – Craig Murray

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May bids farewell – can’t she just clear off?

Theresa May: Good riddance.

Don’t you hate all this false reverence toward someone who has been a complete failure.

Theresa May has wasted three years of our lives. Can’t she just go?

That’s really all I have to say about her. I don’t expect to have to write anything more about her and certainly won’t report on her farewell speech.

The best we can expect from that is that she manages to get through it without choking.

Theresa May has faced MPs’ questions for the final time before Boris Johnson becomes prime minister.

Later, she will deliver a farewell speech in Downing Street before Mr Johnson takes power.

Source: Boris Johnson: May bidding farewell before new PM takes office – BBC News

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Will Tory MPs still vote for Boris Johnson after he was named a racist in Prime Minister’s Questions?

You bet they will!

That’s right, isn’t it, Tory MPs? You all heard Ian Blackford – correctly – reminding Theresa May that Boris Johnson published a poem stating that the Scottish people are a “verminous” race that should be placed in ghettos and exterminated.

Mr Blackford continued: “Well, of course, words matter and actions matter. The Prime Minister thought that the man who published those words in his magazine was fit for the office of our top diplomat, and he has not stopped there. He has said that Scots should be banned from being Prime Minister—banned from being Prime Minister, Mr Speaker—and that £1 spent in Croydon was worth more than £1 spend in Strathclyde. This is a man who is not fit for office. It has been said, “The ultimate measure of a person is not where they stand in moments of comfort, but where they stand at times of challenge and controversy.” This is a time of challenge, so does the Prime Minister realise that not only is the Member racist, but he is stoking division in communities and has a record of dishonesty?

“He has called Muslim women “letter boxes”, described African people as having “watermelon smiles” and another disgusting slur that I would never dignify by repeating. If that is not racist, I do not know what is. Does the Prime Minister honestly believe that this man is fit for the office of Prime Minister?”

All of the factual information in his questions was accurate.

And although Mr Blackford was accused of using un-Parliamentary language, Commons Speaker John Bercow restricted himself to saying Mr Blackford should have notified Mr Johnson of his intention to make this accusation in advance (he said he had). Later, in response to a point of order, Mr Bercow added: “I think it would be wise for colleagues to bear in mind the general principle that one does not impute dishonour to another Member. That is the first point.

“I think it would be appropriate, in the remaining weeks before the summer recess and before a new leader of the governing party takes office, to have some regard to that for which the Prime Minister is responsible. She is responsible for her own policies and for the conduct of her Government and their administration of their affairs, and it is important that questions should be put with that overarching consideration and ambit of responsibility in mind.”

These are all fair points, with regard to Parliamentary procedure. But the question had been asked – in front of packed Conservative benches – and Theresa May could only answer that “I believe that any future Conservative Prime Minister will be better for Scotland than the Scottish Nationalist Party”.

So, if Mr Johnson does become prime minister, his racism has already won endorsement from his immediate forerunner.

And what about all those Conservatives who heard the question and were then called to vote in the third round of their party’s leader election? More than one-third of these MPs voted for Mr Johnson yesterday (June 18), but could reasonably have excused themselves from any accusation of endorsing racism by saying they did not know about Mr Johnson’s actions.

Today they will have no such excuse.

So, if Mr Johnson wins as many votes in the third round, anyone wishing to accuse a Conservative MP of endorsing racism will have at least a one-in-three chance of being right. It wouldn’t be more accurate because it is, of course, a secret ballot.

But the more votes Mr Johnson gets, the more likely a Conservative MP is to be tarred as a supporter of racism and racist comments.

So the results – when they are announced – should make interesting reading!

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How could Boris Johnson lead the Tory Party – or the country – from inside a jail cell?

Boris Johnson: His bags are packed but it’s too late to do a runner. He must appear in court to answer charges.

Boris Johnson’s prime ministerial ambition could soon be in tatters after he was told he will face trial for misconduct in public office over claims he made during the run-up to the EU membership referendum.

Mr Johnson supported the much-publicised claim – on the side of the so-called “Brexit bus” – that the UK sends £350m to the EU every week and the money could be better-used to pay for the NHS instead.

In fact, the UK does not send anything like as much money to the EU – and when the country decouples from the European bloc, the money it does send will need to be used to shore up the economy, which is already taking a battering.

If he is found guilty of the offences (there are three listed), then Mr Johnson may face six months’ imprisonment.

This may seriously harm his career plans. He is currently front-runner in the Conservative Party leadership race – but it would be hard for him to be Tory leader, let alone prime minister, from a jail cell. They don’t let you do it.

As far as I can tell, Mr Johnson’s lawyers are saying the court case is a “political stunt” – an attempt to use criminal law to regulate the quality of political debate.

That seems a very sticky wicket on which to go into bat.

We know that MPs lie.

Why not make it a criminal offence to do so?

Boris Johnson is to be summoned to court to face accusations of misconduct in public office over comments made in the run-up to the EU referendum, a judge has ruled.

The ruling follows a crowdfunded move to launch a private prosecution of the MP, who is currently the frontrunner in the Tory leadership contest.

Johnson lied and engaged in criminal conduct when he repeatedly claimed during the 2016 EU referendum that the UK sent £350m a week to Brussels, lawyers for a 29-year-old businessman who has launched the prosecution bid told a court last week.

Source: Boris Johnson to appear in court over Brexit misconduct claims | Politics | The Guardian

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It’s the end of May – and not a moment too soon

On her way at last: This isn’t a shot of Theresa May leaving Downing Street for the last time – she’ll stay until June 7 – but at least we know she’ll be gone soon.

It has become commonplace for prime ministers to resign after an election but – typically of Theresa May – she has done so after the wrong one.

Mrs May wasn’t even standing in yesterday’s European Parliament elections. There is a certain amount of satisfaction to be gained from the fact that she is leaving after a poll that she never intended to allow.

In typical Tory manner, she has not been removed by public choice, but has instead been backstabbed by her own party – the so-called ‘Men in Grey Suits’, it seems; Mrs May made her announcement after a meeting with 1922 committee chairman Sir Graham Brady, who most likely told her to jump before she is pushed.

She made a speech on the Downing Street steps in which she said she’ll cease to be Tory leader on June 7, but will remain as prime minister until a new leader is elected by the usual cabal of Tories.

And she tried to claim that her government had accomplished things: tackling the deficit (but not the national debt, which has spiralled upwards steeply), reducing unemployment (by including people who work for just a single hour every fortnight in her figures – and productivity has fallen), and providing more funds for mental health (without actually improving the mental health of the nation).

But she said: “It is and will always remain a matter of deep regret to me that I have not been able to deliver Brexit.”

And she had advice for her successor: “Never forget that compromise is not a dirty word. Life depends on compromise.” But this was doubly hypocritical. She was quoting Nicholas Winton, the man who organised the Czech Kindertransport that managed to deliver hundreds of mostly Jewish children out of Nazi Europe before World War Two, but she hasn’t delivered anybody from danger. And of course it is a mark of her own character that Mrs May herself has been unable to compromise on anything – she was, in the end, terminally stubborn.

As I type this, the BBC news is full of toffs in expensive suits doing their best to praise Mrs May.

But The Guardian has, significantly, run an article on the public reaction, headlined Good riddance.

One commenter described her thus: “Author of the hostile environment. Wrongly deported UK citizens to Jamaica. Several of whom were then murdered. Wrongly deported foreign nationals who had not failed English exams. Prevented EU citizens from voting in the EU elections. Sent Go Home vans around minority neighbourhoods. Told that ridiculous lie about the immigrant’s cat. What was that she was saying about ‘burning injustices’? Good riddance.”

Another, referring to her speech, stated: “Those tears at the end … she had none for Windrush.”

A third rightly raised her appalling record of failing to care for UK citizens: “Is anyone keeping score of the deaths and suicides of benefit claimants under her Government, the deaths of deportees under her Government, the wrongful denial of rights to remain, work and study in the UK under her Government, the deaths in custody under her Government, the abuse of care home residents under her Government and anything else that most right minded people would class as burning injustice?

“Don’t let her failure to deliver Brexit overshadow her many other failures.”

One person who certainly won’t allow that to happen is Jeremy Corbyn, who has now seen off two Tory prime ministers. He said: “She has now accepted what the country has known for months: she cannot govern, and nor can her divided and disintegrating party. The Conservative Party has utterly failed the country over Brexit and is unable to improve people’s lives or deal with their most pressing needs.

“The last thing the country needs is weeks of more Conservative infighting followed by yet another unelected Prime Minister. Whoever becomes the new Conservative Leader must let the people decide our country’s future, through an immediate general election.”

Bring it on.

Now Esther McVey wants to be the next Tory leader. They’re going from bad to worse

Misspelt: Shouldn’t the line on the front of her pulpit say, “Opportunist”?

Esther McVey, the Tory MP whose behaviour at the Department for Work and Pensions led to her being branded “McVile”, has said she will campaign to become the next Conservative Party leader (and prime minister), after Theresa May finally gives up squatting in 10 Downing Street.

Ms McVey – currently the MP for Tatton, in Cheshire, after being ejected from the Wirral West seat in 2015 – told Talk Radio: “I’ve always said quite clearly that if I got enough support from colleagues then, yes, I would, and now people have come forward and I have that support.”

She may have support from fellow Conservative MPs but it seems unlikely she would ever have the support of the general public – if voters get a chance to scrutinise her record.

I’ve written articles about it. Let’s see what I wrote when she was appointed as Work and Pensions Secretary, in 2018:

As Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for People with Disabilities, she oversaw the dismantling of Remploy as a government-owned employer of disabled people, saying the factories should be “freed from government control” and funding could be better used if spent on helping disabled people into work through individual support. Experience in the years since then has proved this claim to be false. The disability employment gap is widening, with 114 disabled people leaving work for every 100 gaining jobs. And only last month, Chancellor Philip Hammond lied to the nation with a claim that lower productivity in the UK economy was due to disabled people.

In December 2012, Ms McVey boasted that, when Disability Living Allowance (DLA) was replaced by Personal Independence Payments (PiPs), more than 300,000 people would have their benefits cut or removed altogether. She thought it was a good thing.

In January 2013, she did not bother to turn up to a Parliamentary debate on private firm Atos’s handling of the hated Work Capability Assessment of people claiming Employment and Support Allowance, even though she was the minister responsible. She left it to Mark Hoban, then-Minister of State at the DWP, who answered only 10 questions out of dozens that were put to him. In August of that year, she sent Mr Hoban out to lie on her behalf again – on the same subject.

She misled Parliament and the public with regard to Disability Living Allowance, the benefit that was replaced by PIP.

In April 2013, she tried to justify the change from DLA to PIP by saying it was an “outdated benefit” for which “around 50 per cent of decisions are made on the basis of the claim form alone – without any additional corroborating medical evidence.” She also said 71 per cent of claimants were awarded the benefit for life, without checks. These were both lies. In fact, just 10 per cent of claims were based on the 40-page-long form. In 40 per cent of claims a GP’s report was required for a successful claim and in a further 45 per cent of cases further evidence was used, such as information from a social worker or healthcare professional.  And six per cent of claimants were called in for a face-to-face assessment. And only 23 per cent of DLA awards were indefinite.

Along with Iain Duncan Smith and the other DWP ministers of the time, she supported the regime of sanctions imposed on those who refused to take part in what was then known as the Work Programme, despite having documentary proof, not only that they don’t work, but that they harm claimants’ families as well as the claimants themselves, and are known to cause suicide. With the others, she supported a change in the law after previous rules were found to be illegal. She procured the suicide of disabled and otherwise disadvantaged benefit claimants.

In October 2013, Ms McVey was rewarded for these lies with a promotion, replacing Mr Hoban as Minister for Employment.

In this job, she started as she meant to go on by praising a fall in the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, even though there had been no corresponding increase in employment. In fact, more people were said to be out of work. The drop in the claimant count could be attributed to several other factors: Sanctions, unpaid Workfare or work-related activity schemes, they may have been forced to apply for sickness or disability benefit, they may have been bullied off-benefit by DWP staff or private assessors employed by the Department, or they may have committed suicide. The DWP refuses to follow up on the fortunes of people it has pushed off-benefit, so we simply don’t know.

The following month, she announced that people on sickness benefits would be required to have regular meetings with the kind of “healthcare professionals” who had been pushing as many sick and disabled people as possible off-benefit, with a view to addressing the barriers that stop them getting into work. The implication was that, as their illnesses were not considered to be barriers to work, they weren’t ill at all but were faking it. Ms McVey described this as giving people “the support they need”. In fact, it was about depriving people of support.

Days later, she was back, praising the Bedroom Tax as a way to “tackle overcrowding and to make better use of our housing stock… We have seen our Housing Benefit bill exceed £24 billion – an increase of 50% in just 10 years – and this had to be brought under control”. There were just two problems with that – the Bedroom Tax doesn’t make better use of housing stock (in fact, it increases the likelihood of houses going empty as families are discouraged from moving in, knowing they’ll be forced out when the children leave) and was always likely to increase costs (people moving into private rented property would receive more benefit, and people who have been evicted because they can’t pay their bills after the Tax was imposed will be a burden on councils, who will have to put them up in more expensive B&B accommodation). Again, she was lying in order to make harming people acceptable to the public.

Mere days after that, Ms McVey was forced to admit that the DWP had been lying about the number of people awarded Employment and Support Allowance on their first attempt, by including those who had requested reconsideration after being denied the benefit.

In December that year, Ms McVey was found to have lied about benefit sanctions. She had said they affected only a small proportion of jobseekers – “The vast, vast majority of people don’t get sanctions” – but when the actual number of sanctions (553,000) was compared with the number of people on JSA (1,480,000) it became clear that this was not true.

It is well worth examining Ms McVey’s contribution to the food bank debate, mentioned in tweets by other commenters which I have quoted (above). This Writer published an article about it at the time, and here‘s what I wrote about what she said:

Esther McVey’s speech showed clearly why she should have remained on breakfast television, where comparatively few people had to put up with her. She accused the previous Labour government of a “whirl of living beyond our means” that “had to come to a stop” without ever pausing to admit that it was Tory-voting bankers who had been living beyond their means, who caused the crash, and who are still living beyond their means today, because her corporatist (thank you, Zac Goldsmith) Conservative government has protected them.

She accused Labour of trying to keep food banks as “its little secret”, forcing Labour’s Jim Cunningham to remind us all that food banks were set up by churches to help refugees who were waiting for their asylum status to be confirmed – not as a support system for British citizens, as they have become under the Coalition’s failed regime.

She said the Coalition government was brought in to “solve the mess that Labour got us in”, which is not true – it was born from a backroom deal between two of the most unscrupulous party leaders of recent times, in order to ensure they and their friends could get their noses into the money trough (oh yes, there’s plenty of money around – but this government is keeping it away from you).

She said the Coalition had got more people into work than ever before – without commenting on the fact that the jobs are part-time, zero-hours, self-employed contracts that benefit the employers but exploit the workers and in fact propel them towards poverty.

She lied to Parliament, claiming that children are three times more likely to be in poverty if they are in a workless household. In fact, according to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, in-work poverty has now outstripped that suffered by those in workless and retired households; children are more likely to be in poverty if their parents have jobs.

She attacked Labour for allowing five million people to be on out-of-work benefits, with two million children in workless households – but under her government the number of households suffering in-work poverty has risen to eight million (by 2008 standards), while workless or retired households in poverty have risen to total 6.3 million.

She claimed that 60,000 people were likely to use a food bank this year– but Labour’s Paul Murphy pointed out that 60,000 people will use food banks this year in Wales alone. The actual figure for the whole of the UK is 500,000.

She said the government had brought in Universal Credit to ensure that three million people become better-off. There’s just one problem with that system – it doesn’t work.

She said the Coalition’s tax cuts had given people an extra £700 per year, without recognising that the real-terms drop in wages and rise in the cost of living means people will be £1,600 a year worse-off when the next general election takes place, tax cuts included. She said stopping fuel price increases meant families were £300 better-off, which is nonsense. Families cannot become better off because something has not happened; it’s like saying I’m better off because the roof of my house hasn’t fallen in and squashed me.

Then, on top of all that, she had the nerve to tell the country, “Rewriting history doesn’t work.” If that is the case, then hers was one of the most pointless speeches in the history of Parliament.

In January 2014, Ms McVey praised a large drop in unemployment claims, without commenting on the fact that there had been a huge leap in the number of people who were without a job but were not claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance. I wrote at the time that she had succeeded in making the benefit system the exact opposite of what it was intended to be – pushing people into poverty rather than providing a safety net against it; bullying people into destitution and asking us to celebrate. For those having trouble believing this claim, I provided examples to support it in my article:

“You apply for three jobs one week and three jobs the following Sunday and Monday. Because the job centre week starts on a Tuesday it treats this as applying for six jobs in one week and none the following week. You are sanctioned for 13 weeks for failing to apply for three jobs each week.”

“You have a job interview which overruns so you arrive at your job centre appointment nine minutes late. You get sanctioned for a month.”

“Your job centre advisor suggests a job. When you go online to apply it says the job has “expired” so you don’t apply. You are sanctioned for 13 weeks.”

“You are on a workfare placement and your job centre appointment comes round. The job centre tells you to sign on then go to your placement – which you do. The placement reports you for being late and you get sanctioned for 3 months.”

These are all real experiences of real jobseekers – not scroungers, skivers or layabouts, as reported in a Vox Political article last month.

Ms McVey next appeared when she spoke in support of a cut in Discretionary Housing Payments, the cash provided for local councils to help people in financial trouble after falling foul of the Bedroom Tax and the so-called welfare cap. She said: “Capping benefits is returning fairness to the welfare system,” and this was another lie, as the cap was set too low. The government claimed an average family income was £26,000, but in fact it was slightly more than £31,000. The reason the cap was set at the lower figure was that, at the more appropriate amount, hardly anybody would have been affected; the system was fair before the Tories (and the Liberal Democrats, as this was in the time of the Coalition government) interfered.

On April 27, 2014, Ms McVey’s Wikipedia entry was edited by, as This Writer described it at the time, “somebody with a social conscience”, as follows:

For a short period earlier today, it seems the entry began: “Esther Louise McVey (born 24 October 1967) is a British Conservative Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Wirral West since 2010, and the Assistant Grim Reaper for Disabled People since 2012, second only to Iain Duncan Smith. She was previously a television presenter and businesswoman before deciding to branch out into professional lying and helping disabled people into the grave.” [Italics mine]

The edits have since been erased but at the time of writing, the entry starts: “Esther “no brains” McVey (born 24 October 1767)”.

Also embarrassing for the Employment Minister is the section on her Twitter faux pas during the memorial service on the 25th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster (April 15 this year). It reads: “McVey was criticized by social media users for attacking the Wirral Labour Group in a tweet published at the time a memorial service for the Hillsborough Disaster was being held at Anfield Stadium. She later, in a radio interview with BBC Radio Merseyside, claimed to regret the mistiming of her communication. During this interview, a voice can clearly be heard whispering, ‘Say I didn’t send it’.”

That’s right – she also sent a political tweet during the Hillborough disaster memorial service on April 15, 2014 and then tried to deny having done so.

A later change to the Wikipedia entry stated: “Many opponents believe she is a very unpleasant woman with no understanding of the issues faced by disabled people and seems to be on a vendetta to annihilate them alongside Iain Duncan Smith and supported by the Conservative leading figures.”

Ms McVey launched Help to Work, a scheme that forced jobseekers to sign on every day, commit to six months of voluntary work, or sign up to a training scheme (the last two effectively removing them from the government’s unemployment figures without getting them a job) – or face having their Jobseeker’s Allowance docked for increasing lengths of time. Of course, voluntary work must be offered without coercion, and this aspect of the scheme meant that Ms McVey was forcing UK citizens into slavery.

In June 2014, Ms McVey was criticised for claiming £17,227 on her Parliamentary expenses, to rent a central London flat. Maximum housing benefit at the time was £250 per week – around £100 per week less than she was scrounging for her flat.

She changed the rules of Jobseeker’s Allowance to make it impossible for unemployed people to refuse zero-hour contract jobs, even though such work could make them worse-off than if they were on benefits.

She reneged on a promise to set up an independent investigation into the appropriateness of sanctions.

She claimed it was impossible to work out the cumulative effect of the Tories’ cuts to benefits. This was proved to be a lie when the independent Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) found a way to compile information on the effects of tax, social security and other spending changes on disabled people.

She lied to Parliament, claiming that the DWP’s business case for Universal Credit had been approved by the Treasury; it had not. It seems the Treasury had been signing off on annual budgets only.

Her own constituents launched a campaign to remove her from the government, around the same time the DWP was caught out releasing faked tweets.

The Court of Appeal ruled that Ms McVey’s decision to close the Independent Living Fund was unlawful, saying she did not receive a sufficient understanding of the true threat to independent living for ILF users posed by the proposal to close the fund.

In February 2015, Ms McVey appeared before the Commons Work and Pensions committee to give evidence on the effectiveness of benefit sanctions, but failed to demonstrate that there were any reasonable grounds to show that increasing sanction periods was effective, or what effect increasing the sanction periods would have on claimants. Then-chair of the committee, Dame Anne Begg, concluded of Ms McVey: “I take it from your failure to answer the question that you did not do any research.”

In July 2015, after having lost her Wirral West Parliamentary seat in that year’s general election, Ms McVey refused to say how many of the DWP’s 49 secret reviews into benefit-related deaths concluded that the deaths had been associated with the use of benefit sanctions. She said it was “wrong” of Labour’s Debbie Abrahams to “politicise” and “inflame” the issue. It was later revealed that 10 of the 49 people whose deaths had been investigated had been sanctioned – but the DWP did not say how many times each person’s benefit had been sanctioned off of them.

Put all of the above together and you can see that Ms McVey is what the police might call “a right little charmer” – in other words, the nastiest piece of work one could ever hope to meet.

She is a habitual liar, determined to push through policies that cause the maximum harm to citizens of the United Kingdom.

Her behaviour is a matter of public record.

So there you have it.

But go ahead, Tories. Vote Esther McVey into Downing Street. Here’s the reaction you’ll get from the public:

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.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


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A US village voted to make a turkey mayor. Here in the UK we made one prime minister

Theresa May: We made our turkey prime minister, and in return – with Brexit, she is stuffing us.

“Our animal control officers are pretty good, but he has some ninja-like moves. They have a hard time getting him,” admitted local public safety commander Randy Tewes.

“We’re a divided country, and here this turkey is directing traffic for folks on their way to work, and it gives them something to cheer about.”

He was talking about a turkey called Smoke, who captured the imagination of people in the village of Ashwaubenon, near Green Bay, USA, so much that they decided to appoint it as mayor – if only in an honourary role.

A popular Facebook group called Smoked Turkey has been flooded with pictures and videos of the bird, and a report from The Washington Post showed he had brought joy and community spirit to the town, despite being a terror.

Here in the UK we have a turkey of our own – albeit only in the terms of US slang that defines one as something that is extremely or completely unsuccessful.

She has also inflicted a large amount of mischief on us, although it would be entirely inappropriate to find any of it amusing.

Nevertheless, the electorate of the UK has allowed Theresa May to become prime minister of the entire country, rather than just mayor of a small community.

And, with her plan for Brexit, it seems clear that – unlike Christmas turkeys – she has stuffed us.

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