Tag Archives: Tim Montgomerie

Tory sycophant of the week: Tim Montgomerie

Tim Montgomerie: Before you suggest that he should open the window and jump, it may be worth noting that he's on the ground floor.

Tim Montgomerie: Before you suggest that he should open the window and jump, it may be worth noting that he’s on the ground floor.

Responses to Prime Minister’s Questions every Wednesday are always interesting, sometimes sinister – and sometimes unintentionally hilarious.

Yesterday (Wednesday), David Cameron and Ed Miliband were tearing chunks out of each other over the National Health Service, with the NHS in Wales coming under particularly heavy scrutiny.

In the midst of this, Tim Montgomerie, editor of the ConservativeHome blog and comment editor of The Times*, tweeted the following:
141023montie1
He is of course doubly wrong. Firstly, his tweet was made on the same day that a former cancer sufferer who was cured by NHS Wales expressed outrage that Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has smeared the service and demanded an apology from Hunt to the doctors who saved his life.
Secondly, he seems blissfully unaware of the fact that the Tory-led Coalition Government proved – only yesterday – that it can’t look after the economy. This administration’s reason for existence was to reduce the national deficit to nothing by the next general election in 2015. We found out very quickly that this was not going to happen, but yesterday we learned that the deficit is actually rising again, partly because the Tory squeeze on workers’ wages has meant none of the people who have been put to work on a pittance have been able to pay any taxes.
The Treasury’s comment – that the government’s long-term economic plan is working – showed very clearly that the Tory-led Coalition is in no fit state to run the economy.
Therefore, by Mr Montgomerie’s own admission, it is in no fit state to look after the NHS.
It seems that ministers are more likely to benefit from NHS treatment.
*ConservativeHome is a Tory-oriented political blog that is slightly less influential than Vox Political – but still worth reading if you want to laugh at the things these people believe. The Times used to be a newspaper until it was bought by Rupert Murdoch.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
making a mockery of the day’s political fools!

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

We can’t have unelected bureaucrats running UK, say Tories. Like Lynton Crosby?

How unfortunate for the Conservative Party that “most influential Tory outside the Cabinet” Tim Montgomerie tweeted one minister’s disgust at the perception that unelected foreigner Lynton Crosby is running the party – and thus the government – on the same day the Tories were trying to get people riled up against the unelected foreigners they say are ruining human rights legislation.

Tom Pride, over at Pride’s Purge, had the juice: “Cameron is so desperate to win the next election he hired an Australian called Lynton Crosby to tell him how to do it.

“But now cabinet ministers are complaining that the unelected Australian is running the country instead of Cameron.

“Top Tory Tim Montgomerie – who has been described as one of the ‘most influential Tories outside the cabinet’ – tweeted that a government minister texted him privately to complain that Crosby has replaced Cameron as leader of the Conservative Party:

montgomerie on crosby

“Which means Crosby is also running the country.”

He topped it off by pointing out: “Mind you, another unelected Australian has been running the UK for years, so not much change there then.”

But Tom uncharacteristically missed the icing on this particular cake.

No, it isn’t the House of Lords (although that’s a perfectly good example of why the Tories are wrong, right there).

Today (Friday) is the day the Tories chose to launch their campaign to replace the Human Rights Act with a new ‘Bill of Rights’, dictated by them, which in fact takes rights away from you, rather than bestowing them.

Conservatives have described their campaign to remove power from the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg in a characteristic way, as follows (this is from today’s Express): “Tory MPs … say voters are fed up with unelected foreign judges siding with illegal migrants, terror suspects and criminals.”

Whoever he is, Mr Montgomerie’s minister is right to complain about unelected Lynton Crosby.

At the start of a campaign against unelected foreigners, his presence shows up the Conservatives as a gaggle of hypocrites.

Follow me on Twitter: @MidWalesMike

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
pointing out the facts behind the bluster!

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

The Cabinet splits – are we looking at another Torygeddon?

It seems David Cameron didn’t make such a good job of revitalising Conservatism after all.

Three Cabinet ministers have gone to Tory Blogsite ConservativeHome to vent their frustration at the comedy Prime Minister’s refusal to listen to their concerns about Andrew Lansley’s Health and Social Care Bill. “One was insistent the Bill must be dropped,” the blog post by Tim Montgomerie states. “Another said Andrew Lansley must be replaced. Another likened the NHS reforms to the poll tax,” which was disastrous for the Tories in 1990.

So you see, they’re all in it together (as the saying goes) when the going is easy, but once the headwinds start coming in, the rifts start to show.

And now we have three Cabinet ministers splitting from their PM and his Health Secretary. Does anybody remember a time in the mid-1990s when John Major had a similar problem with three members of his Cabinet? He said at the time: “You have three… members of the Cabinet who actually resign… I could bring in other people. But where do you think most of this poison is coming from? From the dispossessed and the never-possessed. You can think of ex-ministers who are going around causing all sorts of trouble. We don’t want another three more of the b*st*rds out there.”

That seems to be exactly what Comedy David has to deal with, though: “Three more of the b*st*rds”. From his point of view, at least.

His loyalty to his Health Secretary (and former boss at the Conservative Research Department) might be praiseworthy in another context. Here, it seems likely to split his party – because, when members of the Cabinet start to rebel, the writing’s on the wall.

Look at Major’s premiership. With him, the problem was Europe. Right-wingers in his Cabinet caused disruption that became an ideological rift, at a time when New Labour was on the rise. Ministers were caught having extramarital affairs and accepting cash for questions. His party became associated with greed and arrogance and the public deserted it, leaving it in the backwaters of British politics for more than a decade.

One only has to glance at the ‘Comments’ column of Mr Montgomerie’s blog to see that the rifts are still there; Cameron only ever succeeded in papering over them.

The Health Bill is hugely divisive: “Abandoning the bill is not an option – it’s philosophically right, and killing it would give Miliband a huge boost,” claims one (deluded, in my opinion) correspondent.

But another says: “It has suffered death by a thousand amendments. It has become an incoherent mess.”

Another simply asks: “Is the bill the new longest suicide note in history?”

Many have taken the opportunity to voice their opinions about other issues; once a split has been identified, they’ll pour all their grievances through the gap.

Europe remains a hot topic: “The Conservatives have already lost the next general election because of the EU and the false promise that Cameron made to get votes for his party. It is quite plain now that he did not intend for there to be a referendum on the EU and has reneged on the voters – they won’t vote for him again,” according to one correspondent.

The popularity (or not) of individual members of the government is still creating splits: “The fact that [Oliver] Letwin was so heavily involved does, and has, worried me,” writes another. “The guy is very bright, but not in a way people on the street would appreciate, or like. He was also heavily involved in ‘bomb proofing’ the Poll Tax legislation was he not?”

The crucial problem for the Conservatives now is the harm this has done to their electability – a problem that was due to worsen with the publication of a report by the right-of-centre thinktank Reform, saying the government’s entire ‘reform’ of public services is being undermined by the Department of Health’s management of NHS changes.

According to The Guardian, “The Scorecard report on 10 government departments with responsibility for different areas of public sector reform also singles out the prime minister for criticism for personally intervening with detailed promises on issues such as waiting times and nurses visiting patients’ beds every hour. The criticisms by Reform will be particularly damaging because they accuse the health bill of causing exactly the opposite of what it is intended to achieve – holding back reform of the NHS and damaging services for patients.”

Tories like power, and they’ll turn on anything that might get in the way. “The plan needs to be to win a working majority in 2015, and prevent Prime Minister Miliband,” as yet another ConservativeHome correspondent put it.

But Mr Cameron likes power too – even the semblance of it that he’s got now. So, even if he can’t get his legislation passed with any degree of confidence in it, he’ll cling on to what he’s got for all he’s worth.

I reckon we’re looking at another three years of ‘lame duck’ leadership before the electorate can take him out and (metaphorically) shoot him.

As the saying goes.