7 OCT 2015 - David Cameron's 'arm candy rota' of female MPs isn't as creepy as it seems.
Female Conservative MPs have been put on a rota to walk around the party's annual conference with the Prime Minister. For real. Sophy Ridge reports
There’s a very specific feeling that most women have experienced. It’s a nagging voice, a flutter of doubt, which usually happens once something really great has happened to you. A promotion, perhaps, or an invitation to speak at a prestigious event.
Is it just because of my gender?
The new female MPs asked to accompany David Cameron around the Conservative Party conference probably felt honoured and excited. It was their big chance for a photo-op, an opportunity to show their constituents that they are influential and rubbing shoulders with the big guy.
And then, that little nagging voice. Were they only being asked because they wear bras rather than briefs?
Female Conservative MPs have been put on a rota to walk around the Manchester conference venue with the Prime Minister, presumably in order to prove that David Cameron doesn’t just surround himself with blokes and to show off the number of female Conservatives who won seats in May’s election.
He’s been pictured with the new Eastbourne MP, Caroline Ansell (see above), who beat the sitting Lib Dem. The mother of three and a former school inspector accompanied the Prime Minister as he walked out of the conference hall under the glare of snapping cameras.
Kelly Tolhurst, to the delight of many of her Conservative colleagues, beat Ukip MP Mark Reckless in Rochester and Strood. Tolhurst is no push over – she runs her own business – but this week was relegated to the important job of walking into the Manchester conference hall with David Cameron on the way to hear the Chancellor George Osborne speak.
On his other side was Nusrat Ghani, the new MP for Wealden. Nusrat has a glittering CV which includes working in an investment bank, the BBC World Service and charities including Age UK and Breakthrough Breast Cancer. The little nagging voice, however, would question whether Nusrat was chosen to walk alongside the Prime Minister for any of those reasons.
The conference rota is splitting opinion among the women in question.
One told Isabel Hardman at the Spectator: “I didn’t get into Parliament to be a bit of ******** arm candy.”
But not everyone objects to the rota. One new MP said: “I have been told that I might get to walk with the PM, and that picture would get a lot of coverage in the local press. It would not annoy me at all.”
Nicky Morgan, the women’s minister, saw the funny side and joked that her female Conservative colleagues would “flatten” any journalist who dared to call them “arm candy”.
It’s hard to ignore the common theme that unites the Prime Minister’s carefully choreographed walking shots: gender. Arriving at another conference event, David Cameron was flanked by Andrea Jenkyns, who claimed Ed Balls’ scalp in the 2015 election, and Anne-Marie Trevelyan, who beat the sitting Lib Dem MP in Berwick upon Tweed. Jane Ellison, the MP for Battersea in South London, has also stepped out alongside the Prime Minister.
Depressingly, women in Westminster are used to being relegated to a purely cosmetic role.
Caroline Flint famously accused then Prime Minister Gordon Brown of using women Labour ministers as “female window dressing”. Panels with a token woman are common place (and sometimes they don’t even manage that – there were 16 all male panels at Conservative conference.) Jeremy Corbyn managed to get the headline he craved by appointing a Shadow Cabinet containing more women than men – but only by creating new, lesser jobs for the girls and giving the top positions to the boys.
It’s enough to make you want to burn your bra and take to the streets in protest.
But wait a second. Isn’t it better to see the Prime Minister flanked by new female MPs, elected on merit, rather than an endless parade of suits and shirts? The motivation may be questionable, but the end result has to be seen as a positive.
It brings back memories of the coverage of the “Downing Street catwalk” when David Cameron appointed his 2014 Cabinet, which saw a stream of glamorous female MPs walking into Number 10 to get their new jobs. Are there nagging doubts that they were pictured because of their gender? Yes. Was the coverage of their outfit choices depressing? Mildly.
At the time Esther McVey – formerly Employment Minister who lost her seat at the election – told Sky News: “Well, all I can say is that it’s fantastic having women in powerful positions in the newspapers and if that meant we were walking, the paper might have called it a catwalk, we were walking into Number 10 Downing Street.
“And for the last 15 years I have worked with kids from inner city areas – young girls who are looking for role models. They see Nicky Morgan, Secretary of State for
Education, and they’re thinking – ‘hey, that’s something I could do.’”
She’s right. Yes, it’s depressing that in 2015 the little nagging voice is as loud as ever, pointing out that women are only walking alongside the Prime Minister because of their gender.
But isn’t that better than if there weren’t any women there at all?
UP RACIAL HATRED - Britain’s debate on Europe is driven by hateful lies, national resentment and the
scape-goating of Romanian and Bulgarian immigrants, the European parliament president has said.
Martin Schulz made his remarks in a speech in London on Thursday after holding talks with David Cameron, who has promised to renegotiate Britain’s ties with the EU before holding an in-out membership referendum by the end of 2017.
The prime minister has made restricting EU migrants’ access to welfare payments a key part of that effort. Although Schulz did not criticise Cameron by name, his comments are likely to be interpreted as a stinging rebuke to the British leader.
“There are attempts by people in Europe and also in this country to create new barriers between countries,” Schulz
is quoted as saying. “Stirring a feeling of panic over so-called benefit tourists from Romania and Bulgaria wanting to plunder the social systems of the host countries.“
“Outright lies told ... What makes me sad and angry in all this debate is the undertone of national resentment. Hatred is spread. People are used as scapegoats.”
What is quite amazing in all this is that, like Adolf
Hitler, Cameron was re-elected.
RIGHTS VIOLATOR - "Unt ve will smash der human rights fur de
new order" A surprise victory for David Cameron, and he's off. We
fought two World Wars so that Britain could be free of tyranny, ending
with the European Convention. David knows that England violates several
Articles of the Convention, not least Articles 1 and 13, because they
are not included in our domestic HR
Act on purpose. He hates Article 17 as a vampire hates sunlight,
because many of England's laws are designed to deprive a person of their
Article 13 right to an effective remedy. And that is prohibited by
Article 17. What to do then? Simple. Abolish domestic legislation that
is causing embarrassment and enact something more Nazi like. Heil,
mein Führer! David should perhaps reflect on the fate of Margaret
Thatcher, after she pushed the people too far. This country is in
deep doo doo because we spend far too much on defence and quangos,
do not provide affordable housing for low wage earners who are the
backbone of society - and do not operate sustainable policies for a
circular economy. Instead we prop up institutions at the taxpayers
expense that should have been weeded out by natural collapse. Those
quangos and even elected local councillors, are the very ones that are
the same landlords that want housing and rents to remain at a high level
for their own benefit.
example, affordable housing could shave huge sums from our NHS bill.
Why? Because of the relatively stress free life that would allow will
stave off associated illness.
Genuinely sustainable housing would reduce our reliance of North
Sea oil, if new-builds are energy self-sufficient, so extending
revenue from a diminishing resource. The health
of our oceans is another issue to preserve toxin free food supplies
for our children. And lastly, transport should be greener, so less
reliant on burning fuel that causes global
warming. Is David concerned about these issues? Well, they are not
mentioned as his priorities in his election promises! His election
promises are truly designed to squeeze the electorate even more for his
- GENERAL ELECTION MAY 8 2015
party leader David Cameron harnessed Scottish and English nationalism to propel him to victory but both could be his future undoing.
The British Prime Minister, traveled to Buckingham Palace on Friday where the
Queen asked him to form a new government. Unlike in 2010, Cameron’s Conservative Party will be able to govern without the help of a coalition partner.
A jubilant Cameron told supporters that he did not expect this success. “We are on the brink of something so exciting,” he said. But elsewhere, British politics resembled a particularly bloody episode of Game of Thrones as the leaders of three major parties resigned before Friday lunchtime.
Cameron’s euphoria may be short lived as he now has to deal with two problems he was instrumental in creating. Before the election, he said he would renegotiate the U.K’s membership of the European Union and then put that membership to a referendum by the end of 2017. Cameron also infuriated Scottish and English voters alike by warning of the dangers of a powerful Scottish National Party, which could have been the
Labour Party’s ally in government if Labour had performed better on Thursday.
CAMERON - promised voters: "we are on the brink of something special in this country" as he returned to Downing Street as a Prime Minister with a Tory Commons majority for the first time.
The above is the face of a man who cannot believe his luck - nor can we.
The problem is that there is no single party with policies to really get
the UK going again, because we are too deeply mired in decades of
The premier saw his seat tally tick over the all important mark of 326, an absolute majority, while he was at Buckingham Palace with
Cameron, ever the politician, paid tribute to Nick Clegg's work as Deputy Prime Minister and welcomed Ed Miliband's "typically gracious" concession call earlier today.
Standing in Downing Street in front of the famous black door, Mr Cameron
is quoted as saying: "We can make Britain a place where a good life is in reach for everyone who is willing to work and do the right thing."
The Prime Minister vowed to deliver his entire manifesto, including an in-out referendum on Britain's membership of the EU, now he had a majority government.
He is quoted as saying: "As we conduct this vital work we must ensure we bring our country together.
"As I said in the small hours of this morning, we will govern as a party of one nation, one United Kingdom.
"That means ensuring this recovery reaches all parts of our country from north to south, from east to west.
"And indeed it means rebalancing our economy, building that northern powerhouse. It means giving everyone in our country a chance so no matter where you are from you have the opportunity to make the most of your life."
The Prime Minister’s rhetoric increased support for the SNP at the expense of Labour (the Conservative Party has had little representation in
Scotland in the last 30 years) and bolstered Conservative support at the expense of Labour in England. Labour supporters said, with some justification, that they failed because they were squeezed by two nationalisms, Scottish and English.
The issues of Europe and Scotland may have given the Conservatives short-term electoral gain but could end up dominating their next five years in power.
Scotland voted against independence in 2014 but on Thursday the Scottish National Party won 56 out of 59 seats in Scotland, an unprecedented victory. The SNP did not campaign for independence but on economic policies that directly contradict what the Conservatives stood for in England. Alex Salmond, the former leader of the SNP, told voters: “It is inconceivable that such a statement by the Scottish people could be ignored.”
Cameron, who says he is passionately in favor of keeping Scotland in the U.K., will have little choice but to tailor and vary his policies to suit Scotland or risk a constitutional crisis. This could in turn create antagonism against Cameron and Scotland in England where many people are likely to resent any special treatment given to Scotland.
To create the ideal atmosphere for Scottish independence, it could be in the SNP’s best interests for the relationship between Scotland and the rest of the U.K. to break down. Cameron will have to resist exacerbating these divisions, which could further galvanize English nationalism.
U. K. defence policy will also be impacted by the success of the SNP, which was elected on a platform of rejection of the U.K.’s
nuclear program that is wholly based in the Clyde Estuary in Scotland. Trident is due to replaced over the course of the next parliament but renewal and the continued siting of the nuclear base in Scotland will likely become a bone of continued contention because it has been rejected so strongly by the Scottish electorate.
The Conservatives face equal difficulties over Europe. The French newspaper Le Monde captured the view of Europe to Cameron’s success. “Cameron’s triumph: worry in Europe,” its headline ran.
Cameron said he wants to re-negotiate parts of the treaties governing the U.K.’s membership of the E.U., in particular the primacy of the
European Court of Human Rights and the policy that provides the freedom of movement of labor, before putting the membership of the E.U to a referendum in 2017.
Both the re-negotiation and the referendum will antagonize European allies and business leaders, natural allies of Cameron, and will probably not go far enough to appease the anti-E.U. wing of his party.
Christopher Howarth, a senior policy analyst at Open Europe, a think tank, said E.U. nations may be willing to accomodate Cameron to a certain extent but businesses and financial markets would not be pleased. “Markets and the economy traditionally don’t like uncertainty. Holding a referendum potentially creates some uncertainty, particularly around the result and what the result would mean,” he says.
DAVE - is quoted as saying that he had: "always believed in governing with
respect", promising to implement further devolution to Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Adding: "Governing with respect means ensuring the nations of our United Kingdom have their own governments as well as the United Kingdom government. Both are important.
"And indeed with our plans, the governance of these nations will become powerful with wider responsibilities."
Mr Cameron concluded: "The real opportunities lie ahead. Everything I have seen over the last five years and, indeed, during this election campaign has proved once again this is a country with unrivalled skills and creativeness. A country with such good humour and such compassion.
"I am convinced that if we draw on all of this then we can take these islands with all our proud history and build an even prouder future.
"Together we can make Great Britain greater still."
As he traveled back to Conservative HQ to watch the last results come in, Mr Cameron tweeted a picture of himself kissing wife Samantha.
"Here's to a brighter future for everyone," he wrote.
The success of the Conservatives is partly attributable to to their adoption of an E.U. referendum, which was the policy of the rightist United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP). This manoeuvre appears to have stopped UKIP from achieving much success on Thursday. It held one of its two seats and UKIP’s charismatic leader, Nigel Farage, failed to get elected. Farage is one of the three parties leaders to have resigned. (The leader of the centrist Liberal Democrats,
Nick Clegg, has also resigned after his party suffered substantial losses.)
UKIP’s failure belies its popularity; it received 3.5 million votes but because of the electoral system this did not translate into seats in parliament. UKIP members have already started complaining about the British “first-past-the-post” system of electing a government and may start campaigning for European-style proportional representation.
The possibility of the Conservatives’ difficulties over Scotland and Europe will be a light at the end of a dark tunnel for the Labour Party. Ed Milliband resigned as the party leader after he failed to stop Cameron forming the next government. The party will have to find a new leader and work out why they were trounced in Scotland and why their policies did not resonate enough with English voters.
Watching Cameron wrestle with the challenges of Europe and Scotland will be a small consolation for the battered, disappointed Labour Party.
another fine mess they got us into. Sweep it under the carpet
mate." "Maybe we need a bigger carpet."
3 2014 - UKRAINE CRISIS
David Cameron and Barack Obama have agreed Russia must face "significant costs" if it does not change course after deploying troops in
Number 10 said the prime minister and US president spoke by phone on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Prince Edward has cancelled a visit to the Sochi Paralympics, as patron of the British Paralympic Association, on government advice.
The call preceded a statement from the G7 that it was suspending preparations for this year's G8 summit in Russia.
It comes as the American government has said Russian forces have taken control of Crimea.
Ukraine has ordered a full military mobilisation in response to Russia's build-up of forces on the peninsula.
Russian President Vladimir Putin says Russia reserves the right to protect its interests and those of Russian speakers in Ukraine.
A Downing Street spokesman
is quoted as saying: "The prime minister and President Obama spoke at 9pm
on Sunday the 2nd March.
"They agreed that Russia's actions were completely unacceptable. They agreed on the urgent need for de-escalation and for Russia to engage in a dialogue directly with Ukraine.
"They agreed there must be 'significant costs' to Russia if it did not change course on Ukraine."
A statement from the G7 said it was suspending preparations for June's G8 summit in the Russian resort of Sochi because of the "clear violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine".
It called on Moscow to "address any ongoing security or human rights concerns that it has with Ukraine through direct negotiations".
The G7 nations comprise the UK, US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, while the G8 includes those nations plus Russia.
In a separate development, Buckingham Palace said Prince Edward has cancelled a visit to the Sochi Paralympics.
A statement said: "The Earl of Wessex, patron of the British Paralympic Association has, on the advice of government, cancelled a planned visit to
Russia between 11 and 14 March to attend the Sochi Paralympic Games."
got you first Yank." Not on your life Limey." "Okay you
win, but what about the Russians?" "Yuh, we'd better look
serious for the cameras."
MARCH 2014 - CAMERON AIDE RESIGNS
A senior aide to David Cameron
resigned from Downing Street last month the day before being arrested on allegations relating to child abuse images.
Patrick Rock, who was involved in drawing up the government's policy for the large internet firms on online pornography filters, resigned after No 10 was alerted to the allegations.
Rock was arrested at his west London flat the next morning. Officers from the National Crime Agency subsequently examined
computers and offices used in Downing Street by Rock, the deputy director of No 10's policy unit, according to the
Daily Mail, which disclosed news of his arrest.
No 10 confirmed on Monday evening that Rock had been arrested. A spokesman: "On the evening of 12 February, Downing Street was first made aware of a potential offence relating to
child abuse imagery. It was immediately referred to the National Crime Agency (CEOP).
"The prime minister was immediately informed and kept updated throughout. Patrick Rock was arrested at his home in the early hours of 13 February, a few hours after Downing Street had reported the matter. Subsequently, we arranged for officers to come into No 10 and have access to all IT systems and offices they considered relevant.
Mail front page 4 March 2014 - Patrick Rock, the deputy director of the Downing Street policy unit and one of David Cameron’s closest aides, has resigned after being arrested over child pornography allegations.
"This is an ongoing investigation so it would not be appropriate to comment further, but the prime minister believes that child abuse imagery is abhorrent and that anyone involved with it should be properly dealt with under the law."
The arrest of Rock, 62, who had been tipped for a Tory
peerage, will have come as a severe shock to the PM and the Tory establishment.
Cameron and Rock worked together as special advisers to Michael Howard in his time as home secretary in the mid 1990s. Rock later worked for Lord Patten alongside Cameron's chief of staff, Ed Llewellyn, during his time as a
European commissioner in Brussels.
Rock was never a member of Cameron's innermost circle, whose members are closer to the prime minister's age. But he was a respected and trusted figure who shared Cameron's sense of humour.
The Daily Telegraph columnist Benedict Brogan recalled in 2011, when Rock started working in No 10, that he and Cameron repaired to the Two Chairmen pub on the day John Smith died in 1994.
"We both agreed that Blair coming meant that we would be
fucked," he was quoted as saying. Brogan also wrote that Rock coined the phrase: "Cows moo, dogs bark, Labour put up taxes."
Rock helped to draw up government policy which led to the deal with the internet
giants on online filters. Under the deal, all households connected to the internet will be contacted to be asked if they would like the filters installed.
Rock faced embarrassment last year when he was photographed walking up Downing Street clutching a document outlining progress on hundreds of pledges made by the coalition.
Ed Miliband said the document, which admitted that some of the 399 pledges had not been met, was an "audit of coalition broken promises".
SEX MARRIAGES 7 December 2013
David Cameron is facing a backlash from traditional Conservatives after he confirmed plans to allow churches and religious organisations to host same-sex weddings.
Opponents of gay marriage claim more than 120 Tory backbenchers will reject the plans in the free vote promised in the Commons. Details of the draft legislation will be unveiled next week.
The prime minister is backing the proposal in the face of opposition from the Church of England and the Catholic hierarchy. He supports a compromise through what is known as a permissive clause that allows gay marriages to be held in places of worship but does not oblige religious organisations to hold same-sex weddings.
Speaking in Redditch, Cameron said: "I'm a massive supporter of marriage and I don't want gay people to be excluded from a great institution. But let me be absolutely 100% clear, if there is any church or any synagogue or any mosque that doesn't want to have a
marriage it will not, absolutely must not, be forced to hold it.
"That is absolutely clear in the legislation. Also let me make clear, this is a free vote for members of parliament, but personally I will be supporting it."
One cabinet minister has said he will vote against the proposals and believes at least three others will also refuse their support. "This is a sad day. I don't want to oppose the PM's wishes, but I haven't much choice," he said.
David Burrowes, Conservative MP for Enfield Southgate and parliamentary private secretary to the environment secretary, Owen Paterson, told the
Guardian there are several members of the cabinet who will vote against or abstain.
"I have spoken to many Conservative MPs about this and a majority are against this particular change," he said. "These proposals raise many more questions than they answer. The so-called protections will not be sufficient.
"It is an attempt by the state to redefine marriage. This is not just about the freedom of churches to administer gay weddings. It is about the freedom of public sector workers and others to exercise their liberty of conscience. It has opened a can of worms," he said.
Despite the rebellion, the proposals should get through the Commons because most
Liberal and Labour MPs are expected to back them. There may be a bigger fight in the Lords.
The deputy prime minister, Nick Clegg, also voiced his support. "I'm a supporter and always have been of same sex marriage, because I think marriage is a wonderful thing, a wonderful institution," he said during a visit to the south-west. "It's a demonstration of a couple's commitment to each other, of their loving relationship and they wish to celebrate that in the eyes of society and I think we should make that celebration, that ceremony if you like, available to everyone regardless of who they are.
"It's very important to remember that in our plans we're not going to force any church or any religious denomination to hold same
sex marriage ceremonies if they don't want to but I do think it's time that we allow any couple, no matter who they are, to
marry if that's what they want to do."
Under the proposals, governing bodies of each faith will be able to opt-in or opt-out of holding gay marriages; individual parishes will not be able to adopt different positions.
A government spokesman added: "We are committed to bringing equal civil marriage forward and the consultation results will be announced next week. We are very clear that religious organisations must be protected and that none will be forced to conduct same-sex marriage.
"EU law is very clear that this is the case and we will additionally bring in very strong legal locks to ensure that this is watertight."
Although the UK's main churches oppose the reform, other groups, including the Quakers, Unitarians and liberal Judaism, support marriage rights for gay couples and have said they would like to conduct the ceremonies.
Benjamin Cohen, of Out4Marriage, which campaigns for same-sex weddings, said: "We're delighted to hear that the government will be legislating to introduce full equal marriage including same-sex marriages solemnised by religious ministers.
"Legislation must give individual religious organisations the freedom to decide for themselves whether to hold
marriages. None should be forced to, but those that wish to must be given the rights to do so."
Paul Parker, recording clerk for Quakers in Britain, said: "Quakers have been discussing sexuality for 50 years and in 2009 that led us to seek a change in the law so that all marriages in Quaker meeting houses, of whatever sex, can be prepared, celebrated, witnessed, reported to the state, and recognised as legally valid, without further process.
"We are waiting for the law to catch up. For Quakers, this is an issue of religious freedom and we don't seek to impose this on others."
Meanwhile, the gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell said that under the new law, heterosexual couples would have fewer rights than gay couples.
He said: "Despite proclaiming that the legalisation of same-sex civil marriage is driven by the principle of
equality, David Cameron is expected to retain the inequality of the current legal ban on heterosexual civil partnerships.
"Opposite-sex couples are legally prohibited from having a civil partnership and David Cameron intends to keep it that way. This will mean gay couples will soon have legal privileges over heterosexual couples.
"There will be two forms of official state recognition for lesbian and gay couples: the present system of civil partnerships and the new system of civil marriages. Heterosexual couples will have only one option: marriage. They will be subjected to legal inequality and discrimination. This is very wrong. I support straight equality."
Ayesha Vardag, a divorce lawyer, comments: "Civil partnership is almost identical in law to marriage, and is treated by the Courts in the same way … However setting up a distinction, albeit in name only, has caused confusion in the public generally and resentment among gay couples who feel they are being put on a sort of 'second tier' civil partnership track subordinate to their married heterosexual counterparts. We now have heterosexual couples saying they like the look of civil partnership for themselves and gay couple wanting marriage, when in reality they are the same thing."
Andrea Minichiello Williams, director of the Christian Legal Centre, said: "We have seen countless cases where Christians have been forced out of their jobs for their refusal to condone and promote homosexual practice. Their views have not been respected or accommodated and Mr Cameron has ignored their plight.
"This does not bode well for British Christians if further legislation is passed. Assurances to churches who do not wish to perform same-sex 'marriages' fly in the face of all the evidence."
Jonathan West, head of Family and Matrimonial law at city law firm Prolegal said: "The prime minister's desire to give religious institutions the chance to offer marriage services for same-sex couples is welcome, but it doesn't go far enough.
Religious institutions currently exist in a legal niche where they can discriminate on the basis of sexuality against same-sex couples. However, Governments should not shy away from attacking discriminatory practices in every part of society. Apart from religious bodies, any institution which engages in this form of discrimination would be pilloried by public opinion and would certainly be on the wrong side of the law."
FOREIGN CASH FUNDED TORY CAMPAIGN - Saturday April 1, 2006
names some lenders but repays £5m to avoid identifying others.
The Conservative party admitted last night that it fought the last
general election partly with the use of foreign loans which have now
been hurriedly repaid to clean up the party's accounts.
cash support? - No really! Don't ask
Tories have been forced to repay £5m over the past fortnight to at
least 10 supporters in order to preserve their anonymity after the
individuals who lent the money insisted they did not want their names to
be made public. Some of that money will have returned abroad.
is not illegal for political parties to take loans from foreigners -
provided it is on fully commercial terms. An aide to the party leader,
David Cameron, said the detailed terms but not the names of the foreign
lenders would be given to the Electoral Commission next week. The money
had been solicited by Michael Howard, the former leader, as part of
fundraising for the last election.
Maude, the party chairman, defended the payments, telling Radio Four's
PM programme: "Some of them [the lenders] may not be resident in
Britain but there's nothing wrong with that."
Labour party chairman, Ian McCartney, called on the Tories to reveal the
sources of overseas loans. "This Labour government outlawed foreign
donations to prevent those from outside this country interfering with
our democracy," he said. "But the Tories have now revealed
they deliberately tried to get round this ban by taking foreign loans.
now need to know who these people are; where they reside; where they pay
tax; how much they lent; and on what terms. By failing to provide these
details, the Conservatives and David Cameron are fuelling suspicions
that they have even more to hide."
as the focus was turning to the provenance and nature of Tory finances,
Labour's biggest donor admitted he had failed to declare properly a £2m
loan he made to the party. Lord Sainsbury, the science minister,
apologised for misleading the public about his contributions to party
funds, saying the £2m loan had been confused with another donation of a
similar size advanced a few weeks earlier.
a statement, he said he had contacted the Whitehall official about the
money and asked if there was a record of the loan. The permanent
secretary said there was a record of a contribution of £2m to the
Labour party. "It has now become clear to me that the
correspondence refers not to the loan I gave but to the donation of the
same sum I had made a month earlier," Lord Sainsbury said. "I
wish to set the record straight. I apologise for having unintentionally
misled the public."
admission is the latest twist in the three-week row over the finances
underpinning the big parties. Scotland Yard detectives are investigating
both Labour and the Tories to ascertain whether loans were solicited in
exchange for the promise of honours including seats in the House of
Lords. The Tories' decision to try to persuade all the people who gave
them loans to go public was taken two weeks ago as the row enmeshed
Labour. Tory party officials insisted it had taken so long to resolve
the question because many of the lenders did not want their names to be
made public and asked for their money back.
Tories made the repayments by persuading other people who had made loans
to convert them to donations and by raising further loans. The
publication yesterday of both the list of people who had lent the party
£16m and the latest quarterly figures showing donations totalling £8m
suggest about half the money raised came from donors and the rest from
taking out new or extended loans.
Tories have been under increasing pressure to reveal the names after
Labour revealed its lenders. Jonathan Marland, the Conservative party
treasurer, said last Monday that he would never reveal the names, but
Tory sources said yesterday that he was playing for time to negotiate a
the 13 people listed as lending the party £16m, the biggest
contributors are former party treasurer Lord Ashcroft (£3.6m) and the
Scottish philanthropist Lord Laidlaw (£3.5m). The others include Dame
Vivien Duffield (£250,000); deputy treasurer Johan Eliasch (£2.6m);
and Cringle Corporation Ltd (£450,000).
a statement last night, the Electoral Commission said it "welcomes
the decision by the Conservative party to publish details of its current
lenders and to cooperate with us in making available more detailed
information, as we did the decision by the Labour party. We have today
written to registered treasurers requesting a more detailed explanation
of the rationale they used in coming to the view that all loans accepted
by the parties were on commercial terms, including any supporting
evidence that would be helpful in clarifying our understanding."
Scotland Yard detectives conducting an investigation into the peerages
scandal interviewed senior officials at the House of Lords Appointments
Commission yesterday. They have demanded to see all emails and documents
concerning the latest nominated peerage list, which has been delayed
since last July.
said don't ask - nearly got away with it though
name some lenders, and pay back others
on Conservative party funding
is forced to reveal names behind £24m loans
warned: come clean on loans or face court action
to probe Tory loans as honours inquiry widens
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the Chameleon is Labour's new star By Philippe Naughton Labour
has unveiled its secret weapon in the battle against David
Cameron's resurgent ...
page: The Labour Party: securing Britain's future
the chameleon. Labour has today launched a new website exposing David
Cameron's policy flip-flops. Portraying the Tory leader as a political chameleon
www.labour.org.uk/home - 20k - 18 Apr 2006
official British Labour Party website - get the latest news on the Party
and find out how you can get involved.
www.labour.org.uk/ - 5k - 18 Apr 2006
brands Cameron "Dave the Chameleon"
brands Cameron "Dave the Chameleon" 18/04/2006
17:38. LONDON (Reuters) - Tony Blair’s Labour Party branded
Conservative leader David Cameron a ...
latest&template=/news/feeds/odd_story_template.html?page=2 - 33k -
18 Apr 2006
womens politics General Election 2015 Britains young secret Tories hate
UK news womens-life-David-Camerons-arm-candy-rota-of-female-MPs-isnt-as-creepy-as-it-seems
Recod news politics David Cameron vows govern whole
take electricity for granted, but without these pioneers
we would not have lighting or computers. Published
by Lime Park Heritage Trust (all
proceeds go toward the restoration of this monument) RIGHT: An exposé
of the underlying evil lurking in local government with key documents as evidence. To be published by Horse Sanctuary Trust
UK so that the public may know.
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