Dods at Party Conference 2019

Labour | Conservatives | SNP

11 November 2019
Vote Labour poster

Local Labour members have called on the party to drop a candidate who shared an image of Theresa May with a gun pointing at her head.

Jarrow Constituency Labour Party said it was "astonishing" that Kate Osborne had been imposed on them by senior officials. Ms Osborne was forced to apologise for sharing the offending image on Facebook in the run-up to the 2017 election. A special Labour selection panel unanimously agreed on Saturday that she will stand in Jarrow at the general election - despite a plea by female MPs for the party to think again. In a letter to Labour’s general secretary Jennie Formby, members of the Jarrow CLP and other branches insisted their protest "not about political views” and pointed out that Ms Osborne shared the image less than a year after the murder of Jo Cox. “In an environment of increasing threats of violence against woman politicians of all political parties (including several signatories to this letter), it seems astonishing to us that...
11 November 2019
Boris Johnson and Hillary Clinton

Hillary Clinton has condemned Boris Johnson’s “inexplicable” decision to block the release of a report into Russian interference in UK elections.

The former US Secretary of State said it was "shaming" that Downing Street had decided to keep details of the Intelligence and Security Committee's probe under wraps until after the elections. The ISC took evidence on claims that the Kremlin tried to influence the outcome of the EU referendum in 2016 as well as the following year's general election. While it has been been approved for release by the intelligence agencies, Number 10 has insisted it is not ready to be published. Committee chair Dominic Grieve branded the Government’s reasons for holding back the findings as “plainly bogus”, while Labour said it was “politically motivated”. Ms Clinton – who is widely thought to have been hampered in her presidential bid with Donald Trump by Russian interference – suggested the UK move was linked to an authoritarian turn in western leaders. She told the...
11 November 2019
Nigel Farage

Take anything Nigel Farage tells you with a mountain of salt.

We know this because last week, he declared that the Brexit Party would stand candidates in every seat in England and Wales unless Boris Johnson dumped his Withdrawal Agreement. And yet, despite the Prime Minister refusing to budge, Farage has now confirmed that the party he leads will not contest the 317 seats the Tories won in 2017. Desperately trying to present this humiliating U-turn as a positive, Farage claimed that this magnanimous gesture guaranteed the death of the People's Vote dream. "I think our action prevents a second referendum from happening and that to me is the single most important thing in our country," he told supporters in Hartlepool. This is where that mountain of salt comes in. Because if Farage was truly serious about helping to get Johnson back to Number 10, he would also be ordering his troops to stand aside in a swathe of Labour-heald seats which the Tories must win in order to get a majority. Chris Curtis, YouGov's political research manager, said: "Whilst...
11 November 2019
Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage has announced that the Brexit Party will no longer contest seats held by the Conservatives at next month’s election.

In a screeching U-turn, he said the party will instead targets held by what he described as the "Remainer parties". Mr Farage had initially said that he would stand candidates in 600 seats unless Boris Johnson dumped the Withdrawal Agreement he struck with Brussels. His announcement follows weeks of pressure from pro-Brexit figures calling on Mr Farage not to risk splitting the pro-Leave vote at the election. The decision to stand down candidates in the 317 seats which returned a Tory MP at the last election is a boost for the Prime Minister, although it could make it harder for the Conservatives to gain the seats he needs for a working majority. Speaking in Hartlepool, Mr Farage said he was reassured by the Prime Minister ruling out an extension to the post-Brexit transition period beyond 2020 and pledging a “super Canada-style” trade agreement with the EU. “Last night I weighed up Boris’s promises, and is he going to stick to them, against the threat particularly in the...
11 November 2019
Boris Johnson conference

A top Muslim group has hit out at Boris Johnson for breaking his promise to investigate "institutional" Islamophobia in his party.

The Muslim Council of Britain accused the Conservative leadership of "denial, deflection and discounting" after the party announced it would be holding a broader investigation into "all types of prejudice". Chancellor Sajid Javid - who forced his fellow candidates in the Conservative leadership campaign to sign up to a probe on anti-Muslim abuse in the party - confirmed the u-turn on Sunday, saying it "made sense" to launch a wider inquiry. "Yes there will be an inquiry into anti-Muslim hatred, absolutely... And it will start this year," he told the BBC's Andrew Marr. He added: "We will have an inquiry into prejudice and it will absolutely mean looking into anti-Muslim hatred and making sure that our zero tolerance, absolute zero tolerance is as effective as it can be, looking to see what other procedures we could have in place....
11 November 2019

The Bar Could have responded to a leaked Cabinet Office report obtained by the Guardian which finds that almost half of rape victims are dropping out of investigations.

Richard Atkins QC, Chair of the Bar Council, said: “This report confirms that delays continue to undermine the effectiveness of the criminal justice system. It is clear that the justice system - and the criminal justice system in particular - is suffering from many years of chronic underfunding; a point we have been pressing for some time. Victims of crime should not be deterred from reporting what has happened to them because they are worried about the length of time it will take for their case to be investigated or put before a court.”
11 November 2019

NFB Major Contractors Group calls on Government to act immediately to address how construction – the largest contributor to UK carbon emissions – can help the UK to meet 2050 Zero Carbon target. 

The leading trade body representing builders has today called on the construction sector and any future Government, to act now if they are to meet the 2050 zero carbon target. With construction directly influencing 47% of UK carbon emissions and 61% of UK waste1, the sector is a critical part of the radical change needed. The National Federation of Builders’ (NFB) Major Contractors Group (MCG) launched its ‘Transforming Construction for a Low Carbon Future’ report today, warning that the construction industry must be transformed within a generation, otherwise it will have failed the country and the Government will fail in its zero carbon ambitions. Speaking at the launch, NFB’s Chairman, Nick Sangwin, said, “This Report is not a document to sit on shelves gathering dust, it is designed to galvanise the sector into action, to see the opportunities and to lead the way towards zero carbon by 2050. It is critical that those within the construction sector are stepping forward and...
11 November 2019
Vote Labour poster

Local Labour members have called on the party to drop a candidate who shared an image of Theresa May with a gun pointing at her head.

Jarrow Constituency Labour Party said it was "astonishing" that Kate Osborne had been imposed on them by senior officials. Ms Osborne was forced to apologise for sharing the offending image on Facebook in the run-up to the 2017 election. A special panel made up of members of Labour's national executive committee agreed on Saturday that she will stand for the party in Jarrow at the general election - despite a plea by female MPs for the party to think again. In a letter to Labour’s general secretary Jennie Formby, 37 members of the Jarrow CLP insisted their protest "not about political views” and pointed out that Ms Osborne shared the image less than a year after the murder of Jo Cox. “In an environment of increasing threats of violence against woman politicians of all political parties (including several signatories to this letter), it...
11 November 2019
Canary Wharf

The UK has avoided a recession after the economy grew by 0.3% in 2019’s third quarter, new figures show.

The figures will come as a relief to Conservative ministers following -0.2% growth in the last quarter, ahead of next month's general election. They also show however that year-on-year GDP growth slowed to 1%, its weakest since 2010, in the three months to the end of September. An ONS spokesperson said: “GDP grew steadily in the third quarter, mainly thanks to a strong July. Services again led the way with construction also performing well. "Manufacturing failed to grow as falls in most industries were offset by car production bouncing back following April shutdowns. “Looking at the picture over the last year, growth slowed to its lowest rate in almost a decade.  “The underlying trade deficit narrowed, mainly due to growing exports of both goods and services.” In a monthly breakdown, GDP was strongest at 0.3% in July, but it fell by 0.2% and 0.1% in August and September respectively.  Predictions by the Bank of England and National Institute of Economic and...
11 November 2019

IPSE (the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed) has launched , a manifesto for the 2019 General Election.

The manifesto points out the size and influence of the self-employed sector in the election, as well as outlining the policies parties should adopt to secure the support of freelancers. The number of self-employed has grown enormously in the last ten years to almost 5 million. They are now 15 per cent of the workforce – almost as much as the entire public sector. Collectively, they contribute £305bn to the economy every year, which is enough to fund the NHS twice over. IPSE’s manifesto includes 40 policy recommendations to support the self-employed, but has five key asks for political parties: Build a modern tax system: a full review of small business tax (including scrapping IR35 and ending the confusion over the Loan Charge) to unleash the UK’s entrepreneurial spirit. End the culture of late payment: give the Small Business Commissioner...