Category Archives: Conservative Party

Tory HQ spinners slapped down by OBR for ‘fake’ Twitter quote

The Office for Budget Responsibility have taken the unprecedented step of slapping down Tory HQ spinners on Twitter:

Apparently they can’t tell the difference between an actual quote and copy from the Daily Mail.


David Cameron plays chicken: Prime Minister visits Nando’s


David Cameron was spotted feasting on poultry last night, in a humble branch of Nando’s.

In a risky move which threatened to repeat George Osborne’s ‘burgergate’ mishap – not to mention hurling him face first into the halal meat labelling debate – the prime minister was snapped by diners at a Bristol branch of the chicken chain.

It’s not clear whether this particular branch is one of the 64 that only serve halal meat.

But Cameron is in good company in his choice of restaurant. Nando’s is the favourite eatery of that other famous campaigner on halal meat – EDL founder Tommy Robinson.

UPDATE: One bold chicken-lover approached Cameron for a selfie. The result is, of course, deeply troubling.

David Cameron selfie in Nando's


Judge smashes DWP attempts to keep Universal Credit reports secret

  • Judge rules there would be no chilling effect in releasing Universal Credit reports
  • FOI tribunal refuses Iain Duncan Smith leave to appeal against the court’s decision
  • DWP continues to pour thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money into failing legal attempt to keep files secret

Iain Duncan Smith: liar, pants on fire

A judge has smashed Iain Duncan Smith’s attempt to keep potentially damning reports on Universal Credit secret.

The ruling completely undermines the DWP’s claim that there would be a ‘chilling effect’ if the reports were published.

It’s thought the documents could provide a ‘smoking gun’ which proves conclusively that Duncan Smith and the DWP misled parliament with their optimistic assessments of progress on the programme.

As Scrapbook reported, the documents were requested by campaigners under the Freedom of Information act in March last year.

After a year of pouring thousands of pounds of taxpayers’ money into a failing legal attempt to keep the reports secret, the ICO gave a final decision in March that all four reports should be published.

The documents include:

  • Project Assessment Review — periodic high level review of large project
  • Issues Register — details of problems and failures
  • High Level Milestone Schedule — sequence of activities and timings

The DWP were hopping mad at the ICO tribunal’s decision – describing it as “perverse”, and claiming they’d made “errors of law.”

But a second tier tribunal upheld the decision to order disclosure yesterday, with Judge David Farrer QC saying there was no evidence of a chilling effect.

The DWP now has 28 days to decide whether it wants to throw yet more taxpayers’ cash at a losing battle.

Cameron spent £430k of taxpayers’ cash on propaganda letter


David Cameron spent £430,000 of taxpayers’ cash sending out more than a million party propaganda letters touting Tory policy.

The Electoral Commission is demanding an explanation after tax money was used to pay for the letters, sent out to businesses “encouraging them to check” if they qualified for a £2000 National Insurance cut – a Tory policy.

In response to a parliamentary question from Shadow Business secretary Chuka Umunna, Tory treasury secretary David Gauke admitted they’d spent the eye watering sending letters to 1.25million businesses at a cost of 25p per letter.

The letter was sent out on 10 Downing Street headed paper, signed by David Cameron and distributed by HMRC.


The content of the letter is brazenly party political, even using that old favourite Tory catchphrase:

“…long term economic plan”

Is there any rule he won’t break?


Cameron staff called police on Bishop delivering letter on poverty


David Cameron’s staff called the police on a group of priests, including the Bishop of Oxford, who were trying to deliver a letter about food poverty to his constituency office.

Cameron may be all about the God these days, but that apparently doesn’t extend to discussing the pressing issues of poverty with church leaders.

Reverend Keith Hebden, a spokesperson for the End Hunger Fast campaign, visited Cameron’s constituency office in Whitney with the Bishop of Oxford, the Right Reverend John Pritchard, to deliver a letter on food poverty signed by more than 600 clergy, including 45 bishops.

Nobody answered the door to the Prime Minister’s constituency office, and a few minutes later three police officers arrived.

The police soon left when they realised their presence was not required.

A spokesperson for End Hunger Fast told Scrapbook the letter had been delivered to all three main party leaders, but:

“Cameron’s office was the only one to call the police”

The letter was published in the Guardian on Wednesday, describing British food poverty as a “national crisis” and calling for “each of us, and government too, to act to make sure that work pays, that food markets support sustainable and healthy diets, and that the welfare system provides a robust last line of defence against hunger.”

Rev. Hebden told Al Jazeera: “Summoning the police like that illustrates the sense of panic in this government about rising food poverty levels because they are in such denial about this problem.”

 And lo, Cameron cast out the vicars and anti-poverty campaigners from his constituency office.

Esther McVey tweets political attack during Hillsborough service


From a strong field, the political gaffe of the day award goes to Merseyside MP Esther McVey, for posting a political attack tweet during the Hillsborough 25th anniversary service.

In the as yet un-deleted tweet, the employment minister tweeted a link to a press release on her website entitled “Wirral Labour can’t be trusted.”


The ill-timed message coincided almost exactly with Andy Burnham’s moving speech at the service, held at Anfield.

It took Radio 5Live’s Nicky Campbell to point out the incredibly poor timing of the tweet for an MP from Merseyside.

Scrapbook assumes a grovelling apology is to follow shortly.

Vile Facebook messages of ‘social cleansing’ Tory Councillor


A Tory councillor made sick jokes about domestic violence, complained about lesbians, the disabled and black people getting an easy ride, and labelled benefit claimants “scum” on Facebook, Political Scrapbook can reveal.


The posts, made by Cllr Tom Davey of Tory-run Barnet Council, were revealed just days after he was caught advocating ‘social cleansing’ in a shocking video.


In Davey’s status updates, which he made during his time at LSE in 2008, he moaned that his jobhunting might be easier if he were a “black female wheelchair bound amputee who is sexually attracted to other women.”


In another post, he joked he was “more excited than Harold Shipman in a nursing home.”

Speaking to Scrapbook, Davey said the sick joke was “probably misjudgement in hindsight” – but that despite being open to tens of thousands of people in the LSE Facebook network, it was a private joke between friends.

He admitted:

“I have a very dry sense of humour”


Defending perhaps the most disgusting post, in which he says he is “smacking his bitch up…that’ll teach her for ironing loudly whilst the football is on” – Davey said he was being “ironic.”

“I don’t like football and my wife doesn’t do the ironing. If you think it’s a joke about domestic violence, fine.”

Brazenly unapologetic, Davey said it was entirely appropriate to make joke about mass murderers and domestic violence in an essentially public forum.

“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with any of those things in that context.”

Given his recent outburst in a public meeting, it seems context doesn’t matter an awful lot to Mr Davey

Leslie tabled Severn questions after £17k donation from port magnate

  •  Major Tory donor opposed to Severn Barrage project gave £17000 to Bristol MP Charlotte Leslie’s local party
  • Leslie failed to declare an interest when questioning Ed Davey and Vince Cable on the project’s research funding
  • She finally apologised this week – seven months after she belatedly added the donation to the register


A Tory MP tabled three parliamentary questions on the Severn Barrage, failing to declare a £17000 donation from a port magnate opposed to the project.

While Bristol MP Charlotte Leslie apologised to the House on Tuesday for failing to properly declare donations, the link to the Severn Barrage has only been picked up by local media.

Although she knew about the error in August, and updated the register – she says it took until Tuesday for her to work out there was a bigger problem.

What nobody but the local papers seem to have picked up is that since 2009 she’s been fed £17000 by a major Tory donor called David Ord.

David Ord is joint owner of Bristol Port, who are vehemently against the proposed Severn Barrage Project.

Since being elected in 2010, Leslie has asked two written questions of Ed Davey on the feasibility and funding of the Barrage, and one of Vince Cable – all without declaring her 17 grand interest in the project’s principle detractor.

On top of that, she admitted to her local Tory party pocketing £2500 from one Theodore Agnew – whom she questioned when he appeared at the Education Select Committee.

Leslie, who has a staff who one would thought have an understanding of prejudicial interests, blamed the oversight on her dyslexia. Which could in part explain why the national press have largely left her alone.

But several questions remain unanswered:

  • How did it take a professional politician with a professional staff seven months to work out she’d failed to declare an interest on a £17000 donation? 
  • Did it really need a local paper to point it out to her before she realised?
  • Has Leslie ever had discussions with David Ord or his company?
  • Why isn’t this being investigated in terms of “cash for questions?”

Scrapbook have approached Leslie with these questions, but she hasn’t as yet replied.

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