Related video: Keir Starmer says he was in ‘discussions’ for second job – not ‘talks’
The chair of the UK government’s independent standards committee is urging ministers to restrict MPs from holding consultancy and advisory jobs, and warning politicians to stop stalling on the issue.
Lord Evans said his committee had made recommendations as far back as 2018 on the issue – and that if an MP was spending a “huge amount of time” on a second job it would “get in the way of their ability to work in support of their constituents”.
It comes as Tory grandee Malcolm Rifkind – a Cabinet minister during those dramatic events in 1990 – issued a warning to Boris Johnson that he is in danger of becoming “a liability” to the Conservatives and of being toppled by his own MPs, as Margaret Thatcher was.
“I was in the Cabinet when [Ms] Thatcher was required to fall on her sword … no prime minister can assume they’re free from that risk,” he said, amid continued anger at Mr Johnson’s botched attempt to clear ex-MP Owen Paterson for breaching lobbying rules, which ended in a humiliating government U-turn.
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Watch: US VP Kamala Harris mocked for mimicking French accent
Kamala Harris mocked for mimicking French accent
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 20:42
Tories accused of ‘botched’ attempt to steer attention away from sleaze
An update on the Armistice Day flight controversy now. Defence secretary Ben Wallace is being accused of an abuse of power after he accused opposition MPs of being drunk on an official visit to British forces in Gibraltar.
Defence sources said Mr Wallace was writing to the SNP and to Labour to complain about the reported conduct of some of their MPs on the flight out to the British overseas territory.
However, the SNP have hit back following further reports two Conservative MPs on the trip were reportedly out drinking late into the night and were hung over the following day. A party spokesman called on Mr Wallace to apologise for what he claimed was a “botched” attempt to divert attention from the “sleaze” allegations engulfing the Tories at Westminster.
A Conservative source did not deny their MPs, Ben Everitt and Christian Wakeford, had been out for a drink but rejected claims they had turned up with hangovers for events the following day.
A party source said that it was a “desperate attempt” to deflect attention from the behaviour of the opposition members on the flight.
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 20:41
UK an ‘enabler’ of corruption, Nigerian anti-sleaze tsar says
The UK is an “enabler” of corruption, an adviser to the Nigerian president says, in a sharp rebuke to Boris Johnson’s rejection of widespread sleaze.
It comes after the PM hit back at warnings that the UK is sliding into dishonest practices – following the Owen Paterson and Geoffrey Cox controversies – by declaring: “The UK is not remotely a corrupt country.”
But Nigeria’s anti-corruption tsar, Prof Sadiq Isah Radda, has branded London “the most notorious safe haven for looted funds in the world today” – and pointed to a broken promise to crack down on the super-rich buying homes through secret offshore companies.
Our deputy political editor Rob Merrick reports:
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 19:55
Watch: Starmer says he was in ‘discussions’ for second job – not ‘talks’
Keir Starmer says he wasn’t in ‘talks’ about a 2nd job – but was in ‘discussions’
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 19:35
‘So much tension at Cop26,’ say reporters in Glasgow
ITV News’ Anushka Asthana reports from Cop26, as the summit crashes into its last day.
Tweeting this paragraph of official text, the broadcaster’s deputy political editor says world leaders’ timetable has potentially been “sped up – which is needed because scientists think there is no hope of staying below 1.5C if things don’t ramp up now and up to 2030”.
After listing off the status of deals made by contributing countries in an interesting Twitter thread, Asthana turned to the critical US-China agreement.
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 19:21
Negotiators face ‘monumental challenge’ as Cop26 nears end
Alok Sharma has warned negotiators at Cop26 in Glasgow they face a “monumental challenge” to deliver a credible deal in the few days left.
There are fears that the crucial reference in Wednesday’s draft agreement – unprecedented in a UN climate document – to phasing out coal and ending subsidies for fossil fuels is unlikely to survive horse-trading as the deadline approaches, writes our political editor Andrew Woodcock.
It comes after UN secretary general Antonio Guterres today said the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5C is “on life support”.
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 19:05
Watch: Prince Charles reassures man Queen is ‘alright’
‘She’s alright’: Prince Charles reassures man over Queen’s health in Brixton
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 18:45
How the Blair and Brown documentary was made
Liz Mermin, director of episode two of the BBC’s Blair & Brown: The New Labour Revolution, which covered the 1997 election victory and the peace settlement in Northern Ireland, has discussed the unusual conditions in which the series was made.
First, the programmes were made without knowing if Gordon Brown would take part. Then, “just as he said yes, finally” at about this time last year, the second lockdown started.
That is why, as one of the consultants on the project, along with Prof Jon Davis and Mary Ann Sieghart, The Independent’s John Rentoul saw several rough cuts of episodes without Brown. They lacked the tension of the central relationship, with Brown represented on screen by Ed Balls, Charlie Whelan, Stewart Wood, Tom Fletcher and Sue Nye.
John explains the rest in this fascinating piece:
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 18:25
Rayner ‘still waiting for answers’ from PM
Labour’s deputy leader Angela Rayner has called out Boris Johnson for failing to respond to concerns she raised about cuts to the Ministry of Defence’s budget.
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 18:05
Watch: MPs should be allowed second jobs, Tory minister says
MPs should be allowed to have second jobs, Tory minister says
Sam Hancock11 November 2021 17:45