March was a big month in politics. The clocks went forward and the MPs left Parliament for their Easter break but they are still busy. There is still the pandemic and restrictions started to be eased but it was not without controversy, questionable comments and even more corruption. That is why I am back with a new post of A Tory Said What.
So, what is the point of these posts and why am I publishing them? Well, do you ever feel like the Conservative Government [PM Boris Johnson pictured above; feature image from Manchester Evening News] are deliberately lying to you? Do you ever feel like they are deliberately trying to gaslight you? Questioning your sanity? Or, have they said something that sounds so bizarre that has you thinking what the f***, they surely could not have said it,
Inspired by the likes of Lawyer/Journalist/Filmmaker and Communications Union member, Peter Stefanovic (@PeterStefanovi2), I use these posts to attempt to debunk some of the mistruths and outright lies that Conservative MPs have uttered. Why? Because the truth matters! Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
Other comments included may not be mistruths or lies, but something they said that made me stand up and think, really? Is this where they are taking us? Is this something we should be proud of a Government Minister saying? Hopefully, when you read my thoughts on these comments, that it is clear I am speaking objectively. After all, I do try to present comments made by Conservancies in an objective light and give them a fair hearing (I hope that comes through) even though these posts are also my opportunity to rant against the Tories.
So, what happened in March? Oh boy, we have a long list…
The Government started the month of March by spending five days appealing to the public because our world-leading test and trace program could not find a person with the Brazilian variant of concern as the person did not fill in the form correctly. They announced a cut in the amount of financial aid being sent to Yemen and a measly 1% cash terms pay rise for NHS nurses and staff who have done so much during the pandemic which works out as a real-terms pay cut.
In the same week, the world was reacting to that Meghan Markle interview with Oprah Winfrey, the government were still denying that was a pay cut but they took some headlines themselves. Three equalities advisors resigned including Jayne Ozanne who also quit the Party. The UK also unilaterally extended the grace periods on certain parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol prompting legal action from the EU.
Within a week of the tragic death of Sarah Everard and just days after a Virgil for her on Clapham Common descended into appalling scenes, the Government then sought to give police more powers in bringing in the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which could have seen protests creating arbitrary notions such as ‘noise’ being banned. They also announced a 40% increase in the number of nuclear warheads. Why? Oh, and while the Government would not give more than a 1% pay rise for nurses and would eventually be outflanked by Nicola Sturgeon offering NHS staff a 4% pay rise in Scotland, we eventually got to see what £2.6m got with the Downing Street Press Conference Room. I’d be asking for a refund on that.
March also saw the first anniversary of the first national lockdown. Restrictions gradually eased during the month as Schools returned on March 8th and further restrictions were gradually eased on March 29th. The legal basis of the lockdown was extended in the House of Commons and a Conservative MP protested by holding a pint of milk. The month ended in controversy though as the Government published their highly controversial race review which insisted the UK was ‘not deliberately rigged against ethnic minorities‘. Its credibility was hit though with several people claimed in the report to have been consulted claimed that they were not.
Well, that isn’t everything and neither is the comments highlighted and commented on in this post. That said, there are 112 comments from a total of 46 MPs (the most in any of these posts). That is an average of 2.43 comments per MP included and 3.61 comments per day. The worst culprit is without doubt the Prime Minister who appears 27 times alone!
I do not claim that this is an exhaustive list of controversial, questionable or outright lies told by Conservative Ministers and MPs. I will have missed things off but to be honest, it is mentally draining at the same time. If you want to know, on a word document this totals 42 pages and 28,000 words! We start with the Prime Minster…