Rolling coverage of the day’s political developments as they happenPM ‘doesn’t get climate crisis’
No 10 reporter ban: civil service chief must investigate, says Starmer 12.09pm GMT Sir Keir Starmer, the shadow Brexit secretary and favourite in the Labour leadership contest, has just released an eight-point plan for internal Labour party reform. He says he wants to make the party more “open, respectful, creative and engaging”.Although internal party reform is a relatively niche topic, it is important, particularly in the context of an opposition party leadership election. Candidates have been announcing policy, but that are unlikely to have any say over government policy for the next four years at least. But whoever wins the leadership election will – potentially – be able to do quite a lot to change Labour. (I say potentially because power is dispersed in Labour, and until the new leader gets control of the national executive committee and party conference, his or her room for manoeuvre may be limited.)Local party members should select their candidates for every election. The NEC should not impose candidates on local parties. More widely, we must improve our selection process. The current system is impenetrable with too much reliance on who people know rather than what they can do. It costs too much and takes too much time, effectively ruling out potentially excellent candidates. Our current system does not work to this principle and it should be replaced by an independent panel with experts on racism, sexual harassment and poor personal conduct cases. All members and communities must have confidence in the rigour and independence of our disciplinary procedures. We should extend auto-exclusion to include expressions of clear-cut racism including anti-semitism. 11.41am GMT Dominic Cummings, the PM’s chief adviser, was photographed carrying a book called Chinese Spies this morning as he arrived at Downing Street. It’s by the journalist Roger Faligot, and it says China has the largest intelligence service in the world, although the Times’ reviewer (paywall) says Faligot’s account left him wondering “if there is such a thing as an overdevious secret service. In their constant quest to discover the imagined layers of meaning underpinning the actions of their enemies, the Chinese spooks may just be tying themselves in knots, consumed by paranoia.”Perhaps Cummings is looking for tips. At the weekend the Sunday Times (paywall) claimed that he had recruited his own network of “spies” working in Westminster restaurants who will tip him off if they see special advisers having unauthorised meetings with journalists. Continue reading…
Source link : https://www.theguardian.com/politics/live/2020/feb/04/voters-should-not-trust-johnson-to-keep-his-promises-says-former-tory-minister-sacked-from-climate-conference-role-live-news
Author : Andrew Sparrow
Publish date : 2020-02-04 12:14:31
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