PM's epic fail in Cornwall – 'Paranoid control freakery' 'more in common with North Korea than with British politics'

chips
You can still have fun playing our very popular caption comp to this pic on our Facebook site!

The Prime Minister was in Cornwall today trying to shore up support for the Conservatives ahead of the local and general elections. However the plan went spectacularly wrong as journalists complained of being ‘banned from filming’ and being ‘locked in a room’ . The PM’s team have been called ‘paranoid’ and ‘control freaks’ in return.

Even the normally compliant and Tory friendly Cornwall Live changed it’s tune during the day as local journalists were denied any sort of meaningful access to the PM as national journalists like Laura Kussenberg and international agency Reuters  were ushered around the stage-managed visit to AP Valves in Helston.

CL then took their revenge by posting pictures of a miserable looking Prime Minister with the caption ‘PM looking thrilled to be in Helston’ and one of Mrs May pointing up saying ‘can you see my poll rating falling?’

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PM outside AP Valves this morning where she was accused of “paranoid control freakery”

Finally one local journalist, Lyn Bartlett, was allowed two questions and two minutes max and were forbidden from filming or photographing her answering them. Predictably the PM just ignored those questions and trotted out the nauseating mantra about ‘strong and stable leadership’.

PM to visit Cornwall today

The PM then visited Mevagissey and Steve Double MP. In a quick walk about the village Mrs May further upset people by again not answering questions from local press and not engaging with the public.

The one lady who got through to the PM told her “This election is not just about Brexit you know”

Then (maybe the biggest faux-pas of the day) she was photographed eating her lunch but it WASN’T a pasty! It was chips! without even any fresh Cornish fish to go with them!

reuters
 Pic: Dylan Martinez,  Reuters Pics @reuterspictures 

What should have been an easy stop on the campaign trail has turned into an PR disaster for the PM.
 
Stephen Gilbert, the man trying to win the St Austell and Newquay seat back from Steve Double for the Lib Dems, told CS

“Theresa May says she ‘believes in campaigns where politicians actually get out and about and meet the voters’ and today she has done the exact opposite. Blocking journalists from doing their job, refusing questions from local people and banning photos is one way to run an election campaign, which perhaps has more in common with North Korea than with British politics.

The only thing missing from this visit is an accompanying early morning tweet, a la Trump.  If Mrs May wanted to show she was in touch with the issues in Cornwall then this is master-class in how not to do it, but perhaps the fiasco says more about her than we think”

derek PM bw.jpg
Derek Thomas and the Prime Minister visit AP Valves in Helston

Derek Thomas, the St Ives MP who invited Mrs May down said
‘The PM accepted my invitation to meet with me at a business in West Cornwall following a Prime Minister’s Question I asked in the Chamber recently. As the local MP I’ve worked especially hard to help our small businesses as they provide the lion-share of jobs in West Cornwall and Scilly. I’m arguing that we need to create a fairer tax-system including reforming business rates and increasing the vat threshold which will have an immediate positive impact on small businesses in coastal communities. I was pleased to be able to welcome a small manufacturing company, AP Valves. They are a world-leader and export both within the EU and to non EU countries. Just exactly the kind of company that recognises the need for a strong stable Government and a hardworking strong champion for the area.’

Weirdly, his rival for the St Ives seat, ex MP Andrew George had released a statement to the press yesterday, in response to Mr Thomas’ accepted invation, in which  he said he would be pleased if the PM came.

 

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Andrew George

“I hope she comes” he said yesterday. “But when she does I hope she won’t simply come to console the local Tories and for tame photo-calls”

Today he joked
“It seems the art of clairvoyance is alive and well in lay-lined west Cornwall!”

But it also seems the PM has fallen into the self-inflicted trap I’d advised her to avoid. I hope she will open up a bit and answer questions rather than attempt to stage manage things in this way.

This approach is a disaster for her and an insult to those who take pride in our open democracy. I do hope she would learn from this, reverse her decision not to do TV debates and answer the questions I’ve raised on behalf of thousands of local people who care passionately about the NHS, our children’s future and the gamble she’s taking with Cornwall’s future as she seems hell bent on a self-harming hard Brexit”

 

PM’s epic fail in Cornwall – ‘Paranoid control freakery’ ‘more in common with North Korea than with British politics’

chips
You can still have fun playing our very popular caption comp to this pic on our Facebook site!

The Prime Minister was in Cornwall today trying to shore up support for the Conservatives ahead of the local and general elections. However the plan went spectacularly wrong as journalists complained of being ‘banned from filming’ and being ‘locked in a room’ . The PM’s team have been called ‘paranoid’ and ‘control freaks’ in return.

Even the normally compliant and Tory friendly Cornwall Live changed it’s tune during the day as local journalists were denied any sort of meaningful access to the PM as national journalists like Laura Kussenberg and international agency Reuters  were ushered around the stage-managed visit to AP Valves in Helston.

CL then took their revenge by posting pictures of a miserable looking Prime Minister with the caption ‘PM looking thrilled to be in Helston’ and one of Mrs May pointing up saying ‘can you see my poll rating falling?’

image1
PM outside AP Valves this morning where she was accused of “paranoid control freakery”

Finally one local journalist, Lyn Bartlett, was allowed two questions and two minutes max and were forbidden from filming or photographing her answering them. Predictably the PM just ignored those questions and trotted out the nauseating mantra about ‘strong and stable leadership’.

PM to visit Cornwall today

The PM then visited Mevagissey and Steve Double MP. In a quick walk about the village Mrs May further upset people by again not answering questions from local press and not engaging with the public.

The one lady who got through to the PM told her “This election is not just about Brexit you know”

Then (maybe the biggest faux-pas of the day) she was photographed eating her lunch but it WASN’T a pasty! It was chips! without even any fresh Cornish fish to go with them!

reuters
 Pic: Dylan Martinez,  Reuters Pics @reuterspictures 

What should have been an easy stop on the campaign trail has turned into an PR disaster for the PM.
 
Stephen Gilbert, the man trying to win the St Austell and Newquay seat back from Steve Double for the Lib Dems, told CS

“Theresa May says she ‘believes in campaigns where politicians actually get out and about and meet the voters’ and today she has done the exact opposite. Blocking journalists from doing their job, refusing questions from local people and banning photos is one way to run an election campaign, which perhaps has more in common with North Korea than with British politics.

The only thing missing from this visit is an accompanying early morning tweet, a la Trump.  If Mrs May wanted to show she was in touch with the issues in Cornwall then this is master-class in how not to do it, but perhaps the fiasco says more about her than we think”

derek PM bw.jpg
Derek Thomas and the Prime Minister visit AP Valves in Helston

Derek Thomas, the St Ives MP who invited Mrs May down said
‘The PM accepted my invitation to meet with me at a business in West Cornwall following a Prime Minister’s Question I asked in the Chamber recently. As the local MP I’ve worked especially hard to help our small businesses as they provide the lion-share of jobs in West Cornwall and Scilly. I’m arguing that we need to create a fairer tax-system including reforming business rates and increasing the vat threshold which will have an immediate positive impact on small businesses in coastal communities. I was pleased to be able to welcome a small manufacturing company, AP Valves. They are a world-leader and export both within the EU and to non EU countries. Just exactly the kind of company that recognises the need for a strong stable Government and a hardworking strong champion for the area.’

Weirdly, his rival for the St Ives seat, ex MP Andrew George had released a statement to the press yesterday, in response to Mr Thomas’ accepted invation, in which  he said he would be pleased if the PM came.

 

ag
Andrew George

“I hope she comes” he said yesterday. “But when she does I hope she won’t simply come to console the local Tories and for tame photo-calls”

Today he joked
“It seems the art of clairvoyance is alive and well in lay-lined west Cornwall!”

But it also seems the PM has fallen into the self-inflicted trap I’d advised her to avoid. I hope she will open up a bit and answer questions rather than attempt to stage manage things in this way.

This approach is a disaster for her and an insult to those who take pride in our open democracy. I do hope she would learn from this, reverse her decision not to do TV debates and answer the questions I’ve raised on behalf of thousands of local people who care passionately about the NHS, our children’s future and the gamble she’s taking with Cornwall’s future as she seems hell bent on a self-harming hard Brexit”

 

Gloves are off as Tories Fight Back! MPs React Defiantly to Critics

Cornwall’s under fire Tory MPs took their gloves off and hit back yesterday over recent criticism of their behaviour and opinions that have sparked anger in their communities and led to fierce criticism in the press and on social media.

Derek Thomas has retaliated to a Cornishman editorial that criticised his absence at the Devonwall debate – held in the morning of Fri 18th Nov, the same day as when Sheryll Murray caused outrage by filibustering a disability bill AND voting in favour of Devonwall.

Disability Rights campaigners who were so outraged by her behaviour that they staged a spontaneous demo outside her office last Tuesday.

So yesterday Sheryll met with the minister concerned to tell everyone by delaying the bill she had actually done everyone a favour. Sheryll’s press statement was entitled

“Meeting to ensure disabled people do not face discrimination”

meeting
Sheryll gets pally with the Minister at yesterday’s meeting. Far left, Pulsgrove the fellow filibusterer. Andrew Gwynne tries to spot the candid camera

It continued: “Local MP Sheryll Murray has met with Minister Andrew Jones MP following hearing of the plight of some disabled people who found it difficult getting taxis and Private Hire Vehicle’s”

“Three MPs spoke in a debate on Friday 18th November on this topic during a debate when Labour MP Andrew Gwynne brought forward a Private Members Bill. With less than an hour scheduled there was not enough time to debate the bill and Sheryll, Tom Pursglove and the Bills proposer Andrew Gwynne met the Minister to ensure that action was taken on this important issue”.

Sheryll welcomed the measures by saying, “I am pleased that the Minister has a plan to get the well meaning principles behind Andrew Gwynne’s bill into legislation. I will be monitoring what the Minister does following the consultation and am determined to take action if it falls short on results. I have championed a similar issue before in 2012 when issues were raised by a constituent regarding a hearing dog. Having worked in the NHS for over 20 years I know how important and hard working these fantastic dogs are”

She finished the statement by saying:

“Discrimination against the disabled is illegal and I will not tolerate it wherever it does.”

Derek Thomas & Devonwall

Derek Thomas has also lashed back at critics who accused him of hypocrisy and dereliction of duty when he chose to stay away from the Commons on what’s now becoming an infamous Friday in Cornish political circles!

The St Ives MP chose to react to a strong editorial in the latest edition of The Cornishman that slams the Cornish MPs for their performances over Devonwall:

The official voice of the paper said “It beggars belief that of the six MPs…only Steve Double, Sheryl Murray and Sarah Newton bothered to attend when the thorny issue of a cross-Tamar constituency was up for debate

Our Conservative MPs promised in the wake of their stunning election victory in 2015 that they would provide an even stronger voice for Cornwall in Parliament for the things that mattered to Cornwall. Devonwall matters and, with the exception of Steve Double their collective failure to represent the interests of Cornwall it’s history and it’s unique challenges must not be ignored

dthomas

Mr Thomas has hit back strongly at the editorial. In a statement yesterday he said:

“The bill and debate in Parliament that Friday .. is referring to a Private Members Bill that makes no reference to Cornwall. The bill opposes the Government plan to cut the number of MPs from 650 to 600 and to reshape constituencies to make them all of a similar population size”

However as highlighted by Andrew George in the days before the debate, it was a golden opportunity to make the case for Cornwall. Mr George challenged all of Cornwall’s MPs to prove that they oppose a cross border constituency  – as they profess to –  and attend the Commons. In the end only Steve Double stood up to be counted.

Derek’ defence went on

“The judgment I have made is that on Fridays my job is to be out and about in the constituency identifying the issues that matter most to the majority of my constituents and raise those issues with Government Ministers. On the Friday in question (18th November) my constituency commitments were as follows ….. (he lists 7 apps from 10am to 8pm)…

He then goes on to say :

“The greatest privilege of this job is listening to people’s concerns and difficulties and working hard to find a solution. I hear the concern people have about perceived threats to Cornish identity, and Scott Mann MP and I have worked together to identify some areas where the Cornish identity can be strengthened and celebrated and are proposing these to the Ministers concerned.

Please accept my apologies for choosing to work in West Cornwall on Fridays and Saturdays”

Strong stuff.

Scott Mann, the MP who represents North Cornwall, remains silent on the issue despite several requests from CornishStuff (and more importantly, his constituents) for a statement on Devonwall.

What do you think of our Cornish MPS? Comment below or on our Facebook Page – which you really should have ‘liked’ by now 

#BlockedBySheryll : She denied MPs the right to speak in the Commons, now she’s shutting us all up online too! 

 

Blocked

Well, if you are not #BlockedBySheryll by now, you’ll soon will be!

The hashtag, originally posted by frontbench Labour MP Andrew Gwynne to support Cornish people angry with their under fire MP Sheryll Murray, is trending a day before a community protest organised against the Cornish MP.

Responding to a huge amount of criticism she has received for her parliamentary performance last Friday, the MP for SE Cornwall has said in one curt message that she didn’t need to  justify herself and wouldn’t be saying anything only to hastily rushing out a statement only hours later, that in itself drew more criticism. (I would show you a copy but we’ve been, er #blockedbysheryll).

She’s been blocking everyone and anyone from Facebook and Twitter who dare try to criticise, deleting comments and doing her best to ignore the queue of people waiting for an explanation of  her bizarre behaviour..  She calls it “abuse”!

Constituents have flooded her pages with hundreds of messages condemning what they see as a dereliction of duty saying “we did not elect an MP to Parliament to subvert democracy”.

We understand she’s not very happy at the articles we wrote either. Oops, sorry about that.

So Murray and her senior Tory Party chums have swung into action today releasing a series of stories to local media in order to launch a massive counter offensive against a genuinely spontaneous community reaction to  her performance in the Commons that has been described as ‘outrageous’ and “cruel”. It even had fellow Tory MPs shouting “shameful” and “disgraceful” as she succeeded in stopping a simple bill in Parliament designed to help disabled people.

Tory central office has virtually hijacked SW media group @cornwalllive , Plymouth Herald, WMN (have they all forgotten they are no longer owned by the Daily Mail?)  today with stories so cleverly spun and twisted you have to admire them – but only when you’ve seen the other side of the story first. They definitely give you a different point of view to the one you might of read somewhere else on the web … we can’t think where.  If it wasn’t for those meddling kids.

The demo goes ahead as planned at Liskeard tomorrow despite Storm Angus.  Labour / Momentum and LibDem spokespeople are lined up to tell the people of Liskeard of their support however Sheryll herself has scarpered back to London,  after attending a Masonic dinner in Torpoint Saturday night, apparently too busy to listen to the concerns of her constituents, the people who pay her.

Still, there’s a doubt she really cares what they think anyway.

“The way Sheryll has handled this situation shows just how scared she is” said organiser Alfie Hillson “She can block us on social media but she can’t block out our voices”.

Campaigners have said that this would be the beginning of a big push to oust the Tory and urged people not to let the momentum slip after tomorrow’s demo.

Alfie stated: “The whole protest is a movement for anyone with other concerns about Sheryll from within her constituency and people from other areas out of her constituency to join us. She claims that she will only represent her constituents but it didn’t stop her talking on behalf of constituents that were not hers when it came to Devonwall. Come along my friend, you are most welcome.

 

 

(Sources say the easiest way to get #blockedbysheryll is to send her one of our articles)

If you can’t get to the demo tomz then leave a message of support at https://www.facebook.com/events/900899653378932/

#BlockedBySheryll : She denied MPs the right to speak in the Commons, now she's shutting us all up online too! 

 

Blocked

Well, if you are not #BlockedBySheryll by now, you’ll soon will be!

The hashtag, originally posted by frontbench Labour MP Andrew Gwynne to support Cornish people angry with their under fire MP Sheryll Murray, is trending a day before a community protest organised against the Cornish MP.

Responding to a huge amount of criticism she has received for her parliamentary performance last Friday, the MP for SE Cornwall has said in one curt message that she didn’t need to  justify herself and wouldn’t be saying anything only to hastily rushing out a statement only hours later, that in itself drew more criticism. (I would show you a copy but we’ve been, er #blockedbysheryll).

She’s been blocking everyone and anyone from Facebook and Twitter who dare try to criticise, deleting comments and doing her best to ignore the queue of people waiting for an explanation of  her bizarre behaviour..  She calls it “abuse”!

Constituents have flooded her pages with hundreds of messages condemning what they see as a dereliction of duty saying “we did not elect an MP to Parliament to subvert democracy”.

We understand she’s not very happy at the articles we wrote either. Oops, sorry about that.

So Murray and her senior Tory Party chums have swung into action today releasing a series of stories to local media in order to launch a massive counter offensive against a genuinely spontaneous community reaction to  her performance in the Commons that has been described as ‘outrageous’ and “cruel”. It even had fellow Tory MPs shouting “shameful” and “disgraceful” as she succeeded in stopping a simple bill in Parliament designed to help disabled people.

Tory central office has virtually hijacked SW media group @cornwalllive , Plymouth Herald, WMN (have they all forgotten they are no longer owned by the Daily Mail?)  today with stories so cleverly spun and twisted you have to admire them – but only when you’ve seen the other side of the story first. They definitely give you a different point of view to the one you might of read somewhere else on the web … we can’t think where.  If it wasn’t for those meddling kids.

The demo goes ahead as planned at Liskeard tomorrow despite Storm Angus.  Labour / Momentum and LibDem spokespeople are lined up to tell the people of Liskeard of their support however Sheryll herself has scarpered back to London,  after attending a Masonic dinner in Torpoint Saturday night, apparently too busy to listen to the concerns of her constituents, the people who pay her.

Still, there’s a doubt she really cares what they think anyway.

“The way Sheryll has handled this situation shows just how scared she is” said organiser Alfie Hillson “She can block us on social media but she can’t block out our voices”.

Campaigners have said that this would be the beginning of a big push to oust the Tory and urged people not to let the momentum slip after tomorrow’s demo.

Alfie stated: “The whole protest is a movement for anyone with other concerns about Sheryll from within her constituency and people from other areas out of her constituency to join us. She claims that she will only represent her constituents but it didn’t stop her talking on behalf of constituents that were not hers when it came to Devonwall. Come along my friend, you are most welcome.

 

 

(Sources say the easiest way to get #blockedbysheryll is to send her one of our articles)

If you can’t get to the demo tomz then leave a message of support at https://www.facebook.com/events/900899653378932/

Sheryll Murray Demo

murray-2
“Is there a hole I can crawl into?”

A statement has been released from the organisers of the spontaneously called Demo against Sheryll Murray’s recent behaviour, that has appalled many and drawn criticism from across the board.

Protesters are invited to congregate by the Fountains in the middle of Liskeard at 1pm on Tuesday for Speeches, followed by a march to her office.

Alfie Hillson,  organiser of the Demo, said:

“We the people of South East Cornwall did not elect an MP to parliament to subvert democracy and the rights of every MP to speak and give their point of view. Or to violate the rights of disabled people. We are calling on everyone who feels equally as disgusted to gather at 1 pm on Tuesday.

Organisers have received support from across the country with many other MPs, including fellow Tories, being disgusted by her behaviour.

Murray also used the same tactics in the morning when speaking in favour of Devonwall, in direct contrast to a Steven Double speech that has been widely welcomed. (see related articles).

“What makes it worse is that the (afternoon) debate centered around the Disability Equality Training Bill  -which could have provided disability awareness training for taxi drivers & extra support for those with guide dogs” said Alfie.

If you cant make it on Tuesday, organisers have asked supporters to post comments on the FB  Event page wall (link below) which will be printed and handed in to her office. (Best take a photo, she’s developing a habit of losing constituent’s correspondence…)

Alfie urged those outraged by their paid representative to attend.

“Let’s try and get as many people there as possible to show her that this behaviour will not be accepted…”

http://www.facebook.com/events/900899653378932/

 

THE NATIVES ARE REVOLTING – BUT SO IS SHERYLL MURRAY

murray

Comment & Opinion

by Flamank

 

Sheryll Murray, Tory MP for SE Cornwall, has come in for widespread criticism this weekend from across her constituency, across Cornwall and from Disability Rights campaigners from across the UK.

It’s because on Friday she sat all day in the chamber of the House of Commons, not as you would hope, doing her job and representing the people of Cornwall but delaying proceedings, talking nonsense on purpose just to waste time, interrupting and generally being one of those politicians that ultimately caused Brexit & Trump.

She pretended that she hadn’t received any correspondence from her constituents about Devonwall and voted in favour of the boundary change that the rest of Cornwall has united to reject. Murray also criticised the Council in her speech for wasting money on independent legal advice on whether or no the minority status of the Cornish people who live in Cornwall could be used to stop Devonwall. At one stage she deliberately and pointlessly interrupted fellow Cornish MP Steve Double’s speech by asking the Snozzle MP which part of his own constituency was crossing the Devon border? Maybe she spends so much time up London this “Cornish girl” has forgotten the geography of Cornwall.

She was just getting warmed up. After voting in favour of Devonwall, she stayed in the chamber to filibuster – to use delaying tactics – through an obscure but simple bill that would have taxi drivers and the like attend compulsory disability awareness training – this means more taxis available to take disabled people to work & school etc.

Why on earth would you waste taxpayers time and money on stopping that?

Who is she representing? Who is she working for?

Sorry if this is slipping into more of a rant than a news story but I’m angry with her aren’t you?

coolwetgrascoolwetgrasscoolwetgrass

Reaction on social media to her behaviour has been instant and vicious on both issues.

Labour frontbencher and the bill’s sponsor Andrew Gwynne MP called her “shameful”.

He tweeted “Shameful of Tory MPs Tom Pursglove Sheryll Murray for talking out my Bill. Heartless & pathetic, despite Govt wanting action”

One comment from Kyle’s Evie called her “selfish and uncaring”

– please explain to the public why exactly you hate people who are blind? “

CNP on Devonwall “Sheryll Murray, you have secured your place in Cornish history. When is the next general election?”

@cornishstuff reader LP summed it up perfectly in our new comments section (plug plug)

“You don’t speak 4 me or represent me. What did you actually do…. so disrespectful 4 ur actual constituency do they know u wasted precious time on things that matter”

Disability Rights campaigners have organised a demo outside her office in Liskeard at 1pm this Tuesday (22/11) . Supporters from across Cornwall are expected to attend.

 Interestingly, Truro MP Sarah Newton –  a junior minister and until the summer a Government whip – was in the house at 2pm (she voted in favour of Devonwall) but she did nothing to influence her colleague’s behaviour and see the  bill through – this despite speaking at and sponsoring  a #disabilityconfident event at Hall for Cornwall the previous Friday, an event to promote er.. disability rights and disabled people getting into work…..

    • if you have copies of genuine correspondence that you have sent to Murray on Devonwall please let @cornishstuff know 😉