Boris Johnson latest: Minister rejects ‘demeaning’ call for shortlist of women to replace ‘Porn MP’

Neil Parish resigns after admitting watching porn in the Commons

A government minister has rejected calls for a shortlist of women to find a replacement for disgraced Tory MP Neil Parish.

Universities Minister Michelle Donelan has said women-only shortlists for legislative candidates are “demeaning” to women.

She argued that it was better to encourage female candidates to enter parliament “on merit”.

“We don’t do that by putting in place quotas which I find quite degrading for women,” she told Sky News. “Women can get there on merit.”

Kwasi Kwarteng, the business secretary, also voiced his opposition to the quotas.

“I’ve never been a fan, frankly, personally, of quotas and shortlists,” he said in an interview over the weekend.

It comes after Oliver Dowden, the leader of the Conservative Party, pledged to ensure half of Tory Commons candidates are women amid allegations of sexual misconduct and intimidation by MPs in parliament.

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Starmer: Cost of living crisis keeping people awake at night

The rising cost of living is keeping people awake at night, Labor leader Keir Starmer said on the campaign trail in Worthing.

He arrived at Worthing Lido before walking along the beach with Worthing Council Labor leader Beccy Cooper.

Sir Keir said: “Everyone is talking about the cost of living crisis.

“What keeps people up at night is worrying about paying their bills and getting taxed by the government.

“From a Labor Party perspective, we believe there should be a windfall tax on oil and gas companies in the North Sea, they have made more profit than they expected.

“Use it for energy bills, up to £600 for those who need it most.”

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 11:32 a.m.

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Twenty-five years later, we can now see that the Blairite truths are eternal

A quarter of a century after the 1997 landslide, Labor is coming back to a better understanding of its own achievements, writes Jean Rentoul.

Read John’s full article here:

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 11:10 a.m.

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Watch: Sturgeon says she ‘tailored my appearance to protect me’ amid sexism row

Speaking to broadcasters earlier, Sturgeon was also asked about the storm of sexism hanging over politics.

She said she adapted how “I seek to protect myself”.

More comments from the Prime Minister below:

“I adapted my appearance to protect myself”: Nicola Sturgeon on sexism in politics

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 10:50 a.m.

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Watch: Sturgeon says she doesn’t expect Scotland to vote no

Nicola Sturgeon took part in the broadcast this morning.

The Prime Minister was asked about a second referendum on Scottish independence.

She says she does not expect Scotland to vote no if a vote takes place. Watch the FM comments here:

Nicola Sturgeon says she ‘doesn’t anticipate Scotland voting no’ in independence referendum

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 10:35 a.m.

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ICYMI: Interest rates are rising this week – expect a bumpy road?

Right now, interest rates are almost absurdly low, and I believe the current crop of central bankers will be judged harshly by history, writes Hamish McRae.

Read Hamish’s full article here:

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 10:14 a.m.

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More than 250 people detected in small boats after rupture in Channel crossings

Some 254 people were detected in small boats crossing the English Channel to the UK on Sunday after an 11-day break from such trips.

The figure was confirmed by the government as more people thought to be migrants were brought to Dover on the Bank Holiday Monday.

There is believed to have been an 11-day break in activity around the English Channel from April 20-30, when no crossings were recorded amid reports of strong winds and rough seas.

Updating its figures from Sunday, the Ministry of Defense confirmed that 254 migrants had been detected in seven small boats.

On Monday morning, more people believed to be migrants were pictured on the Dover lifeboat following what was thought to be a small boating incident in the English Channel.

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 9:55 a.m.

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Sturgeon: sexism in politics is getting worse

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she believes issues of sexism and misogyny in politics are growing, in part due to the impact of social media.

Ms Sturgeon told ITV Hello Brittany“I don’t think there’s a woman alive, not just in politics but in any walk of life, who hasn’t experienced somewhere on the spectrum of misogyny and sexism what is unacceptable.

“In a way, I think it’s worse today than it was when I was a woman starting out in politics.

“You get a little used to it and you get used to it as I see it much more clearly through the eyes of younger women.”

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 9:30 a.m.

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Sturgeon: no illegal referendums

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she will not hold another independence referendum unless it is legal and constitutional.

“I wouldn’t want to go ahead with a referendum that is not legal,” she said.

“The only referendum worthy of the name is one that is democratic, legal and can be effective.

“It would not be in the interest of those who want independence, let alone anyone’s interest, for a referendum to be anything other than legal and constitutional, because that is the only way to ensure the independence.”

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 9:10 a.m.

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Tories split from call to find female candidate to replace porn shame MP

Universities Minister Michelle Donelan has said women-only shortlists for legislative candidates are “demeaning” to women.

Our political editor Andre Bécasse reports:

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 8:50 a.m.

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Outraged Somerset voters burn Tory candidate posters

People destroy and burn election posters of a Conservative council candidate in Somerset, it has been reported.

Dawn Denton, election candidate in the Conservative Party of Frome North, said The telegraph she received a bad response when canvassed in the campaign

“Farmers said they were happy to put them up, but they are getting trashed,” she said.

“People say they’re going to put them very close to the election, because we know they won’t survive.

“I also had people throwing leaflets at me through the door.”

Matt MatherMay 2, 2022 8:37 a.m.

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