Don Macintyre's Sketch: Will the Tories' leading lady ever get her man?
To say Mark Reckless is obsessed with the evils of Europe would be an understatement
Thursday 18 April 2013
In Keith Vaz’s view, Theresa May is now engaged in one of the great mano a mano struggles of our time. True, while the term originated in the bullfighting arena, he prefers a sporting analogy closer to home: “It’s like one of those long-running Wimbledon finals in the fifth set. May vs Qatada. It seems to go on for ever and ever…”
Vaz did not actually say that the super-radical Islamist cleric and his ingenious lawyers were all that stood between her and the Tory leadership candidacy, for which she was recently touted. But he came pretty close. “You have made this a key feature of your role as Home Secretary, getting rid of this man,” he told her, adding hastily: “by legal means I should say,” as if worried he was putting ideas in her head.
But as if Qatada wasn’t enough, Ms May also had to deal with her fellow Tory Mark Reckless, MP. Reckless is an able barrister with City experience. But to say that he is obsessed with the evils of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights in particular would be to understate the case.
He accused her of “craven surrender” to the ECHR by refusing to “test” its Qatada judgment in the Supreme Court. This seemed a bit unfair given that she has tried to ingratiate herself with the Tory right by suggesting the UK might eventually withdraw from the Court’s ambit altogether.
She was also pressed on a tendency by some of the newly elected Police and Crime Commissioners to spend cash on activities not that relevant to protecting the public. Specifically, in Cumbria, where information leaked to the regional press that the local commissioner racked up £700 in expenses on trips in a chauffeur-driven Mercedes on dining trips with his wife has so far led to three arrests. Prosecutions were a matter for the police, she said.
The Liberal Democrat MP Julian Huppert was perturbed that on the Thursday before Ms May announced that she was taking over the functions of the UK Border Agency, a ministerial written answer said it was all going swimmingly.
So if the Government in future said that a “government body was on a sure footing that doesn’t exclude the possibility that a decision has been taken to abolish it?”
Ms May replied: “The Home Office will make a statement which it believes appropriate at the time it makes it.” Gleeful cries all round of “Yes Minister.”
- 1 Howard Jacobson: Let's see the 'criticism' of Israel for what it really is
- 3 Belgium fan Axelle Despiegelaere lands L'Oreal campaign after World Cup viral photo
- 4 Britney Spears sings 'Alien' without Auto-Tune in embarrassingly brilliant leaked audio clip
- 5 PornHub begs users to stop uploading video clips of Brazil getting beaten 7-1
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Instagram of US airport security chiefs: Lipstick knives and IED training kits among items seized
‘Ryan Gosling got someone pregnant and it's not me. Brazil you think you’re devastated…’
Israel-Palestine crisis: ‘We just want it to end… We don’t deserve to live like this’
Israel-Palestine crisis: Eight killed in Gaza Strip cafe while watching World Cup semi-final
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
There’s a nasty smell in the political air – and it’s coming from the Tories
Vanessa Feltz criticises 'vile' reaction to Rolf Harris allegations
£60000 - £75000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Business Analyst Consultant (Fina...
£60000 per annum: Harrington Starr: A leading provider in investment managemen...
£600 - £700 per day: Harrington Starr: AVS, JVS Openlink Endur Developer JVS, ...
£45000 - £60000 per annum + competitive: Progressive Recruitment: Exciting opp...