Rishi joins the pork pie plotters
Westminster denizens will no doubt remember the infamous ‘pork pie plotters’ who conspired to bring down Boris Johnson. A group of 20 MPs from the Red Wall cohort – supposedly led by Alicia Kearns who represents the home of Melton Mowbray – who met in January 2022 to organise a coup against the PM who won them their seats.
It’s arguable a line can be traced all the way from that meeting to Rishi Sunak entering Downing Street as Boris Johnson’s successor-but-one.
It seems appropriate, therefore, that when MPs arrived at Downing Street earlier this week for a garden party with the PM, what else should he serve them but luxury pork pies from his local butchers in North Yorkshire.
The pies apparently came from Kitson’s in Northallerton, who appear to be long-time supporters of Rishi Sunak’s.
For the 2015 General Election, when Mr Sunak entered the Commons, Kitson’s provided an enormous ‘special edition Conservative election pie’: “Pork, Shepherd’s Purse Blue Monday cheese, Yorkshire chutney and a lattice top”. The pie was ‘launched’ by Rishi Sunak and his predecessor William Hague.
According to one outraged customer on Yelp, it’s not all plane sailing for the luxury butchers: “Bought pork and stuffing pies today, First time since lockdown. Prices rose 25p a pie.”
Presumably, it’s what inspired Rishi’s pledge to halve inflation…
Talking of pies…
According to MPs’ expenses returns, Labour MP Beth Winter spent £3 of taxpayers’ money on mince pies last December.
Beachcomber asked Downing Street whether Rishi paid for his own MPs’ catering this week – they insisted there was no cost to the taxpayer…
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Tory MPs unsympathetic to Rishi’s financial plight
If Rishi had used taxpayers’ cash to pay for his MPs’ drinks and nibbles in Downing Street, you could hardly have blamed him.
Yesterday’s Times Rich List revealed Mr and Mrs Sunak lost £200million in the last year. Beachcomber wonders if he has an extra large sofa for money to get lost behind…
At the bar last night it seems one or two critics of the Prime Minister on the right of the party, still a little sore about Boris and Liz being turfed out (well less Liz to be honest!) were engaging in some dark humour on the issue.
A message was being passed around saying: “£200million! That’s the cost of a coup!”
A joke of course, although as one parliamentary drinking partner, unimpressed with the high tax low growth approach of this government, suggested: “If you have c*** economic policies, that’s what happens.”
Bad news for Therese
Looking ahead to the Tory conference, news reaches Beachcomber that may prove crushing for party animal Therese Coffey, the Environment Secretary.
Ms Coffey is rather partial to a Karaoke session, occasionally hosting them for her colleagues in Parliament from time to time.
Now a traditional Tory conference staple, Toryaoke, could be at risk.
The historic organisers, InHouse, may be planning on scrapping the party staple in favour of Labour conference, which is set to gather before the Tories this year.
Thankfully Manchester’s Midland Hotel has a piano in the bar…
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