Tag Archives: duncan hames

Jo Swinson on shared parental leave: “It means mums might go back to work earlier and dads might get to spend more time with their children”

swinson and hamesThere was an in-depth interview with Jo Swinson, Lib Dem business minister, in Tuesday’s London Evening Standard – her first interview since returning from maternity leave, having given birth. You can read the full feature here, but snippets below…

Jo Swinson on her (and Duncan Hames’) baby being the first carried through the voting lobby of the Commons:

“Given that we’re still voting until 10pm on a Monday, that makes our lives slightly easier. It saves you having to leave the baby with a stranger.” Is Swinson pleased it was a male MP who was the first to do this? “Yes. Having a baby has an impact on dads too — and people don’t always recognise that.”

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

Duncan and Andrew Hames make history

Last week Harriet Harman said a rumour had been put round that she’d - shock horror- taken a baby through the voting lobby:

When I came back after having my first baby I was reported to the serjeant-at-arms for breaking the rules by taking my baby through the division lobby under my jacket.

What a difference 30 years makes.

Tonight, Jo Swinson tweeted:

At least, we’re assuming that it …

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Three reasons to hope that new enquiries will bring a satisfactory conclusion to child abuse scandal

Parliament SunsetTheresa May has announced two enquiries into historic allegations of child abuse.

The BBC reports:

The head of the children’s charity NSPCC is to lead a review of historical child sex abuse allegations, Home Secretary Theresa May has announced.

photo by:
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Andrew Lennox Marshall Hames: The first picture

Well, not the first actual picture, of course, but the first that the likes of you and I are allowed to see.

And, the undeniable fact is that the firstborn son of Jo Swinson and Duncan Hames is incredibly, snuggliciously cute.

Andrew Hames

 

In addition to the gorgeousness of the baby, I love the obvious besottedness of his parents, And the Lib Dem yellow pram.

Congratulations to Jo and Duncan.

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Duncan Hames steps down as PPS to Nick Clegg and Simon Wright takes over

Following this afternoon’s wonderful news about the safe arrival of Andrew Lennox Marshall Hames,  the Belfast Telegraph reports that his dad, Duncan Hames, has decided to step down from his position as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Nick Clegg so that he has “more time to spend with our new baby”:

Mr Hames said: “When I told Nick that I would be wanting more time to spend with our new baby, I knew he would understand.

“Now that our son, Andrew, is with us, I am stepping down as the Deputy Prime Minister’s PPS.

“I truly appreciated the opportunity to see the coalition

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++Jo Swinson and Duncan Hames welcome son Andrew

When Jo Swinson and Duncan Hames got engaged, they announced it by a co-ordinated tweets.

They carried on that tradition to announce the birth of their son Andrew. He was born on Sunday, but they’ve just announced his arrival in the last few minutes.

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Jo Swinson and Duncan Hames expecting Christmas baby

swinson and hamesLovely news, via the Kirkintilloch Herald that Jo Swinson and Duncan Hames are expecting their first baby and he or she is due to put in an appearance on Christmas Day.

The Lib Dem MP made the announcement exclusively to the Herald, two years after marrying fellow MP Duncan Hames.

Jo (33) became the youngest MP in the House of Commons when she won the East Dunbartonshire seat in 2005 at the age of just 25 – continuing to be the so-called ‘Baby of the House’ until July 2009.

Now the MP,

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11 Liberal Democrat MPs vote for registrars to be exempt from marrying same sex couples

The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Bill has made fairly easy progress through the Commons tonight. After a Government/Labour compromise on a review for extending civil partnerships to opposite sex couples, and the heavy defeat or withdrawal of amendments, including “son of Section 28″, it looks as though many of the barriers to this Bill’s passage have been removed.

There is still a further day of debate tomorrow, though, and further amendments to be debated.

One of the amendments discussed today, defeated by 340 votes to 150 in favour, was to allow registrars to exempt themselves from marrying same sex couples. Eleven Liberal …

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Duncan Hames is one to watch – Independent

Duncan Hames - Some rights reserved by Duncan HamesDuncan Hames has been picked out by the Independent as a political star of the future. John Rentoul feeds some “scientific criteria” into his machine to come up with a list of MPs to watch in the future. The criteria include performing well on TV, networking, administrative ability and ideological positioning.

Duncan comes out of the machine as the one Lib Dem pickee:

Duncan Hames, 35, who has been PPS to Nick Clegg

Posted in News | 5 Comments

In other news… Hemming “resignation threat”, Rogerson on second home tax, Russell on Israel & more

MP John Hemming’s fury over ‘cover-ups’ (Daily Express)

A LIB Dem MP threatened to resign the party whip last night and sit as an independent unless child protection was treated “more seriously”. John Hemming said the Government was “dangerously complacent” about the level of cover-ups at ­children’s homes and in the ­wider family justice system. He said if ministers did not demonstrate “a change of attitude”, he would withdraw his “personal support for the Government”.

Mentally impaired people ‘exploited by court-appointed deputies’ (BBC News)

Action is needed to prevent vulnerable people being ripped-off by those appointed by the courts to manage

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Jo Swinson, Julian Huppert & David Laws top Lib Dem members’ reshuffle promotion wish-list

Lib Dem Voice polled our members-only forum recently to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. Some 500 party members have responded, and we’re publishing the full results.

LDV asked: Which backbench Lib Dem MPs who are not current ministers would you like to see promoted? (Please write-in.) (NB: I’ve set the cut-off for inclusion in this list at 5 individual mentions.)

    Jo Swinson 77
    Julian Huppert 73
    David Laws 66
    Tim Farron 25
    Duncan Hames 21
    Simon Hughes 19
    Andrew George 16
    Tessa Munt 16
Posted in LDV Members poll | Also tagged , , , , , and | 7 Comments

In other news… Thurso on banking, Ward on immigration, Swales on G4S & other stories

Here’s a round-up of stories we haven’t had time to cover on the site this past few days…

John Thurso MP to lead banking inquiry (John O’Groat Journal)

CAITHNESS, Sutherland and Easter Ross MP John Thurso has been elected to lead an inquiry into how the banking system is run. The Lib Dem politician has been chosen as one of five representatives who will

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PMQs: My honourable friend makes an important point

I think David Cameron broke his own record this week:

(To Nicolas Soames) My right honourable Friend makes an important point.

(To Julian Brazier) My honourable Friend makes two very important points.

(To Duncan Hames) My honourable Friend raises an important point.

Posted in PMQs | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

Nick Clegg responds as more Labour councillors deride extra money for poor pupils

Following Manchester Labour’s extraordinary attack on the pupil premium – describing the policy as a “sham” – news reaches The Voice via Lib Dem councillor Steve Beasant that a Labour cabinet member on North East Lincolnshire Council has joined his Manchester colleagues in their criticism.

As Paul Walter reported earlier, Nick Clegg was asked about the comments of Manchester’s Labour councillors at Tuesday’s Deputy Prime Minister’s Questions by Lib Dem MP Duncan Hames. Here’s the full exchange:

Duncan Hames (Chippenham) (LD): Wiltshire schools have long felt short-changed by funding allocations for education, so they will welcome the doubling of pupil

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DPMQs: LibDem MPs enjoy an untroubled post-questions lunch

Time was when Deputy Prime Minister’s Questions was the closest you got to bloodsports in the House of Commons. The DPM would be tethered, red-faced and growling, to the dispatch box, as Labour MPs taunted him and propelled all sorts of bile at him, augmented by the odd tactical nuclear missile rear-launched by the Tory swivel-eyes.

We’ve come a long way in a few months. Now, DPMQs are relatively sedate affairs. The DPM is well in control and there is little mischief from the Labour benches. Well, none that would spoil LibDem MPs’ lunches.

Indeed, at least four MPs found it difficult …

Posted in Parliament | Also tagged , , , , , , and | 1 Comment

Jenny Willott MP writes… Protecting a lifeline – Lib Dem success in battle for DLA Mobility Component

With all the headlines and discussion this week about the Autumn Statement and public sector strikes, people would have been forgiven for missing an announcement from the Minister for Disabled People, Maria Miller MP, that proves once again the Lib Dem influence in Government, and fulfilling yet another Conference motion.

Maria Miller has today announced that the Government is dropping the proposals to remove the Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA) from people in residential care homes.

The reversal answers the calls our Party made last Spring in Liverpool, where we passed a motion calling for the plan to be dropped. …

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PMQs: Nadine Dorries asks question. No-one dies.

Today was the fiftieth anniversary of Prime Minister’s Questions. And it was a fairly typical session. As always, it was in two parts.

Part one: Lots of jeering, cheering, knockabout, winding-up and prepared lines exchanged between the PM and opposition leader.

Part Two: Generally hum-drum but important questions from various back-benchers, largely heard in earnest silence.

The bit that most people will see will be the short bit on the telly, which will be a few seconds of ya-boo politics. In itself, that is a good piece of democracy in that it highlights the weaknesses of the government and the opposition. The longer …

Posted in Europe / International and PMQs | Also tagged , , , , and | 5 Comments

End of term report for Lib Dem MPs’ Class of 2010

As the House of Commons rises this Tuesday, the BBC’s Gavin Stamp gives new MPs of all parties his end-of-term report.

Here’s what he has to say about the new Lib Dem intake:

New entrants were small in number but still accounted for almost one in six of the Parliamentary party.

No new MPs made it into the ranks of ministers or were asked to head up a series of backbench committees designed to help the party retain an independent voice on issues outside the coalition.

However, Gordon Birtwhistle and Duncan Hames became parliamentary private secretaries, the latter also finding time to

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Lord Tyler writes: Don’t listen to the doomsayers

Since the publication of the Government’s White Paper and Draft Bill on House of Lords reform, the old guard have lined up to cavil about its detail, to deride its democratic principles and to defend – in the last ditch – the status quo.

This has augmented the popular media’s predisposition towards arch cynicism and trenchant pessimism. Yet there is firm evidence to contradict their lazy assumptions. Just because Labour engaged in over a decade of dither and delay does not mean that a determined government, with the resolve of the House of Commons behind it, cannot succeed.

The …

Posted in Op-eds and Parliament | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , and | 8 Comments

“Speaking rights only” for unelected peers – Hames

Another barnstorming speech on Lords reform, this time by Duncan Hames MP in last night’s Commons debate.

Duncan reiterates the suggestion he made earlier in the debate, that unelected peers should have speaking rights only:

Does the right hon. Gentleman think that bishops voting in the House of Lords adds in any way to the expertise they are able to offer through what they say in that Chamber, and might they find it easier to remain in that Chamber if they were to desist from taking part in Divisions?

The speech in full:

It is a privilege to follow Rory Stewart, not

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DPMQs: Nick Clegg looks forward to Mañana

The LDV Collective have asked me to add the monthly Deputy Prime Minister’s Questions to my radar screen. When these sessions started they seemed rather manufactured and unnecessary. However, they have evolved into an important part of the Commons’ calendar, covering a wide range of key issues. They are of interest especially for those of us in the Liberal Democrats who are interested in hearing what Nick Clegg has to say in his official capacity, under scrutiny from MPs, in a mercifully Flashman-free environment.

But this will never be like Prime Minister’s Question Time. The chamber is only about a …

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LDV survey: The new Lib Dem MPs who’ve impressed party members the most

Lib Dem Voice has polled our members-only forum to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. Over 660 party members have responded, and we’re currently publishing the full results.

LDV asked: Which of the newly elected Lib Dem MPs has genuinely impressed you to date?

Our sample of party members could tick as many (or few) of the 10 ‘newbie’ MPs as they liked. Here are the top five:

  • 45% – Julian Huppert, Cambridge
  • 17% – Tessa Munt, Wells
  • 17% – Duncan Hames, Chippenham

Posted in LDV Members poll | Also tagged , , and | 7 Comments

Have-a-go Hames

Duncan Hames' hero tweet

Duncan Hames, the new Liberal Democrat MP for Chippenham, has spoken of chasing after a man who snatched a woman’s bag in his constituency.

From the BBC:

Liberal Democrat Duncan Hames said he had been sitting in his car at traffic lights on Friday when he saw the theft.

He pulled over, spoke to the woman to make sure she was unhurt and chased after the thief through Monkton Park.

He said a cyclist who also saw what happened managed to retrieve the bag. Mr

Posted in News | Also tagged | 1 Comment

The Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Private Secretaries

The appointments of various LibDem MPs to be PPS to ministers have been rather low-profile, so in case you have missed any here is the complete list:

Gordon Birtwistle – PPS to Danny Alexander
Mike Crockart – PPS to Michael Moore
Duncan Hames – PPS to Sarah Teather
Jo Swinson – PPS to Vince Cable
Jenny Willott – PPS to Chris Huhne

and in addition Norman Lamb as Chief Parliamentary and Political Adviser to Nick Clegg is also his PPS.

Posted in News and Parliament | Also tagged , , , and | 10 Comments

Lessons for future campaigning from the 2010 election

The Wednesday lunchtime at Liverpool conference saw myself chairing the last of The Voice’s fringe meetings, this one looking at lessons from the 2010 general election.

Our guest speakers were Hilary Stephenson (Director of Campaigns), Duncan Hames (newly elected as MP for Chippenham) and Paul Holmes (former MP for Chesterfield).

Thanks to Alex for sorting out the recording and podcasting wizardry.

Play
Posted in Conference and Podcasts | Also tagged and | 6 Comments

LibDemVoice.org at Conference

Once again, Lib Dem Voice have a varied and exciting programme at the Lib Dem federal conference planned for Liverpool next month.

Some of our events are still taking form; others are now so well established they are almost traditional.

And don’t worry if you are unable to join us in person at conference – we will be making recordings of the events and making them available right here on the blog, so that you can get the conference feel coming in your ears wherever you are in the nation.

For your delight and delectation, here are some details.

Blog of the Year Awards

Join …

Posted in Conference and Events | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

Office of the Public Guardian finally starts to get some serious public scrutiny

The Office of the Public Guardian should be a wonderful public service, helping people have more control over how their lives are sorted out if they get to a point where they can’t make decisions for themselves. That’s the theory anyway. The reality is somewhat different, as I’ve chronicled with their long and complicated paperwork:

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

Lib Dem MP Duncan Hames delivers his Mpinions

Duncan Hames, the Lib Dem MP for Chippenham is the second of our newbie MPs to take part in a viral video campaign called ‘Mpinions’. Here’s the spiel from its creators:

Mpinions is allowing new MPs to properly introduce themselves to you and all in a few easily-digestible minutes! Consider it the speed dating of the political world! The video campaign itself will be running until the end of August and is being sponsored by The Electoral Reform Society and supported and promoted online by the Hansard Society, Operation Black Vote, Dod’s Parliamentary Communications and The British Youth Council. Videos

Posted in YouTube | 10 Comments

Hames, Swinson to wed

I had hoped not to write this story immediately after the last, less happy one, but sometimes, them’s the breaks.

Not since Baroness Scott and the Lib Dem’s bureaucrat of choice Mark Valladeres changed their facebook statuses to “engaged” has the Lib Dem online world been so charged with romance.

Now Jo Swinson and Duncan Hames used the medium of Twitter to tell the world of their engagement, to cheers of encouragement all round.

Every congratulation and wish for happiness from all your friends at t’Voice.

Posted in News | Also tagged , , , and | 8 Comments

Chippenham’s double Lib Dem win

Lorraine Roberts Rance with Chippenham PPC Duncan Hames
Two new Liberal Democrat Councillors were elected yesterday in the new Chippenham constituency:

Posted in Council by-elections | Also tagged , and | 2 Comments
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