Brandon Lewis

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  • Jul.19.2018: Jo Swinson pairing row: Conservatives admit chief whip asked MPs to break arrangements. Julian Smith made error in asking Tory MP to vote despite pact with Lib Dem. Party sources conceded on Thursday night that Julian Smith had asked several Tory MPs to break pairing arrangements but most had refused to do so. It is not the first time that Smith has been at the centre of a row about whipping arrangements as the govt tries to get through its Brexit legislation at a time when it has a wafer-thin parliamentary majority. The only one who did obey the instruction was paired to a Liberal Democrat MP who was on maternity leave. In June the sick Labour MP Naz Shah had to be pushed through the division lobby in a wheelchair after the Tory whips refused a request to allow her vote to be counted without her having to pass through the lobby. Suspicions about Brandon Lewis’s voting came to a head on Thursday. Tory MP Andrew Bridgen cast doubt on claims the incident was an honest mistake. He told the BBC’s Daily Politics: “I think the fact that Brandon Lewis abstained on six votes and then just mysteriously voted on the vital two – I think it tells you all you need to know.” Dan Sabbagh, Jessica Elgot, The Guardian.
  • Mar.17.2018: Promise of roubles 'dazzled Tories". Comments section: "Having heard the Chairman of the Conservatives, Brandon Lewis, claim that it was completely legitimate to accept donations from UK citizens of Russian origin provided that the donation passed the test of satisfying Electoral Commission rules, it would appear that this form of selective blindness has continued its existence in the Conservative Party. His suggestion that it would be ethically questionable to deny such people their right to make political donations would suggest that it will continue into the future. Given that many Russian expatriates will avail themselves of dual nationality, again perfectly legally, would it not make sense to to check upon the company they keep as well as the apparent provenance of their wealth? The Times.
  • Feb.13.2018: Labour’s renationalisation plans are not only expensive but dangerous. Many will be too young to remember the days of the nationalised utilities, but it’s worth taking a look back to see how things were when politicians were in charge. Power blackouts meant sales of candles boomed as homes were left without electricity. There were telephone waiting lists... Brandon Lewis, The Times.
  • Oct.02.2017: Iain Dale’s 100 most influential people on the Right 2017. Minister for Immigration. A rising star, and an excellent media performer, Lewis was unlucky not to make full Cabinet, and he will be one of the first knocking on the door in the next reshuffle. We said that last year but mean it even more this year. He’s gradually got a grip on a department which is famous for its incompetent administration. Possibly a successor to Patrick McLoughlin as Party Chairman. Iain Dale, ConservativeHome.
  • Jul.10.2017: Channel 4 Dispatches - Secrets of Britain's New Homes. An investigation asks why so few affordable homes are being built, and examines links between the govt and the property industry. Gallagher Estates, private developer behind the 1st phase of 1,500 homes, has successfully battled the council to halve the number of affordable homes and remove a restriction on minimum room sizes. Despite this, in Nov.2014 then housing minister Brandon Lewis threw the govt's "full weight of support" behind Northstowe. The developer, Gallagher Estates, was owned by Anthony Gallagher, a major donor to the Conservative Party. In recent years Gallagher has given the Party more than £1.25m and is a member of the Leaders Group. In Feb.2017, Gallagher sold Gallagher Estates for some £500m and in Apr.2017 made a £20,000 donation to Brandon Lewis's election campaign. Channel 4.
  • Jan.12.2016: Tories vote down law requiring landlords make their homes fit for human habitation. Labour MP Teresa Pearce's amendment to the Housing and Planning Bill 2016, which would place a duty on landlords to ensure that their properties are fit for habitation when let and remain fit during the course of the tenancy, was defeated by 312 votes to 219. Marcus Jones said the govt believed that homes should be fit for human habitation, but did not want to pass a new law that would explicitly require it. Other ministers claimed the proposal would impose "unnecessary regulation" on landlords, and that it would push up rents. Brandon Lewis, himself a landlord, was one of those who voted "No". Jon Stone, The Independent.