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- Sept.11.2018: Lobbyists: Brexit's Biggest Beneficiaries. Washington law firm Squire Patton Boggs claims to have "direct access" to both the UK and the EU negotiating teams via its Brexit team, which it says includes "sitting members of the UK Parliament" ref. We have, though, no clue as to which MPs, or Lords it employs: there is no mention on the Parliamentary registers of interests and Squire Patton Boggs did not respond to enquiries. It has, though, hired former Northern Powerhouse minister and Brexiter James Wharton, and used to employ Wharton’s predecessor Jake Berry, when he was Northern Powerhouse minister. Squire Patton Boggs earned $24m from lobbying in the US, where its recent clients include infrastructure giant AECOM, car maker Nissan, and Amazon ref. Tamasin Cave, Unlock Democracy, Spinwatch.
- Aug.23.2018: North braver on Brexit than politicians. People living in the north of England are “braver” about Brexit than Whitehall, Jake Berry said yesterday. He said of those wanting a second referendum: “You are on very dangerous territory if you start from the premise that the voters were wrong or didn’t know what they were doing.” The People's Vote released polling showing that the region, which voted Leave by a 16-point margin two years ago, was now evenly split over the merits of leaving the EU. Mr Berry, a former Remainer who now backs Brexit, said there “could not be any greater danger to democracy” than “frustrating the result” of the referendum. He said the north had voted for Brexit as it felt “disconnected” from the London-based govt. Francis Elliott, The Times.
- Mar.09.20198: Minister criticises 'snowflake' artists who opposed arms firm sponsorship. Jake Berry has described campaigners who forced the arms firm BAE Systems to withdraw as a sponsor of a flagship arts festival in north-east England as “subsidy-addicted artists” and “snowflakes”. he Great Exhibition of the North, which will run from 22 June to 9 September in Gateshead and Newcastle, is being funded by £5m from the government’s northern powerhouse fund, with a further £7.5m to be found from other sources, including sponsorship. BAE Systems, which employs 18,000 people in the north of England, was lined up for an estimated £500,000 sponsorship deal, but decided to pull out after an online petition calling for the event to sever ties with the arms manufacturer garnered more than 2,000 signatures.On Thursday, Jake Berry, the northern powerhouse minister and MP for Rossendale and Darwen – where BAE Systems has a huge manufacturing plant – rounded on the petition’s organisers. He tweeted: This is an absolute disgrace. What these subsidy addicted artists need to realise is that it is the 18000 BAE workers in the North who pay the taxes that support them." The petition organisers said BAE Systems’ decision showed “that arms corporations cannot hide their war profiteering behind arts events”. Frances Perraudin, The Guardian.
- 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. Jake Berry, himself a landlord, was one of those who voted "No". Jon Stone, The Independent.
- Nov.18.2014: Named and shamed: The govt MPs profiting from NHS sell-off. Jake Berry has registered interests in legal lobbying firm Squire Patton Boggs, which worked with multiple NHS trusts on PFI and PPP programs. 71 Coalition MPs (64 Tories / 7 LibDems) acted dishonestly in claiming that the change was for the good for the country, when in fact they meant it was good for themselves. How many of them declared a clear conflict of interest when voting in favour of the Health and Social Care Act in 2012? None, proving that corruption played a huge part in the introduction of private firms into the NHS. Mike Sivier, Vox Political.