The book — Michael Gove: A Man In A Hurry — by Owen Bennett, recalls the incident in detail, leading to a bitter blame game for the leak among Mr Gove’s top team, with suspicion falling on Ms Armstrong.
One insider told The Mail on Sunday it ‘doesn’t take Sherlock to work out how this got out’. Another claimed Ms Armstrong had the ‘dark arts flowing through her’ and had cut her teeth as a researcher at Conservative Party HQ, digging up dirt about Labour.
Last night, Mr Raab’s team said: ‘This did not come from anyone involved in the Raab campaign. We would never look to score cheap political points like this.’
3) #Raab NDA trended on Twitter (Tues 11th June)..
Maria Miller was forced to defend Raab on the radio. Lots of people have been asking who did Raab C get to sign the #NDA? While he CAN talk about it, she can’t!
4) Raab has a lot of money to burn on Facebook ads targeting older Tory members.
Dominic Raab dropped over £50,000* on Facebook ads in the last week, just before the spending limit deadline, way more than any of his rivals.
5) Raab is STILL blocking people who share this video of him on Twitter
The future PM has famously blocked Victoria Derbyshire, LBC’s James O’Brien and, of course, us here in his constituency of Esher and Walton.
It isn’t a big problem, we just have to sign out of our account to view Raab C’s appalling attempts at social video.
But more people are joining the #BlockedByRaab club
They seem to get an instant blocking for sharing infamous foodbank video.. Can you get yourself blocked by @DominicRaab
Journalists gathered on Monday (10/6/19) to watch Raab C’s leadership launch at the Royal Festival Hall and here are 10 scary things we learnt about the original Brextremist..(and that’s not Esther McVey)
The day was notable in London for constant rain. It was if God himself was shedding tears of pain, as he was forced to listen to one un-costed pledge to cut income tax / National Insurance or VAT after another, after another, from the various #ToryLeadershipContest rivals. First it was Hancock, then Raab, then McVey and finally Gove..
But let’s get down to business… What did we learn in those painful 22 minutes of Dominic Raab speaking words, very, very badly?
1) What’s this? Raab is being introduced by the Chair of the Women and Equalities Select Committee??
WOW! Now this is a surprise.
How much bullying did it take to get well-known feminist Maria Miller, Chair of the Women and Equalities Select Committee, to introduce not-so-well known feminist, Dominic Raab?
2) Raab doesn’t understand irony – “We’ve been humiliated in this country during the talks with the EU”
Can we PLEASE just remind Raab who was responsible for the negotiations…. Yes, it was YOU who has humiliated the UK..
“The tired approach that got us into this mess… [Raab, that was YOU!]
…can’t get us out of it” [We agree. #StopRaab becoming PM]
3) The man is really boring… for a self-proclaimed “buccaneer”
While nobody could actually see Hancock at his campaign launch also at the Royal Festival Fall – a classic schoolboy error is that you don’t stand in front of a bright window. You’ll just appear in the dark on camera.
Chaotic at times, Hancock’s launch was a blast compared to the dull, and deeply, deeply, serious Raab C launch, which occurred a floor beneath in the Royal Festival Hall.
We loved it when a fired-up Hancock asked journalists: “If you could choose, what time you would be alive? Wouldn’t you choose now?”
Even McVey had her picture of Thatcher and the EXCITEMENT of a stage invader [who she actually laughed at!].
4) “Me, 3 years-old, and the bowl haircut”
For some reason, Raab C seems to believe his upbringing is REALLY interesting.
Unlike Gove or Hancock, who are happy to speak without notes, nervous Raab was totally scripted. And those scripted “jokes” barely got a laugh.. [there is one involving Emily Thornberry that is just soooo painful].
Raab was so nervous and so dull in contrast to Gove, who strolled around the stage confident and with his notes rolled up, ready for action.
5) Raab has a great memory. He may have been just two years-old, but Raab remembers 1976 VERY well.
He has a stunningly good memory of the strikes of ’76, inflation and coffins piling up – bearing in mind Raab would have been just TWO YEARS OLD!
Raab was born on 25 February 1974, so we doubt he was worried about inflation aged two.
We developed a nasty cough [cough..”bullshit!”], whenever Raab talks about his formative life experiences that resulted his becoming a Brextremist Tory.
We are pretty sure its all TRUE [cough..bullshit!] that he recalls the “national pride” of a Silver Jubilee “street party” which he [apparently] attended way back in 1977, presumably rocking his trademark “bowl haircut.”
6) Worryingly, Raab has NO FEAR of bringing his kids into his leadership campaign
We believes that MPs should have a private life.
We wouldn’t invade Raab’s privacy by NAMING his father, mother OR CHILDREN (who, we found out are just 6 and 4 years old..poor “little mites”).
But Raab is happy to bring his family into his politics, particularly if it allows him to illustrate yet another lesson he learnt on his way to become a Thatcherite Tory.
Who names his own kids at a launch speech in front of journalists at the Royal Festival Hall? We have a feeling that by invading the privacy of his family may well come back to haunt him, should he ever become PM.
But we WILL name Mrs Raab C – that is Erika Rey-Raab mainly because Raab C wants us to know that she is BRAZILIAN. Last time we checked, Brazil wasn’t in the EU so her right to remain in the UK will be just fine after Brexit [we hope!].
Raab C wants us to know that his wife, Erika, who is Brazilian (we thought we would remind you!) because he is trying to get across that he is completely fine with immigration (not like some of those nasty fruitcakes and racists in UKIP).
Raab has form in the area of using is family in attack videos. A particular gutter move, was to use a picture of his late father, a Jewish refugee, in a social video to attack Corbyn. #NotFair
7) He refers to the UK crashing out of the EU as merely a “transition”
He talks about hard Brexit causing a period of “uncertainty” and “transition” for British businesses. But that’s not what the CBI is saying!
Business is saying that a WTO Brexit will be carnage for the British economy, which is already flatlining.
He double-downed on the warning that Parliament won’t stop him from crashing out of the EU in October.
8) “I believe in a second chance society”
Do you Raab C? Really?
That isn’t just a soundbite? PS: what is a “second chance society”, anyway?
9) “That’s a pay rise for the nurse, getting up at 5 am to catch the bus to work..”
Then the moment came, like any good Tory he offered a tax bribe. In his case, a cut in National Insurance contributions for the poor (like nurses).
That’s when the heavens started to open and sensible Hammond started to rain tears of despair.
In fairness Raab wasn’t the first or the last last Tory leadership contender that day to offer un-costed tax cuts, which the editor of the FT described in a Tweet as “financial incontinence”.
10) He opposes climate change and wants to stop it, unlike “luddite Labour Party”
Well, well, well…. Raab isn’t blue, he is GREEN.
Look Raab, we’ve read your voting record on preventing climate change…. and its frankly all hot air..
Raab on climate change
11) He thinks things will go “back to normal” once Brexit is delivered…
Brextremists believe if only we can just get out of the EU, by whatever means necessary, and things will return to normal.
The Party will reunite and the Tories can carry on being, well….Tories.
They don’t understand that Brexit will NEVER end. Whitehall will be dealing with it for decades to come.
Unpicking and re-writing all the trade deals and introducing new regulation will go on and on, and ON…..
We’ll be employing EXTRA staff to man the borders, not fewer.
We’ll be arguing for decades to come over why a box of tyres is able to move across a border, yet a human needs to have their passport stamped.
It is why we have to Revoke Article 50.
Remain and then reform the EU.
While he will no doubt blame his old boss May (he has form in this area), a wise Raab would consider that the top Pro-Remain parties – Lib Dems, Greens, and Change UK – got a grand total of just over 23,000 votes.
Easily beating the combined efforts of the Brexit Party (11,648) and other pro-Brexit parties.
In the past Raab C has taken his safe Tory seat for granted, but at the next GE he may actually have to do something extraordinary – actually bother to campaign.
But Raab would love to be made PM, Drive through a hard Brexit,
Preferably NOT call a General Election anytime soon.
Surely, Tory members will view this as completely anti-democratic?
Does Dominic Raab really understand the catastrophic impact that a no-deal Brexit will have on the UK and his constituents in Esher & Walton?
In this video the ‘lightbulb’ truly goes off when he is ‘jarred’ to hear that leaving the EU may require MORE government red tape, rather than less. This must lead him to question whether leaving the EU is really such a genius move after all.
Raab is a small state Tory. His big leadership promise is to to bring tax cuts by slashing civil service jobs and by cutting Whitehall bureaucracy.
But what’s this? We may have to employ MORE people to man the borders.
The former Brexit minister who, let’s not forget negotiated a deal with the EU, which he then voted against, has form in this area.
He famously “hadn’t quite understood the full extent” to which Britain is reliant on the Dover-Calais crossing for frictionless trade.
Quite a few off us are already ahead of Raab when it comes to appreciating what a nightmare a WTO Brexit will be, including the civil service. We welcome more lightbulb moments.
Although being pragmatic politician, the earliest you would get away with holding it would be 2020…
‘I think the sensible thing, if it’s very close, within a couple of points, would be to take pause, respect the verdict of the British people and effectively shelve this debate until that point, which I hope is going to be as close to the 2020 election as possible.
‘Take some pause for breath and measure up the direction of the EU against the changes the Remain campaign say they’ve secured.
‘I think the public would expect us to accept their verdict, but of course things change.’
‘If the verdict is to stay in the EU, and it’s close, I think those that do want to revisit it should just pause for a few years and shelve it into that.’
In the same article, Raab ponders how quickly Brexiters in the Tory party would be able to remove Cameron (as it was assumed that Remain would win).
This is further evidence that Dominic would never ever consider folding, if the UK voted to Remain in the UK. So Raab must understand that Remain supporters in Esher & Walton won’t be stopping any time soon either.
So this is rare occasion where we AGREE with Raab.
Let’s have a 2nd Referendum in 2020… after all the result was, to use Raab’s words, “within a couple of points”
Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, Andrea Leadsom, Jeremy Hunt, Rory Stewart, Sajid Javid, Matthew Hancock and James Cleverly are the eight candidates to nail their colours to the mast this way. Opponents Esther McVey, Kit Malthouse and Mark Harper have so far refrained from commenting.
In fact, just one of the Tory leadership candidates – former Brexit secretary Dominic Raab – has explicitly said that he isn’t a feminist.
Stylist rightly called out BoJo for his comments about Muslim women, although as mayor he did quadruple the number of rape crisis centres.
So what about Raab?
He has said that the Government Equalities Office – where policy relating to women, sexual orientation and transgender equality is developed – should be abolished, describing it as “pointless”.
Since throwing his hat into the ring for the top job, Raab has refused to backpedal on his stance, though he has tried to soften it somewhat. He told ITV News that he was “probably not” a feminist, adding: “The point I was making is that sexism is wrong and it’s wrong if it’s said about a woman or about a man… I’m all for working women making the very best of their potential.”
We think the readers of Stylist magazine have got the measure of Raab. Sadly, we doubt many are Tory members or MPs
If you believe the rumours in The Times, Raab has been taken lessons in ‘authenticity.’ Now out of the classroom, Raab’s had a chance to put theory into practice…needless to say it hasn’t gone well..
Theory: Learning to be authentic…
Create a meaningless ‘Pledge’ – please play fair (except when attacking Labour)
Good guy Dominic Raab has signed the Dominic Raab Pledge to be fair to his other candidates. But he only managed to get two other candidates to sign, interestingly both Remainers. Boris didn’t sign (or was he even invited by Raab?) implying that perhaps Boris won’t be playing “fair” .
We find it slightly rich that Raab won’t “speak ill of fellow Conservatives”. Yet he wouldn’t stoop so low to bring the memory of his late father, a Jewish refugee, into the gutter with him when he attacked Corbyn on anti-semitism in a social media video (30/5/19)?
Would he? The attack video doesn’t hold back and its personal. It is surely a new low in political campaigning?
Film a social media video in the park about… FAIRNESS!
Here we see Raab in his natural environment, playing in a park outside Parliament. He wants to talk to us about “fairness” which he has (apparently) been fighting for all his “working life.” Hmm…..
But something caught his eye just before filming, that seemed to distract him. Whatever it was it seriously buggered up the start of the video… I would have gone for a re-take.
Was it pesky grey squirrel running up a tree?
Or was it BoJo stealing an ice cream from a small child (NOT FAIR!)
Twitter was alive with debate about what the distraction could be…
“Now take your ball and fuck off, I’m trying to make a video.”
Dominic Raab ISN’T the most extreme Brexit-supporting Tory leadership contender. Can you believe it?
The award for the most extreme Brextreemist goes to [drum roll, please]… jointly, Steve Baker AND Priti Patel. They get 6/6 for opposing May and No Deal at every vote.
But while Priti co-authored the legendary Britannia Unchained is seen as part of the new young, new Tory right, alongside Raab C Brexit, she isn’t actually standing as Tory leader [yet]. Neither is Steve Baker [double yet]. It is surprising as some would say only a hardcore Brexit or bust believer will win among the Tory membership.
Rabb has blotted his Brexit credentials with the ERG and the Leave.EU campaign group because:
Flip-flopped by voting to support May in Meaningful Vote III. A cynical move, which he claims was done only so the UK could leave in March.
BoJo and Johnson is on 5/6, according to the data from Leave.EU his lost that one point for supporting Meaningful Vote Three.
While Raab obviously would take the UK off the cliff edge, there are some candidates who have said they won’t be doing this and would only leave with a deal.
So Hunt, Hancock, Javid or Stewart are sounding the most moderate, although we can’t remember if any have come out for a Confirmatory Referendum on the Brexit deal? This is obviously something that changes day by day (in the case of Hunt!).
The data was produced by Leave.EU and appeared on Peston (29/5/19)… the more Green ticks the most extreme Brexit. The more red crosses the least extreme.
Here at RaabWatch towers we always like to remind our MP that a whopping 59.5% Elmbridge-ites (the good folk of Elmbridge, Surrey) want to REMAIN in the EU. Yet we’ve never heard Raab publicly acknowledge this fact.
We don’t want WTO, we don’t want to drive anywhere near the infamous ‘cliff edge’ and nor do we want an MP who is prepared to risk local jobs.
Would Raab be such a Brexiter if, say, he was an MP representing Lambeth (78.6% Remain)?
Would he be so keen on NO DEAL if he lived in Gibraltar (95.9%)?
Just before the May EU elections Raab had Tory volunteers post out the election leaflet [above].
The staggering thing is that it only goes to highlight he little he has actually done for the people of Walton & Esher.
“I am confident that the UK and British people have the economic strength, innovation and potential to manage the short-term risks..” and how he felt compelled to resign as Brexit minister “as a matter of principle”. yet ignoring the fact he failed to get a proper deal with the EU (while humiliating May in the process).
But there is just one thing that doesn’t get a mention in his propaganda ….
Namely that nearly 60% of constituents don’t want Brexit.. and they would rather vote Lib Dem (in May EU elections) than Tory…