» Monday, March 20, 2006

Party Funding

Asked if Sir Hayden Phillips would be responsible for investigating allegations of impropriety in political party finance, the Prime Minister's Official Spokesman (PMOS) said that Sir Hayden Phillips was looking at the future of political funding and party funding and that was where his focus would be. It was an attempt to build a consensus amongst the parties and that was the role he had taken on. Asked by Sky News when it was decided that Lord Falconer would make a statement in the Lords announcing changes to the electoral law bill, the PMOS said that he had been asked that question this morning and he had said then that he refused to get into processology, his position had not changed since then, nor would it. Put to him therefore that it had obviously been decided at some point this afternoon, the PMOS said that he could answer the question his way and the journalist from Sky News could try and put words into his mouth in his his own way, but the end result was the same.

Briefing took place at 16:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Prime Minister

Asked what did the Prime Minister make of the various editorial appeals that said that he should leave sooner rather than later, the PMOS said that as he had said on Friday when he was asked the same question that he was not going to be part of any paper's publicity machine, the same applied to all the questions regarding this subject. The Prime Minister was concentrating on getting on with the job, and he would.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comment (1)


Asked if Cabinet would meet on Tuesday to hear the Budget, the PMOS said that the Cabinet would meet as usual on Budget Day, which was Wednesday.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)


Asked if it could be deduced that as he had highlighted the remit of the Sir Hayden Phillips review to look at state funding, was it the preferred option, the PMOS replied that it could not be deduced. That was why the PMOS had stressed that it was to examine the case and to consider. There was no point in announcing a review and then pre-empting the outcome, and we would not do that. The PMOS said that this had been a difficult issue for all political parties, and what this gave us was the chance to take a rational look at how to fund political parties and to try and get a consensus behind that. That was what we were doing.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Pension Funds

Asked about pension funds and whether they were affected by Government bonds, and who was responsible for them, the PMOS replied that although they were a bit busy this week, the Treasury was the Department to speak to about this. The PMOS added that there was also a pension review being done by the DWP, so it might be best to wait for that review.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

Northern Ireland

Asked when was the Prime Minister going to announce his plan with the Taoiseach on a devolved government in Northern Ireland, the PMOS said it would be announced when we were ready. As the PMOS had said before, our best approach was to remain silent on it until it had actually happened.

Briefing took place at 9:00 | Read whole briefing | Comments (0)

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