In other news… Huhne in court, Clegg dines Tories, Ming protests immigration rules & other stories

by Stephen Tall on June 3, 2012

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

Chris Huhne’s ex-wife Vicky Pryce pleads not guilty (BBC News)

Vicky Pryce, the ex-wife of Chris Huhne, has pleaded not guilty to taking the former energy secretary’s penalty points for a 2003 speeding offence. The Eastleigh Lib Dem MP did not enter a plea because he will try to dismiss the charge against him at a future hearing, Southwark Crown Court heard. The pair, who were married for 26 years, face charges of perverting the course of justice. A date for the trial, due to last up to two weeks, has been set for 2 October.

Clegg addresses Tory MPs’ dinner (BBC News)

Last Tuesday, in dining room C of the House of Commons, Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg did something rather unusual. He addressed a private dining club of Tory MPs. … Mr Clegg spoke for about 10 minutes before taking questions, and many of the 20 or so MPs present said they had come away rather impressed. One reported: “It was a reminder of how much we have in common. Nick was very clear that the over-arching mission of the coalition is to fix the deficit and avoid financial crisis.” … One MP said Mr Clegg had been prepared to joke about his support for reforming the House of Lords. “It is wrong to say that I am obsessed with the House of Lords,” he reportedly told the MPs. “I sometimes just wish it would go away.”

Ming warns: Immigration rules could cost UK (ITV News)

British universities could lose out on millions of pounds annually if immigration policies are not changed, senior education figures have warned David Cameron. The letter written to the Prime Minister on behalf of 68 chancellors, governors and university presidents says Britain attracts around one in 10 students who study outside their home country, generating around £8 billion a year in tuition fees, according to The Daily Telegraph. Signatories include former Liberal Democrat leader Menzies Campbell, chancellor of St Andrews University, as well as broadcaster Lord Melvyn Bragg, chancellor of the University of Leeds.

Canterbury Lib Dem tries to show thugs caught on film (ThisIsKent.co.uk)

A VIDEO of drunks fighting, shouting, swearing, knocking on doors and urinating through letter boxes was not allowed to be shown to councillors. Liberal Democrat Nick Eden-Green had been planning to show the evidence to members of the Canterbury Area Member Panel last week. But the council’s legal team vetoed it. Instead Mr Eden-Green handed out copies to the press. Afterwards he stormed: “It is scandalous the council wants to stop this from being recorded. It has been on the BBC and is in the public domain.” Liberal Democrat leader Alex Perkins shouted from across the hall: “I am going to put it on YouTube.”

* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, and also writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.