Archive for the ‘conservative party’ Category

Sunday papers – 18 November 2018

Sunday papers – 18 November 2018

Conservative Party

Tories being asked for help in shoring up the Prime Minister’s position may have been misled, reports the Telegraph.

The Conservative Party Chairman has been accused of peddling “nonsense” to grassroots Tories in a conference call intended to win support for Theresa May’s Brexit deal.
Brandon Lewis told local Conservative Association chairmen that the proposed deal contained a “very, very high legal bar” requiring the EU to agree a trade deal before there was any need for a Northern Ireland backstop.
Article 184 of the Withdrawal Agreement says the EU must use its “best endeavours” to agree a trade deal before the end of the transition period, but lawyers and Brexit-supporting MPs have argued that the phrase is legally worthless.

And the Tories’ own website, Conservative Home, reports the opinions of the membership.

Last month, 68 per cent of respondents to our survey wanted a Canada Plus Plus Plus-type Brexit, or else no deal at all – in other words, a quite hard to very hard Brexit.
And this month, we have 72 per cent against the Prime Minister’s draft deal and 23 per cent for it.
In other words, the bulk of our Party member panel respondents want a hardish or clean Brexit, and see Theresa May’s draft deal as not delivering it – a view that many will have taken without reading the best part of 600 pages of which it consists.

Tory leadership

Meanwhile, the party’s leadership is still under question. Sky News will interview the Prime Minister this morning:

Theresa May will come out fighting in a Sky News interview, hitting back at Tory MPs bidding to remove her and cabinet ministers demanding a better Brexit deal.
Under more scrutiny and pressure than ever before, the prime minister will be appear on Sophy Ridge On Sunday at the start of a week, which if it goes wrong for her, could see her lose her job.
Mrs May is under attack on three fronts:
Tory backbenchers led by the European Research Group’s Jacob Rees-Mogg claim they are close to securing the 48 MPs required to trigger a vote of no confidence.

The Express reports on a plot to replace her and a boost for UKIP.

SENIOR Brexiteers are in talks to decide who should replace Theresa May with a confidence vote expected this week.
Sources have told the Sunday Express that Boris Johnson and David Davis, who both quit the Cabinet in July over Mrs May’s Chequers plan, have held a mini-summit to try to agree which one should be the “Brexit candidate” in a leadership contest. The revelation came as two polls reveal the Tories are haemorrhaging support in the wake of criticism of the Prime Minister’s proposed deal with the EU. But allies of Mrs May have warned that if her deal is rejected, the Government will amend it to keep Britain under Brussels rule in the customs union – ending the chance for free trade deals with the rest of the world.

But what is the best time to make their move? The Mail reports:

Supporters of a Boris Johnson leadership bid are at war over whether to attempt to force Theresa May out now – or wait until she brings her Brexit deal to the Commons.
The former Foreign Secretary’s entourage has been debating furiously if they should join Jacob Rees-Mogg’s campaign to force a vote of no-confidence in the Tory leader.
Some influential figures warn that if a vote is held now and Mrs May wins it, she would be locked into the job for the next year. They say they should hold off from sending in letters to the 1922 Committee until after the Commons votes on the Brexit deal – believing that MPs will reject it and bring the Prime Minister down.

The former Brexit secretary, who sensationally quit last week, could be lining up to throw his hat into the ring, reports the Sun.

HIGH-flyer Dominic Raab is gearing up for a head-to-head battle with Boris Johnson for the Tory crown.
The former Brexit Secretary has emerged as front-runner to succeed Theresa May after quitting the Cabinet over the PM’s doomed deal for leaving the EU.
He is expected to run with the backing of David Davis, who also previously resigned from the Brexit role.
But they will face a tough challenge from ex-Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson.

And the Telegraph also the reports the manoeuvring.

The campaign to unseat Theresa May neared tipping point tonight as the Conservatives’ former London mayoral candidate called on the Prime Minister to resign and a former Brexit minister told how members of the Government were hoodwinked over her deal.
Writing in The Sunday Telegraph, Zac Goldsmith, a Brexiteer, says he would have voted Remain rather than choose Mrs May’s plan and that her departure will “give us the chance of a fresh start”.

Brexit

The subject of all these shenanigans is covered in the Telegraph.

Senior Conservatives are in talks with opposition MPs over a “fallback plan” for Brexit in the belief Theresa May’s deal will be voted down in the Commons.
Influential former ministers are drawing up plans to put a Norway-style deal with the EU to a Commons vote in an emergency motion days after an expected defeat in the “meaningful vote” on her plan.
The MPs claim their proposal, which is likely to be fiercely opposed by many Brexiteers, is the only one that could gain the support of a majority of MPs in a bitterly divided Parliament. They believe it would attract the support of up to 70 Labour rebels.

And there have been claims that the UK is being bullied by Brussels in the Times.

Dominic Raab today warns that Theresa May has allowed Britain to be “blackmailed and bullied” by Brussels and that she should toughen her stance on Brexit or face disaster.
In an interview with The Sunday Times the former Brexit secretary called on the prime minister to show greater “political will” and made a veiled pitch for her job, saying Britain would not look like it is — “frightened of its own shadow” — if he was running the negotiations.
He called on the prime minister to walk away from the talks rather than submit to the “predatory” behaviour of “dark forces” in Brussels.

Is there any will to continue the fight against the EU? BBC News reports one opinion.

Former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab has criticised the government’s “lack of political will and resolve” in dealing with the European Union.
Mr Raab, who quit on Thursday over the Brexit deal, told the Sunday Times the UK should not allow itself to be “bullied”, and must be prepared to walk away from negotiations if necessary.
There has been widespread criticism of the PM’s draft withdrawal agreement.
However, Theresa May dismissed suggestions the deal could be amended.

The former Brexit secretary says we should make further demands from Brussels in the Sun.

DOMINIC Raab has blasted Theresa May, suggesting she has failed to stand up to a bullying European Union over the Brexit deal.
Raab stepped down as Brexit secretary on Thursday saying he could not accept the terms of the deal done by the Prime Minister.
He told the Sunday Times the UK should demand an agreement that allows it to unilaterally leave any customs union.

The Express also reports Raab’s words.

THE FORMER Brexit Secretary, Dominic Raab, has today fuelled the fire of Theresa May’s critics as he hit out at the Prime Minister for failing to stand up to a bullying European Union over the Brexit deal.
Mr Raab resigned from his position on Thursday in protest at the terms of the withdrawal agreement. His decision to quit came less than 24 hours after Mrs May said there was “collective agreement” in the Cabinet on the deal. He has now spoken out to criticise the Prime Minister’s negotiation strategy.

Gang of five’

Meanwhile, five senior Tories are ganging up against the PM over pizza, the Mail says.

Andrea Leadsom has told Theresa May there is ‘more to be done’ to her EU withdrawal deal as the Brexiteer ‘Gang of Five’ in the Cabinet turns up the pressure on the PM.
The Commons leader’s veiled threat to Number 10 came after she and four other leading Leave supporters agreed to stay in the Cabinet in a bid to rewrite the Brexit deal.
Mrs Leadsom and her allies Michael Gove, Penny Mourdaunt, Liam Fox and Chris Grayling have reportedly been holding ‘pizza nights’ at her home.

They are said to support Mrs May but disagree with her plan, says ITV News.

There is still time for “more to be done” and the Brexit deal “improved”, Andrea Leadsom has said as the Conservative Party continues to row over Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement with Brussels.
The Brexiteer Commons leader said she supports the Prime Minister but suggested there is an opportunity before a special European Council meeting on November 25 to get “the best possible deal for the UK”.

The Sun covers the deliberations of the Pizza Plotters.

BREXITEER plotter Andrea Leadsom has said there is “still time” to try and force Theresa May to change her deal.
The Commons leader is working with Michael Gove, Liam Fox, Penny Mordaunt and Chris Grayling to make the PM seal more promises on a future trade deal.
The so-called Pizza Plotters, named after a group who have held talks over takeaways in the past, will hold talks this weekend and early next week to try and pin down a Canada-style trade deal from the EU.

Labour Party

And the turmoil is handing support to the official opposition, says the Mail.

The Conservatives have lost ground to Labour in the polls after a chaotic week at Westminster.
Two surveys carried out at the height of the Tory civil war over Brexit saw the Conservatives fall between three and four points behind Jeremy Corbyn‘s party.
In one poll the Conservatives lost 10 points among Leave voters, reflecting deep divisions among Brexiteers about the PM’s withdrawal agreement. 

And an MP who was elected as a Conservative has backed the Labour leader, reports Westmonster.

Conservative Remoaner Anna Soubry has sparked anger after tweeting support for Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn to back a second referendum.
Soubry’s tweet states: “Please sign and RT! Petition · Jeremy Corbyn: Labour must now lead on a People’s Vote”.
The petition was started by Labour MP Angela Smith and reads: “We call on Labour’s Leader Jeremy Corbyn to back a People’s Vote on Brexit at the earliest opportunity — and if he is successful in forcing a General Election then Labour’s manifesto must commit clearly to an immediate People’s Vote, in which Labour will campaign to Remain.”

EU

Across the Channel, it seems that Brussels is still looking for the UK to yield further, reports the Express.

FRANCE is looking to turn the screw on Theresa May by pressurising EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier to demand Britain makes even more concessions in next week’s talks to discuss the draft withdrawal agreement.
Meanwhile Irish Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has also sought to turn up the heat by claiming Britain faced economic disaster if the House of Commons fails to ratify the deal, with Mrs May forced into a u-turn weeks later.

And the Times reports that even as diplomats agreed not to change the plan before them, there were mutterings of discontent.

As EU diplomats gathered on Friday to examine the final withdrawal agreement, they resolved not to tinker with the 585-page exit deal that has been 20 months in the making.
Yet as they prepare for a meeting of Europe ministers in Brussels tomorrow to review a separate text on the future EU-UK relationship, several are finding the provisions of the backstop on fish too odorous to ignore.
“It has left a bit of a stink for some, but the attitude is that we’ve landed this thing so let’s just get on with it,” said one person familiar with the discussions.

And the Express claims the bloc will start making even further demands of us.

MICHEL Barnier is ready to twist the knife by locking Britain out of Europe’s internal security database after Brexit, telling member states the UK must face up to the consequences of leaving the bloc.
In a move which has echoes of the EU’s plan to exclude Britain from the Galileo satellite system, Mr Barnier said there would be “difficult negotiations” over the maintenance of access to parts of the EU’s database. A diplomatic note circulated to ambassadors of the remaining EU27 states, whom Brexit negotiator Mr Barnier met on Friday, paid tribute to UK Prime Minister Theresa May for sticking to the agreed withdrawal agreement despite fearsome domestic opposition which could see her face a no-confidence vote as Tory Party leader in the next few days.

Farage

Will our former leader return? The Sun speculates.

NIGEL Farage is poised for a return to frontline politics unless the PM drops her “Brexit betrayal” plan.
The former Ukip boss warned he will be unable to sit on the sidelines if Theresa May drives through her “half-baked” proposal.
He told The Sun on Sunday: “If I have to step back into the fray and do it all again I shall.
“But this time there would be no more Mr Nice Guy. I would knock their legs from underneath them.”
Mr Farage admits he can feel frustration welling up inside him and is already considering his options – either a return to run Ukip or launching a new party.

The Times reports on Farage’s relationship with his money man

Nigel Farage’s relationship with Arron Banks, who bankrolled the unofficial campaign to leave the European Union with the biggest donation in British political history, has cooled amid growing scrutiny of the businessman’s finances and links to Russia.
A source close to both men claimed they remained friends, but are speaking less after revelations about contacts between Banks and Russian officials in the run-up to the EU referendum, and a series of deals offered to him by Kremlin agents.

Education

Away from front-line politics, the Times reports on primary schools.

Religious primary schools achieve better test results than other state and private schools, according to the latest rankings by The Sunday Times.
The success of faith schools, revealed in today’s Parent Power tables, means they account for almost half of the top 500 state primaries, with 48 in the top 100, made up of 25 Catholic, 19 Church of England, two Jewish, one Muslim and one Hindu school. Overall, faith schools account for 37% of all primaries.

And the Mail reports on schools failing boys.

Britain’s schools are failing to help boys who under perform at school out of fear it will be ridiculed by feminist and gender equality groups, ex-UCAS chief has warned.
Mary Curnock Cook, who was head of the university admissions service until last year, has stated her alarm that boys falling behind at school has become ‘normalised’, reports the Telegraph.
She added that it has become an unpopular topic of conversation because she believes feminist groups have made the issue ‘taboo’.

Universities could be ready to offer quick degrees, says the Sun.

UNIVERSITIES are to offer fast-track degrees which will leave students up to £25,000 better off.
New two-year courses will have the same qualification and quality as the standard three-year study.
Those who sign up for an “accelerated degree” will pay a fifth less in tuition fees, saving them £5,500 plus a year’s housing and living costs.

Climate change

A demo by climate change activists really snarled up London yesterday, reports the Times.

Environmental protesters paralysed central London yesterday after occupying five of its busiest bridges “in anger” at the lack of action on climate change.
At least 85 people were arrested for obstruction but the demonstrations remained largely peaceful even when the protesters occupied Parliament Square, blocked traffic in surrounding roads and dug holes to plant trees as “a symbol of life”.
“We closed Southwark, Waterloo, Westminster, Blackfriars and Lambeth bridges,” said the campaign group Extinction Rebellion, the organiser of the protest.

Reuters reports arrests.

British police said they arrested more than 70 people at an environmental protest on Saturday, after demonstrators blocked five bridges across the River Thames in central London.
Organizers of the ‘Extinction Rebellion’ event said they wanted to put pressure on Britain’s government to take greater action to slow climate change and eliminate greenhouse gas emissions by 2025.
The protest centered for several hours on Westminster Bridge, near Britain’s parliament, but there was also disruption to traffic on four other bridges.

The Mail also reports the demo.

Hundreds of eco-activists barricaded bridges, blocked traffic and caused travel chaos during ‘a day of rebellion’ on the streets of London today in order to force the government to impose radical new laws on climate change.
Five bridges across the Thames – Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges – were blocked off during the day of havoc, and police claimed more than 70 people were arrested at the protests organised by Extinction Rebellion (ER).

The Sun says the capital came to a standstill.

PROTESTERS blocked five major bridges and brought London to a standstill yesterday.
Hundreds of activists urged Theresa May to tackle global warming while they staged a sit-in along the River Thames.
At least 85 were arrested as police struggled to clear Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges.
The rally, which continued outside Parliament last night, caused major traffic jams and blocked routes for emergency vehicles.

HS2

Has he truth about the high-speed rail line come out yet? The Telegraph reports:

The company behind the HS2 rail link is gagging local authorities with non-disclosure agreements that keep residents in the dark, a new report states.
The major review of England’s planning system warns HS2 Ltd is stoking resentment among communities who discover their councils are prevented from revealing details about the construction of the high-speed line.
The Sunday Telegraph has learnt that 26 local authorities across the country have signed NDAs with the company at the early planning stage.

And the Times reports on more delays.

The £56bn HS2 rail line is expected to be delayed by more than a year after it emerged in contract talks that the building project was at risk of soaring over budget.
Sources said costs for the “main works civil contracts” on the London-to-Birmingham stretch — including bridges, tunnels and embankments — had come in “several billion pounds” over the official budget of £6.6bn. That work is due to start next year.

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Saturday papers – 17 November 2018

Saturday papers – 17 November 2018

What a week! I know they say that a week is a long time in politics, but this week must be one of the most interesting in a long time.

Brexit

The Telegraph is one of the papers covering the revolt to the Prime Minister’s plans.

Michael Gove and four other Eurosceptic Cabinet ministers will try to force Theresa May into a last-minute change to the Brexit deal as the price for withdrawing their threats to resign.
The “gang of five” believes it is not too late for Mrs May to go back to Brussels and demand a unilateral exit mechanism from the so-called “backstop” arrangement over Northern Ireland.
The Environment Secretary, who stepped back from the brink of resignation on Friday, will meet Andrea Leadsom, Chris Grayling, Penny Mordaunt and Liam Fox over the next two days to agree the terms of their ultimatum.

Westmonster claims the ‘gang of five’ will hope to change the PM’s mind.

Those Cabinet Brexiteers not resigning now plan to somehow re-write Theresa May’s Brexit plan.
That’s according to Bloomberg, who were told today that Andrea Leadsom will bring together the likes of Michael Gove, Liam Fox, Penny Mordaunt and Chris Grayling.
It is hard to see how this would be anything other than a gigantic waste of time given that May stood steadfastly by her plan despite months of warnings from the like of Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg that she should change course.

The Times says the renegotiation is the price of their loyalty.

Theresa May’s remaining Brexiteer cabinet ministers are to demand that she pushes Brussels for further concessions as the price of their loyalty.
The Times understands that the ministers are to meet early next week in an attempt to agree a joint strategy. They intend to present it to the prime minister before a summit of EU leaders that is due to sign off on the deal.
The group includes Michael Gove, who handed the prime minister a lifeline yesterday by remaining as environment secretary. Other members include Andrea Leadsom, the leader of the Commons, Penny Mordaunt, the international development secretary, and Liam Fox, the trade secretary.

And the Mail points out that these five will stay and fight from within the Cabinet.

Michael Gove and other leading Brexiteer ministers have today decided to stay in the Cabinet – but entered a pact to fight to change Theresa May’s controversial deal.
He had been put on resignation watch alongside Andrea Leadsom, Penny Mordaunt and Chris Grayling as the PM’s Brexit deal plunged the Tories into civil war.
Number Ten had been on red alert for any of them to walk the plank as they have all voiced major concerns about the PM’s hugely controversial Brexit plan.

BBC News covers the plotting.

A group of five ministers in Theresa May’s top team are hoping to persuade her to make changes to her draft Brexit deal, the BBC understands.
Leader of the Commons Andrea Leadsom is believed to be coordinating the group.
The five ministers include Michael Gove and Liam Fox – who on Friday publicly threw their support behind the PM – plus Penny Mordaunt and Chris Grayling.
Mrs May published her draft withdrawal agreement with the EU on Wednesday, and has vowed to “see it through”.

Westmonster claims WTO rules predominate among its readers.

An unscientific poll Westmonster carried out this morning, that saw more than 8,000 of Westmonster’s readers and followers vote, has shown significant support for a No Deal Brexit.
More than 90% of our followers now back a No Deal over what Theresa May has put on the table, flying in the face of claims from the Remainstream media that the British people didn’t vote for and don’t want to exit fully without a deal. As ever, they are massively out of touch.
As now former Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab has previously explained there would be short-term issues to overcome, but the benefits of a No Deal would be:
Immediate recovery of full legislative and regulatory control including over immigration policy; Lower tariffs to bring into effect new trade deals straight away; Swifter end to financial contributions to the EU.
No Deal? No problem.

The Telegraph claims business leaders have also slated the plan.

More than 200 chief executives and entrepreneurs have called on Conservative MPs to vote down Theresa May’s Brexit deal, describing it as “the worst of all worlds”.
In a letter, seen by the Telegraph, business leaders who run medium sized companies say Mrs May’s deal represents “the greatest act of national humiliation in this proud nation’s recent history”.

The letter, organised by John Longworth, the former director general of the British Chamber of Commerce, is signed by members of the Alliance of British Entrepreneurs including Tim Martin, the boss of pub giant Wetherspoon and veteran venture capitalist John Moulton and will be delivered to all Tory MPs next week.

Ireland

But the DUP will not support the plan, says the Mail.

The DUP could tear up their deal to prop the Tories up in No10 unless Theresa May is ousted as the party leader.
The party wields an enormous amount of power as its 10 MPs have agreed to support the Conservative Government in a confidence agreement.
But they are seething at the Brexit deal – accusing the PM of having ‘sold out’
Northern Ireland and breaking her own promises.

And the Mail points out that no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic could cause problems.

Ireland is set to become a gateway to the UK after Brexit, with citizens being able to move freely between the two countries.
The Emerald Isle would remain an open door to the UK under the withdrawal agreement and EU citizens not settled in the UK would be subject to immigration rules but would be able to travel to the UK via Ireland uninhibited.
This would mean no passport checks for EU citizens on flights or ferries between the two countries and would even ensure that EU citizens could travel to major cities such as Dublin or Belfast and take a flight or ferry over to the UK without the usual passport checks.

EU

But it seems the bloc will demand more concessions on fishing and the customs union, says the Telegraph.

European Union governments will try to railroad Britain into a permanent customs union and extract more UK concessions in fishing, heaping yet more pressure on an embattled Theresa May.
The EU-27 is looking to hard-wire British commitments on fishing, tax, the environment, social standards, security, transport and foreign policy into the negotiating boundaries of the future UK-EU trade agreement.
EU-27 governments are seeking “dynamic alignment” on those standards to ensure they keep up with Brussels over time, ensuring the UK is shackled to its red tape and preventing it from being more competitive than the bloc.

The Times claims Barnier has been told to extract more from the UK.

A group of European countries rounded on Michel Barnier this week to demand that the chief EU negotiator squeeze more concessions out of Britain in talks next week.
Some EU nations believe that the UK would have an economic advantage after Brexit if it were able to diverge from European laws and regulations while still having access to the single market. They are also demanding greater powers for the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and greater fishing rights in British waters.

The Guardian claims EU leaders will be asked to agree the deal.

European leaders have launched a campaign to sell the Brexit deal struck with Theresa May on a “take it or leave it” basis as EU ambassadors in Brussels collectively agreed it would be impossible to make major changes.
Putting aside the anxieties of some about the 585-page withdrawal text, the 27 member states collectively ruled out a redrafting of the agreement by either side during a meeting with Michael Barnier, the EU’s chief negotiator.
Barnier had told the EU ambassadors they should not engage in “bargaining”, despite the political situation in the UK. A number of British cabinet ministers are said to have chosen to stay in their posts purely to engineer a change in the agreement.

But Breitbart reports the German Chancellor’s views that no further negotiations will be held.

There is “no question” of renegotiating the super-soft Brexit deal agreed with Theresa May, Angela Merkel has warned, as Eurocrats voiced hope that the divorce could be called off altogether.
Speaking after a cabinet meeting in Potsdam, the German Chancellor said: “We have a document on the table that Britain and the remaining 27 EU states have agreed. There is, as far as I am concerned, no question of further bargaining at present.”
With German industry bodies set to be hit particularly hard in the event of a no-deal Brexit, Merkel stated this would be the “worst and most chaotic scenario”, but signalled there would be no room for compromise with Britain.

Art50

The Guardian claims there’s a possibility that Article 50 could be reversed.

The UK supreme court is to reconsider the terms of article 50 of the treaty on European Union, which formally triggered Brexit, amid mounting political pressure for the procedure to be reversed.
The government has applied for permission to appeal against a ruling by the Scottish courts that the question of whether the UK can reverse the clause should be referred to the European court of justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg.
A date has been set for 27 November for an emergency hearing by ECJ judges of an application brought by a cross-party group of six Scottish MPs, MEPs and MSPs, along with Jolyon Maugham QC, the director of the Good Law Project.

Conservative Party

But the PM is also facing a revolt from within her own party, says the Times.

Pro-Brexit Conservative MPs have accused Theresa May of going over their heads to stave off the attempt to oust her through a vote of confidence.
A row erupted after Brexiteer MPs found that Mrs May had a conference call with local Conservative Party chairmen and women. MPs said that the prime minister should talk to her parliamentarians, not local associations, if she wanted them to back her Brexit plan.

Huffington Post turns its attention to the 48 letters of no confidence needed to trigger a leadership election.

Tory Brexiteer rebels have claimed they are “not far off” reaching the number of MPs needed to trigger a no confidence vote in Theresa May’s leadership.
Steve Baker, the former Brexit minister, said on Friday afternoon it was “imminent”.
The leading member of the European Research Group (ERG) of Brexiteer Tory MPs told BBC’s Politics Live programme that by his count the number was “over 48 with another almost dozen probably on top”.

The Guardian says numbers are rising.

Theresa May is battling to halt a growing revolt from the Tory right after half a dozen more backbenchers came out in favour of a no-confidence vote and the organiser of the rebellion publicly predicted more MPs would follow next week.
The prime minister held a conference call with local association chairmen on Friday afternoon as she fought to head off a coup and sell her hard-won Brexit deal to a sceptical and partially hostile party.
Her efforts came after the number of backbenchers calling publicly for a no-confidence vote in May’s leadership increased to 23. Rebellious MPs said they were confident of reaching the required threshold of 48 letters to Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the party’s 1922 Committee.

The latest Brexit secretary will not be able to negotiate with the EU, reports ITV News.

Theresa May has appointed former health minister Stephen Barclay as her new Brexit Secretary as Amber Rudd made a dramatic return to the Cabinet.
The appointments follow a backlash against Mrs May’s proposed
Brexit deal with the EU, including the resignations of several ministers and the threat of a leadership challenge.
The reshuffle came just hours after Mrs May was buoyed by declarations of support from pro-Leave ministers Michael Gove and Liam Fox.
Leave-supporting Mr Barclay will not have negotiation powers with the EU, which Mrs May will now take sole charge of.

Migration

Away from Westminster, the Telegraph reports on a surge in illegal immigration.

Seven men are huddled, cold and wet, in a car park at Samphire Hoe near Dover talking to a Coastguard Search and Rescue officer. Four have turquoise blankets wrapped tightly around their shoulders by the time an ambulance arrives on Friday lunchtime to check if they have any injuries or hypothermia.
On the rocks of a beach below, a dinghy with a small engine is deflating. Two lifejackets and a red fuel tank float limply inside it. A black glove and coat have been abandoned nearby on the pebble beach, which is overlooked by Dover’s white cliffs.
The men are Iranian, and have travelled overnight in their inflatable craft through thick fog across the English Channel, the latest migrants to arrive during an unprecedented week which has seen 55 caught by border patrol, in what is thought to be a rush ahead of the March Brexit deadline.

Benefits

And the Times reports on the UN ‘expert’ who has criticised the UK.

A United Nations expert has compared Britain’s benefits system to China’s former one-child policy because it punishes mothers for having children.
Philip Alston, the UN special rapporteur on extreme poverty, accused the government of ignoring the “damage to the fabric of British society” caused by changes in benefits.
After a 12-day tour of Britain, the Australian-born academic said that the universal credit system had plunged people into misery and despair and condemned the government’s policy of restricting benefits to a family’s first two children.

His report is a scathing indictment on our benefits system says the Guardian.

The UK government has inflicted “great misery” on its people with “punitive, mean-spirited, and often callous” austerity policies driven by a political desire to undertake social re-engineering rather than economic necessity, the United Nations poverty envoy has found.
Philip Alston, the UN’s rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, ended a two-week fact-finding mission to the UK with a stinging declaration that levels of child poverty were “not just a disgrace, but a social calamity and an economic disaster”, even though the UK is the world’s fifth largest economy,

The report compares the UK to China in the Mail

The UN’s poverty envoy today blasted Britain as ‘mean-spirited and callous’ and compared its benefits rules to China’s cruel one-child policy.
Special rapporteur Philip Alston’s controversial new report follows a two-week ‘human rights fact-finding visit’ to the UK.
Today he said 14million people – a fifth of the UK population – now live in poverty and 1.5million of them are destitute because they are unable to afford basic essentials.

The Telegraph says the system is ‘sexist’.

Britain’s welfare system is so sexist it may as well have been compiled by “a group of misogynists in a room,” a UN expert has claimed.
Philip Alston, the UN’s rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, warned that poverty in the UK is a “political choice” and that compassion and concern had been “outsourced” in favour of tax cuts for the rich.
In a damning 24-page report he brands levels of child poverty “not just a disgrace, but a social calamity and an economic disaster” and said that limiting benefit payments to two children was as “forced and physical” as China’s one-child policy.
Critics of the UN’s involvement in UK politics suggested that the organisation should spend its time and money studying poverty in third world countries rather than the world’s fifth largest economy.

And the Mirror claims it’s all the Tory government’s fault.

The Tory Government has inflicted “great misery” with its “punitive and mean-spirited” welfare reforms, the United Nations have said.
A damning report said ministers were “in denial” about how the Universal Credit
 had  pushed people into poverty.
“Government policies have inflicted great misery unnecessarily, especially on the working poor, on single mothers struggling against mighty odds, on people with disabilities who are already marginalised, and on millions of children who are locked into a cycle of poverty from which many will have great difficulty escaping,” the UN’s special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, said.

Child grooming

Still more men of Asian origin have been found guilty of sexually exploiting girls, reports the Mail.

A gang of six men has been jailed for a total of 101 years after sexually exploiting five vulnerable teenage girls in Rotherham.
The men targeted girls who were ‘easy to exploit because they wanted to be loved’ – sexually abusing them in parks, abandoned buildings and secluded locations.
The offences were committed against five girls under 16 in the Rotherham area between 1998 and 2005.
Their abusers – all Asian men from Sheffield and Rotherham – were convicted of offences including rape and indecent assault.
The girls said in statements how the men had ‘destroyed’ them and that their childhood had been taken from them.

Breitbart also has the story.

Six men of Pakistani heritage have been handed jail sentences for sexually abusing five underage girls in Rotherham following an eight-week trial, during which jurors heard the men had “destroyed” their victims’ childhoods.
Mohammed Imran Akhtar, Nabeel Kurshid, Asif Ali, Iqlak Yousaf, Salah El-Hakam, and Tanweer Ali were sentenced at Sheffield Crown Court on Friday, after they were convicted at the end of last month of 22 child sexual exploitation (CSE) offences which took place in Rotherham between 1998 and 2005.
According to local media, the men failed to show any remorse for the string of offences they committed, which included indecent assault, rape, and false imprisonment.

The Sun has a personal story about the abuse.

A GROOMING victim has opened about the horrific abuse she suffered at the hands of an Asian sex gang in Rotherham as they were caged for 101 years.
The men – who were found guilty last month – lured the young girls into joining them, then plied them with alcohol and drugs before passing them around men in the town for sex.
Mohammed Imran Ali Akhtar, 37, Nabeel Kurshid, 35, Iqlak Yousaf, 34, Tanweer Ali, 37, Salah Ahmed El-Hakam, 39, and Asif Ali, 33, were jailed for the string of sex offences.
The gang forced one girl to have sex with at least 100 Asian men before she turned 16 as the gang “perpetrated, facilitated and encouraged” the abuse of five “vulnerable” girls.

The post Saturday papers – 17 November 2018 appeared first on UKIP Daily | UKIP News | UKIP Debate.

Robert Craig: What Happens Constitutionally If the Draft Withdrawal Agreement Is Voted Down?

Now that a draft withdrawal agreement has been settled with the European Commission, the next step is a ‘meaningful vote’ in the House of Commons pursuant to s 13 European Union Withdrawal Act (‘EUWA’) which I analysed recently on this blog with Gavin Phillipson. This post seeks to explore what the Prime Minister might do if the draft agreement is voted down. Three potential scenarios are suggested. The theme of this post is that the ripple effects of the Fixed-term Parliaments Act (‘FTPA’) mean that previously accepted constitutional norms may have been affected and it may be helpful to explore what could happen as a result.

Scenario 1 – Theresa May resigns as party leader but not Prime Minister

If Theresa May were to lose the “meaningful vote” on her proposed agreement, a central plank of her premiership will have been rejected by her party and by the House of Commons. As I have argued elsewhere with Gavin Phillipson, it is likely that a “clean” vote without substantive amendment would be necessary.

Historically, it is likely that the loss of such a vote would have meant going to the Palace to precipitate a General Election but the FTPA now prevents that. One alternative is resignation as party leader not as Prime Minister. 23 years ago, John Major decided to resign as leader of the Conservative Party without resigning as Prime Minister in order to face down critics in his own party, telling them to “put up or shut up”.

Mrs May might consider that one key advantage of resigning as leader but not as Prime Minister is that it would likely prevent the leader of the Opposition, Jeremy Corbyn, from somehow moving in to Number 10. This is because she could carry on as caretaker Prime Minister until a new Conservative leader was chosen and that new leader would be very likely to command the confidence of the House of Commons given the parliamentary arithmetic.

It will be recalled that the confidence and supply arrangement with the DUP is with the Conservative Party, not the Prime Minister. Furthermore, the terms of paragraph 2.18 of the Cabinet Manual would arguably apply because that alliance officially has an overall majority.

Where a Prime Minister chooses to resign from his or her individual position at a time when his or her administration has an overall majority in the House of Commons, it is for the party or parties in government to identify who can be chosen as the successor.

Conservative party leadership process

A Conservative party leadership contest is now governed by their internal party procedures (see this House of Commons library paper and here for a short summary). It may seem strange to be considering the internal rules of a political party in a constitutional law blog post but it must be remembered that, as Griffith pointed out, the constitution is ‘what happens’ and ‘everything that happens is constitutional’. In the modern era, large political parties dominate the House of Commons and the confidence of the House is now umbilically linked to who leads those parties. Consideration of Conservative party leadership election rules is therefore unavoidable.

The first point to make is that Mrs May could not fully replicate the John Major precedent because she could not resign as leader and then stand in the resultant contest against alternative candidates within the current party rule structure. There is therefore no “back me or sack me” option except perhaps by way of a non-statutory vote of no confidence of the whole House which would be a quite different matter (see below). The second point is that the Conservative leadership process is designed to whittle down candidates to a final pair who then put themselves to the general party membership for a final vote. In theory, this could take a considerable period of time – which may not be a luxury available to the country.

Fortunately, Mrs May’s own victory in the last Conservative leadership election is a good precedent whereby a clear winner amongst MPs could lead to the immediate withdrawal of the second candidate from the final ballot of party members. The entire process took 17 days. The internal rules, therefore, appear to leave considerable room for recognition of more pressing political realities.

More difficult would be if the two final candidates secure roughly equal votes amongst MPs or if the candidate with fewer votes believes the ordinary party members would prefer them as Prime Minister – perhaps due to his or her Brexit stance – and therefore refuses to withdraw. In those circumstances, it is to be hoped that the relevant grandees would bring about a seriously curtailed timetable. Party members are likely to be well informed in any event as to the candidates. It is suggested that such a ballot could, and with respect should, be organised within a far shorter period than is perhaps envisaged during a normal party leadership election process.

As an aside, the British system is grounded in representative democracy and the doctrine of confidence. It is unfortunate that MPs from both major parties have abdicated their representative responsibilities on this most crucial issue. How is it possible that a leader who does not command the confidence of the majority of the party MPs (and therefore of the House in fact), could ever be Prime Minister? Edmund Burke must be spinning in his grave.

Scenario 2 – The Prime Minister resigns

The forthcoming vote of MPs on the draft agreement needs every possible vote in its favour if it is to succeed. One of the weapons available to Mrs May would be to threaten to resign immediately as Prime Minister if she loses the vote. Under the FTPA, resignation is the only option because she cannot call an election. Such threats to resign must be believable to be effective and if she loses, she may feel resignation is unavoidable. In addition, the fact that her central policy has been rejected could lead her to the view that she is honour-bound to resign as Prime Minister – not just as party leader as in Scenario 1. Either way, we must consider what could happen if Mrs May resigns as Prime Minister.

The 2010 precedent

Some appear to think that the Queen must call the leader of the opposition if the Prime Minister resigns, or that she has some discretion as to what to do in such circumstances. This is mistaken. It is not clear exactly when understandings changed but there is a clear precedent. After the 2010 election, there was some uncertainty as to who should go to the Palace as negotiations were ongoing. The Palace made it crystal clear that it would not get involved under any circumstances. It was and remains

the responsibility of those involved in the political process, and in particular the parties represented in Parliament, to seek to determine and communicate clearly to the Sovereign who is best placed to be able to command the confidence of the House of Commons. (Cabinet Manual [2.9]).

This unfortunately left Gordon Brown in a fairly awkward position in 2010 where he was forced to stay in post whilst negotiations proceeded – indeed, some think he still resigned too early. Whilst this was difficult, it was essential due to another core principle of the constitution: Her Majesty’s Government must always be carried on. To put it more bluntly: there must always be a Government. Technically, the Prime Minister becomes a caretaker prime minister (Cabinet Manual [2.20]) when there is doubt over the continued confidence of the House of Commons (see further this Select Committee report, section 3).

In such circumstances, there are clear limitations on a caretaker Prime Minister’s freedom of action until a new mandate is secured – those restrictions mirror those that occur during the purdah period [Committee Report para 21] when a General Election is triggered. These restrictions are constitutionally necessary precisely because the confidence of the House of Commons – the sole source of Prime Ministerial authority – is arguably absent. Parliament and Prime Minister are inextricably intertwined in the UK’s political constitution, as Bagehot famously pointed out. That is why the ripple effects of the FTPA have spread so far. It is an error to claim that elections to Parliament and the tenure of a Prime Minister are wholly distinct issues.

It is suggested, then, that responsibility now rests solely with the politicians to decide who should go to the Palace. Her Majesty will rightly refuse to do anything except confirm whoever eventually emerges from the political maelstrom. The politicians must sort it out.

Some say the outgoing Prime Minister can, or should, advise on whom to call at the moment when they formally resign. I respectfully disagree. A Prime Minister who has lost the confidence of the House must lose the general right to advise the Monarch. It arguably follows that the outgoing Prime Minister cannot advise who should then be called to the Palace. Further, such advice would arguably constitute a major policy decision that falls outside their limited ”caretaker” role. It is submitted that the decision is a matter for MPs in the House of Commons.

In the event of a Prime Ministerial resignation, therefore, someone must be chosen by the politicians to replace her. There is, at least at the time of writing, a deal in place between the DUP and the Conservative party. The starting point, therefore, must be that someone – preferably without leadership ambitions themselves – should be nominated to act as a caretaker Prime Minister whilst a leadership election takes place (Cabinet Manual [2.18] – see above). The obvious candidate would normally be the Deputy Prime Minister, if there is one.

That candidate could announce to the House that following discussions with colleagues, he or she would go to the Palace until a new leader of the party was formally chosen. The situation would then be similar to Scenario 1 except Mrs May would not be the caretaker Prime Minister.

Alternative government

It is possible to envisage an alternative pathway. The Leader of the Opposition (or someone else) could, say, promise to organise another referendum. In those circumstances, what might be termed a “Conservative Remainer” caucus of MPs might hypothetically agree a “confidence and referendum” agreement – rather than the more common “confidence and supply” agreement – with a majority of Labour MPs. They would be unlikely to approve any domestic policy proposals and no doubt any such referendum would need to be organised as quickly as possible. This assumes the EU would grant an extension under Article 50(3). In those circumstances, the leader of this alternative Government could claim the right to go to the Palace.

In none of these scenarios would the Queen be involved in any way save the formality of appointment.

Scenario 3 – The Prime Minister carries on

Whilst it seems unlikely, it is entirely possible that if the meaningful vote is lost, Mrs May could continue in office. Some take the view that the FTPA now means that only a formal statutory vote of no confidence requires the Prime Minister to resign. This includes, for example, Mark Harper MP, former Conservative Chief Whip (see his recent evidence to the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee from: 15.37.28. Transcript here @Q195). If the meaningful vote was lost, Mrs May could argue that there is no time for a leadership election or general election and she must go back to the EU and attempt to renegotiate.

If Mrs May did attempt to carry on, it is possible that Conservative MPs could precipitate a leadership election through their internal procedures. If Mrs May survived that process, she would be safe for a year. If she lost, then we would be back in Scenario 1.

Vote of no confidence

The next potential situation could be that the Opposition bring a motion claiming that the House has no confidence in the Prime Minister because she has lost the meaningful vote under s 13 EUWA but has not resigned. This could be done via a statutory motion under the FTPA or by a non-statutory motion. If a non-statutory motion were chosen and the Prime Minister lost, that could lead to Scenario 2 again if Mrs May decided the loss of a straightforward vote of no confidence meant she ought to resign, even though the motion was non-statutory.

Matters are a little different if there were a statutory vote of no confidence under s 2(4) FTPA. The motion must be in the following form.

“That this House has no confidence in Her Majesty’s Government.”

The first point to make is that the Prime Minister could win. In those circumstances, she would then be able to continue in office until 2022 unless there were an internal leadership election in her party or a successful vote of no confidence.

If the Prime Minister lost a statutory vote of no confidence, then a 14 day period would ensue before an automatic general election is called. A general election will only be prevented if a vote of confidence in Her Majesty’s Government is secured within 14 days. In theory, due to the uncharted waters caused by the FTPA, Mrs May could carry on and seek such a vote of confidence in order to continue in office. Alternatively she might resign. If so, a caretaker candidate could be nominated and they could then seek a statutory vote of confidence within 14 days. If successful, they could then carry on as caretaker whilst a full leadership election took place in the Conservative party.

Alternative government

It is possible that if a statutory vote of no confidence is lost by Mrs May, an alternative potential Government could form, following an agreement with a putative Conservative Remainer caucus (as above). At this point it is necessary to highlight a further drafting issue in the FTPA, first highlighted by Gavin Phillipson.

Section 2 (5) FTPA states that a motion in the following terms must be passed.

“That this House has confidence in Her Majesty’s Government.”

The problem is that such an alternative slate would not technically be “Her Majesty’s Government” because the leader of the alternative government would not yet have been appointed as Prime Minister. One potential solution might see a three step process. The first step would be that a non-statutory motion would be passed expressing the confidence of the House in the alternative potential Government. This would be a direct analogue of an “Investiture Vote” for which the Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee persuasively argued in their 10th report of 2014-5 at [61].

The leader of the alternative Government would then be in a position to claim the right to go to the Palace as the person best placed to command the confidence of the House. The incumbent Prime Minister would be expected to resign (Cabinet Manual [2.19]). Once appointed as Prime Minister, and as long as 14 days had not passed, a statutory vote of confidence could then be sought and a general election would be prevented if it passed.

Conclusion

This post has sought to map out three potential scenarios if the meaningful vote in Parliament under s 13 EUWA is lost by the Prime Minister. It has argued that there is no longer any role for the Queen in any part of this process except to confirm whoever has demonstrated that they possess the confidence of the House of Commons. It has also been suggested that matters have been perhaps unnecessarily complicated by the ripple effect of the FTPA. Many will recall that the FTPA is so unpopular in the House of Commons that, for example, the latest Conservative party manifesto is committed to repealing it.

The author would like to thank Gavin Phillipson, Petra Schleiter, Jack Simson-Caird, Graeme Cowie and Tom Poole for their helpful comments on a previous draft. The usual disclaimer applies.

Robert Craig, PhD Student, Durham University

(Suggested citation: R. Craig, ‘What Happens Constitutionally If the Draft Withdrawal Agreement Is Voted Down?’, U.K. Const. L. Blog (16th Nov. 2018) (available at https://ukconstitutionallaw.org/))

News review – Friday 16 November 2018

News review – Friday 16 November 2018

EU

Metro
Donald Tusk has said Brexit is a ‘lose-lose situation’ for the UK and EU, just hours after Theresa May secured Cabinet approval to proceed with her deal. Speaking alongside EU chief negotiator Michel Barnier at a press conference in Brussels, the European Council (EC) president, sent a message to British people, telling them: ‘As much as I am sad to see you leave, I will do everything to make this farewell the least painful possible, for you and for us.’ Mr Tusk set out the process leading up to a Brussels summit of EU leaders on November 25 at which the UK’s withdrawal agreement will be finalised and formalised.

Telegraph
EU leaders said they were hoping for a “no-Brexit scenario” on Thursday as they suggested that Britain could call off the entire process if it did not like the terms of the deal. Donald Tusk, the president of the European Council, said reversing the referendum result would be the EU’s preferred outcome of the negotiations.  “The EU is prepared for a final deal with the United Kingdom in November. We are also prepared for a no-deal scenario but of course we are best prepared for a no-Brexit scenario,” said Mr Tusk at a press conference in Brussels.

Times
The European Union has admitted that plans for a minimal customs union with Britain do not go nearly as far as either side wanted for their post-Brexit relationship. Brussels will push for what is in effect a full customs union with the UK after Brexit when trade talks begin next year. This is because both sides recognise that the present arrangements, which are designed to avoid a hard border in Ireland, are “sub-optimal”. As Westminster was in turmoil, negotiators in Brussels said yesterday that the draft divorce deal had also pushed the EU to its limit after difficult splits about whether to accept the UK’s demand for temporary customs arrangements to avoid border checks in Ireland.

BBC News
EU leaders have dismissed talk of renegotiating the draft Brexit deal and warned the UK’s political situation could make a “no-deal” more likely. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said there was “no question” of reopening talks as a document was “on the table”. Meanwhile French PM Edouard Philippe said there was a need to prepare for a no-deal because of UK “uncertainty”. The EU has set out a series of meetings leading up to 25 November when it plans to approve the Brexit agreement.

Sun
ANGELA Merkel warned Britain there is “no question” of renegotiating the terms of the Brexit deal. The German Chancellor insisted the withdrawal pact agreed with Theresa May is the bloc’s final offer. She said: “We have a document on the table that Britain and the EU have agreed to, so for me there’s no question at the moment whether we negotiate further.”
Her intervention came after eurocrats insisted the deal is “the best we can do” and that there is no room for further compromises. Their ‘take it or leave it’ ultimatum will scotch Brexiteer and Remainer hopes that the terms of the deal could be reopened if Theresa May is toppled.

Times
Angela Merkel has quashed hopes that the European Union could step in to rescue the Brexit agreement with further concessions. Governments across Europe have tried to shore up support for the agreement struck by Theresa May’s cabinet yesterday amid mounting concern that Britain could end up tearing itself out of the EU without a formal deal. The German chancellor said that a no-deal Brexit would be the “worst and most chaotic scenario” but clearly signalled her reluctance to yield more ground to the British side.

Breitbart
Populist Alternative for Germany (AfD) MP Petr Bystron has blamed the Brexit failures of UK Prime Minister Theresa May on the attitudes of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the European Union who he labelled “stubborn” and “unhelpful.” Mr Bystron, who acts as Spokesman for the Alternative for Germany (AfD) on the Foreign Policy Committee of the German Bundestag, said that much of the blame for the outcome of the Brexit negotiations rested on Dr Merkel and her government. “Theresa May’s tragic failure is in large part due to the intransigent attitude of the Berlin government under Angela Merkel, who refused to negotiate constructively with the British government.

Guardian
France’s finance minister, Bruno Le Maire, has welcomed the draft Brexit withdrawal agreement but warned Paris would be vigilant on its final terms, amid mounting concern from EU member states that the UK was being given too soft a deal. An agreement was “good news for the French economy, good news for all French firms,” Le Maire told French public television on Thursday. “It’s in everyone’s interest that Brexit should go ahead smoothly.” However, he stressed France would be “cautious” over formally signing off the divorce deal to ensure it “guards French and European interests”. If the UK stayed in a customs union, as envisaged until an agreement on future trade was negotiated, “we must be sure it respects all EU rules”, he said, including on taxation and environmental standards. The deal “must not weaken our common market”.

Express
EUROPEAN Union countries have rounded on the Italian government, saying it must fall in line after Rome refused to change its budget despite repeated EU demands. Yesterday, Italy submitted its draft 2019 budget to the European Commission with no changes to its growth and deficit projections which had previously been rejected for breaking EU economic rules. The move increased tensions between Rome and EU leaders who had demanded the Italian coalition government make changes. Today, finance ministers from France, the Netherlands and Austria all demanded Italy take “responsibility” amid fears Europe can not handle yet another crisis.

Brexit

Telegraph
In the course of the Brexit negotiations the Prime Minister made a series of assertions and promises about the Brexit deal. In speeches delivered over the past year and a half, she repeatedly vowed to “take back control of our borders, laws and money.” Here we measure the deal published on Wednesday against Mrs May’s promises. Payments to EU:
What May promised: An end to “vast annual payments” in her Tory conference speech in October 2018. What May delivered: Britain will honour all of its commitments to the current EU budget, meaning that member states will not be left to fill the gaps.

Conservative Party

Sky News
Leading Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg has submitted a letter of no confidence in Theresa May, increasing the threat of a Tory leadership challenge. The Tory MP said it was “in the interest of the party and the country if she were to stand aside”, but later insisted he was not staging a “coup” against the prime minister. Several other Conservative MPs – including Henry Smith, Simon Clarke, Laurence Robertson and Anne Marie Morris – also confirmed on Thursday they had submitted their own letters amid growing discontent over the PM’s Brexit plan.

Telegraph
As she stepped up to a lectern in Downing Street on Thursday evening, Theresa May described her job as a “heavy responsibility”, and the burden of high office was written on her careworn face at the end of one of the most turbulent days she has lived through. Such was her demeanour, so deep her tone, that many of those watching thought she was about to announce her resignation, but instead she promised to battle on, to stay at the crease, like her dogged cricketing hero Geoffrey Boycott.

Mirror
Theresa May tonight vowed to stand and fight in a stubborn statement warning of “consequences” if she is forced from power. The Prime Minister gave a live statement to the nation from Downing Street warning of “deep and grave uncertainty” if her Brexit plan is scuppered. Brexit plans are in chaos as she faces defeat for the deal in the Commons, a Tory no confidence vote, and seven resignations over the deal – including Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab and Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey.

Morning Star
THERESA MAY’S “incompetent” Tory Party teetered on the brink of collapse today as her “chaotic” Brexit deal led to a wave of calls for her to quit. The PM was seriously undermined by the resignations of Brexit secretary Dominic Raab and work and pensions secretary Esther McVey, with other Tories following suit. 
Hard-right Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg called for a vote of no confidence in Ms May in outrage over her Brexit deal. In his resignation letter, Mr Raab said the regulatory regime proposed in the deal “prevents a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom,” and said he could not support a deal where the EU has a “veto over our ability to exit.”

Mail
Brexiteers plotting to topple Theresa May faced a ferocious Tory backlash on Thursday night. On a dramatic day at Westminster, hardline Eurosceptics went public with their bid to oust the Prime Minister, following the resignation of Dominic Raab, Esther McVey and two junior ministers over Brexit. Jacob Rees-Mogg confronted Mrs May in the Commons before holding an extraordinary Press conference outside Parliament, saying he had submitted a letter of no confidence in her. Another 15 MPs also announced they had submitted letters in a bid to reach the threshold of 48 needed to trigger a confidence vote.

Telegraph
As all about him were losing their heads – and some were even blaming him – Boris Johnson cut a surprisingly restrained figure as he faced the cameras in parliament’s Central Lobby on Tuesday night, to rubbish a Brexit deal he had not even read. The leavers’ strategy of coming out fighting against the Brussels briefings in a bid to control the news agenda proved unpopular with many Tory MPs, but in the end, there was little criticism of Boris – not least in light of the events that followed. As one backbencher, previously a May loyalist, put it: “Boris showed he is capable of being sensible. His tone was measured. It showed that he has the capacity to step back and take a breath.”

Times
Theresa May was at the mercy of her remaining Brexiteer cabinet ministers last night after being left weakened by an attempted coup and wave of resignations. 
The prime minister failed to persuade Michael Gove to become her third Brexit secretary as she tried to stem the flow of ministers from government. After she forced the Brexit deal through her divided cabinet on Wednesday, Mrs May suffered the worst day of her premiership as: • Dominic Raab quit as Brexit secretary, telling the prime minister that he could not support plans for an Irish backstop. • Esther McVey followed shortly afterwards, leaving her post as work and pensions secretary and accusing Mrs May of betrayal.

Breitbart
Brexit campaign leader Nigel Farage has celebrated the wave of ministerial resignations which have followed the unveiling of Theresa May’s draft withdrawal agreement with the European Union, saying hopes to see her deposed within a matter of days. “At last! Gosh, it’s taken them a hell of a long time, I mean they should’ve got rid of her a year ago, really,” exclaimed the veteran campaigner in an interview with Channel 5, evidently relieved. “It was perfectly obvious after her speech in Florence that she did not genuinely want to leave the European Union — that’s the speech where she started talking about opting back into part of the EU,” he recalled.

Ireland

Telegraph
For Brexiteers, the Irish ‘backstop’ has become a dirty word, handcuffing the UK to the EU’s customs union and taking away Britain’s chance to strike trade deals around the world for the foreseeable future. When the history of Brexit is written, there will be long arguments over whether the ‘backstop’ could have been avoided, but even before the Brexit vote, it was clear that Ireland was going to present a major impediment to the UK’s departure from the EU. The backstop has its origin in the 1998 Good Friday Agreement which created an ‘invisible’ border between Northern Ireland and the Republic as part of the peace settlement between Unionist and Nationalists.

Express
IRELAND’s deputy premier Simon Coveney says he has faith that Theresa May can navigate the “difficult days” ahead as members of her Cabinet walkout over her Brexit deal amid speculation of a leadership challenge.  The Tánaiste was challenged during Dail questions on whether the deal was already doomed, given the developments in London. Mr Coveney said he had faith that Theresa May could navigate the “difficult days” ahead: “She’s resilient and she’s shown a remarkable capacity to get things done in difficult circumstances.”

Guardian
Irelandwill remain an open door to the UK for EU citizens after Brexit with no mandatory passport checks on those who travel to Britain via Dublin and Belfast, it has been confirmed. After Brexit, EU citizens not already settled in the UK will be subject to immigration rules but will be able to travel to Britain via Ireland and Northern Irelanduninhibited. This is because the withdrawal dealstates the UK will respect Ireland’s continued membership of the EU and its freedom of movement rules while at the same time keeping the common travel area (CTA), which has allowed British and Irish citizens to move freely between each others’ countries since 1922.

Telegraph
Ireland declared victory in the Brexit negotiations on Thursday while other EU leaders cautiously welcomed Theresa May’s deal, even as Eurosceptics in Westminster threatened to bring down her Government. The front page of the Irish Times announced “Victory in London, chaos in Brussels,” while Danish paper Berlingske boasted that the “British people are beginning to understand that the EU is not a buffet.” Senior officials in France, meanwhile, said it was critical that the deal was implemented in full. 

Scotland

Guardian
The ongoing Brexit chaos makes the case for Scottish independence stronger every day, Nicola Sturgeon has said, suggesting that she may update the Holyrood parliament on the timing of a second independence poll in a matter of weeks. Responding to a question from Scottish Greens co-convenor Patrick Harvie at first minister’s questions on Thursday, the Scottish National party leader said: “I have no doubt that Scotland will get an opportunity to choose again on the question of independence, and when it does, I am confident that it will choose to be an independent country.

Gibraltar

Express
SPAIN has refused to give up its claim on Gibraltar, despite the draft Brexit withdrawal agreed by Theresa May specifically protecting the British overseas territory and its people. The Brexit divorce agreement presented to Parliament by the Prime Minister, which has been met with widespread criticism, includes a protocol setting out the rights of citizens and businesses in Gibraltar but a Spanish minister said his country has not relinquished claims to the region. The overarching aim of the protocol is to, “ensure and orderly withdrawal from the Union in relation to Gibraltar.”

Second referendum

Telegraph
To paraphrase Sherlock Holmes: when you exclude the impossible, what remains, however improbable, is the answer. The only way out of the Brexit impasse is a further referendum. At some point Parliament should recognise this, and if the tactics of how it is voted upon aren’t bungled, should agree it. But the sooner the better. The Theresa May deal should not pass Parliament. It is a bad deal, a million miles away from what people were promised from Brexit; and a deal which Members of Parliament would never in a thousand years vote for if they were voting purely on its merits.

NHS

Times
Over-65s seeking flu jabs are being turned away by GPs who say they are struggling to get hold of the vaccine. Shortages of a version tailored to older people are being reported around the country, with doctors complaining that health chiefs have not given them enough time to order supplies. GPs have accused NHS England of presiding over a “complete debacle”, but health chiefs insist that surgeries have been given plenty of time to arrange supplies of the vaccine.

Times
NHS cancer screening is to be overhauled after a string of blunders, and a review will consider replacing one-size-fits-all checks with tests targeted according to risk factors. Checks for breast, bowel and cervical cancer are being reviewed as health chiefs acknowledge that programmes established decades ago need updating. Stratified screening that offers more frequent checks to those at highest risk while calling in others less often is likely to be among changes considered. Artificial intelligence that checks scans for cancer could also be integrated with other changes to modernise systems that rely on sending out standardised letters.

Sun
DOCTORS have warned women could be at risk of cervical cancer after an NHS blunder meant up to 48,000 failed to receive letters inviting them for a smear test. The “appalling error” saw patients miss a crucial reminder notice to book a smear test, while others weren’t sent results letters, the British Medical Association said. Officials admit 180 women were not told they had abnormal findings – and were at heightened risk of cervical cancer. NHS England said half have now been followed up and there is no evidence of harm, while the rest have been booked in for extra checks.

Morning Star
DRUG companies are ripping off the NHS to the tune of tens of billions pounds a year, statistics from management body NHS England revealed yesterday. They showed that companies supplying medications charged the NHS £20.2 billion last year — an increase of 10.9 per cent. The increase far outstrips inflation and is round three times higher than extra cash given to the NHS by taxpayers. Campaign group Global Justice Now condemned the increase as “exploitative” and said the government should take action to curb the companies’ blatant greed. The group says that patients are being denied access to vital drugs because of spiralling costs.

Education

Times
Children as young as 11 are being put on a “GCSE flight path” and taught an increasingly narrow curriculum, teachers say. Schools are preparing children for GCSEs from the start of secondary school and have an obsession with exams, meaning access to arts subjects is being restricted, according to a survey. Amanda Spielman, the head of Ofsted, spoke out last year against schools that start the two-year syllabus a year early, at Year 9, meaning that pupils decide which subjects they will study at GCSE level at the end of Year 8 when they are 12 or 13.

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News review – Thursday 15 November 2018

News review – Thursday 15 November 2018

Brexit

Mail
The scale of the compromises made by Theresa May in Brexit negotiations has been laid bare tonight. The draft Withdrawal Agreement reveals that there will be more regulatory checks between Northern Ireland and Britain – a red line for the DUP.  The UK will also potentially be locked in a backstop to avoid a hard Irish border ‘unless and until’ another solution can be found, with no unilateral ability to exit. That would mean obeying environmental and other rules to keep a ‘level playing field’. Meanwhile, the document leaves open the option of indefinitely extending the transition period – essentially staying in the EU but having no say in setting the rules.

Sun
THE extent to which Britain faces being stuck with the EU for years to come finally emerged yesterday. Furious Eurosceptics said Downing Street had committed the UK to “slavery” as the bumper 585-page Withdrawal Agreement was published shortly after the PM addressed the nation. It confirmed the UK could extend a post-Brexit transition phase beyond New Year’s Eve 2020 — at a cost of billions more — if it needed more time to thrash out a trade deal. And MPs were alarmed to see the document detailed the transition could be extended for an indefinite date of “[31 December 20XX]”. A final date will thrashed out by next month’s EU Council with sources saying last night it could be a matter of months or “few years”. It also revealed Britain would not be able to walk away from the Irish border backstop – a post Brexit customs insurance plan – unless it also had permission from the EU.

Breitbart
The Prime Minister has betrayed the principles of Brexit and is subjecting the United Kingdom to political slavery at the hands of Brussels, Brexiteers have said, as the details of the Prime Minister’s deal leaked to Irish media Tuesday afternoon. Brexiteers within the Conservative party met Tuesday as the news emerged of a “technical level” agreement emerged — apparently leaked to Irish journalists sympathetic to the European Union but not to figures within the United Kingdom — and spoke of launching a “coup” against the Prime Minister, Britain’s
The Times reported in the early hours of Wednesday morning. Several prominent pro-Brexit figures lined up to condemn the plan, which if the leaks are representative of what has been agreed, would see most promises and red-lines promised by the Prime Minister broken or ignored.

Morning Star
THERESA MAY’S squalid deal that purports to deliver the June 2016 referendum decision to quit the European Union should be opposed root and branch. Her priority all along, while reciting deceitfully the mantra “Brexit means Brexit,” has been to concentrate negotiations with the European Union on a package of priorities demanded by the City of London financial sector and her Business Advisory Council. When she, David Cameron and George Osborne led the Remain side into the referendum campaign, they warned that leaving the EU would mean turning our backs on both the EU single market and the customs union.

Sky News
Theresa May has won the approval of her ministers for her Brexit agreement, but there are growing rumblings of discontent despite what she has hailed as a “decisive step forward”. The Prime Minister’s top team signed off on the
draft text following a marathon five-hour cabinet meeting, in what represents a breakthrough in the exit process two-and-a-half years on from the referendum. But Sky News has been told as many as 10 ministers spoke out about what was on offer and made their misgivings known. Sky sources said the gathering was “very split”, with Mrs May getting the agreement through on a majority rather than with unanimous backing.

Mail
Theresa May has secured her deal in Brussels but her fight to get it actually in place in time for Brexit day is just beginning. If the Cabinet agrees to the deal the biggest hurdle will be the ‘meaningful vote’ on the plans in Parliament. This is expected to take place in December to ensure the deal is over its biggest hurdle before the end of the year. The Prime Minister needs at least 318 votes in the Commons if all 650 MPs turns up – but can probably only be confident of around 230 votes. The number is less than half because the four Speakers, 7 Sinn Fein MPs and four tellers will not take part.

ITV News
Theresa May said “difficult days lie ahead” as she announced her Brexit deal had been approved by the Cabinet. One of the chief obstacles could be the House of Commons, where a simple majority of MPs will need to vote for the blueprint for the deal to be given the green light. The magic number is 320, a majority of the 639 voting MPs in the Commons which excludes suspensions, the Speaker, three Deputy Speakers and seven Sinn Fein MPs who abstain from attending the UK Parliament. The Parliament website lists 93 MPs who are ministers of Government and would therefore be bound to support Theresa May’s Brexit plans owing to collective responsibility.

UKIP
Gerard Batten MEP and UKIP Leader on the cabinet accepting Theresa May
s ‘Not Really Leaving the EU Deal’: “In the morning we can expect a complete betrayal of the Referendum result. Mrs May has threatened the cabinet with accepting her Not Really Leaving the EU Deal or the threat of a general election and the spectre of a Corbyn Marxist government.” “This is exactly what I have predicted since the historic and spectacular Referendum result. UKIP’s position is unilateral and unconditional withdrawal. “The real struggle to leave the EU now begins in earnest. UKIP will never give up the fight for a complete and total exit from the EU. “If this surrender deal is implemented, UKIP will be the political resistance movement, fighting in the electoral beaches, fields, lanes, and landing grounds. UKIP will never surrender.”

EU

Telegraph
European Union countries will seek to drive home their advantage over Britain and try to secure further concessions in fishing and finance, despite the Cabinet appearing to be ready to back the Brexit deal. Britain and the European Commission have agreed a draft Brexit deal, reaching a compromise over the vexed issue of how to prevent the return of a hard border on the island of Ireland after the UK leaves the EU. But diplomats from the EU-27 warned on Wednesday, as government ministers debated the agreement, that the deal is not guaranteed their support and they will push for more.

Independent
Brussels will “retain all the controls” over swathes of British regulation under the Brexit deal struck by Theresa May, EU negotiators have told member states. A leaked diplomatic note from a meeting between Commission officials and ambassadors from the EU’s 27 countries reveals how Brussels views the “level playing field” rules signed up to by the prime minister. “We should be in the best negotiation position for the future relationship. This requires the customs union as the basis of the future relationship,” deputy chief negotiator Sabine Weyand said, according to the note seen by
The Times newspaper. “They must align their rules but the EU will retain all the controls. They apply the same rules. UK wants a lot more from future relationship, so EU retains its leverage.”

Guardian
Michel Barnier conceded that securing backing for the provisional Brexit deal struck with the UK would be difficult as he unveiled a new customs union along with a joint pledge to keep the EU and UK in permanent regulatory lockstep. As the EU’s chief negotiator revealed the withdrawal agreement and political declaration on the future deal in Brussels, he said the documents offered evidence of “decisive progress” in the talks. Barnier told reporters in a press conference, however, that he recognised that the “path is still long” in getting agreement on both sides of the channel, and called on the UK parliament to “assume its responsibility”.

Mail
Michel Barnier today hailed the deal thrashed out with Theresa May as a ‘decisive and crucial’ step in delivering Brexit. In a day of high drama, the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator hailed the deal in a press conference in Brussels minutes after Mrs May got sign off for it from her Cabinet. The PM emerged from the marathon five-hour meeting to declare she believes with her ‘head and heart’ her deal ‘is firmly in the national interest’ – and her ministers had backed her.  And in a carefully orchestrated show to unity, Mr Barnier addressed a press conference in Brussels to hail the deal.  He said: ‘This agreement is a decisive and crucial step in concluding these negotiations.’

Ireland

Mail
The DUP today lashed Theresa May‘s Brexit plan as a ‘bad deal’ which MPs will reject – as their pact to prop her up in No10 hangs in the balance. Sammy Wilson, the party’s Brexit spokesman, said many in the country will be ‘appalled’ at the deal the PM has thrashed out with Brussels. And he vowed that the DUP will vote against it when the deal comes heads to Parliament for a titanic battle next month. His words are a major blow for Mrs May as the DUP’s 10 MPs are propping the Tories up in Number Ten in a confidence and supply deal.

Mirror
Theresa May’s DUP allies look set to abandon her as they warn her Brexit deal will break up the UK. Mrs May handed over £1.5billion barely a year ago for the Northern Irish party’s 10 MPs to vote with her in Parliament because she doesn’t have a majority. But as DUP chief whip Sir Jeffrey Donaldson told the BBC: “This deal has the potential to lead to the break-up of the UK. “That is not something we can support.” The news is a major blow to Theresa May just hours after she secured a draft deal with Brussels. Cabinet ministers will examine the deal at 2pm – but the DUP are opposed to plans for customs checks between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.

Sun
ARLENE Foster flew to London to warn Theresa May the DUP would bring down her Government unless she changed course on Brexit. The furious Ulster hardliner hinted the confidence and supply agreement propping up the Tories was not dependent on Mrs May being leader. The DUP leader said there would be “consequences” for Mrs May if she put forward a deal which threatened to break up the United Kingdom. “If she decides to go against that, if she decides to go against herself – because on many, many occasions she stood up in this very place and said she will not break up the United Kingdom, there will be no difference between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK – if she decides to go against all that, then there will be consequences,” said Mrs Foster. “Of course there will be consequences. We could not as Unionists support a deal that broke up the United Kingdom.”

BBC News
The DUP has described the government’s Brexit text as a “poor deal” after Prime Minister Theresa May announced the cabinet had voted to support it. East Antrim MP Sammy Wilson reacted angrily to the news saying it was “a deal she (Mrs May) said she would never accept”. DUP leader Arlene Foster and deputy leader Nigel Dodds met the prime minister on Wednesday night. Mrs Foster described the meeting as “frank” on a Twitter post. Both parties held the discussions at the prime minister’s office in the House of Commons. The meeting, which lasted around an hour, took place after the text of the draft withdrawal agreement had already been published.

ITV News
The chairman of the Conservative Party has admitted there is “work to do” to get the DUP to back
the prime minister’s draft Brexit agreement. Theresa May secured Cabinet approval of the draft agreement on Wednesday evening, but faces an uphill battle to get it through a Commons vote. Appearing on ITV’s Peston, Brandon Lewis denied the deal with the DUP propping up the Tory government was “in tatters”. He told the programme: “I do accept we have got work to do over the next few weeks with colleagues as they go through the detail of this deal.”

Times
The Irish government breathed a sigh of relief last night as its Brexit red lines were met in the draft withdrawal treaty between Britain and the EU. Chief among the commitments was the assurance that a hard border would not emerge again on the island and Britain could not unilaterally leave the temporary customs arrangement. Leo Varadkar, the Irish prime minister, praised Theresa May for staying “true to her word” on the Irish border. Speaking shortly after the draft deal was published, Mr Varadkar said it had been one of the better days in politics.

Conservative Party

Express
THERESA MAY and her negotiating team have “shown by their actions that they never believed Brexit can be a success”, the Prime Minister’s former joint chief of staff has argued. Nick Timothy used a newspaper column to stage the intervention. The former Downing Street aide fell out of favour after the disastrous 2017 General Election. He was one of the key architects of Mrs May’s catastrophic snap election campaign. Writing in the Daily Telegraph, he said: “The draft agreement fails the Lancaster House tests set by Mrs May. “It has no chance in the Commons.” Mr Timothy, who alongside Fiona Hill was blamed for Mrs May’s catastrophic 2017 General Election campaign, argued the European Commission “knows it has won hands down” and “the silence in Brussels is revealing”.

Express
THERESA May hailed a “decisive step” towards Brexit last night after narrowly winning the backing of her Cabinet for her draft deal with the EU. Following five hours of bad-tempered wrangling in Downing Street, senior ministers agreed by a wafer-thin majority to support the deal thrashed out with Brussels negotiators. MPs now faced a choice between backing her deal that delivered on the 2016 EU referendum vote or “no deal or no Brexit at all”, she said. “I believe that what I owe to this country is to take decisions that are in the national interest, and I firmly believe with my head and my heart that this is a decision which is in the best interests of our entire United Kingdom,” said the Prime Minister.

Mail
Theresa May last night hailed her Brexit deal as being in the ‘national interest’ after convincing her Cabinet to back it – but only after a stormy five-hour meeting in which minister after minister had spoken against the plans, sparking fears of an imminent coup against her leadership from furious Brexiteers. Mrs May finally won the day after declaring it was ‘this or Jeremy Corbyn’, but the fallout from the discussions left at least one minister – Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey – on ‘resignation watch’. In all at least 10 mutinous ministers spoke out against Mrs May’s draft deal with Brussels during the meeting that stretched into yesterday evening.

Mail
Furious Brexiteers are ready to launch a no confidence vote in Theresa May in protest at the ‘betrayal’ in her draft EU deal. For the first time members of the hardline European Research Group led by Jacob Rees-Mogg are warning the Prime Minister she has run out of time. A vote will be called if 48 Tory MPs send letters to Sir Graham Brady, the chairman of the 1922 Committee of Conservative backbenchers. Rumours have swirled for months that Sir Graham was close to the threshold but no contest has ever emerged.

Times
A wave of Brexiteers are poised to submit letters of no confidence in Theresa May, hardliners claimed last night, prompting predictions of a contest within days. The leadership of the European Research Group (ERG), which represents about 50 or more hard Brexiteers, decided to start pulling support from Mrs May yesterday afternoon. Key ERG figures urged colleagues to write letters of no confidence to Sir Graham Brady, chairman of the 1922 Committee. As the cabinet meeting dragged into its fifth hour, however, the group stopped short of asking that they be sent amid growing expectations of resignations within days. Under the rules, Sir Graham must hold a vote of no confidence if he receives 48 letters from Tory MPs.

Westmonster
There are strong rumours tonight that Brexiteer Tory MPs may finally force a no confidence vote against Theresa May. Sam Coates from The Times was the first to hint of more letters going in, except this time “from non-usual suspects”. The Beeb’s Laura Kuenssberg has also been told of Brexiteer anger so great that there could be a no confidence vote tomorrow. Conservative MP Conor Burns has summed up the potentially shifting move against Theresa May, saying: “I have consistently said we don’t want to change the PM, we want to change the policy of the PM. “However there comes a point where if the PM is insistent that she will not change the policy, then the only way to change the policy is to change the personnel.”
Are pro-Brexit MPs finally going to try and oust May?

Order-Order
ERG Chairman Jacob Rees-Mogg has written to all Conservative MPs calling on them to vote down Theresa May’s draft withdrawal agreement.
Short and to the point…

Westmonster
Pro-Brexit Conservative MP Nadine Dorries has hit out at Prime Minister Theresa May’s decision to meet with Jeremy Corbyn before her own party’s MPs after putting forward her EU Withdrawal Agreement, and has insisted that May would lose a confidence vote. Speaking on ITV’s Peston, Dorries said of the late night meeting with the Labour Leader: “Which has gone down really badly with those few MPs who were from my side of the party who who were still giving her the benefit of the doubt. “In fact one has just said ‘the fact that she is calling in the Leader of the Opposition in to speak to him before she talks to her own MPs is the final straw’.”

EU army

Independent
The European Commission has said it is “delighted” that the leaders of France and Germany have backed the creation of a “real” EU army. A spokesperson for the commission’s president Jean-Claude Juncker said he was “pleased” that the argument for the force seemed to be “going in our direction”. Addressing the European Parliament on Tuesday Angela Merkel said she supported a “real, true” European army, echoing an identical call by her French counterpart Emmanuel Macron the week before. Speaking on Wednesday, the commission’s spokesperson tried to attribute credit for the idea to Mr Juncker, noting that he had previously endorsed such a force.

Fixed odds betting terminals

Times
Theresa May has been forced into an embarrassing climbdown over the reform of fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs) in the face of a Commons rebellion. A cut in the top bet on the machines from £100 to £2 to combat problem gambling will now come into force in April, six months earlier than planned. More than 20 Tory MPs set out to sabotage Treasury plans to push it back to October. Tracey Crouch resigned as sports minister over the delay, which had been condemned by MPs who believe the cut is vital to protect vulnerable people and families. The change was announced in a written statement to MPs by Jeremy Wright, the culture secretary, yesterday.

Mail
Theresa May today made a humiliating U-turn on her decision to delay curbs to ‘crack cocaine’ gambling machines after a Tory revolt. The Government sparked fury by deciding to delay the slashing of the maximum stake on Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs) from £100 to £2, by six months. The decision, announced by Philip Hammond in the Budget, was condemned by charities and caused the shock resignation of Sports Minister Tracey Crouch. But after a fortnight of mounting pressure, the Government today announced they will abandon the delay and bring the implementation forward to April next year.

Housing

Independent
Ministers have unveiled plans for a specialist “housing court” to speed up the settlement of property disputes between landlords and tenants. The designated court, according to the government, will be “particularly important” for families and vulnerable tenants “who live with the fear of suddenly being forced to move”. It comes after the then-communities secretary, Sajid Javid, announced at the Conservative Party conference in 2017 the government would explore the idea to deliver “more effective” justice. Mr Javid’s successor, James Brokenshire, has now issued a “call for evidence” to consult on the housing court for the next two months – seeking views from tenants, landlords and owners.

NHS

Telegraph
NHS staff shortages could triple in a decade, without a radical boost to recruitment efforts, major thinktanks have warned. Analysis by the King’s Fund, the Health Foundation and the Nuffield Trust suggests the health service could be short of more than 350,000 staff if it continues to lose staff and cannot attract enough from abroad. On such trends, one in four posts would be vacant, compared with one in eight today. The think tanks said “worryingly” high numbers of hospital doctors and nurses were taking early retirement, and not being replaced in sufficient numbers. It follows research which shows just one in 20 trainee GP intends to work full-time, with the average family doctor working just three and a half days.

Mail
The NHS faces a catastrophic shortage of 350,000 staff by 2030 unless it can attract new workers, experts warn. Three leading health sector think-tanks claim the workforce crisis is now a greater threat to services than financial challenges. The NHS is already struggling with growing staff shortages, with a record 107,000 unfilled vacancies and more staff working part-time. The King’s Fund, Nuffield Trust and The Health Foundation warn that the widening staffing gap could lead to spiralling waiting times and declining care quality. Richard Murray, policy director at the King’s Fund, said the NHS had less than a year to act or risk creating a downward spiral caused by ‘unbearable’ working conditions. Mr Murray said: ‘They have very little time.’

Death tax

Telegraph
Legal experts have accused the Government of sneaking in a new “death tax” by the back door without proper parliamentary scrutiny. New rules will mean estates worth £2m or more pay £6,000 in probate fees, up from £155 currently. The 3,770pc increase is a reduction on the original plans, which would have meant a bill of £20,000 for the largest estates. A “grant of probate” allows the executor to access and distribute someone’s estate when they die. The fiercely unpopular changes have been dubbed a “stealth death tax” and a de facto increase on top of existing inheritance levies (IHT). Experts have now warned that the probate fee structure will not be thoroughly debated in Parliament, as any other tax rule changes would. The changes are expected to be introduced in April 2019, but the rules already form part of the law, it has emerged.

Energy

Telegraph
Surging oil prices sent household bills spiralling at rates not seen since 2012, keeping pressure on family finances despite costs easing for other goods and services. Gas prices are picking up sharply, rising by 7.6pc over the 12 months to October. Electricity is also up 9pc on the year and petrol prices are up 11.5pc at 131p per litre, a four-year high. By contrast food price inflation fell to 0.4pc, the smallest annual rise in 18 months. On a monthly basis food prices have now fallen for two consecutive months, helping families with the weekly shop. Clothes and shoes are also getting cheaper with prices down 1.1pc on the year.

Times
The owners of two of Britain’s biggest energy suppliers have revealed contingency plans for the collapse of the companies’ planned merger, opening the door to a fresh shake-up of the sector. SSE agreed last year to spin off its household supply unit and merge it with Npower, part of the German utility Innogy, to form an independent supplier listed in London. It admitted yesterday that there was uncertainty over whether the deal would go ahead because the combined company “couldn’t achieve a listing on the premier section of London Stock Exchange in its current form”.

The post News review – Thursday 15 November 2018 appeared first on UKIP Daily | UKIP News | UKIP Debate.

News review – Wednesday 14 November 2018

News review – Wednesday 14 November 2018

Brexit

Westmonster
Former Brexit Secretary David Davis has described a “moment of truth” as Theresa May prepares to put forward her EU deal to the Cabinet and MPs in Parliament. The deal, set to keep the UK inside the EU Customs Union for years come and at the mercy of Brussels, has already been savaged by the likes of Boris Johnson and Jacob Rees-Mogg, with the latter describing such an arrangement as a “slave state”. Davis has issued a rallying call, writing on Twitter: “This is the moment of truth. This is the fork in the road.

Mail
Theresa May has agreed a draft divorce agreement with the EU and will today present it to her Cabinet in a three-hour ‘make or break’ meeting. Last night, leaked details of the agreement included that EU chiefs have conceded Britons will not need visas to travel to Europe after Brexit. The other leaks surrounded the issue of the backstop, the terms Britain will automatically adopt if a trade deal is not agreed by 2020. The EU dropped its demand for Northern Ireland to remain in the customs union without the rest of the UK, which would create a border in the Irish Sea. Instead the customs union would apply indefinitely to the whole of the UK.

Breitbart
The Prime Minister has betrayed the principles of Brexit and is subjecting the United Kingdom to political slavery at the hands of Brussels, Brexiteers have said as the details of the Prime Minister’s deal leaked to Irish media Tuesday afternoon. Brexiteers within the Conservative party met Tuesday as the news emerged of a “technical level” agreement emerged — apparently leaked to Irish journalists sympathetic to the European Union but not to figures within the United Kingdom — and spoke of launching a “coup” against the Prime Minister, Britain’s
The Times reported in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Times
Theresa May will put her future in the hands of senior ministers today as she asks them to sign off a Brexit deal in the face of accusations of betrayal. The prime minister was trying to sell the divorce deal and pact on the future relationship with Europe last night to a reluctant cabinet, which is due to meet at 2pm to agree it. Leave-supporting cabinet ministers were coming under intense pressure to reject the deal as senior Brexiteers and the DUP launched a pre-emptive strike on what they claimed was an abject surrender.

Express
IAIN Duncan Smith has said the government are in “real trouble” after Theresa May summoned her Cabinet to consider a draft following a breakthrough in Brexit negotiations. The UK and EU officials have agreed the draft text of a Brexit agreement with ministers currently meeting the Prime Minister for one-on-one talks. The Brexiteer warned that if reports of the deal’s contents were true the Government was “breaking their own agreed position and will be bringing back something that is untenable”.

Order-Order
Senior Eurosceptics have been tearing into Theresa May’s Brexit deal following reports that a draft text has been agreed, with Boris Johnson describing it as
“vassal state stuff” and “utterly unacceptable”. Jacob Rees-Mogg has called it a “failure of the Government’s negotiating position and a failure to deliver on Brexit”. The DUP have warned May that there will be “consequences” if she does not keep her Brexit promises to them, with Sammy Wilson stressing that their confidence and supply deal is with the Conservative Party, not May herself. May is going to have some job getting this through Parliament…

Sky News
Ministers have been summoned to Downing Street to go through the draft of a Brexit withdrawal agreement, as Leave-supporting MPs reacted with fury to reported details of the text. In what is a breakthrough in the Brexit process, an agreement on the terms of Britain’s EU exit has been reached at a “technical level” by negotiators in Brussels. But Theresa May now needs to win over her top team and get them to back the proposals. Ministers were seen coming and going on Tuesday evening, with the talks a chance for them to scrutinise the detail and for the PM to try and get them on side.

Mirror
D-Day for Brexit has finally arrived after the UK agreed a draft deal with the EU. Tory Cabinet ministers were tonight hauled one-by-one into Downing Street to learn how negotiators won a dramatic race against time in Brussels. After they have been briefed, Theresa May will summon her Cabinet to an emergency meeting at 2pm tomorrow to sign off the deal – which was “agreed at a technical level” today. Tonight’s development, which sent the pound to a seven-month high, was a breakthrough for the PM just hours before the deadline to call a special EU summit – where 27 EU leaders would sign the deal off.

BBC News
UK and EU officials have agreed the draft text of a Brexit agreement after months of negotiations. A cabinet source told the BBC that the document has been agreed at a technical level by officials from both sides after intensive discussions this week. A special cabinet meeting will be held at 14:00 GMT on Wednesday as Theresa May seeks ministers’ backing. The PM has been meeting ministers in Downing Street for one-to-one talks on the draft agreement. BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg said the agreement contained a UK-wide customs “backstop” aimed at preventing new border checks in Northern Ireland.

Guardian
Theresa May summoned her cabinet to an emergency meeting on Wednesday afternoon to sign off her long awaited final Brexit deal, prompting hard-Brexit Tories to call for senior ministers to stand up and block it. The critical meeting is the culmination of months of negotiations and will see May’s senior ministers consider whether they can personally endorse the agreement that the prime minister has been able to reach. Ministers were summoned to No 10 in the early evening and some met individually with May or her chief of staff, Gavin Barwell. They were given the chance to read the key documents, although they were not trusted to take any papers home.

Mail
Theresa May is facing ‘judgment day’ on Brexit after securing a withdrawal agreement with Brussels. At an emergency three-hour Cabinet meeting on Wednesday afternoon, she will warn ministers it is now ‘make or break’ for avoiding a chaotic exit. Downing Street believes it has headed off plans that could have led to Northern Ireland being ‘annexed’ by the EU after Brexit and insists it has laid the groundwork for a ‘good deal’. But No 10 is on alert for possible resignations tomorrow, with Eurosceptic ministers under intense pressure from hardliners not to approve a ‘Brexit in name only’.

DUP

Express
THE Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) has launched a scathing attack on the Prime Minister’s Brexit agreement, threatening to vote it down and saying it crosses a “fundamental red line.” The Northern Ireland party props up the Conservative minority government and the Prime Minister will be relying on DUP support to get the deal she is presenting to ministers tonight through Parliament. However DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds has said his party will not support the agreement “on constitutional grounds” as it would leave Northern Ireland subject to rules and regulations set “in Brussels with no democratic input” from Belfast.

Westmonster
DUP Leader Arlene Foster has insisted that the “desire for a deal will not be superseded by a willingness to accept any deal” as Theresa May gets set to reveal her plan. Without the support of the DUP’s 10 MPs, the deal has even less chance of getting through Parliament. In a statement, Foster has made clear that “an agreement which places new trade barriers between Northern Ireland and Great Britain will fundamentally undermine the constitutional and economic integrity of the United Kingdom. That is not acceptable”.

Legal advice

Guardian
The government will be forced to publish the full legal advice on the final Brexit deal after it was defeated in the Commons by Labour, backed by the DUP. Ministers conceded defeat by ordering Conservative MPs to abstain in a Commons vote, after it became clear they would lose any attempt to stop the disclosure when the DUP said it would support the move. Ministers will now be required to to publish the advice covering the legally binding withdrawal agreement, including the Irish backstop plan, before any Brexit deal is put before parliament.

Times
Ministers will publish up to 5,000 pieces of legal advice on the Brexit deal after losing a parliamentary battle. In a bad omen for Theresa May in getting the agreement through the Commons, Brexiteers and the DUP joined with Labour to force the concession. Labour used the niche parliamentary procedure of a “humble address” to force a vote on the Queen requiring ministers to let MPs see “any legal advice in full”. Despite last-ditch concessions from David Lidington, the prime minister’s effective deputy, the DUP made clear that they would vote against the government.

Scotland

Express
NICOLA Sturgeon has called on campaigners pushing to keep Britain tied to the EU through its single market and customs union to seize the opportunity if Theresa May is unable to get her Brexit deal through the Commons. The Scottish First Minister said MPs voting down Mrs May’s agreement would offer an opening “to get better options back on the table”. Ms Sturgeon, a staunch Remainer, has demanded Westminster negotiate terms which includes staying inside the EU’s single market and customs union – and warned the SNP will vote against any deal which does not offer this.

Conservative Party

Express
THERESA May will hold a special Cabinet meeting on Wednesday to approve the draft Brexit bill she has negotiated with the EU. So who could block the plan? Downing Street confirmed the news with a statement on Tuesday evening which said: “Cabinet will meet at 2pm tomorrow to consider the draft agreement the negotiating teams have reached in Brussels, and to decide on next steps. Cabinet ministers have been invited to read documentation ahead of that meeting.” No details of the withdrawal agreement have yet been released, but a cabinet source told the BBC the document has been agreed at a technical level by officials from both the EU and UK.

Reuters
Former minister Jo Johnson said that the future of Britain’s ruling Conservative Party would be in peril if Prime Minister Theresa May proceeded with Brexit, hours after Britain agreed the draft text for leaving the European Union. The former junior transport minister, who is the younger brother of former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, issued a searing critique of May’s Brexit deal last week when he unexpectedly quit and called for a second referendum. “The future of the Conservative Party will be gravely imperilled if we are held responsible for taking the country into this absurd new relationship with the EU where vast swathes of our economy will be governed by rules that we have no hand at all in shaping,” Jo Johnson told a political rally in London.

Express
PENNY MORDAUNT has demanded Theresa May waive the fundamental Parliamentary convention of Collective Cabinet Responsibility so MPs can have a free vote on the draft Brexit deal thrashed out this week. The International Development Secretary staged the astonishing intervention on Tuesday. Ms Mordaunt is thought to have called for Tory MPs and ministers to act with their consciences when the deal is brought before the Commons. The constitutional convention of Collective Ministerial Responsibility is a cornerstone of the UK system.

Buzzfeed
Senior cabinet ministers led by Brexit secretary Dominic Raab will tell Theresa May that the current deal on offer from the EU is unacceptable and she should prepare for the UK to leave with no deal if she cannot secure further concessions. In a significant raising of the pressure on May from inside her own cabinet, the group of senior ministers will make clear to the prime minister that they could not support a deal that breaches their two red lines. They are doubling down on their demands that the EU drops its Northern Ireland-only “backstop to the backstop” and that the deal must include a “break clause” mechanism that would allow the UK to unilaterally leave a UK-wide customs arrangement.

EU

Westmonster
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has today echoed French President Macron’s call for an EU Army. Speaking in the European Parliament, she said: “This is really important…we have to work on a vision of one day creating a real, true European Army”. Going even further than that, Merkel called for the EU to develop its foreign policy including a European Security Council and a “European intervention force so that we can tackle issues immediately on the ground”. This is the disturbing direction the European Union is now heading in. Brexit Britain must leave – and fast.

Sun
GERMAN leader Angela Merkel has joined the French President in calling for a “real, true” European army. Merkel declared there should be an “integrated European Union military”, recalling the lessons of the First World War and the divisions that led to the conflict. Speaking to MEPs today about the future of Europe, Merkel said the continent should take its “fate fully into its own hands”. Echoing comments made by French leader Emmanuel Macron last week, she said: “We should work on a vision of one day establishing a real, true European army.”

Mail
Angela Merkel called for the creation of a ‘real, true’ European army during a speech to EU ministers on Tuesday in a rebuke to President Trump. The German Chancellor also called for a European Security Council that would be responsible for coordinating defence policy across the continent. Merkel spoke out after French President Emmanuel Macron floated the same idea last week, and hours after Donald Trump lambasted him for it on Twitter. Meanwhile, Trump joked that Parisians ‘were starting to learn German before the U.S. came along’ and liberated France during the Second World War – and told EU leaders to pay their fair share to NATO.

Guardian
The EU has ratcheted up the pressure on Theresa May by publishing a fresh batch of no-deal plans including the warning that it will only allow UK nationals to make short visa-free visits to EU destinations if the policy is reciprocated by the British government. With the Brexit negotiations at their most intense, and Downing Street pushing to make make decisive progress within the next 24 hours to secure a November summit, the commission made public its emergency preparations. They range from residency and visa-related issues to financial services, air transport, customs, the transfer of personal data, and climate policy.

Express
THE European Union has five years to overhaul the bloc’s financial system, the vice president of the European Banking Federation (EBF) has warned. José María Roldán said the EBF has made progress since it was set up but called on the bloc to step up efforts to make it “perfect.” The EBF, headquartered in Frankfurt, comprises all 19 eurozone countries who participate in the single supervisory mechanism (SSM) and the single resolution mechanism (SRM). Speaking to American financial news network CNBC, Mr Roldan said the system still has a lot of progress to make and he put a five year deadline on how long the European Union has to ensure it is “perfect.”

Labour Party

Times
Labour MPs are to be presented with personalised polling evidence showing that their constituents “silently” back a second Brexit referendum. In an attempt to shift Labour’s opposition to a second vote, each of the party’s MPs is being sent an individual breakdown of voter sentiment in their area based on a poll of 25,000 people. The survey by YouGov used the technique that correctly predicted the result of the 2017 general election while other polls indicated a Tory landslide. It found that of the 159 Leave constituencies that elected a Labour MP last year a majority of voters in every seat now supported a public vote on the outcome of the negotiations.

Education

Morning Star
UNIONS and Labour warned today that the government is planning millions of pounds of “back door cuts” to colleges and universities. The University and College Union (UCU) has warned that workers are worried that possible cuts to pension funding could see institutions footing a £300 million bill. The concerns come from employers having to raise their contributions to the Teachers Pension Scheme (TPS) from 16.48 per cent to 23.6 per cent, following the government’s announcement that it would be reducing the rate which it pays.

ITV News
School buildings need to be properly maintained to protect children, the Scottish Conservatives have said. New figures reveal at least 150 building safety incidents were recorded at Scottish schools in the last two years. A freedom of information request was made to local authorities in Scotland asking them to detail incidents involving either the collapse or partial collapse of a wall or structure, or a child or teacher being struck by a falling object.

Rail travel

ITV News
Proposals to ensure disabled passengers can “travel with confidence consistently” have been published by the Office of Rail and Road (ORR). Planned measures include improving training for railway staff in how to deal with disabled passengers. Also, those who do not receive assistance that they have pre-booked as part of their journey will be eligible for compensation. Other proposals include introducing a new, standardised handover process for disabled passengers between stations and improving the information available to passengers about station facilities and what they should expect during their journey.

NHS

ITV News
The NHS will invest up to £46 million to help tens of thousands of people living with diabetes to receive life-changing treatment. NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens has pledged to end the postcode lottery where type 1 in some parts of the country are not able to get glucose monitors. Mr Stevens said from April next year the NHS will ensure the Freestyle Libre devices are available on prescription for all patients who qualify for them. The wearable sensor scraps the need for inconvenient and sometimes painful finger prick blood tests by relaying glucose levels to a smartphone or e-reader, making it easier to notice when sugar levels are starting to rise or drop so action can be taken quicker.

HS2

Times
Ministers are under pressure to impose cutbacks to HS2 after a report warned that it would cost more than double that of other high-speed rail projects. The scheme would cost £81 million per kilometre compared with £32 million for 20 comparable schemes elsewhere in Europe. The report, commissioned four years ago and focusing on the second phase of the line north of Birmingham, said that the project would be “at the high end of the range of costs” for any scheme worldwide. Total costs for the whole scheme stand at £55.7 billion.

Winter

Mail
Britain could be set for snow as the ‘Beast from the East’ dramatically slashes temperatures by 27F, bringing an end to a short lived warm spell. Forecasters predict a blizzard and very cold winds will hit the country next week, bringing with it a big freeze after temperatures briefly rise to 65F on Thursday during an ‘Indian Summer’. The warm spell will be short-lived, as the mercury is due to swing in the opposite direction next week – with the chance of areas across the UK seeing snowfall and lows of 35F (2C). Cold air from Russia will cause snow to fall across the country, leaving the UK feeling ‘more like Moscow than the Mediterranean’, says one meteorologist.

Sun
A FLURRY of snow set to sweep into Britain with “the Beast from the East” next week could be the start of a month of blizzards — meaning a White Christmas may be on the cards. Forecasters predict heavy snow and very cold winds will batter the country after temperatures rise to 17C during an “Indian Summer” on Thursday. But temperatures will plunge sharply next week as cold air from Russia causes snow to fall across the country, leaving the UK feeling “more like Moscow than the Mediterranean”.

Star
SNOW and freezing temperatures is heading to Britain this month, it has been claimed. The so-called “mini ice-age” winter blast will see snow and sub-zero temperatures before the end of November. Much of the country will grind to a halt while violent storms threaten outbreaks of the weather phenomenon thundersnow. Then the freeze may be severe disruption to roads and transport networks through Christmas. This comes as Daily Star Online revealed that snow will blanket Britain in a White Christmas. While the freeze is forecast to come after warm weather this week which could even bring the hottest November day in 177 years.

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News review – Monday 12 November 2018

News review – Monday 12 November 2018

Brexit

BBC News
Several cabinet ministers expressed significant doubts about the prime minister’s preferred Brexit plan from the start, the BBC has learned. Parts of Theresa May’s plan were described as “worrying”, “disappointing” and “concerning” by members of her top team back in July. Mrs May is struggling to broker an agreement on Brexit with ministers. Two ministers have told the BBC they believe there is little chance the deal would get Parliament’s backing. One of them said it was “self-harming” for the PM to keep pursuing the same strategy.

Sun
THERESA May was last night 48 HOURS from having to trigger hundreds of millions-worth of No Deal projects as Brexit talks entered deadlock. The UK’s Brexit negotiator Olly Robbins held yet another round of intense talks with the EU’s Sabine Weyand yesterday to try and solve a row over customs and the Irish border. But Whitehall sources warned the chances of a deal being ready to present to Cabinet meeting on Tuesday or Wednesday morning were drifting away. They admitted if the PM is unable to put a withdrawal agreement before the Cabinet in 48 hours the chances of a November summit with the EU are OFF.

Times
Downing Street was hoping last night for a deal with Brussels in the next 48 hours amid signs that cabinet unhappiness with the eventual package is growing. British and EU negotiators are closing in on a draft withdrawal agreement as early as tomorrow, possibly giving the green light to a leaders’ summit before the end of this month, but two crucial issues remain outstanding. The first is access to fishing rights during the backstop, the insurance plan to avoid a hard border in Ireland under which Britain would remain aligned with the EU customs union.

Independent
Theresa May has been forced to abandon plans for an emergency cabinet meeting to approve a Brexit deal, after fresh opposition at home and abroad plunged her timetable into turmoil. The prime minister shelved the meeting, pencilled in for Monday, slamming on the brakes after fierce resistance in her cabinet and in Brussels threatened to derail the path to an agreement. A government source conceded that an outline deal might not be ready by Tuesday – making it increasingly unlikely that a special EU summit to sign it off can be held in November, as hoped.

Telegraph
Theresa May’s Brexit plan will fail to get through Parliament if Britain is left “trapped” in a Customs Union with the EU against its will, the Leader of the Commons has warned.  Andrea Leadsom, a leading Eurosceptic Cabinet minister, warned that the EU cannot be allowed to stop Britain from leaving the Customs Union after Brexit.  She said that any arrangement which gave the EU a power of veto would “fail to fulfill the will of the people expressed at the referendum” and be voted down.  Her stark warning came as the EU rejected the Prime Minister’s plan for an “independent mechanism” to oversee how the UK might leave a temporary customs arrangements if Brexit talks collapsed.

Huffington Post
The UK must not agree to a Brexit deal which leaves it “trapped in a customs arrangement” with the EU, Andrea Leadsom has insisted. The leader of the Commons said she was “sticking in the government” to ensure the UK cannot be “held against its will” in a customs arrangement if a Brexit backstop deal is agreed. With the need to avoid a border between Ireland and Northern Ireland a major sticking point for Theresa May, the UK is likely to agree to a backstop while it negotiates its future relationship with the EU. This could see the whole of the UK effectively remain within the EU’s customs union.

Guardian
Theresa May’s Brexit plan is under siege from across the Tory party as she attempts to overcome the final sticking points with Brussels in time to push it through a critical meeting of her cabinet ministers on Tuesday. As time runs out, leading Brexiters have told the prime minister they remain deeply opposed to her version of an exit mechanism that would prevent the UK unilaterally quitting a temporary customs arrangement if Brexit talks collapse. Andrea Leadsom, the Commons leader and a prominent Eurosceptic, said she was “sticking in government” to make sure the UK did not end up trapped in a customs arrangement.

Express
THERESA MAY’s “so-called Chequers proposals are in truth very far from dead” and the Brexit model will be “at the heart” of the deal she will “shortly and magically secure”, Boris Johnson has argued. The former Foreign Secretary used his weekly newspaper column to stage a dramatic Brexit intervention amid his brother’s bombshell resignation last week. Mr Johnson wrote in the Daily Telegraph: “The so-called Chequers proposals are in truth very far from dead. “The essence of the idea – that the UK should remain in the customs union and the single market for goods and agri-food – is what the backstop entails.”

Sky News
Boris Johnson is calling on his former cabinet colleagues to stage a mutiny over Theresa May’s Brexit plan – but he admits “it will make little difference”. Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Mr Johnson says the PM is “on the verge of total surrender” to Brussels and her proposals are “a recipe for continued strife”. “We are on the verge of signing up for something even worse than the current constitutional position. These are terms that might be enforced on a colony,” he adds. Mr Johnson’s stinging attack on Number 10 comes days after his brother,

Breitbart
Boris Johnson has once again laid into the government’s EU plan, insisting that he agreed with his resigning brother Jo’s criticism that it amounted to the “worst of both worlds” and that it “must be thrown out wholesale”. Writing for The Telegraph, BoJo claims that the “ambition of the government – as set out at Chequers and never yet repudiated by the Prime Minister – is to remain in captivity: to stay in our cell, even if we are given the theoretical key to escape”. Ouch. Further more he insists that “on the present plans we will be a vassal state, and in the Customs Union, until such time as our EU partners may feel moved to enter into fresh negotiations on a trade deal”.

Sun
BORIS Johnson has urged Theresa May’s Cabinet to stage a mutiny to thwart her Brexit plans. He said the PM is “on the verge of total surrender” and ready to make Britain “the punk of Brussels”. The former foreign secretary believes her “shameful” plans will leave the UK “trapped” in a customs union indefinitely. 
Mr Johnson hit out days after his brother Jo resigned as Transport Minister and called for another referendum. Writing in the Daily Telegraph, he said: “As my brother Joseph rightly said when he resigned last week, we are already looking at the biggest failure of UK statecraft since Suez.”

Express
BORIS Johnson has warned the UK Government is on the verge of “total surrender” to Brussels as the Brexit talks enter their crucial final stage. In a scathing attack on Theresa May’s negotiating strategy, the former foreign secretary said Britain is about to sign up to something “even worse” than its current deal. Likening the divorce terms to those that “might be enforced on a colony”, Mr Johnson claimed the Prime Minister intends to keep the UK “in captivity” to the EU through its customs union. His latest criticism comes as Mrs May faces renewed pressure from Tories on both sides of the Brexit divide.

No deal plus

Express
JACOB Rees-Mogg has set out his new “no deal plus” vision for Brexit to break the deadlock between the UK and EU, urging Theresa May to finally abandon her unpopular Chequers blueprint. The leading Brexiteer has put forward his “compromise” as the Prime Minister faces major divisions within her party over her Brexit plans, as well as reports of opposition from the EU. Under Mr Rees-Mogg’s proposal, the UK would pay £20 billion to the EU, in what the chair of the influential European Research Group (ERG) has described as a “generous offer” to make Britain’s departure from the bloc as “amicable as possible”.

EU

Express
THERESA May is facing another crisis in her cabinet after the EU officials rejected her key Brexit proposal that would avoid the UK being trapped in the customs union. The Prime Minister had called for an “independent mechanism” that could allow the UK to quit a temporary customs arrangement if Brexit talks collapsed. The plan briefed to senior members of her cabinet including attorney-general, Geoffrey Cox aimed to finally solve the remaining issue of the “Irish backstop” with the bloc. A
Whitehall source told the Sunday Times, Mrs May’s plan is the governments “life-support machine” adding: “By rejecting the proposal, the EU has just turned off the oxygen.”

Huffington Post
Theresa May’s hopes of securing a Brexit deal have suffered a major setback after the EU signalled it could not accept a key plank of the UK’s plans, HuffPost has been told.  The EU27 have rejected Britain’s proposed model for independent arbitration of a temporary customs partnership with the bloc, senior Whitehall sources have revealed. The fresh diplomatic roadblock emerged as rumours swirled that at least one Cabinet minister was on the edge of quitting in the wake of the resignation of transport minister Jo Johnson

Conservative Party

Sun
TORY ‘Remainers’ are preparing No Confidence letters in Theresa May as the UK edges towards a No Deal, the Sun can reveal. A furious senior Tory last night stormed “it’s now clear the Prime Minister is the problem” and it was time for a change in No 10. Another – who asked not to be named – said backbenchers were actively planning what to do as “we are staring into the abyss”. Until now it has been the Eurosceptic side of the Tory party that has submitted No Confidence letters in a bid to topple the PM – furious at her for a ‘sell out’ on Brexit. Today’s revelations that PRO-EU Tories are now minded to follow suit will terrify party big wigs. Just 48 letters are needed from Tory MPs to trigger a leadership election.

Express
THERESA May’s Cabinet remains deeply divided over Brexit as the Prime Minister prepares to sell plans for the Northern Irish border to her inner circle at a crunch meeting this week. Agreeing a safety net to avoid a hard border in Ireland is the final obstacle blocking a withdrawal agreement, but senior ministers are at odds over whether the UK can secure terms which allow it to break free from the ‘backstop’. Brexiteers have warned that the wording of the agreement could trap Britain in the EU’s customs union indefinitely. Commons Leader Andrea Leadsom yesterday insisted the UK must be able to leave any customs agreement. But her Cabinet colleague, Education Secretary Damian Hinds, said the EU would be “very, very unlikely” to agree to such terms.

Labour Party

Telegraph
Labour is facing a deepening split after Emily Thornberry insisted the party could back a second referendum despite Jeremy Corbyn insisting that Brexit could not be stopped. Divisions on the Labour frontbench appeared to widen on Sunday, after the shadow foreign secretary appeared to contradict an interview given by Mr Corbyn just days beforehand. Speaking to the German newspaper
Der Spiegel on Friday, the Labour leader said that Article 50 was irrevocable and that his party had to “recognise the reasons why people voted leave”.

Independent
Emily Thornberry has sought to calm Labour anger by saying the party could still back a Final Say referendum – just a day after Jeremy Corbyn rubbished the idea. The shadow foreign secretary said “all options remain on the table” if Labour fails to force a general election by voting against the Brexit deal Theresa May still hopes to strike within the next few days. Mr Corbyn has angered Labour MPs and supporters by arguing Brexit cannot be stopped – and by going on to reject the growing calls for a fresh public vote. But Ms Thornberry said: “If we don’t have a general election then, yes, of course all the options remain on the table.

Reuters
British Prime Minister Theresa May cannot expect the opposition Labour Party to save her in a parliamentary vote on any Brexit deal, Emily Thornberry, Labour’s foreign affairs policy chief, said on Sunday. “What we’ve said is that you cannot simply come to the House of Commons with a bit of nonsense … you cannot expect the Labour Party to save you from your own backbenchers,” Thornberry told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, saying Labour would vote against any deal that did not meet its tests. If May loses the vote in parliament, Thornberry said: “First stage is we demand a general election … if we don’t get a general election, then what we have said is all options remain on the table.”

Independent
Jeremy Corbyn has rejected growing calls for a Final Say referendum, despite a backlash from his own MPs for saying Brexit cannot be stopped. The Labour leader faced strong criticism – including from a shadow minister – after an interview in which he insisted the process of EU withdrawal could not be halted. Matthew Pennycook, a Brexit spokesman, took to Twitter to point out that Labour’s agreed policy is to leave the door open to “another referendum in which Remain cannot be ruled out as an option”. Pro-EU backbenchers accused Mr Corbyn of a “dereliction of duty” and warned he would never be forgiven for ignoring the overwhelming wishes of Labour members.

Breitbart
EU loyalist politicians have been left seething after Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn told the German press it was too late to stop Brexit. Speaking to
Der Spiegel, the ageing socialist answered in the negative when his interviewer asked, “If you could stop Brexit, would you?” “We can’t stop it. The referendum took place. Article 50 has been triggered. What we can do is recognize the reasons why people voted Leave,” he said, adding that “a lot of people have been totally angered by the way in which their communities have been left behind.”

Fixed odds betting terminals

Sun
BORIS JOHNSON will this week lead a cross-party rebellion over delays to a crackdown on fixed-odds betting terminals (FOBTs), The Sun can reveal. Sources claimed he is one of SIXTY Tory, Labour, DUP and SNP MPs who will support an amendment demanding the Chancellor bring forward a cut in the maximum stake to £2 from October 2019. The amendment could be laid by former Tory party leader Iain Duncan Smith and Labour’s Carolyn Harris as early as Monday. 
And it will leave Theresa May and the Treasury facing a crushing defeat when the issue goes to a Commons debate on November 20th.

Health

Guardian
The health secretary, Matt Hancock, is to meet the French president, Emmanuel Macron, the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, and other world leaders at a summit on new technologies that could revolutionise health and social care. 
The minister will champion the UK’s genomics, life sciences and artificial intelligence programmes as he addresses the GovTech summit in Paris on Monday about how innovation can transform patients’ lives. “I’ve said I’ll scour the world to find technology to improve the NHS.

Knife crime

Mail
Police chiefs want an expansion of stop and search powers to combat knife crime by lowering the level of suspicion an officer needs to take action. They want to scrap the requirement that ‘reasonable grounds’ are needed before a suspect can be frisked. It came as Home Secretary Sajid Javid was last night locked in a bitter war of words with the police over how to fight the violence epidemic which has seen 250 knife killings in Britain this year. Adrian Hanstock, of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, said talks had been held with Mr Javid over stepping up stop and search.

Guardian
The wave of knife crime may be linked directly to the police budget cuts instigated by the coalition government and continued under Theresa May, a former head of Scotland Yard has suggested. Speaking to the
Observer after a week in which five people were stabbed to death in London, Lord Blair said the fact that violent crime had risen alongside a reduction in police funding may not be a coincidence. In 2010, when the Conservatives came to power with the Liberal Democrats and began cutting spending, the capital had 4.1 officers per 1,000 Londoners, but by 2016-17 the ratio had dropped to 3.3 officers per 1,000, according to figures from city hall.

Sun
POLICE chiefs want to expand their stop and search powers to halt Britain’s knife crimewave. The current requirement of “reasonable grounds” for a search could be scrapped under the plans. It comes amid a crime surge that has seen at least 250 UK knife death victims this year. Senior officers have held talks with Home Secretary Sajid Javid’s advisers over the past fortnight to discuss the issue. Adrian Hanstock, British Transport Police’s deputy chief constable, said current requirements — from the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 — are out of date. He suggested officers should be able to carry out a search if they “are concerned a person may have something to cause harm”.

Antibiotics

Times
The World Health Organization has described increased antibiotic resistance as one of the greatest threats facing global public health. As disease-causing micro-organisms evolve and adapt, they naturally become more resistant to the antibiotics we have developed to destroy them, but the overuse and misuse of drugs is accelerating the process. A review commissioned by the UK government warned that the number of people dying worldwide every year from superbugs could increase from the 700,000 reported in 2016 to ten million by 2050.

Gas

Times
Britain needs more gas storage sites to reduce the risk of a supply shortage that could lead to blackouts, a leading energy consultancy has warned. The country’s gas supply position is “precarious” and winter shortfalls could jeopardise fuel supplies for power stations, according to Wood Mackenzie. Graham Freedman, its principal analyst for European gas, accused the government of “taking its eye off the ball” after the closure of Britain’s main storage site and urged it to act to “get some more gas storage in place”. The question of gas security has risen up the agenda after the “Beast from the East” cold snap in the spring, when a supply scare led to prices surging to two-decade highs.

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