Newslinks for Monday 19th August 2019

Johnson points finger at ex-ministers over No Deal planning leak…

“Boris Johnson has accused Remain-supporting former ministers of leaking details of no-deal planning in an attempt to damage Brexit negotiations. A secret Whitehall dossier known as Operation Yellowhammer, revealed over the weekend, included warnings that Britain could face shortfalls of fresh food, fuel and medicines. It also suggested that there could be an increase in public disorder, delays at airports and a hard border with Ireland. A Downing Street source pointed the finger at a group of ex-ministers known as the “Remain alliance”, which is led by the former chancellor Philip Hammond.” – The Times

  • Hammond denies he’s the source – Daily Telegraph
  • Downing St ‘furious’ at release of paper – The Guardian
  • Leaked document paints stark picture – FT

More:

  • Business groups admit many are ‘ill-prepared’ – FT
  • Government urged to bring forward PR blitz to counter ‘scaremongering’ – Daily Telegraph
  • Talks underway to stop EU ‘strangling’ Gibraltar – The Sun

>Today: ToryDiary: A No Deal Brexit. “It’s not going to be the end of the world. But it’s not going to be a walk in the park either.”

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: Gove – The No Deal Brexit “Yellowhammer” document covers “absolutely the worst case”

…amidst rumours that up to 40 MPs could be backing them

“As many as 40 Tory MPs are now backing a bid led by ex-Cabinet ministers Philip Hammond and David Gauke to stop Britain leaving the European Union without a deal on Oct 31. Sources in the group – dubbed the ‘Gauke-ward Squad’ – say the numbers of MPs who now support the rebellion has jumped from 21 to nearly 40 after details of the group emerged last week. The size of the potential rebellion will increase pressure on Boris Johnson to avoid putting the question of the UK leaving the EU to a vote of MPs before the UK is scheduled to leave on October 31. Mr Johnson and his team are adamant that the best way of securing a new deal with Brussels is to make clear that the UK is ready and willing to leave without a deal.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Speaker holding talks with anti-Brexit MPs – Daily Mail

Opposition:

  • Labour leader says he will do ‘everything necessary’ to stop No Deal – FT
  • Liberal Democrats to ‘keep options open’ about swift return to the EU – The Times
  • ‘Outcry’ as arch-Remainer Miller vows to fight no-deal exit… – Daily Express
  • …as she claims the Government has accepted it can’t prorogue Parliament – Daily Mail

Comment:

  • Now the cost is known, MPs must do whatever it takes – Matthew d’Ancona, The Guardian
  • Brexiteers fear Clarke still has an eye on Number Ten – Asa Bennett, Daily Telegraph
  • Wake up, Remainers: Brexit is happening – Trevor Kavanagh, The Sun
  • Brexit doublethink is blinding us to the facts – Alex Massie, The Times

>Yesterday:

Johnson to take ‘uncompromising’ line with Merkel and Macron

“Boris Johnson will make his debut as UK prime minister on the world stage this week, first by travelling to Berlin for talks with chancellor Angela Merkel and probably also to Paris to meet President Emmanuel Macron, before appearing at the G7 summit of world leaders in south-west France. Senior officials in Downing Street acknowledge it will be a “big week” for Mr Johnson as he presents his vision for the future of Britain… Mr Johnson will deliver an uncompromising message: ignore the chatter about parliament moving to stop a no-deal Brexit, the UK is leaving on October 31 with or without a deal. Mindful of how MPs undermined his predecessor Theresa May’s negotiating stance on Brexit, the prime minister hopes to leave the EU in no doubt about his determination to leave the bloc.” – FT

  • Prime Minister to EU chiefs: we will not back down – Daily Express

Senior Brexiteers urge him to call an election

“Senior Brexiteers have urged Boris Johnson to call a snap election in a bid to head off Jeremy Corbyn and the Remainer MPs preparing to topple him next month. Iain Duncan Smith, the former Conservative leader, has said that the Prime Minister should call the Labour leader’s bluff and go to the country before opposition MPs and Tory rebels have a chance to bring him down. With Mr Corbyn widely expected to table a motion of no confidence when MPs return in September, Mr Duncan Smith said that Mr Johnson could outflank him by calling a snap election. He told The Sun that calling an election before MPs have a chance to vote down the Government would hand Mr Johnson the advantage and allow him to frame the poll as a vote to save Brexit.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Today programme a ‘waste of time’, ministers told – The Times

>Today: Audio: Moggcast Special: Annunziata Rees-Mogg – “The Conservative Party needs to be reminded that Leave won”

Patel signals overnight end to freedom of movement

Freedom of movement by European Union nationals into the UK will end overnight from October 31 in the event of a no deal Brexit, Priti Patel has signalled. Theresa May’s government had wanted to crack down on freedom of movement as soon as possible after the UK left once new laws had passed through Parliament. This would have meant a new Immigration and Social Security Co-Ordination Bill would have had to be on the Statute Book before the curbs could be implemented. However, with time running out before the UK’s expected exit from the EU, the new Home Secretary has made clear that she wants the tough new approach to apply at the UK’s borders as soon as Britain has left the EU.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Plan ‘risks another Windrush scandal’, Home Office warned – The Times

More:

  • Home Secretary calls for tougher sentences for people who assault police officers – The Sun
  • Jihadi Jack’s parents brand Javid a ‘coward’ – The Times

Priti Patel: I’ll make sure officers have the protection they deserve

The brutal and mindless killing of PC Andrew Harper on Thursday was an appalling and sickening act. It has shocked the nation. I have written to Pc Harper’s family to express my condolences and I know his death will continue to cause immeasurable pain for his loved ones and colleagues in the years to come. That is why I have instructed the Home Office to urgently explore what we can do to better support the families of our brave police officers who are seriously injured, or worse, by criminals. Pc Harper began his career as a volunteer police officer. He was the very best of British policing. The bravery he showed by heading towards danger to protect the public is extraordinary. He is a hero.” – Daily Telegraph

Javid ‘backs away’ from stamp duty reform

“The UK chancellor has backed away from the suggestion that he is considering overhauling stamp duty to shift the tax burden from home buyers to sellers in an effort to help people get on to the property ladder. In an interview published on Friday, Sajid Javid said he was looking to create a more efficient tax system and did not deny he was considering major reforms to stamp duty. “I’m looking at various options. I’m a low-tax guy. I want to see simpler taxes,” Mr Javid told The Times. But on Sunday, he appeared to backtrack. The chancellor tweeted “To be clear, I never said to The Times I was planning to put it on sellers, and I wouldn’t support that. I know from the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government that we need bold measures on housing — but this isn’t one of them.”” – FT

  • He denies ever planning to shift the burden to sellers – The Guardian

Johnson to tell social media companies to do more to combat anti-vaccination

“The Prime Minister has said social media firms must share the responsibility for the rising spread of measles in the UK as he attacked antivax misinformation. Boris Johnson will on Monday set out plans to improve vaccination rates on a visit to a hospital in the South West, following a rise in cases of measles. In the first quarter of 2019 there were 231 confirmed cases of measles, just three years after the World Health Organisation declared the UK measles-free. Earlier this year Simon Stevens, the head of the NHS, said “fake news” by anti-vaxers on social media had fuelled a tripling in measles cases and added that the promotion of misguided messages on Instagram and YouTube was one of the factors behind the dip in vaccinations.” – Daily Telegraph

Corbyn attacks Johnson in ‘election pitch’

“Jeremy Corbyn will accuse Boris Johnson of being a “fake populist and phoney outsider” in the mould of Donald Trump as he sets out his election pitch to transform the country as radically as Labour did in 1945 with the creation of the welfare state. The Labour leader will give a flagship speech in the key marginal seat of Corby in the east Midlands as speculation grows about an election in the coming weeks. Speaking at a children’s centre on Monday, Corbyn will promise to do “everything necessary to stop a disastrous no-deal Brexit”, although he has so far insisted that he must be the one to lead a caretaker government to extend article 50 if Johnson loses a confidence vote.” – The Guardian

  • Labour leader promises revolution on scale of Thatcherism – Daily Telegraph

Comment:

  • Corbyn wants an election, but is Labour ready to fight one? – Andrew Rawnsley, The Guardian
  • Why is your child voting for this socialist vision? – Ruth Sunderland, Daily Mail

Wollaston faces possible with local Lib Dems for her seat…

“For while she may be happy to switch parties to her heart’s content, her arrival has left local activists feeling a tad disgruntled – not least Caroline Voaden, who had already been chosen by the local Lib Dems to stand in any forthcoming election. An understandably miffed Voaden, who was elected as MEP for the region in May, gave no signs of backing down on local radio last week: ‘At some point a decision will be made about whether I fight the seat for Totnes or whether Sarah does, and that is a decision that the party will make, and it has not been made yet.’ With a potential showdown in Totnes already on the boil, might it be easier for Wollaston to simply switch to a fourth party within six months?” – Daily Mail

…whilst Soubry’s Change UK now has ‘zero support’

“Anna Soubry’s breakaway pro-EU party launched in a blaze of publicity six months ago now has “zero support”, a survey of general election voting intentions has revealed. At zero per cent, it is even below Ukip, which has been all but destroyed by multiple, scandal-hit leadership changes and the rise of the rival Brexit Party led by Nigel Farage, yet manages one per cent. There is pressure on the party’s five remaining MPs to after two of their former colleagues, Chuka Umunna and Sarah Wollaston, joined the Liberal Democrats. But a defiant Ms Soubry, The Independent Group for Change’s leader, insisted it remained vital, as the Brexit crisis deepens, saying: “We will carry on.”” – Daily Express

News in Brief:

  • Javid is right: tinkering with stamp duty will not solve the housing crisis – Julian Jessop, CapX
  • Why Boris must reject the anti-immigration lobby – James Middleton, 1828
  • The secret of Salvini’s success – Nicholas Farrell, The Spectator
  • Why the new EU leader is good news for Brexit – Neva Sadikoglu-Novaky, Brexit Central
  • Are ‘gateway’ drugs a fiction? – Tom Chivers, UnHerd

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Author: Conservative Home


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