Carswell 1) Clacton MP defects to UKIP

UKIP logo‘David Cameron was on an international phone call in his No10 study when Douglas Carswell dropped his bombshell live on TV, just after 11am. A shell-shocked aide went in to break the news as soon as the PM put down his receiver. Rumours of Tory defections to Ukip have been circulating in Westminster for months. Downing Street was sure any imminent threat had been seen off by beating a determined but haphazard attempt from Nigel Farage to win the Newark by-election in June. In reality, it was in May that Douglas Carswell began to secretly plot his defection.’ – The Sun (£)


>Today: David Nuttall MP on Comment: I want to leave the EU, and that’s why I’ll be staying in the Conservative Party


Carswell 2) UKIP claim eight more Tory MPs have been in talks

‘After the shock defection of Douglas Carswell yesterday in protest at David Cameron’s stance on immigration and Europe, a source told the Daily Mail that the threat of a mutiny went far beyond just one MP. It is understood that Mr Carswell was among nine Tories wined and dined by millionaire Ukip donor Stuart Wheeler at a series of discreet lunches in Mayfair.’ – Daily Mail

Russia invades Ukraine

Ukraine flag‘At least a thousand Russian soldiers are now fighting alongside rebels in east Ukraine, Nato said yesterday as Kiev declared that the Kremlin has begun a “direct invasion.” Russian troops and an injection of Russian heavy equipment including tanks and sophisticated anti-aircraft missile systems appear to have turned the tide of the war in the last few days, placing Kiev on the defensive for the first time since early July.’ – The Times (£)

>Today: ToryDiary: War in Europe

Net migration soars to 243,000

‘David Cameron’s target to cut net immigration to under 100,000 by next May appeared beyond reach tonight after the figure for the past year soared by almost 40 per cent to 243,000. The surge was largely driven by European Union nationals, including Romanians and Bulgarians, coming to Britain to seek work. The increase comes with a reviving UK economy and sluggish EU growth.’ – The Times (£)

>Today: Iain Dale’s Friday Diary: Why are foreign students counted as immigrants? Continue to all today’s Newslinks