Migration figures deliver fresh blow to Government’s ambitions…

IMMIGRATION mat“The true scale of the immigration crisis facing this country was laid bare last night as damning figures revealed net migration had surged to a record 330,000 – a rise of 40 per cent in one year. It is a humiliating blow to David Cameron after his ‘no ifs, no buts’ pledge to reduce the number to ‘tens of thousands’. Incredibly, yesterday’s figures do not include illegal immigrants in the UK, estimated at 1.1 million. The devastating statistics came as thousands of migrants yesterday flooded across the Hungarian border into central Europe.” – Daily Mail

  • Brokenshire blames businesses’ reliance on foreign workers – Daily Telegraph
  • Field demands Government take control of the border – The Sun (£)
  • Eastern European benefit claimants double to 50,000 – The Times (£)
  • Government accused of closing doors to Eritrean refugees – The Independent
  • Petition in support of Afghan translators signed by 50,000 – Daily Mail
  • Why is it so difficult to reduce immigration? – The Independent

Comment and Editorial:

>Today: Simon Clarke in Comment: Why we need more students from overseas to stay and work here

…as Cameron criticised for peerage nominations

“David Cameron was accused of an ‘affront to democracy’ last night after handing peerages to a millionaire donor, an MP at the heart of the expenses scandal and a string of political cronies. The Prime Minister named 26 new Conservative peers in his dissolution honours list, as well as handing knighthoods and other honours to political friends. New peers include former Cabinet minister Douglas Hogg, who stood down from the Commons in 2010 following controversy over his expenses claims, which included billing the taxpayer £2,200 to clear the moat at his 13th-century manor house.” – Daily Mail

  • Downton Dave under fire for using honours to tip the help – The Times (£)
  • Ex-MPs and aides pack list of new lords – Financial Times
  • Prime Minister criticised for handing peerage to ‘Lord Moat’ – Daily Telegraph
  • MPs caught in expenses scandal elevated to the Lords – The Times (£)
  • New Tory peers won’t save Government from defeat, Tories concede – The Times (£)
  • Cameron now supports time limits for peers – The Guardian
  • Lord Winston calls for House of Lords to be cut in half – Daily Telegraph
  • Crowded upper house beginning to look ridiculous, warns Lamont – The Times (£)


  • Radical reform of the Lords is vital, so I’m glad to be a member – Peter Hain, The Guardian
  • The House of Lords is full of sycophants, sack them all – Leo McKinstry, Daily Telegraph
  • What’s the point of a chamber which rewards failure? – Martin Kettle, The Guardian


Fraser Nelson: Ignore the hype, Cameron can’t be bothered to fix the BBC

BBC“In fact the Prime Minister admits, in private, that he’s quite happy with the BBC and is baffled by colleagues who loathe it. He grumbles about Nick Robinson having kept him awake by filming reports outside his bedroom in No 10, but his animus doesn’t run much deeper… There are Tories who would love to dismember the BBC, but they’re not in positions of power. John Whittingdale, the Culture Secretary, was hawkish on the BBC during the election campaign when bookmakers gave the Tories a 10-1 chance of being able to do anything about it. But in power, he is cooling quickly; when speaking at the Edinburgh Festival earlier this week, he even dropped his criticism of Strictly Come Dancing. Mr Cameron’s overall feeling is that he doesn’t want to be drawn into a “never-ending argument”. So why the panic? Perhaps because any rational analysis of the BBC highlights several anomalies crying out for change – and none bigger than the licence fee.” – Daily Telegraph

Rudd heralds dramatic reduction in support for solar

“Ministers moved to slash massive subsidies for solar panels yesterday, amid signs the Government’s enthusiasm for green energy is waning. In a surprise move, Energy Secretary Amber Rudd announced a consultation aimed at cutting the subsidies by almost 90 per cent. If implemented, such a step would remove virtually all incentive for home owners to install the panels and could mean the end of Britain’s solar power boom. In recent weeks, ministers have tightened planning restrictions and reduced subsidies for wind farms.” – Daily Mail

Duncan to tackle ‘overuse’ of road signs

Sir Alan Duncan“Road signs could soon include ‘remove-by dates’ as part of plans to get rid of ‘the blight of pointless signs’, say ministers. A consultation paper has been unveiled, setting out plans to declutter the nation’s highways.  A taskforce headed by Tory MP Sir Alan Duncan to ‘tackle the overuse of road signs’ has also been announced. Research by the Department of Transport in 2013 found that the number of traffic signs has doubled in the last 20 years, to the point that many are now confusing, distracting and dangerous.” – Daily Mail

Corbyn’s out of touch supporters want to get rid of the Queen…

“Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters want to ditch the Queen and renationalise utilities, a survey revealed yesterday. The study found that supporters of the veteran Left-winger are strikingly out of touch with public opinion on a wide range of issues. It also reports that many have unconventional views. Some 28 per cent believe the world is ‘controlled by a secretive elite’, while 67 per cent describe themselves as ‘dreamers’. The findings came as Mr Corbyn arrived in London with his rarely-seen wife Laura Alvarez for the Labour leadership hustings, where he was due to debate with rival candidates Liz Kendall, Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper. The figures, by polling firm YouGov, came from a survey of the views of almost 4,000 people with a vote in Labour’s leadership contest.” – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Eleven things I learned about monarchs by writing about them

…as he u-turns on NATO membership…

NATO“Jeremy Corbyn has been attacked by rivals after appearing to blame Nato for prompting Russian aggression against Ukraine and backtracking on his previous calls for Britain to leave the alliance. During a live leadership debate Mr Corbyn was quizzed by the other three candidates on whether or not he believed Britain should leave the military alliance. Mr Corbyn told a hustings hosted by the Daily Mirror that Nato was perusing an “expansion eastwards”, which was encouraging Russia to expand to counteract the threat. He said Britain needs to develop a relationship with Russia to enable us to demilitarise the border with Ukraine, “otherwise the consequences are very dangerous.”” – Daily Telegraph

  • Sturgeon praises Labour favourite for ‘getting people talking’ – Daily Telegraph

…and claims membership will determine policy

“Policy will be made by Labour members and not the leader, shadow cabinet, or parliamentary party, Jeremy Corbyn has said in a debate with his three leadership rivals organised by the Guardian. The frontrunner has previously made clear that his policy proposals are only suggestions that would have to be agreed by colleagues, but this is his clearest indication yet that the role of MPs and the shadow cabinet would be diminished. “I don’t think we can go on having policy made by the leader, shadow cabinet, or parliamentary Labour party. It’s got to go much wider. Party members need to be more enfranchised. Whoever is elected will have a mandate from a large membership.”” – The Guardian

Lord Mandelson warns Corbyn puts Labour in mortal danger

LABOUR dead rose“Lord Mandelson, one of the founding fathers of the New Labour project, has given warning that a Jeremy Corbyn victory could be the “final chapter” for the party after a century at the forefront of British politics. The former business secretary says in an article in the Financial Times that Labour is in “mortal danger” if it elects Mr Corbyn, the leftwinger who is favourite to win the leadership race. Policies such as printing money, state ownership of leading industries, quitting Nato and unilateral disarmament would make the party “unelectable”, the peer said. “It would be a sad and possibly final chapter in the British Labour party’s history.” The outspoken comments follow those of other party grandees, including Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and Lord Kinnock, who have highlighted the dangers of a Corbyn victory.” – Financial Times

  • Any fightback must end the belittling of our government record – Lord Mandelson, Financial Times

Jeremy Corbyn: My new people’s politics will take the fight to the Tories

“For the past five years, we have been saying that the Conservatives’ ideologically driven austerity programme is a political choice, not an economic necessity. It doesn’t have to be like this. A fuse has been lit and a new kind of more inclusive, less personalised politics has been let out of the bottle. There is an optimism about the Labour leadership campaign that has attracted people to meetings and to debate political issues. Whichever candidate wins, it is clear that a fundamental change of approach to our politics is long overdue. Despite the barrage of attacks, hysteria and deliberate misrepresentation of the positions my campaign has put forward, it is our message which is resonating.” – The Times (£)

  • Fuse is lit to resist Conservatives, claims front runner – The Times (£)
  • Corbynmania hits peak as fans bid for used coffee cup – Daily Telegraph


  • If he won, Labour’s local government wing might need to split off – Jonathan Carr-West, Daily Telegraph

Burnham attacks DWP after thousands die having been ruled ‘fit for work’

Andy Burnham“The figures from the DWP showed that 1,360 people declared fit for work had completed an appeal against the decision before they died, although it is unknown how many were upheld. Some previous figures suggested 42 per cent of appeals against the company’s decisions were upheld… Labour leadership contender Andy Burnham said: ‘These are shocking figures that for the first time show the human cost of this Government’s punishing benefits regime. It raises serious questions about this Government’s punitive approach to people on benefits.’ David Cameron announced in June that the statistics showing how many people who have died after losing their benefits would be published. A Freedom of Information request to release them was blocked by the DWP, after Mr Duncan Smith said his department did not collect these numbers.” – Daily Mail


  • Death has become part of our welfare system – Frances Ryan, The Guardian
  • Politicians struggle to relate to British individualism – Janan Ganesh, Financial Times

>Today: Local Government: The number affected by the spare room subsidy cut falls again

Sturgeon dismisses suggestion SNP cost Labour the election

“The suggestion that the Conservatives won the general election due to the perceived threat of a Labour-SNP coalition is “b*****ks”, according to Scotland’s First Minister. Nicola Sturgeon dismissed claims that voters turned to the Tories in May because they feared a minority Labour government controlled by the SNP, despite research showing that the majority of English and Welsh voters were very concerned about the prospect. “I’m not sure this a word I should use in an interview but it’s b*****ks,” the SNP leader told Holyrood magazine.” – The Independent

  • ‘People tell me I have the worst job in politics’ – Interview with Kezia Dugdale, Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • Irish politicians claim IRA are still active – Daily Mail
  • Spectre of Provos saps Stormont of stability – Financial Times
  • DUP prepared to bring down Assembly over IRA claims – The Independent
  • Metropolitan Police bans books and blogs by officers in ‘sensitive roles’ – The Times (£)
  • Rail strike heralds bank holiday misery – Daily Telegraph
  • Tsipras gambles on outright victory in Greek election – Financial Times
  • Where are North Korea’s vanished submarines? – Daily Mail

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