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Leadership 1) Boris endorses Leadsom

LEADSOM Andrea pink‘Boris Johnson has thrown his weight behind Andrea Leadsom to be the next prime minister, declaring that she is the only candidate with the “zap, drive and determination” to lead the country. The former mayor of London has become the energy minister’s best-known backer, four days after he crashed out of the race when he discovered that he had been betrayed by Michael Gove, his campaign manager. The move amounts to an act of revenge designed to hobble Mr Gove as Tory MPs hold the first round of voting today to begin whittling down five contenders to two by next week. Mr Johnson’s endorsement will boost Mrs Leadsom’s status as the candidate who has made the strongest commitment to sever ties between the EU and Britain.’ – The Times (£)

  • She’s the only one I trust to get us out of the EU – Katie Hopkins, Daily Mail
  • The Energy Minister resists pressure to publish her tax return – Daily Mail
  • Her husband’s firm used ‘morally repugnant’ trust – The Times (£)
  • And she accuses May of using EU migrants as ‘bargaining chips’ – Daily Mail
  • MPs says her 1922 pitch was a ‘car crash’ – The Sun (£)

>Today:

>Yesterday:

Leadership 2) May: I would hold an immediate Trident vote

‘It would be sheer madness to contemplate even for a moment giving up Britain’s independent nuclear deterrent. And there is no room for compromise, and no room for cheese paring. We need a full fleet of four submarines, capable between them of providing what the military call ‘Continuous At Sea Deterrence’, or permanent, around-the-clock cover…A lot of parliamentary business has, for obvious reasons, been put on hold until the leadership election is complete and a new prime minister is in post. But when it comes to the nuclear deterrent, the national interest is clear, the Conservatives are united, and we have waited long enough. The House of Commons should, before the summer recess, vote on Britain’s next-generation nuclear deterrent – and we should get on with getting it built.’ – Theresa May, Daily Mail

>Today: Gavin Barwell on Comment: The two tests which will decide my vote on the leadership

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Why is May talking so tough on EU nationals living in Britain?

Leadership 3) ConHome survey finds the two women way out in front

conhome coat of arms 72 dpi‘Mrs Leadsom is now likely to emerge as the main challenger to Theresa May, the Home Secretary. It came after a poll of Conservative activists by the ConservativeHome website found that Mrs Leadsom has pulled ahead of Mrs May. The poll found that she had the support of 38 per cent of party members, compared to Mrs May’s 37 per cent.’ – Daily Telegraph

  • YouGov shows May beating Leadsom soundly in a run-off – The Times (£)
  • My optimistic vision of life after Brexit – Liam Fox, FT
  • Only one MP turns up to Fox’s campaign launch – The Sun (£)

>Today: Interview: Crabb on his “party and national unity candidacy”. And why we need a One Nation Government that gets on with Brexit.

>Yesterday:

Leadership 4) Whittingdale: It’s got to be Gove

‘At these crossroads, it is vital that we have a leader who will take us in the right direction. I have no doubt in my mind that this person is Michael Gove. I have had the pleasure of working with Michael for many years both in Government and Opposition, and I have always been struck by not only his passion for reform, but his belief in doing the right thing. I also was hugely impressed by the leadership that he gave to the Vote Leave campaign. As education secretary, Michael established new schools, gave money to the poorest students and helped more pupils enter good or outstanding schools.’ – John Whittingdale, The Times (£)

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Eurosceptics divide over the leadership race

Brexit 1) Standard and Poor’s dismisses ‘Armageddon’ warnings

growth flag‘Britain will scrape by without a full-blown recession over the next two years as a weaker pound cushions the Brexit shock and panic subsides, Standard & Poor’s has predicted. “We’re not in the Armageddon camp,” said Jean-Michel Six, the rating agency’s chief economist for Europe. “Devaluation acts a shock absorber. It stimulates exports and makes the London Stock Exchange more attractive to foreign investors,” he said. The UK economy should muddle through with growth of 1.5pc this year, 0.9pc in 2017, and 1pc in 2018, shielded from the storm by fiscal largesse and monetary stimulus a l’outrance.’ – Daily Telegraph

Good news

  • The UK’s still a great place to do business, says General Electric boss – Daily Mail
  • FlyBe boss urges cut in Air Passenger Duty – Daily Mail
  • EDF says Hinkley Point will survive – The Times (£)

Bad news

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: The pro-EU Chicken Lickens warned the sky would fall in if we voted Leave. It hasn’t.

Brexit 2) Whitehall seeks negotiating expertise from the private sector

‘Britain is turning to the private sector to prepare for Brexit, seeking to second consultants to boost a civil service with almost no experience of complex trade negotiations. Sir Jeremy Heywood, the country’s top civil servant, has held talks with companies including accountants EY and KPMG, and the consultants McKinsey, as he prepares for a negotiation with Brussels described by outgoing prime minister David Cameron as “the most important task the British civil service has undertaken in decades”. “We want the brightest and the best working on these complex negotiations,” said a government spokesperson.’ – FT

>Today: Daniel Moylan on Comment: The referendum mandate is clear – we must invoke Article 50 quickly, and get on with a new trading relationship

Brexit 3) Farage stands down, declaring: “I want my life back”

FARAGE Nigel official‘Nigel Farage has stepped down as Ukip leader and said that he wants his “life back” after admitting that the role has come at a significant “cost” to him and his family. The Ukip leader said yesterday that he feels he has “done his bit” after helping win the EU referendum for the leave side and now hopes to return to an “ordinary life”. Speaking to The Telegraph after announcing his resignation, Mr Farage said that he hopes to find “contentment”.’ – Daily Telegraph

Editorials

>Today: Local Government: UKIP councillor in Gloucestershire defects to the Conservatives

>Yesterday: WATCH: Farage stands down as UKIP leader

Brexit 4) German anger against Juncker grows

‘Jean-Claude Juncker faces German fury today over his failure to enforce European Union austerity rules for Spain and Portugal amid growing pressure for him to step aside. The president of the European Commission has personally intervened to delay sanctions against the two eurozone countries because he disagrees with austerity policies. A decision on the sanctions was expected today, but commission officials were unable to confirm whether the issue was “on or off the agenda”.’ – The Times (£)

  • He’s got to go – The Times Leader (£)
  • Schulz hopes to seize a chance to make Brussels the ‘true government’ of Europe – The Times (£)

Corbyn finally concedes it was a mistake to call Hamas and Hezbollah ‘friends’

Jeremy Corbyn (Tory Poster)‘Jeremy Corbyn has finally said he regrets calling members of Hamas and Hezbollah “friends” after months of defending the comments during a grilling on anti-Semitism before MPs. The Labour leader defended his attempt to create dialogue in the Middle East peace process but said “with hindsight” he wished he had not used the word to describe the militant groups. Mr Corbyn also insisted that anti-Semitism had not risen in Labour since he took office last summer despite a string of high-profile suspensions and mounting concern among the Jewish community.’ – Daily Telegraph

  • Watson holds crisis talks with union bosses – The Times (£)
  • Umunna attacks Corbyn’s failure in the referendum campaign – The Sun (£)
  • Labour peer says he lacks ‘mental capacity’ to lead – The Sun (£)
  • Labour moderates are considering founding a new party – Rachel Sylvester, The Times (£)
  • They should do it – Janan Ganesh, FT

Thousands of schools disrupted by teachers’ strike

‘Ministers have criticised today’s strike by the largest teachers’ union as a “futile, politically motivated gesture” that will disrupt education. Thousands of schools in England will be shut or have asked some classes or year groups to stay at home as members of the National Union of Teachers stage a one-day strike. Further 24-hour walkouts are likely in the autumn term because the broad strands of the NUT’s demands, which include an increase in school budgets, are impossible for the government to meet without rewriting previous public spending settlements.’ – The Times (£)

Oborne: Fears mount that Chilcot will miss the point

BLAIR Marr May 2016‘According to advance leaks, Sir John will apportion the blame very widely with several dozen ministers, officials and military figures coming in for criticism. These same reports also suggest a great deal of the report will concentrate on mistakes made during the occupation of Iraq rather than the decision to go to war in the first place. If these leaks are true, they suggest that Sir John’s report, like the whitewashed reports that have already been published, will lack focus. There are in truth only a handful of crucial points it should address. Did Tony Blair lie in order to make the case for war? Was the war legal? Did the war — as Tony Blair promised it would — make Britain a safer place?’ – Daily Mail

  • Blair told Bush: backing you could be my political epitaph – Daily Telegraph

News in Brief

  • NASA spacecraft enters Jupiter orbit – Daily Mail
  • Police receive assault complaint about Chris Evans – The Times (£)
  • Bombings hit Saudi Arabia – The Guardian
  • British launch experiment to clean up rubbish in orbit – The Times (£)

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