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Election 1) How May imposed her own ‘A list’

“Like the party leaders who came before her, Theresa May and her team want the next intake of Conservatives MPs to be in their own image (Sam Coates writes). Mrs May has managed to exercise just as draconian a filtering process as David Cameron, who alienated many in the party with his “A-list” of candidates, but she has attracted far less publicity. By keeping her efforts well below the radar, and executing ruthless decisions in a very short time, grumbling from disappointed Tories who missed out on seats has been kept to a minimum. Mrs May and her team had a clear set of priorities as they put together a team that they hope will shepherd through some of the most difficult decisions facing the country since the Second World War.” – The Times (£)

  • Only five ethnic minority candidates selected for Tory targets – The Times (£)

Comment:

  • Progress for Tory women is no thanks to Cameron – Katie Perrior, The Times (£)

Election 2) Calls to sack woman leading ‘battle bus’ probe over anti-Tory bias

“The woman at the heart of the investigation into Conservative elections expenses has faced calls to be sacked over her alleged “bias” after the Crown Prosecution Service said MPs and officials would face no charges. Senior Tories said the inquiry was a “politically motivated witch hunt” after Facebook postings emerged from Louise Edwards, saying she did “not want to live under a Tory government”. Ms Edwards, who is the Electoral Commission’s head of regulation, wrote in a number of posts back in 2010 that she did not support the party. She said: “Just can’t understand what people were thinking – do they not remember the Tories before?” One other post said after David Cameron won the 2010 election: “cannot believe’ that she lives under a Tory PM again! What is wrong with people? Grrr! Words have failed me.” She added a few days later: “doesn’t want to live under a Tory government”.” – The Sun

>Today: Iain Dale’s column: There must be a reckoning for the Electoral Commission after the election

Election 3) Prime Minister dismisses predecessor’s ‘extreme Brexit’ warning

“Theresa May has dismissed comments from her predecessor David Cameron that she requires a strong majority at the general election in order to face down those intent on achieving an “extreme Brexit”. In an interview on LBC radio, the Prime Minister listened back to a recording of Mr Cameron, saying he wanted his successor in Downing Street to “win and win well” as he campaigned for the Conservatives earlier on Thursday in Crewe and Nantwich… But when asked about the comments and whether the reality of why she called the election was to stand up to her own MPs and avert an “extreme Brexit”, Ms May replied: “No. The reason I called the election was because I think we need the security and the stability for five years of greater certainty that will take us through Brexit and beyond.”” – The Independent

  • Cameron hits the campaign trail with call to avert ‘extreme Brexit’ – Daily Mail

More campaign:

  • ‘Progressive alliance’ targets Rudd as Labour and Greens make deal in Hastings – The Independent

Election 4) May accuses Corbyn of abandoning working-class voters

“Theresa May accuses Jeremy Corbyn of abandoning “proud working class people” as she calls on them to defect. Mounting an audacious political land grab, the PM will target traditional Labour voters across the party’s former northern heartlands to vote Tory instead this time on June 8. And to ram home her plea, the Tory leader will unveil her election battle bus in England’s most northern constituency, Berwick-upon-Tweed. Later, Mrs May will tell a rally in Tyneside: “proud and patriotic working class people in towns and cities across Britain have not deserted the Labour Party – Jeremy Corbyn has deserted them.” – The Sun

  • Labour voters turn to ‘charismatic’ Tory leader – Daily Express

More May:

  • Prime Minister reveals ‘heartbreak’ at not being able to have children – Daily Mail

More Labour:

  • Corbyn to deny that he’s a pacifist… – Daily Mail
  • …but also signal that he’d withdraw troops from Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan – The Sun
  • ‘Bomb first, talk later’ approach has failed, Corbyn claims – The Independent
  • Labour leader doesn’t need a coalition to create chaos – Daily Telegraph

>Yesterday:

Election 5) Tensions at the top of the Tories over defence

“Philip Hammond is facing a struggle with Theresa May’s allies over whether to hold a review of defence and security after the election. Mark Sedwill, the national security adviser who is close to Mrs May, wants to hold a strategic defence and spending review (SDSR) this year. Mr Sedwill, a former permanent secretary at the Home Office and ambassador to Afghanistan, is conducting a 60-day review of security which will be shared with whoever wins the election. He is understood to be pushing for this work to be converted to an SDSR amid concerns about a funding crisis within defence. Mr Hammond and the Treasury are thought to be unenthusiastic, barely two years after the last SDSR.” – The Times (£)

  • Tories eye ‘death tax’ to fund social care – FT

Comment:

  • Conservatives are in the dark over Chairman Theresa’s manifesto – Fraser Nelson, Daily Telegraph
  • May’s challenge: to reward effort more than inheritance – Chris Giles, FT

Editorial:

  • Widening gap between Government rhetoric and Forces’ reality – The Times (£)

>Today: ToryDiary: Wanted next week: a Conservative manifesto for fairness between the generations

Election 6) Corbyn’s manifesto would ‘cost every family £4,000’

“Labour is plotting a £93 billion-a-year spending spree that would cost families an average of £4,000 each, it emerged last night. Analysis of the party’s leaked draft manifesto, which was signed off by Labour’s high command yesterday, reveals an array of costly pledges – but little information about how they will be funded. On a calamitous day for party leader Jeremy Corbyn – including his car running over a BBC cameraman’s foot – one expert described the manifesto as ‘the most expensive suicide note in history’.” – Daily Mail

  • Tax, borrow, and splurge: Labour’s plan for Britain – The Times (£)
  • Policies will put the economy ‘in reverse’, warn businesses – Daily Mail
  • Scottish leader backs hard-left nationalisation plan – Daily Telegraph
  • Opposition fight civil war over manifesto – The Times (£)
  • Labour MPs reject policy proposals and vow to oust Corbyn – Daily Telegraph
  • Workers unsure if party can deliver on radical promises – FT
  • Opposition would extend abortion rights to Northern Ireland – The Independent

More Labour:

  • Party pledges return to Robin Cook’s foreign policy priorities – The Guardian
  • Election warchest bolstered by £4.5 million donation from Unite – The Times (£)
  • Corbyn ducks veteran’s questions over Northern Irish prosecutions – Belfast Telegraph

Analysis:

  • Who did leak the Labour manifesto? – Andrew Pierce, Daily Mail
  • Red vs Blue, in black and white – Chris Hanretty, Times Red Box

Election 7) Philip Collins: This is Labour’s trip to the Dignitas clinic

“The leaked Labour manifesto does matter, although not for the 2017 election, which is already lost. It matters because it reveals a party which is yet to work out that there can be no election victory for an avowedly left-wing platform. This has the force of an axiom: if the left is running the Labour Party, it will lose. I have always maintained that Jeremy Corbyn’s incompetence would kill him off before anyone even got to his politics. However, in the event that he is succeeded by a more capable leader of similar views, the evidence is now in. If incompetence doesn’t get you, the manifesto will.” – The Times (£)

  • Ideas aren’t the problem: credibility is – Martin Kettle, The Guardian
  • These spending plans are impossible to cost – Paul Johnson, The Times (£)
  • It’s worse than 1983 – Joe Haines, Daily Mail
  • Only Labour can prevent a divisive referendum and hard Brexit – Kezia Dugdale, Times Red Box
  • Backward-looking manifesto has nothing to say on today’s issues – Juliet Samuel, Daily Telegraph
  • Corbyn plays the long game (again) – Sebastian Payne, FT
  • This is what we know about Labour’s civil war – John Rentoul, The Independent

Editorial:

>Today: Dr Lee Rotherham in Comment: Labour can’t both cling to its EU policy and nationalise the railways, too

>Yesterday:

Johnson tells Somalia to take back control

“Boris Johnson told the leaders of war-ravaged Somalia they must seize control of their country because they can’t “rely on outsiders forever” as Theresa May announced a further £21million in aid. The Foreign Secretary urged ministers to “take responsibility for their own country” ahead of the London Somalia conference yesterday. He said the famine threatening Somalia can be avoided if world leaders act “early and decisively”. Action is urgently needed to help the millions of people on the brink of starvation in the African country, plagued by conflict and drought for years. It came as the PM announced the UK will contribute £21 million over the next two years to train and mentor Somalia’s army and police.” – The Sun

  • Aid mandarin quits after clashes with Patel – Daily Mail

More ministers:

  • Fallon says Saudi Arabia is ‘just defending itself’ in Yemen – The Independent
  • International Development Secretary hired husband to run her office – The Times (£)

Sturgeon considers 50p rate for Scotland

“Nicola Sturgeon’s government is considering increasing the top rate of income tax in Scotland to 50p despite her civil servants warning the move could lose the public purse £30 million as the wealthy move to England. Derek Mackay, the SNP’s Finance Minister, said the Scottish Government’s council of economic advisers was examining whether the new band could be introduced for those earning more than £150,000 from next April. He admitted that officials have warned there is “revenue risk” association with increasing the top rate from 45p but said the rise could go ahead “if we are sufficiently assured” this could be mitigated. But the Conservatives said the SNP had already made Scotland the highest taxed part of the UK and it would be a “huge mistake” to make the difference with England even larger.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Recession fears threaten independence bid – Daily Express
  • RBS refuse to rule out move to England if second referendum called – The Scotsman

Comment:

  • It’s a tough old political world, as the First Minister is learning – Alan Cochrane, Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • Let shops sell Spice legally, urges North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner – Daily Mail
  • Families facing squeeze as wages stagnate, warns Bank of England – The Times (£)
  • Barnier slaps down Juncker and calls for ‘mutual respect’ in talks – The Sun
  • No return to hard border in Ireland after Brexit, says EU negotiator – Daily Telegraph
  • US warns EU over bid to force City firms into bloc – The Sun
  • Trump administration hails US-China trade deal – FT
  • Macron unveils candidates for French legislative elections – Daily Mail

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