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Manifesto 1) May moves on from Cameron and Thatcher

“Theresa May has set out her vision of conservatism to challenge “the cult of selfish individualism” and not to allow free markets to operate “untrammelled”. Launching her manifesto in the Labour seat of Halifax, the Prime Minister said conservatives must move on from the “caricature” of Thatcherite conservatism.” – Daily Telegraph

  • At a glance guide – BBC
  • Crackdown on internet trolling and terror plots – Daily Mail
  • How much will it cost – The Times(£)
  • Help for Generation Rent – The Sun
  • House of Lords to be slimmed down and “integrity” for honours system – The Sun
  • First past the post for Mayoral elections – City AM
  • Boost for electric cars – Financial Times(£)
  • May signals break with Thatcherism – The Guardian
  • Change to definition of refugees – Independent
  • Dire consequences without a clean Brexit says May – Daily Telegraph

>Today: ToryDiary: We asked for Grown-Up Government. Now we’ve got it.

>Yesterday:

Manifesto 2) A “mainstream Government for mainstream Britain”

“Prime Minister Theresa May has promised a “mainstream government that would deliver for mainstream Britain”. Launching the Conservative manifesto, Mrs May said a strong economy and delivering Brexit were top priorities. The manifesto drops the 2015 pledge not to raise income tax or National Insurance and has big changes to social care funding in England.” – BBC

Manifesto 3) Pledge to create a “great meritocracy”

“Theresa May yesterday vowed to create “a Great Meritocracy” as she unveiled her ­sweeping vision for a post-Brexit Britain. At the heart of the Prime Minister’s appeal for the nation to return her to Downing Street on June 8 was a promise to take on a host of large problems previously ducked. Mrs May insisted the country has been bedevilled by them for too long, as she published the Conservatives’ 84-page election manifesto entitled “Forward Together”. Seizing the patriotic mantle, she said leaving the EU was “a defining moment”. And if voters “believe in Britain and in the enduring power of the British spirit”, it will emerge from it even stronger, she said.” – The Sun

Manifesto 4) Fracking to be speeded up

“Local authorities would be stripped of powers to block drilling for shale gas in the countryside under Conservative plans to copy the United States and make Britain less reliant on imported energy. Shale companies could undertake “non-fracking drilling” under permitted development rights, the party’s manifesto said. They would not need to make a formal planning application and could start drilling more quickly. Igas, a leading shale gas explorer, had to wait more than a year to get planning permission from Nottinghamshire county council to drill two exploratory wells, neither involving fracking.” – The Times(£)

Manifesto 5) New definition of Overseas Aid

“Theresa May has promised to rip up the rules on what counts as foreign aid – in a move that will delight critics of the ‘arbitrary’ 0.7 per cent target. The Tory manifesto includes a staunch defence of our £13 billion annual development spending, insisting it helps millions of people and makes a ‘powerful statement’ about Britain’s place in the world.  But the document brands the current international definitions of what classifies as aid spending ‘unhelpful’ and commits to overhauling them.” – Daily Mail

Manifesto 6) “Chilling” press regulation abandoned

“Newspapers will be spared the “crippling” legal costs they feared would have a chilling effect on freedom of expression, the Conservatives pledged. They would repeal a measure forcing newspapers to pay their opponents’ costs in libel and privacy cases, win or lose, unless they had signed up to an approved regulator. Newspapers have widely condemned Section 40 of the Crime and Courts Act 2013 which is on the statute book but not yet enacted, because of the punitive deterrent costs that it would inflict.” – The Times(£)

Manifesto 7) No timetable for migration pledge says Fallon

“The Conservatives would “aim” to meet their manifesto pledge to reduce net migration to the tens of thousands, a cabinet minister has said. Sir Michael Fallon said the policy was not yet costed as the government did not know when it would be achieved.” – BBC

Manifesto 8) Clegg’s fury as his free hot lunches are abandoned to have free breakfasts

“Furious Nick Clegg has branded the Tories ‘cynical’ and ‘mean’ for abandoning the Coalition’s flagship policy to give hot lunches to primary school children.  Theresa May announced she will scrap the scheme, which gives dinners to the children aged five, six and seven and has been credited with boosting concentration and attainment in the classroom. Instead, the Tories will offer all primary school children a free breakfast instead and plough the cash saved back into education.” – Daily Mail

  • An attack on struggling families – Nick Clegg The Guardian

Manifesto 9) UK to stay in European Court of Human Rights

“The prime minister has committed to keeping Britain in the European Court of Human Rights for at least five years if the Conservatives were re-elected. Theresa May, an opponent of the court, also said that she would halt plans to scrap the Human Rights Act. Pressing ahead with either reform would have made it more difficult to secure an agreement with the EU in areas such as law enforcement co-operation, which Mrs May has said that she wants to continue.” – The Times(£)

Manifesto 10) No second Scottish independence referendum without public consent

“A second Scottish independence referendum will not take place “until the Brexit process has played out”, Theresa May has pledged in the Conservative manifesto. Prime Minister Theresa May launched a manifesto under the banner “Forward, Together” that makes clear a second referendum cannot take place “until the Brexit process has played out”, and should not be considered “unless there is public consent for it to happen”.” – The Scotsman

Manifesto 11) Funding boost for the NHS

“The NHS got a triple-pronged £8billion shot in the arm yesterday under fresh Tory spending promises. Theresa May pledged to inject a minimum of £8bn in real terms over the next five years. If re-elected the Conservatives promised to hike NHS funding per head of population in every year of the next Parliament so that as the population rises, so will the Government’s contribution. A commitment to recruit up to 10,000 more mental health professionals by 2020 was also underlined.” – The Sun

Manifesto 12) Business groups warn against attack on free market

“Business groups yesterday accused the Conservatives of a misguided interventionist attack on free markets that threatens to saddle companies with costs and strip them of skills. The party’s manifesto drew a stinging rebuke from the business community after it laid out plans for an almost unprecedented level of interference in corporate affairs by government.” – The Times(£)

  • Now is the time to stand up for capitalism – no political party will – Kate Andrews City AM

Manifesto 13) Social care plan is brave says Nelson

“Perhaps the most controversial part of Mrs May’s manifesto is her brave and necessary social care plan. Just how to cope with this is one of the toughest questions in politics: a healthier population means longer life, but more of the illnesses that come with age – particularly dementia. And the Prime Minister’s manifesto now proposes a solution: those who can afford to pay for it themselves should, but those who can’t (ie, have assets beneath £100,000) should not. Again, this is not a radical proposal. The over-65s need the most care, but the housing bubble means that one in six pensioners now lives in a millionaire household. So Mrs May is saying what even Labour didn’t quite dare: there’s nothing wrong in someone selling their house, or anything else, to pay for the care that they need.” – Fraser Nelson, Daily Telegraph

  • Without a cap on care costs we are left with a lottery – Sarah Wollaston, The Times(£)

Manifesto 14) A welcome from the Daily Mail

“By any standards it is an extraordinary document. Detailed, deadly serious, utterly candid and unashamedly moral, the Tories’ 84-page manifesto yesterday unveiled Mayism (a word she hates) and British politics entered a new era. Gone were the gimmicks, glitz and disingenuity of the Cameron and Blair eras, and the cynical manifestos replete with pledges their authors had no intention of keeping….Instead, with a clear ethical – even Christian – tone, this vicar’s daughter took the riskier option: to be unremittingly honest with the public about the great challenges this country faces, to spell out how she intends to confront them and to promise only what she can deliver.” – Leader, Daily Mail

Manifesto 15) The Sun endorses the Conservatives

“Never in The Sun’s history has an election thrown up a choice so clear-cut and a ­conclusion so obvious for our readers…On June 8 you could vote for Corbyn’s socialist shambles, the Lib Dems’ Remainer Resistance or the pointless, rudderless Ukip. But let’s get real.The Tories alone will see Brexit through while keeping our economy on track, taxes low and taking serious and bold action to improve Sun readers’ lot. It’s a no-brainer.” – The Sun Says

Other comment

Conservatives win the fund raising battle

“The Conservatives won the fundraising battle during the first week of the election campaign, raising £4.1 million from donors while Labour remains almost totally reliant on trade unions. Figures released by the Electoral Commission yesterday showed that Labour raised £2.7 million during the first week, of which all but £61,300 came from trade unions. Unite, whose general secretary, Len McCluskey, is one of Mr Corbyn’s closest allies, gave £2.4 million — almost 90 per cent of the money.” – The Times(£)

Minor party leaders clash in TV debate

“The leaders of five political parties have taken part in a live TV election debate – but Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn sat it out. There was little disagreement between the leaders of the Lib Dems, Green Party, Plaid Cymru and the SNP as they repeatedly clashed with UKIP’s Paul Nuttall. Brexit was a dominant theme, and the panellists also turned their fire on the absent Tory and Labour leaders. The ITV debate took place in Salford.” – BBC

>Today: Columnist Iain Dale: Why aren’t the Liberal Democrats doing better in these election polls?

Davidson appeals to Labour supporters for tactical votes to defeat the SNP

“Ruth Davidson will today make a direct appeal to Scottish Labour voters disillusioned with the party’s “civil war” to vote tactically for the Tories in the General Election to stop Nicola Sturgeon “trying to pull our country apart.” Launching the Scottish Conservative manifesto alongside Theresa May, Ms Davidson is expected to sympathise with the predicament of moderate Labour supporters who do not like Jeremy Corbyn or Kezia Dugdale’s decision to suspend her Aberdeen council group.” – Daily Telegraph

Poll shows Labour closing the gap

“Jeremy Corbyn has gained eight points on the Tories, in a poll that is usually among the least favourable to Labour. The party has slimmed down the Conservative lead to only 15 points. Jeremy Corbyn’s personal favourability – often held as the biggest problem for Labour to win the election – has also improved, according to the new data.” – Independent

  • Harrow West voters concerned about fly-tipping – The Guardian

Davis pledges to put Juncker “back in his box”

“The Prime Minister’s no-nonsense approach to negotiations had proved we will not be bullied into accepting a bad Brexit deal and put European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker and his allies “back in their box”, he said.  Mr Davis also revealed half his time at the Department for Exiting the EU is spent preparing for the possibility of the Government walking away from Brexit talks without a deal.” – Daily Express

  • Brexit divorce bill could be only £5 billion – The Sun
  • The bulldog spirit we need – Leader, Daily Express

News in brief

  • Scottish Labour leader sued over homophobia claim – The Scotsman
  • Retail sales rise boosts pound – The Guardian
  • David Cameron gives a speech in Las Vegas – Daily Mail
  • Venezuelan opposition leader grounded – BBC
  • Trump denies collusion with Russia – Independent

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