‘Corbyn by Christmas’ – the latest warning deployed to win support for May’s deal

‘Tory MPs have been warned the could get Jeremy Corbyn for Christmas unless they get behind Theresa May’s Brexit plan. The Labour leader could win power by default if the government collapses in the wake of a hefty Commons defeat on Tuesday…One Cabinet minister said: “Some of my fellow Tory MPs are busy writing their fantasy Christmas lists topped with Super Canada and a brand new party leader. “But the grim truth is if they reject the gift the PM is offering they don’t get that shiny new train set, they get a dirty great lump of coal in the form of a Corbyn government propped up by Nicola Sturgeon’s separatists.”’ – The Sun

  • Scottish Tory MPs get personal private audiences with the Prime Minister – Daily Telegraph
  • Half of voters think politics is broken – Daily Mail
  • Business argue the deal is bad for trade – FT
  • Ford boss warns against No Deal ‘catastrophe’ – Daily Mail
  • Gove proposes legal requirement to improve on fisheries deal – Daily Mail
  • Cleverly and Rees-Mogg demolish second referendum demands in Channel 4 debate – Daily Mail
  • The nine different kinds of second referendum available – Freddie Sayers, The Times
  • Ministers consider deal-or-no-deal ballot – Daily Telegraph
  • Shadow minister defies Corbyn by backing a re-run – Daily Mail




Chief Whip reportedly urges the Prime Minister to delay the vote

‘With time rapidly running out, Mrs May phoned Donald Tusk, the European Council president, to explain that MPs would kill off the deal – and possibly her premiership – unless Brussels could throw her a lifeline. Mrs May also called Leo Varadkar, the Irish Taoiseach, to discuss the vote and Thursday’s summit in Brussels…Even her closest allies were still unsure on Sunday whether she would postpone the vote in the hope of winning fresh concessions from EU leaders at a summit in Brussels on Thursday, or press ahead and use her expected defeat to prove to the EU that the deal is dead…one senior minister said Mrs May did not have a clear plan, likening her strategy to Wilkins Micawber, the Dickens character who forever insists that “something will turn up”…Stephen Barclay, the Brexit Secretary, insisted the vote would “100 per cent” go ahead on Tuesday, but senior government sources said nothing was set in stone. Julian Smith, the Chief Whip, is understood to be among those now urging Mrs May to put the vote back until at least next week, if not the new year, to buy time to break the deadlock.’ – Daily Telegraph

>Today: Chris White on Comment: A guide to what could happen in the Commons this week as tomorrow’s vote on May’s deal looms

Would-be leaders jockey, as Downing Street braces for the possibility of letters going in

‘Theresa May is facing the prospect of a leadership battle with the 48 letters from MPs that would trigger a contest likely to be submitted this week, The Times has been told. Tory challengers broke cover to set out their leadership pitches yesterday before the most difficult week of Mrs May’s troubled premiership. Boris Johnson tried to put himself at the head of a jockeying pack by outlining plans for another negotiation with Brussels. Other former ministers refused to rule themselves out of a contest. Some cabinet ministers were clinging to a fast-fading hope that the prime minster would postpone tomorrow’s so-called meaningful vote on her Brexit deal as whips calculated that she was heading for a three-figure defeat. However, Stephen Barclay, the Brexit secretary, said that the Commons vote was “100 per cent happening” and that Mrs May would continue in office even after a heavy defeat.’ – The Times


Foges: My grudging admiration for Theresa the unkillable Tardigrade

‘Say what you like about May, believe her to be completely misguided, but you cannot deny she is an old-fashioned public servant. Ego and greed aren’t her motivators. In years to come she won’t be at society dinners toying with a glass of port while bragging about the time she had Jean-Claude Juncker in a metaphorical headlock. She won’t be on the circuit of lucrative directorships and speeches. She will most likely retire to the country, satisfied that she has done her best. All this is not an apology for the premiership of May; far from it (how I wish that from the beginning of her time in No 10 the tone had been softer, the overtures to Brussels more emollient). This is simply a suggestion that we remember the woman at the centre of this drama; her steadfastness and determination in the service of what she believes to be the national interest.’ – Clare Foges, The Times

  • Channel 4 debate audience member accuses her of treason – The Sun
  • Merkel’s likely successor will woo voters with immigration pledges – The Times Leader
  • Belgian coalition demolished by UN migration pact controversy – The Times
  • What the world needs is more EU – The Guardian Leader
  • Heathrow to help its foreign employees apply for right to remain – FT


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