Victory in the Newark by-election

ballot_box‘David Cameron breathed a sigh of relief last night as the Conservatives claimed a comfortable victory in the Newark by-election. A mammoth effort to fend off Ukip delivered a healthy lead for Robert Jenrick, the Tory candidate, who won with a majority of just over 7,400. The prime minister will cite the result as evidence that he can beat back the swell of support for the anti-EU party that swept it to victory in European elections earlier this month. The result is disappointing for Ukip.’ – The Times (£)


Trojan Horse 1) Ofsted finds teachers fail to protect children from extremism

‘Children are at risk of radicalisation and of growing up in “cultural isolation” at a Birmingham school, Ofsted has concluded. A leaked inspection report on Golden Hillock School said senior staff members and governors were not doing enough to keep pupils safe from extremist views. The trust running the secondary school confirmed that Ofsted had judged it inadequate and placed it in special measures.’ – The Times (£)

Trojan Horse 2) Cameron calls in the Cabinet Secretary to interview May and Gove

CAMERON POINTING‘Theresa May and Michael Gove are to face an extraordinary grilling from the country’s most powerful civil servant about their damaging public spat over how to tackle extremism. David Cameron has told Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood to produce a full report on the vicious row between two of his most senior ministers. Government sources said the Home Secretary and the Education Secretary would each be interviewed by Sir Jeremy and asked to account for their conduct and that of their advisers.’ – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: May and Gove should snog and make up

EU 1) Hague: we’ll lay out renegotiation aims after the General Election

‘The Tories will wait until after the 2015 Election before revealing EU renegotiation demands – William Hague has signalled. The Foreign Secretary said the next year would be spent establishing “common ground” within the EU about the need for change. He said: “We are at that stage rather than the stage of a shopping list of detail.” The comments will anger Eurosceptics desperate for the Tories to take a TOUGHER line with the EU.’ – The Sun (£)

>Yesterday: Jaber Jabbour on Comment: Is it racist to give Europeans open-door immigration rights?

EU 2) Juncker hits out at Britain and Fleet Street

EU FLag‘The frontrunner for the presidency of the European Commission says he will not ‘get on his knees’ to Britain to secure the post, it was reported last night. In a bitter attack on the UK, Jean-Claude Juncker also condemned what he described as a British campaign against  his presidency…’What bothers me is the gathering British press campaign.’’ – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: International: Conservatives set to become third largest group in the European Parliament

Cameron meets Putin

‘David Cameron has tonight warned Vladimir Putin that the ongoing civil unrest in Ukraine is “not acceptable” during face-to-face talks. The Prime Minister said he gave the Russian leader a “very clear and firm set of messages” during a meeting in Paris about the crisis. During the hour long discussions Mr Cameron called for Moscow to negotiate with new Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko and de-escalate the conflict.’ – Daily Express

  • Pro-Russians in Ukraine execute hostages on camera – FT
  • Never forget the lessons of history – The Times Leader (£)

Goldsmith: Clegg is rewriting history on recall

Zac Goldsmith‘Nick Clegg was branded a liar last night for insisting he backed giving voters radical powers to sack their MPs. The Lib Dem chief insisted he wanted a far reaching version of ‘Recall’ championed by Tory backbencher Zac Goldsmith. But Mr Clegg said the Coalition was introducing a watered down version – which still gives a committee of MPs a final say – because of Cabinet opposition. A furious Mr Goldsmith accused Clegg of “rewriting history”.’ – The Sun (£)

>Today: Iain Dale’s Friday Diary: My Queen’s Speech. The Liberal Democrats (Abolition of) Bill. The 40p tax threshold up. The Joanna Lumley (Listed status) Bill…

>Yesterday: WATCH: Clegg backs Zac Goldsmith’s demands on tougher right of recall

Obama intervenes in the Scottish independence debate

‘Barack Obama effectively abandoned US neutrality on the issue of Scottish independence yesterday and declared himself a unionist, insisting that America had a “deep interest” in ensuring Britain was “robust, united and effective”. He added that Scotland was doing “pretty well” as a member of the UK and Britain would lose influence if there was a vote for independence in the September referendum.’ – The Times (£)

Controversy over secret trials

GRAYLING collarless‘MPs from across the political spectrum yesterday condemned plans to hold a major terrorism trial in secret and called for an urgent parliamentary debate on the growing controversy. The case – in which a judge declared he would try two suspected terrorists entirely behind closed doors – was described as a ‘dangerous precedent’ which will change the British legal landscape forever.’ – Daily Mail

Downing Street pushes for better rural phone coverage

‘David Cameron has ordered ministers to improve mobile phone coverage across the countryside after becoming frustrated about the lack of reception in the often core Conservative-voting territories. Earlier this year, Downing Street asked then culture secretary Maria Miller to draw up plans to boost coverage of A and B roads in rural areas following complaints from senior ministers, say mobile executives.’ – FT

Memorials mark the 70th anniversary of D-Day

Poppy‘Seventy years ago today, he landed on these beaches amid the hell of battle. The cacophony of shells and gunfire. The cries of the wounded and dying. Yesterday, in the serenity of a sunny June morning, D-Day veteran Gordon Smith stood in silence on the same stretch of Normandy coast, alone with his memories. Staring out to sea from the sands where he lost so many comrades, the 90-year-old former Royal Engineer couldn’t hold back the tears.’ – Daily Mail

News in brief

  • Vet shoots man in gorilla suit after mistaking him for the real thing – The Sun (£)
  • Nancy Reagan: I still feel Ronald’s presence – Daily Mail
  • Three more babies suffer blood poisoning – Daily Telegraph
  • Parents arrested for their child being too fat – The Sun (£)
  • Fairytales, Dawkins-style – The Times Leader (£)
  • Plain packaging fails to reduce smoking in Australia – Daily Mail
  • Seattle student disarms gunman with pepper spray – The Times (£)

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