Osborne warns of UK exposure to Chinese crisis

OSBORNE red and blue“George Osborne warned on Monday that Britain’s economy was exposed to a global downturn and its vulnerability reinforced the need to resolve long-standing domestic weaknesses. As the FTSE-100 plunged almost 5 per cent to its lowest level in over two years, the chancellor issued his warning in Helsinki, saying: “Everyone’s concerned about the situation in Asian financial markets”. With two of Britain’s largest banks – HSBC and Standard Chartered – highly exposed to emerging markets, the UK is potentially more at risk than many rich nations from any Asian economic downturn.” – Financial Times

  • Watson attacks O’Neill over China bullishness – The Guardian
  • Chancellor aims to sell Lloyds stake within a year – Financial Times

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Corbyn could boost Osborne’s leadership chances

Davis warns Cameron against Syria vote before Chilcot publishes

“David Cameron has been warned not to push a Commons vote on military action in Syria until the Chilcot inquiry into the Iraq war is published. David Davis, a senior Tory who has led opposition to intervention in Syria, said that indications that ministers may seek to extend airstrikes against Islamic State militants heightened the need for publication. Downing Street resisted efforts to link the two issues, but Mr Davis said that they were inextricably bound.” – The Times (£)

  • Prime Minister won’t allow Chilcot to delay vote on Syria action – Daily Mail
  • Farce deepens as Downing Street rules out enquiry into enquiry – The Independent
  • Chilcot Enquiry might ‘go on forever’, warns Lord Saville – Daily Telegraph
  • Labour leadership ballot may impact on UK action in the Middle East – Financial Times

Duncan Smith accuses Labour of ‘blind opposition’ to welfare reform

Iain Duncan Smith“Iain Duncan Smith yesterday accused Labour of ‘blind opposition’ to welfare reform after it attacked his plans to help a million sick and disabled people return to work. The Work and Pensions Secretary faced a barrage of criticism from the Left yesterday after unveiling plans to shake-up the discredited Employment and Support Allowance paid to 2.5 million people. The controversial test that decides whether people are too sick to ever work will be replaced with a new test designed to assess what work they could do.” – Daily Mail

  • Work is a good medicine, claims Work and Pensions Secretary – The Times (£)
  • Minister criticises employers for disability employment gap – The Guardian
  • IDS claims it was wrong for DWP to invent quotes for publicity material – The Independent

Comment and Editorial:


Brokenshire unveils new crackdown on illegal workers

“Under a fresh immigration crackdown, rogue owners of food and drink outlets will be stripped of their licences if caught hiring foreigners who do not have permission to work in Britain. For the first time, illegal workers could also be jailed if they are seized – facing up to six months’ behind bars and an unlimited fine. Immigration Minister James Brokenshire was unveiling the measures as part of the Government’s desperate battle to get a grip of the Calais crisis and send a message to asylum seekers that the UK’s streets are not paved with gold.” – Daily Mail

  • Businesses employing illegal workers face temporary closure – Financial Times

Villiers not surprised Provos still exist

Northern Ireland“Northern Ireland secretary Theresa Villiers has admitted she is not surprised that the Provisional IRA (PIRA) still exists. Villiers said on Monday that she agreed with the analysis of Northern Ireland’s chief constable that some structures of the organisation remain intact. George Hamilton, the head of the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI), said at the weekend that the PIRA still exists but was not primed to go back to armed struggle. He was commenting in relation to the murder of former IRA assassin Kevin McGuigan in east Belfast almost a fortnight ago.” – The Guardian

Hammond defends thaw in Anglo-Iranian relations

“Britain will “tread carefully” as it rebuilds relations with Iran, but the countries need to work together to tackle problems like Islamic State, Philip Hammond has said. The British foreign secretary – speaking from Tehran on Monday, following the reopening of Britain’s embassy in the city and ahead of a meeting with the Iranian president, Hassan Rouhani – said that, although relations had been improving, the countries had a “difficult history”.” – The Guardian

Jenkin to lead MPs’ enquiry into Kids Company failure

Charity“An inquiry into the scandal-hit charity Kids Company is expected to grill leading figures who may have been ‘blinded by the charisma’ of its colourful founder, it emerged yesterday. Among those it is expected to call are BBC creative director Alan Yentob and Cabinet Office chief Oliver Letwin. The cross-party Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee will announce its investigation as soon as Parliament resumes next month, the Mail can disclose. Its chairman, Tory MP Bernard Jenkin, said there was ‘clearly an issue to investigate’, and confirmed that he has already asked clerks to make preparations.” – Daily Mail

>Today: Judy Terry in Local Government: Do councillors take their role as charity trustees seriously?

Lib Dem arrogance may prompt Government to clip peers’ wings

“Ministers could launch a fresh drive to reform the House of Lords after suffering a string of defeats inspired by Liberal Democrat peers. Senior Tories are furious at their boast that they will block the Government’s programme despite having just eight MPs after the General Election. Of the 16 votes in the Lords since May, the Government has suffered defeats in ten, including key issues such as English votes for English laws. In contrast, the Coalition lost just 11 votes during 2014.” – Daily Mail

Paul Johnson: The Government must be bold to tackle public sector pay

MANIFESTO money“The lack of regional pay differentials mean that the relative pay of police, teachers and nurses varies dramatically across the country. They are some of the best paid workers in places like north Wales and northeast England, but some of the worst paid in expensive regions like the southeast. We know for sure that this means staff quality varies across the country to such an extent that it affects patients’ outcomes in different regions of the NHS. Much has been said about tackling this in recent years, but little has been done. Isn’t this the moment to introduce regional pay once and for all?” – The Times (£)

Straw accused of helping Tories dismantle Freedom of Information Act

“The Labour Party has turned on its former Home Secretary Jack Straw, accusing him of conniving with the Tories to dismantle the Freedom of Information Act. Party sources told The Independent that Mr Straw had been asked not to join a committee set up last month by the Cabinet Office to review the workings of the Act. The party fears that the committee will be used by the Tories as cover to restrict what information can be released under the Act and make it harder for the Opposition to scrutinise the work of the Government.” – The Independent

Labour leadership 1) Barely a fifth of voters would back Corbyn

Labour holes“Barely a fifth of voters would back Labour with Jeremy Corbyn as leader, a poll reveals today. The study shows that although the veteran Left-winger has electrified the Labour leadership contest, he appears to have little appeal to the wider electorate – and would lead the party to a historic defeat. Only 22 per cent of people said they would vote Labour if Mr Corbyn is in charge, compared with the 30.4 per cent recorded by Ed Miliband in May and the 27.6 per cent achieved by Michael Foot in Margaret Thatcher’s 1983 landslide.” – Daily Mail

  • Guru claims Labour favourite would sack Bank of England Governor – The Times (£)
  • Frontrunner demands national maximum wage – Daily Mail
  • Corbyn urged to reject leader’s salary boost – The Sun (£)
  • ‘Corbynmania’ boosts Khan in Labour’s mayoral race – Financial Times
  • Karen Danczuk backs Corbyn – Daily Telegraph


  • Enemies of Corbyn’s politics should not delight in his rise – Norman Tebbit, Daily Telegraph
  • This race is bigger than Labour: if Corbyn wins the UK could leave the EU – Polly Toynbee, The Guardian
  • Labour’s anti-bigotry credentials are being destroyed – Dan Hodges, Daily Telegraph

Labour leadership 2) Lucas proposes left-wing electoral pact

“The Green Party has opened the door to an electoral pact with Labour if Jeremy Corbyn wins the party’s leadership race. In an extraordinary open letter to Mr Corbyn, published in The Independent, the Greens’ only MP, Caroline Lucas, fulsomely praised his campaign and suggested that the two parties should join together and not field candidates against each other in 2020. But her endorsement will be controversial, not only in Labour circles but also her own party.” – The Independent

  • My message to Jeremy Corbyn: I can help build a progressive majority – Caroline Lucas, The Independent

Labour leadership 3) Janan Ganesh: This is as straightforwardly awful for Labour as it appears

LABOUR dead rose“The enemy of sound political judgment is the desire for distinctiveness. Commentators sometimes parse straightforward events for surprising nuances or daring new angles because it makes for good copy. But it is better to be right than original. No, a Corbynite Labour party will not cause trouble for the Tories. Mr Cameron will not find him a confounding adversary across the parliamentary dispatch box. Demonstrations will not shake the government. They will not even shake the streets they are held on. Politics will not be reinvented. Mr Corbyn is not “on to something” with his critique of capitalism and western foreign policy. This is a passing commotion whose principal victims are the millions of low-paid Britons who need a serious party of the centre-left.” – Financial Times

Labour leadership 4) Brown comes out for Yvette

“Labour’s Yvette Cooper received a major boost to her flagging leadership campaign tonight after Gordon Brown backed her to succeed Ed Miliband. The former Prime Minister announced that he had given the shadow home secretary his first preference. It comes just a week after Mr Brown refused to endorse a single candidate in a 50-minute speech on the Labour leadership contest. Instead Mr Brown urged the party not to become a ‘permanent party of protest’ in remarks taken as a thinly-veiled warning not to elect hard-left candidate Jeremy Corbyn.” – Daily Mail

Labour leadership 5) Party should be prepared to tax rich more, claims Burnham

Andy Burnham“Labour leadership candidate Andy Burnham has said that Labour should be prepared to raise taxes on the rich to pay off the deficit, arguing that for too long the party had been frightened of using the word “tax”. Speaking at a rally in central London on Monday night, Burnham said Labour had previously been too timid, and repeated pledges to bring the railways into public ownership, scrap charitable status for private schools and replace tuition fees with a graduate tax. “Let’s have a Labour alternative and a balanced plan for the economy that doesn’t reduce the deficit just by punishing the poorest and most valuable,” said Burnham.” – The Guardian

  • You’d better think of something to say, Burnham! – Patrick Kidd, The Times (£)

>Yesterday: The Deep End: There’s nothing strange about the death of New Labour

SNP 1) Robinson steps up to Salmond as war of words escalates

“The BBC’s outgoing political editor Nick Robinson has accused Alex Salmond, former leader of the Scottish National party, of trying to control the broadcaster, as the war of words over coverage of the independence debate escalates. In an article for the Guardian, Robinson takes issue with the politician’s view that the BBC is biased against the SNP and rejects criticism of his own reporting. “His assertion that [the BBC] is a broadcaster that dances to a tune written by the Whitehall and Westminster establishment is wrong,” he writes.” – The Guardian


  • The BBC must resist Salmond’s attempt to control its coverage – Nick Robinson, The Guardian
  • The Nats and their nasty fans need to get over it, they lost – Rupert Myers, Daily Telegraph

SNP 2) Scottish universities warn that Holyrood control bid could cost them millions

SNP logo white background“Scotland’s universities have warned that that tens of millions of pounds of their funding are being put at risk by SNP plans giving ministers unprecedented political control over how they are run. Umbrella group Universities Scotland said the Higher Education Governance Bill creates such close links with the state that it endangers institutions’ charitable status and could mean they are officially classified as part of the public sector. Some of their “most important sources of finance” could be cut off as a result, they warned, giving them no choice but to scale back their activities and operations.” – Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • Tumbling Chinese market hits UK pensions – Daily Mail
  • Trillion wiped off global markets in day of panic – The Times (£)
  • Shares crash as effects of crisis spread – The Sun (£)
  • Met Office eyes legal action against BBC – Financial Times
  • Tube strike called off but unions threaten fresh walkouts – Daily Telegraph
  • Juncker pleads with Europe to maintain free movement – Daily Mail
  • Reports of suicide and blackmail probed after Ashley Madison hack – Financial Times

And finally… Twitter acts to spare MPs’ blushes by closing account

“Twitter has stopped a popular service that archived embarrassing tweets deleted by MPs, saying that it made the service terrifying for politicians. The social network cut off access to its internal data for 31 accounts that archived deleted messages posted by politicians and diplomats worldwide. These included @deletedbyMPs, a UK-specific service, which had more than 7,000 followers. It had caught politicians including Ed Miliband deleting embarrassing mistakes or remarks.” – The Times (£)