Calais crisis 1) Hammond claims the Government is getting a grip

HAMMOND Philip Marr“Up to 100 extra security guards are to be sent to patrol the Channel Tunnel terminal in the latest move to get the migrant crisis at Calais under control. … Philip Hammond, the Foreign Secretary, set out the moves last night after a lengthy meeting of Cobra, Whitehall’s emergency committee. … He insisted the Government was getting a grip on the situation, as the number of illegal migrants trying to cross the Channel had fallen in recent days.” – The Independent

  • “Plans for thousands of families of failed asylum seekers to be stripped of their automatic right to financial support are to be detailed by Home Office ministers on Tuesday.” – The Guardian
  • “Years of ‘soft-minded liberalism’ were yesterday blamed for the chaos at Calais by a former Labour immigration minister. … Phil Woolas made the blistering intervention as he demanded a British-run detention camp on French soil.” – Daily Mail
  • “The number of lone children applying for asylum in Britain has soared by almost 50 per cent in the last year.” – Daily Mail
  • “An OAPs’ home axed due to lack of funds will reopen for immigrants — using taxpayers’ cash.” – The Sun (£)

And comment:

  • “…it is alarming to hear Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond claim the Government has ‘got a grip’ on the Calais crisis.” – Sun editorial (£)
  • “Our memories are short. We first tried to resolve this problem in 2002, when the then Home Secretary, David Blunkett, and the French interior minister, later president, Nicolas Sarkozy, agreed a plan to close the Red Cross refugee camp at Sangatte.” – Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
  • “Blame the swarm on Britain’s shadow economy.” – Rachel Sylvester, The Times (£)

> Yesterday:

Calais crisis 2) The EU is paying migrants to find work in Britain

Border“Unemployed migrants are being given thousands of pounds to find work in Britain under an EU scheme, The Telegraph can disclose. … It has emerged that the UK has taken a third of the young migrants involved in the ‘Your First EURES Job’ programme. … Some 1,178 unemployed young people from the Continent have been found jobs, training or apprenticeships in Britain under the ‘jobs mobility’ programme since it was set up in 2012.” – Daily Telegraph

  • “The German government called in the army yesterday to cope with a record number of asylum seekers — immediately drawing accusations that it had breached the nation’s strict constitution, introduced after the Second World War.” – The Times (£)

Calais crisis 3) Cameron goes on holiday

Cameron“Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has taken charge of the government response to the Calais crisis as David Cameron heads off on his first holiday of the summer. … The Prime Minister, who is expected to be away for most of August, is facing calls to return to Downing Street to take the lead on bolstering border security. … Home Secretary Theresa May is also on holiday, but violence continued for another night in Calais after a weekend where around 2,500 migrants stormed the Channel Tunnel.” – Daily Mail

Will the Prime Minister reward former MPs?

“David Cameron is set to announce the award of a string of knighthoods and other honours amid concerns they will be used to compensate ‘failed’ MPs. … As Westminster awaits the publication of a controversial list of new peers, it is expected that a separate list will hand out lesser titles and honours. … Insiders say it is usually made up of former politicians – leading to fears party leaders will use the process to compensate MPs who lost their seats in the election and former ministers booted out of office.” – Daily Mail

  • “The Serious Fraud Office investigation into the firm chaired by former Conservative party leader Lord Howard of Lympne is expected to include payments it made to the Somali government as part of its unorthodox oil deal with the war-torn country.” – The Independent

Osborne starts the RBS sell-off

OSBORNE red and blue“Chancellor George Osborne pulled the trigger on the first sale of the Government’s RBS shares since its credit crisis bailout seven years ago. … Around £2billion-worth were up for grabs in the City in a hugely symbolic auction. … The sell-off will take the taxpayers’ holding in RBS down from 78.3 per cent to 73.2 per cent. … It was expected to be sold at between 325p and 330p per share, well below the 502p needed for the State to break even on the 2008 bailout.” – The Sun (£)

  • “Some bankers argue that it is always a risk to sell shares in August, when more investors are on holiday and liquidity can be low.” – Financial Times
  • “Britons looking for new jobs are now prioritising big pay packets over job security as their fear of redundancy falls away, a survey has found.” – Daily Mail
  • “One of Britain’s biggest graduate recruiters will no longer consider degree or A-level results when assessing potential employees.” – The Independent

And comment:

  • “Privatisation without preparation does nothing for economic growth.” – Financial Times editorial
  • “At last, we are starting to move on from the crisis.” – Allister Heath, Daily Telegraph
  • “Borrowers, get ready for interest rate pain.” – Ed Conway, The Times (£)

> Today:

> Yesterday:

Eleven bankers face trial after trader is jailed for fixing Libor rates

RBS logo“Eleven more bankers are to face trial after the first City trader was jailed for fixing the Libor rate today. … Tom Hayes, a 35-year-old dubbed ‘Rainman’ after making £200million for UBS over four years, was sentenced to 14 years behind bars after being found guilty of conspiring to fix rates for profit. … He was described as the ‘ringmaster’ of a larger group who ‘cajoled’ rate setters at other banks in to submitting false data to manipulate the the London interbank offered rate (Libor) between 2006 and 2010.” – Daily Mail

  • “A 14-year prison sentence for manipulating benchmark interest rates is a stiff but deserved penalty.” – Times editorial (£)
  • “Now the bank bosses must be made to pay.” – Daily Mail editorial

“Protect the science budget, Chancellor!” urges Blackwood

Nicola Blackwood“Now though, Blackwood is resurgent. She secured a stonking majority of 9,852, won the vote to chair the Commons Science and Technology Committee, and takes regular injections for the migraines, which have transformed her enjoyment of life. … So she’s not wasting any time in making her presence felt. In her first interview since taking on the committee chairmanship, she makes an outspoken appeal for the Chancellor to protect the science budget in his autumn spending review. So far he has failed to commit to doing so.” – Daily Telegraph

  • “Government science advisers are expected to investigate a new method of creating ‘supercharged’ genetically modified organisms that some scientists fear might cause havoc if released without adequate safeguards into the wild.” – The Independent

Government under pressure to abandon nuclear reactor plans

The Government is under growing pressure to abandon plans to construct the UK’s first nuclear reactor for more than 20 years, after a damning report into the viability of the project by financial analysts was swiftly followed by data showing that the legal bill has already exceeded £1 million. … The Independent can disclose that the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has already paid the London law firm Slaughter and May more than £1.3m.” – The Independent

  • “Ministers have declared ‘open season’ on the Green Belt by relaxing planning guidelines and pushing impossibly ambitious housing targets, Sir Andrew Motion warned yesterday. … The former Poet Laureate, who now serves as the president of charity the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), said developers were ‘gunning for the Green Belt’.” – Daily Mail

Crouch intends to get Britain exercising

Tennis balls“Sports minister Tracey Crouch today vows to get Britain off its backside amid fears the 2012 Olympics legacy is starting to crumble. … The Tory rising star told the Sun she wanted to turn the country into a ‘truly active nation’ as she launched consultation on the first cross-Government Sports Strategy for 13 years. … She said ‘nothing was off the table’ as she looked to get more kids into sport – inside and outside of school – and to ensure lower income families are not priced out of taking part.” – The Sun (£)

  • “Don’t lose the impetus of London 2012.” – Tracey Crouch, Daily Telegraph
  • “In the war on obesity, sport and exercise are exactly where the focus should be. … Not on slapping opportunistic, punitive taxes on fizzy drinks and sugary snacks in the foolish belief people will change their diets.” – Sun editorial (£)

Fallon announces second reprieve for RAF Tornado squadron

“The RAF Tornado squadron spearheading Britain’s air campaign against Islamic State (Isis) in Iraq has been given a second reprieve. … Defence secretary Michael Fallon has announced that 12 (Bomber) Squadron will continue in service for a further year, until March 2017. … The squadron of Tornado GR4 fighter bombers – previously designated 2 Squadron – had originally been due to be disbanded last March and replaced with a squadron of Typhoon air defence fighters.” – The Guardian

Spencer: Use anti-terror orders against teachers who preach against gay marriage

School“Christian teachers who tell pupils that gay marriages is ‘wrong’ should have anti-terror banning orders used against them, a Tory MP has argued. … Mark Spencer has called on Extremism Disruption Orders (EDOs), which were introduced by the Government to crack down on hate preachers and terrorist propagandists, to be used to stop children being taught that same-sex marriage is a sin.” – The Independent

  • “SNP ministers are under pressure to investigate whether Scotland’s Higher exam has been made easier after record-breaking results showed a greater pass rate among pupils who sat a new version of the qualification.” – Daily Telegraph

Police accused of covering up child sex allegations against Heath

“Police are being investigated over sensational claims they covered up child sex allegations against former prime minister Edward Heath. … The probe was launched after a retired ‘very senior’ officer raised concerns that a criminal trial was derailed in the 1990s to protect the former Tory leader. … As a result, it is alleged, he was never interviewed by police – let alone arrested – and his home was not searched. … One alleged victim claims he was sexually assaulted aged 12 by Sir Edward in a Mayfair flat in 1961, after the MP spotted him walking the streets alone.” – Daily Mail

  • “Police yesterday issued an extraordinary direct public appeal: Were you ever abused by former Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath?” – The Sun (£)
  • “Edward Heath’s friends and colleagues defended his memory yesterday and accused Wiltshire police of taking a cheap shot by conducting a press conference outside his former home.” – The Times (£)

And comment:

  • “Rumours always swirled about [Heath’s] sexuality – I’m sure that’s all they were.” – John Campbell, The Independent

Bercow to address the TUC

John Bercow“John Bercow is to become the first Commons Speaker to address the Trades Union Congress, it was revealed yesterday. … In a major break with tradition, he will give a keynote speech at their annual conference in Brighton next month. … But his decision to accept their invitation to speak at the Leftie gathering will cause controversy as the Speaker is supposed to be politically neutral.” – The Sun (£)

  • “London is on course for more Tube strike chaos this week as unions rejected a revised offer on Monday from London Underground.” – Financial Times

Clarke reckons that Corbyn could benefit from a recession

“Jeremy Corbyn could win the next election for Labour — according to a former Tory Chancellor. … In astonishing comments, Ken Clarke said the veteran Left-winger ‘will be difficult to campaign against’ if Britain is hit by another recession. … Mr Clarke spoke out as it emerged Gordon Brown is set to wade into the Labour leadership debate. … The former PM is expected to give his views on the bitter contest at an event in Edinburgh at the end of the month.” – The Sun (£)

  • “Kenneth Clarke, the former chancellor, said he had been assured that he was not being investigated by police about claims he abused a teenage boy and that false allegations damaged the cause of genuine victims.” – The Times (£)

Labour MPs lay into “Corbynomics”…

LABOUR dead rose“Panicked Labour MPs have rounded on leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn, warning his hard-left economic policies would be a ‘recipe for disaster’. … Mr Corbyn has garnered huge support for his call to end austerity, increase borrowing and renationalise energy firms and the railways. … But opponents in the Labour party warn the Marxist throwback’s brand of ‘Corbynomics’ would push up inflation and interest rates, hitting the poorest hardest.” – Daily Mail

  • “Labour should offer more policies to help Britain’s army of part-time workers, the leadership candidate Andy Burnham will say on 4 August.” – The Independent
  • “Labour’s mild-mannered shadow chancellor became a hate figure at a Jeremy Corbyn rally last night as a crowd cheered the claim that ‘electability is not really the most important thing’.” – The Times (£)
  • “Andy Burnham has been accused by Jeremy Corbyn supporters of ‘ageism’ after suggesting that MPs should retire after 25 years of service.” – Daily Telegraph
  • “Andy Burnham, who has complained that Labour politicians appear ‘out of touch’ with ordinary voters, has disclosed that he wears an Armani suit.” – Daily Telegraph

…whilst the man himself lays into Osborne’s Northern Powerhouse

“George Osborne is guilty of a ‘cruel deception’ over his plan to create a northern powerhouse, which involves little more than devolving the ability to impose public spending cuts, Jeremy Corbyn will say as he sets out his economic vision for the north of England. … The Labour leadership candidate will pledge to end ‘central government diktat’ to help deliver a ‘deep-rooted regeneration’ of the British economy, as the Corbyn camp moves to show it has a wide-ranging economic plan for the whole of the UK.” – The Guardian

  • “A Commons vote to extend UK airstrikes of Isis positions in Syria could be postponed if Jeremy Corbyn becomes Labour leader.” – The Independent

Janan Ganesh: The soft left is the real threat to Labour

Janan Ganesh“The more insidious threat to Labour is actually the soft left, with its undeserved sheen of respectability. … These are the people who elected Ed Miliband as leader in 2010 and egged him on through every vainglorious showdown with corporate Britain until he crashed into the electorate on May 7. … The soft left is more electable than the hard left but then Mars is more habitable than Neptune: neither planet will host human life anytime soon.” – Janan Ganesh, Financial Times

  • “Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters aren’t mad – they’re fleeing a bankrupt New Labour.” – Owen Jones, The Guardian
  • “Free to dream, I’d be left of Jeremy Corbyn. But we can’t gamble the future on him.” – Polly Toynbee, The Guardian
  • “The only way to stop the Corbyn juggernaut is for Liz Kendall to pull out.” – Dan Hodges, Daily Telegraph

Criminals selling fake documents for claiming benefits

“Crooks are selling fake documents to scammers who fraudulently claim more than £1 billion benefits each year. … An undercover investigation has discovered that just £700 will buy all the paperwork you need to claim benefits worth more than £1,000 a month using a fake name and address. … The dodgy documents — everything from birth certificates, driving licences, National Insurance numbers, bank statements, utility bills and even GP sick notes — are being openly sold online.” – The Sun (£)

  • “This ‘help yourself’ mindset towards public money — shared even by many with lawful access to it — must change.” – Sun editorial (£)

Hospitals told to find more savingsNHS

“Hospitals have been told to draw up emergency plans to slash their budgets. … These include cutting staffing levels and allowing patients to languish even longer on waiting lists. … The bosses of all hospitals were sent a letter by NHS watchdogs last night warning them that their day-to-day running is ‘simply unaffordable’. … It tells them to ‘leave no stone unturned’ in identifying ways to ensure the ‘money we have goes as far as possible’.” – Daily Mail

Did the BBC’s Yentob try to intervene on Kids Company’s behalf?

“Mr Yentob, the BBC’s £330,000-a-year creative director, telephoned Newsnight staff hours before it aired a damning report into Kids Company last month … It is claimed he tried to ‘influence the direction’ of the item – an action that would leave him open to allegations of a conflict of interest. … Mr Yentob did not stop there. The following morning he joined Miss Batmanghelidjh at the studios of Radio 4’s Today programme when she was interviewed.” – Daily Mail

News in brief

  • Biden considering whether to join the US presidential race – Daily Mail
  • Obama announces climate change plan – Daily Telegraph
  • Greek shares crash during first day of trading for five weeks – The Sun (£)
  • Last surviving Dambusters pilot, Les Munro, dies aged 96 – The Guardian