Refugee crisis 1): Cameron confirms pledge to take thousands more Syrian refugees…

timesrefugees“As the migration crisis engulfing Europe escalated, David Cameron confirmed that Britain would take thousands of the most vulnerable from camps along the Syrian border. It is understood that the final figure is likely to be between 4,000 and 10,000. The prime minister is about to reject demands from charities such as Save the Children that Britain accepts 3,000 unaccompanied children who have already travelled to Europe.” – The Times(£)

  • “Speaking during a trip to Spain and Portugal, the Prime Minister also announced that the UK would spend an extra £100million supporting refugee camps in countries bordering Syria, where four million are currently living.” – The Independent
  • Local government response – The Guardian
  • Offer a spare room to a refugee says Mayor of Bristol – BBC
  • Scotland “ready to take a thousand” – BBC
  • Geldof: I’ll shlter four families – The Times(£)


Refugee Crisis 2): …but he rejects EU quota

“On 9 September, Jean-Claude Juncker, the European Commission President, will present a plan to relocate 120,000 Syrians, Iraqis and Eritreans who have already entered the EU to states across the union. This is in addition to the relocation of 40,000 asylum-seekers previously proposed. Presidency of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker Britain is not expected to take part in the relocation programme as it has an opt-out on EU justice and home affairs issues under the Lisbon Treaty.” – The Independent

Refugee Crisis 3): Labour could still veto military intervention in Syria

telegraphcorbyn“Britain will be unable to launch military action in Syria if Jeremy Corbyn becomes Labour leader, former party ministers, military leaders and allies of the UK have warned. The plight of thousands of dying and suffering migrants this week has reignited debate about how to respond to the Syrian crisis. But with Mr Corbyn expected to be named Labour leader next Saturday, senior party figures have warned that his appointment will leave the chance of British military intervention much reduced.” – Daily Telegraph

  • “Mr Cameron said he would “only pursue going further on this issue if there is genuine consensus in the UK,” suggesting that a victory in the Labour Party leadership election for Jeremy Corbyn, who opposes military action in Syria, could curtail any such move.” – The Independent
  • “The success of RAF airstrikes in Iraq and the training of Kurdish and Iraqi security forces are to be cited as part of the argument to broaden military intervention to Syria.” – The Independent
  • Labour MPs must defy this peacenik fantasist – The Sun Says(£)

Refugee Crisis 4): Parris says stop crying if you are serious

“Yes, I too saw the photograph of the dead child. Yes, I too had to brush away a tear. But weeping at pictures is not a policy, and saying “we must do more” is not a policy. Policy seeks remedies, and the remedy for the refugee crisis is no more apparent now that we have seen a picture of a lifeless toddler than it was before it. What kind of primitives have we become that we need to see a drowned person before we acknowledge to ourselves that people are drowning?” – Matthew Parris The Times(£)

Refugee Crisis 5): Bomb IS so Aylan didn’t die in vain says Mercer

MERCER Johnny“BRITAIN must step up its military assault on IS so drowned toddler Aylan Kurdi did not die in vain, an MP says today. Former Afghan war hero Johnny Mercer asks David Cameron for “a gear change in aggression towards the cowards”. The Tory insists IS can be destroyed by a Special Forces’ campaign, and urges Brits to “remember how they felt” at seeing the tragic photos of Syrian lad Aylan, three.” – The Sun (£)

>Today: Johnny Mercer MP on Comment: First, let refugees in, then let’s take the fight to ISIS in Syria

Refugee Crisis 6): Did Samantha Cameron’s refugee camp visit influence her husband?

“Samantha Cameron influenced her husband’s decision to accept more Syrian refugees, it was claimed last night. The Prime Minister’s wife is thought to have helped persuade him to change his mind after having visited a camp in Lebanon two years ago…After Mr Cameron yesterday announced Britain would welcome ‘thousands more’ refugees, it was suggested Mrs Cameron’s experience had played a part in his decision. Tim Montgomerie, founder of the Conservative Home blog, wrote on Twitter: ‘Am told that Samantha Cameron was huge influence on shift in the Government’s refugee policy.” – Daily Mail

Preparing for Corbyn 1): 500 Labour councillors could lose their seats

Jeremy Corbyn 09-08-15“More than 500 Labour councillors risk losing their seats in next year’s local elections if Jeremy Corbyn becomes party leader, Andy Burnham’s camp has claimed. It made the forecast on the basis that a Corbyn victory in the leadership election would not lead to any rise in Labour’s poll standing. In May 2012, when council seats to be fought in 2016 were last up for election, Labour won 1,188 of the 2,260 seats elected in England. This was a gain of 534 from when those seats were last fought in 2008.” – The Guardian

  • Labour has become a Trojan Horse for the naive and the reckless – Leader Daily Telegraph
  • Posh past of the sexpot Trot – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: LeftWatch: Corbyn may not win – is anyone prepared for that possibility?

Preparing for Corbyn 2): McDonnell for Shadow Chancellor

“Jeremy Corbyn is being advised to give shadow cabinet economic posts to his closest allies in a move that could lead to one of Labour’s most rebellious MPs becoming shadow chancellor…They believe it means that he would have to appoint his closest allies to the key posts of shadow chancellor, shadow business secretary and shadow work and pensions secretary. It is understood that John McDonnell, the left-wing Labour MP who has become a hugely important figure in Mr Corbyn’s leadership campaign, is being strongly linked with the role of shadow chancellor.” – The Times(£)

Preparing for Corbyn 3):Tristram warns against defections

tristramhunt“Tristram Hunt, the shadow education secretary and leading Labour moderniser, has rejected talk of a split in the Labour party, or legal challenges to the outcome, if Jeremy Corbyn is elected leader – warning that anyone who plans to quit will only be playing into the hands of the Conservatives. In a speech to the Progress conference in Birmingham, he warned the modernisers were in danger of becoming a spent force in the party, and must do more to rebuild their strength.” – The Guardian

Preparing for Corbyn 4): Hutton joins the attack

“A FORMER Labour Defence Secretary has blasted Jeremy Corbyn for claiming Britain should never use its military. John Hutton said the Labour leadership frontrunner’s comments in a live TV hustings debate were “completely irresponsible”. It came after firebrand Corbyn told rival Liz Kendall he could not think of “any circumstances” where Britain should deploy its forces. His remarks seemingly show his hand on a potential Parliamentary vote on plans to launch air-strikes on IS extremists in Syria. Lord Hutton said: “This is the old far-left reasserting itself and I think those views are completely at odds with the modern world and where Britain needs to be.” – The Sun(£)

Preparing for Corbyn 5): Cooper offers alternative for Clause 4

Yvette Cooper 13-08-15“Yvette Cooper has sought to energised her determined late run for the Labour leadership by announcing she wants to rework the famous clause IV of Labour’s constitution so that it includes a new explicit commitment to champion equality. The shadow home secretary said that the current clause IV– rewritten two decades ago by Tony Blair in a symbolic ideological break with Labour’s previous commitment to public ownership – was striking in that it calls only for equality of opportunity.” – The Guardian

Preparing for Corbyn 6): Jeremy told protestors “f*** the rich”

“Runaway Labour leadership favourite Jeremy Corbyn has downplayed claims his hard-left politics will scare off middle class voters – claiming wealthy families were ‘happy’ to pay more tax. However, the 66-year-old hardliner has not always been so measured. In November 1997, just months after Tony Blair won a landslide general election victory, Mr Corbyn addressed a rally of student protesters where he attacked inequality before adding: ‘F*** the rich.’ ” – Daily Mail

UKIP launch campaign for No vote in EU referendum

UKIP logo“UKIP’s campaign for Britain to leave the EU will “get outside the confines of Westminster” and “reach real people”, its leader has said. Nigel Farage said 300 public meetings had already been planned in “village halls, working men’s clubs and arenas”. Speaking at the launch of UKIP’s referendum campaign, he said he would welcome a Jeremy Corbyn victory in the Labour leadership contest. He said the political left was “waking up to what the EU is”. The in/out referendum on the UK’s EU membership will take place by 2017.” – BBC

Farmers concerned SNP will force land sales

“Landowners and farmers are being left in the dark over the circumstances in which “incredibly vague” proposed laws would force them to sell their properties to local communities, MSPs will be warned next week. Jill Robbie, a lecturer in private law at Glasgow University, will join farmers and sporting estates in lambasting the lack of clarity in the Land Reform (Scotland) Bill, arguing that it is so vague that it undermines a centuries-old principle of property ownership. The legislation would allow SNP ministers to force the sale of land if the owner was deemed a barrier to “sustainable development” and failure to push through the transaction would be “like to result in significant harm to that community”.” – Daily Telegraph

Queen to give a rare speech as she obvertakes Victoria as longest serving monarch

Queen's Speech“The Queen is expected to make a rare public speech thanking her British and Commonwealth subjects for 63 years of support when she becomes our longest-reigning monarch on Wednesday. Her Majesty, who had originally wanted to spend the landmark day in private, has already bowed to the clamour for a public appearance by agreeing to interrupt her holiday at Balmoral and open a railway in the Borders.” – Daily Telegraph

  • A cause for us all to celebrate – Andrew Roberts The Times(£)

Cable says Osborne will be the next PM…

“Vince Cable, the former business secretary, will single out George Osborne as “extremely shrewd politically, very cynical” and ready to let his Treasury advisers intimidate government departments such as the Department of Work and Pensions. In an interview with the Guardian to mark the upcoming release of his book After the Storm, Cable says the chancellor is “engaging, a good listener, and highly intelligent” before adding: “But he focused on political strategy and didn’t really engage with economic stuff – he took that from the Treasury. The economy turned out all right, but I don’t think that was because of him.” Cable describes David Cameron as pretty hands-off and predicts Osborne will become the next prime minister.” – The Guardian

…and that the Lib Dems weren’t ruthless enough

CABLE Dr Evil“This ability to operate on different levels is part of the modus operandi of the House of Commons. But the Tories appeared to have an exceptional ability to compartmentalise, to commit political murder with a charming smile. I worried that, in its rapid ascent from the Championship to the Premier League, my party hadn’t acquired this ruthlessness, and has now paid the price.” – Vince Cable, extract from After the Storm, The Guardian

Expat benefit fraud falls by a third

“BENEFIT cheats living abroad swindled £67million out of taxpayers last year, figures reveal. However, ministers said crackdowns have seen “abroad fraud” fall a third from £101million in 2012. A series of scams by expats included claiming cash for a dead relative. The Department for Work and Pensions investigated 7,296 Brits at 157 locations last year. Most were in Spain. Officials said anti-fraud units operating in Madrid and Alicante have handled 1,100 tip-offs and secured 136 prosecutions since 2008.” – The Sun(£)

News in brief

  • Care of dying patients “inconsistent” – BBC
  • Cancer drug funding cut – The Times(£)
  • Clegg’s free school meals programme “to be scrapped” – Daily Mail