Cameron promises to unveil EU demands within weeks

CAMERON EU fence“David Cameron will finally reveal his long-awaited European Union renegotiation demands at the start of next month. The Prime Minister this afternoon said he would accelerate the discussions as he bowed to pressure to set out a timetable for laying out his proposed reforms. As he arrived for a summit in Brussels, Mr Cameron said he would present a list of the demands he is seeking within weeks.” – Daily Mail


>Yesterday: Daniel Hannan MEP’s column: Cameron lowers renegotiation expectations in the hope of selling paltry change as a triumph

Osborne accused of hiding impact of tax credit reform

“George Osborne has been accused of hiding the impact of tax credit changes amid a huge effort behind the scenes to dampen Tory jitters on the issue. The chancellor was criticised by a Conservative-led committee in the House of Lords, which said that the Treasury’s first impact assessment on the measures was “difficult to understand, even for those used to economic analysis”.” – The Times (£)

Ministers 1) Morgan opens door to wave of satellite grammar schools

School“Dozens of new ‘satellite’ grammars are set to open after the Government gave the green light to the first new selective state school in 50 years. Education Secretary Nicky Morgan has approved the creation of a 450-pupil school in Sevenoaks, Kent – an extension of an existing grammar seven miles away. Politicians yesterday said the move would set a precedent and ‘open the floodgates’ for more applications, with one already in the pipeline.” – Daily Mail


Philip Collins: Time to drop this grammar school obsession

“Even without laurels, there were never enough people like me at grammar schools who crossed every day from the poorer to the wealthier part of town. In the end the Tory fetish about grammar schools does little for too few children.” – The Times (£)

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Why should a decision about a Sevenoaks school be made at a Whitehall desk?

Ministers 2) Rudd believes that conclusion of nuclear deal is imminent

NUCLEAR-POWER“Britain’s energy secretary Amber Rudd has voiced hopes that a deal with France and China to build the first in a new generation of UK nuclear plants will be reached “very soon”, with negotiators working flat out to agree financing. Senior executives from French energy group EDF are trying to finalise terms for the £24bn Hinkley Point power station with their Chinese nuclear industry partners, just days before premier Xi Jinping makes a state visit to London.” – Financial Times

  • National security warning to ministers over Chinese nuclear deal – Daily Mail
  • Cameron calls high-level talks on energy crunch – Financial Times
  • Rudd keeps up pressure in price cut drive – Daily Telegraph
  • Ambassador warns Government that human rights lecture would offend China – Financial Times

Ministers 3) Gove prepared to review controversial ‘tax on guilt’

“A controversial tax on guilty defendants may be scrapped as part of Michael Gove’s criminal justice reforms. The unpopular criminal courts’ charge is being reviewed after widespread concerns among magistrates. At least 50 have resigned. The charge was introduced by Chris Grayling, Mr Gove’s predecessor as justice secretary, and has led to some magistrates imposing lesser sentences so as not to hit defendants with an additional charge they cannot pay.” – The Times (£)

  • Ministry of Justice scraps plans to outsource collection of court fees – The Independent

Yentob and Batmanghelidjh roasted by Jenkin’s committee

Charity“Alan Yentob the senior BBC executive who presided over the collapse of Kids Company was last night accused of resorting to “alarmist rhetoric” over a series of stabbings and the death of a teenage boy to justify the record of the charity… One senior MP disclosed that the committee had been told privately that a series of incidents were thought likely to have happened because the cash hand-outs from Kids Company had dried up – to the anger of local drug dealers.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Leaders of fallen charity clash with MPs – Financial Times
  • Kids Company used £50,000 of donor cash to pay school fees for employees – Daily Mail


  • Yentob’s day of embarrassment – Michael Deacon, Daily Telegraph
  • He looked like a pudding waiter sitting next to a fruit salad – Quentin Letts, Daily Mail

Bercow says MPs should not have time off for party conferences

“MPs should not be allowed a three week break while they attend their “voluntary” party conferences, John Bercow has said. The speaker of the House of Commons said the party conference season was “incongruous” and the public expected politicians to be in their “main place of work”.” – Daily Telegraph

Health service managers criticise trades union reform

NHS_Logo“Health service managers have warned that the government’s trades union bill will jeopardise relationships with workers and potentially harm patient care. The bill, which raises the legal threshold for strike ballots, changes the rules on picketing and industrial action, and stops the automatic deduction of union dues from public sector members’ pay, is in the committee stage in the House of Commons this week.” – Financial Times

  • Restrictions on recruiting overseas nurses temporarily lifted – The Independent

Fabricant accuses Labour leader of crowding out MPs at PMQs with long questions

“Jeremy Corbyn is wasting time meant for MPs by reading out questions from the public at Prime Minister’s Questions, a Conservative MP has said. Michael Fabricant said the Labour leader was adding “nothing” to the debate with his new technique but was “wittering on at length”.” – The Independent

Labour rebels ‘bullied’ by Corbyn allies

LABOUR dead rose“Labour has been accused of bullying its own MPs after the party named and shamed rebels who refused to oppose the government’s austerity measures. Email inboxes of the 21 MPs who did not fall into line with John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, were deluged with complaints and abuse from hard-left activists yesterday.” – The Times (£)

  • Opposition MPs slam leadership for ‘embarrassing’ u-turn on charter – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: McDonnell describes his u-turn

Corbyn faces damaging split as Scots Nats call Trident vote

“Jeremy Corbyn faces another damaging split in his party after the SNP revealed they will call a vote in the House of Commons on whether to renew Trident. Angus Robertson, the SNP’s Westminster leader, used a speech at party conference to challenge Mr Corbyn to stick to his “career-long opposition” of Britain’s nuclear deterrent.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Shadow minister claims leader is ‘incompetent’ and has ‘lost control’ – Daily Telegraph


  • Why I went full throttle in shadow minister’s car crash interview – Cathy Newman, Daily Telegraph

Sturgeon tells SNP snap referendum would disrespect the public

SNP logo white background“Nicola Sturgeon today sought to play down the prospect of a second independence referendum as she comes under pressure over rising unemployment and a stalling recovery in Scotland. The First Minister opened the SNP conference in Aberdeen with a claim that jobs, education and health ‘matter just as much’ to her as breaking up the Union. But after a surprise rise in the number of people out of work, while the tally fell across the rest of the UK, Ms Sturgeon faces claims she is focusing too much on independence, instead of governing Scotland.” – Daily Mail

  • No referendum until ‘strong evidence’ of a change in attitude – The Independent
  • Pause in march to separation comes as no surprise – The Guardian
  • Nationalist leadership accused of ‘happy, clappy’ smothering of debate – Daily Telegraph
  • Sturgeon warns second poll ‘unstoppable’ in event of Brexit – Daily Telegraph
  • First Minister pledges to build 50,000 affordable homes – The Independent
  • Heathrow courts SNP over third runway – Financial Times
  • Black stars in political broadcast contrasting Holyrood with Westminster – The Independent


  • Scottish independence is not yet inevitable – Martin Kettle, The Guardian
  • Mixing with the Sassenach MPs – Patrick Kidd’s sketch, The Times (£)

>Yesterday: LeftWatch: Storm clouds gather over the SNP conference

News in Brief:

  • Campaigners warn that Leveson regulation is huge threat to press freedom – Daily Mail
  • Migrants drown after collision with Greek coastguard – The Times (£)
  • Turkey agrees €3bn plan with EU to ease migrant crisis – Daily Telegraph
  • Hospitals defy Government to hike parking fees – The Sun (£)
  • Sun journalists acquitted of ‘corrupt payments’ – Financial Times
  • Director of Public Prosecutions face calls to resign – The Independent
  • British special forces to return to Helmand – Daily Mail