Pressure mounts on Corbyn but his allies are fighting back

timescorbyn“Senior Labour figures and MPs have sought legal advice on how to unseat Jeremy Corbyn in the hope of building support for a plot against him. After the worst fortnight for Labour under the hard-left leader, rebels, including some of the party’s most prominent MPs, have been told by lawyers that in the event of a leadership challenge Mr Corbyn could be removed and denied a place on the ballot paper by MPs.” – The Times(£)

  • More than 100 Labour MPs plan to defy their leader over Syria air strikes – Daily Telegraph
  • How top team turned on Leader – Daily Mail
  • Corbyn’s red in the water – The Sun
  • Labour’s Oldham by-election nerves – BBC
  • Bickley claim UKIP are a real threat to Labour – Independent
  • Watson backs air strikes – Independent
  • Grassroots army plots online attack against Labour right – The Times(£)
  • Andrew Fisher’s suspension lifted – BBC
  • Firebrigade Union reaffiliates to Labour – Morning Star
  • Mao “did more good than harm” says Abbott – Daily Mail
  • Livingstone’s 7/7 remarks spark fury – The Times(£)
  • Fishermen should be called “fishers” to be gender neutral says Shadow Environment Secretary – Daily Telegraph


  • Corbyn is right – Matthew Parris The Times(£)
  • A battle for the Party’s soul – Patrick Wintour – The Guardian
  • A party being destroyed by its members – Michael Deacon Daily Telegraph
  • Chairman Corbyn’s Maoist Britain – Dominic Sandbrook Daily Mail
  • Now is the time to act on climate change – Jeremy Corbyn Independent
  • Zealots never surrender – Leader Daily Telegraph
  • Labour MPs have only one option – a mutiny – John McTernan Daily Telegraph

>Yesterday: LeftWatch: So Corbyn’s not up to the job. Why are we surprised?

McDonnell calls for a free vote on Syria

“MPs should be able to follow their “own judgement” on possible air strikes over Syria, the shadow chancellor has said. About a possible Commons vote to decide the issue, John McDonnell said: “There are some issues like going to war that should be above party politics.” Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is opposed to air strikes in Syria against Islamic State (IS) militants – putting him at odds with much of his shadow cabinet.” – BBC

  • UK should back air strikes says Hollande – BBC
  • Poll backs bombing  by 48 per cent to 30 per cent – Daily Mirror

Hammond says intervening in Syria is a matter of self defence

HAMMOND Philip Marr“With seven plots recently thwarted in the UK, joining airstrikes in Syria is, the foreign secretary insists, a question of self-defence not liberal interventionism. “We are right on the front line. I do not believe for a minute that we protect ourselves by trying to go quiet. We can’t hide from these people — we have to take them on. They are determined to get us. The British people are at risk from Isis at home and abroad and the only way we diminish that risk is to diminish the organisation that’s threatening us.” – Interview with Philip Hammond in The Times(£)

  • Cameron hasn’t yet made the case for war – Leader Daily Mail

Forsyth: EU referendum could scupper Osborne’s leadership hopes

“The EU referendum is now the biggest threat to George Osborne’s chances of becoming Prime Minister. He not only needs the “in” campaign to win, but to win well. A narrow and divisive victory would be disastrous for his leadership chances. This week was a reminder of Osborne’s political deftness. He, as this paper has been urging him to do, U-turned on the tax credit changes. He wrong-footed Labour by finding a way to protect the police budget. All this was designed to bolster his effort to portray the Tories as the party for working people that you can trust with your security. But the focus now shifts to Europe, the question that divides the Tories more than any other.” – James Forsyth The Sun

Moore: The smug Tory front bench makes me want to vote Labour

MOORE Charles blue background“The headlines announced the end of austerity. The photographs displayed those smug Tory front-bench grins which make even me want to vote Labour. Speaking as a journalist, I don’t object: my trade enjoys endless stories of who outwits whom, “Wasn’t George clever to shoot Theresa’s fox by not cutting police spending!”, etc. But speaking as a taxpayer and citizen, I feel definitely grumpy that the management of our economy is treated like a street magic show (“Take a card – any card!”) in which we applaud the cleverness of the fellow with the top hat and white gloves.” – Charles Moore Daily Telegraph

Call for Feldman and Shapps to resign over Mark Clarke scandal

guardianclake“Grant Shapps and Lord Feldman should resign over revelations the Conservative party failed to act on complaints about an election aide at the heart of a bullying scandal, says the father of a young activist believed to have killed himself. Ray Johnson – the father of 21-year-old political blogger Elliott, who accused the youth organiser Mark Clarke of bullying him before he was found dead in September – said his son would still be alive if the Conservative party and its chairmen had acted responsibly.” – The Guardian

  • Cameron wrote Clarke a thank you letter – The Sun
  • How ego trip led Tories into crisis – The Times(£)
  • A portrait of the cad tearing his Party apart – Daily Mail
  • Warsi had complained about Clarke – Independent


Councils and churches included in child abuse investigation

“The Anglican and Catholic churches and both former and current MPs are to be investigated by the inquiry into child sexual abuse, its chair has said. Justice Lowell Goddard said councils in Lambeth, Nottinghamshire and Rochdale councils will also be examined as part of 12 separate investigations in England and Wales. The scale of the inquiry was “unprecedented” in the UK, but she was determined it would succeed, she added.” – BBC

Thatcher’s legacy ended in tears says Vernon Bogdanor

thatchertank“George Osborne wants to reduce the share of GDP taken by the state far below what it was when Margaret Thatcher left office. But, as the first chancellor to represent a northern constituency since Denis Healey in the 1970s, he also seeks to reshape the state and regenerate urban England through his northern powerhouse proposals. Yet this involves not building on Thatcherism, notoriously hostile both to devolution and to localism, but repudiating it. Thatcherism may have been a salutary philosophy for the 1980s. But it left as many questions as answers. When politicians finally succeed in finding the answers, they may come to discover that the ism has become a wasm.” – Vernon Bogdanor The Times(£)

News in brief

  • A&E waiting times getting worse – BBC
  • Support for striking doctors shrinks – The Times(£)
  • Queen opens Commonswealth meeting in Malta – BBC
  • Supply of new homes plummets – Daily Telegraph
  • Greg Clark to decide on Lancashire fracking appeal – BBC
  • Help to Buy Isas launched – BBC