Feldman under pressure as Shapps resigns

Lord Feldman“The Tory party chairman Lord Feldman, David Cameron’s closest political ally, was facing pressure to quit last night after Grant Shapps resigned as a minister over the death of a young Conservative activist. The family of Elliott Johnson, who committed suicide in September after being bullied by senior Conservatives, said Feldman, a friend of the prime minister since university days, had ‘failed the party’ by presiding over the so-called ‘Tatler Tory’ scandal. Shapps, who co-chaired the party with Feldman until May, resigned as an international development minister yesterday declaring that ‘the buck should stop with me’” – Sunday Times (£)

  • Blackmail plot over MP’s affair forces Shapps to resign – Mail on Sunday
  • Tory bullying scandal forces Shapps to quit – Observer
  • Feldman in the firing line – Mail on Sunday
  • Clarke the bully boy with a “First Mother” complex – Mail on Sunday



Montgomerie: scandal reveals over-centralised party

“When the Tory election machine turned to Mark Clarke’s Road Trip army to fill the gaps in its ability to reach voters in target seats they were desperate for activists to deliver leaflets – but they were only ever papering over the cracks. Once the inquiry into complaints of bullying is over…it needs to address the centralisation of power that is at the root of not just this problem but a wider malaise. Few people advance in today’s Tory Party if they not do what the leadership wants. The ministerial benches are top heavy with people who are George Osborne’s protégés” – Tim Montgomerie, CapX

  • If Tories won’t radically reduce the size of the state, what’s the point of them? – Janet Daley, Sunday Telegraph

Cameron to order killing of ISIS leaders

David Cameron 26-11-15“David Cameron will order RAF airstrikes to ‘decapitate’ the leadership of ISIS in Syria if MPs vote to support an extension of bombing this week. The prime minister has told commanders to use precision strikes to target the head of the terrorist group’s ‘international attacks’ unit, which masterminded the Paris massacre and is now targeting Britain” – Sunday Times (£)


Comment: Luke de Pulford: Moderate Muslims can’t and won’t defeat ISIS

Boulton: Two leaders stake their authority on Syria

“In mortal confrontation this weekend over UK bombing in Syria, David Cameron and Jeremy Corbyn have more in common than they might think, and not just because only one of them can emerge a winner from this political crisis. For both this is a definitive test of their authority over their own MPs: fail now and it is difficult to see how either of them will be able to ‘lead’ their parties” – Adam Boulton, Sunday Times (£)

Harris: Labour MPs must have the courage to defy Corbyn

CORBYN Jeremy“Let us hope, then, that enough Labour MPs have the courage to defy their leader and his virtual army and ensure that Britain plays its part in the UN coalition against Isis. Because if the vote goes the other way it won’t only be the Labour party that will have been revealed as supine, unreliable and irrelevant in the teeth of this crisis — it will be the entire country” – Robert Harris, Sunday Times (£)

Farage urges Tories to “lend” UKIP their vote in Oldham

“Nigel Farage will urge Conservative supporters to ‘lend’ him their votes in order to defeat Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour party at a key by-election this week. New polling suggests the UK Independence Party has dramatically cut Labour’s lead in the previously safe seat of Oldham West and Royton, which became vacant when the former minister Michael Meacher died last month” – Sunday Telegraph

Ministers to crack down on hate preachers at universities

JOHNSON Jo“Ministers will issue an ultimatum to universities tomorrow to crack down on hate preachers and other extremists or face legal sanctions. Jo Johnson, the universities minister, will issue a new framework requiring universities to reveal what measures they are taking to combat extremism following the massacre in Paris. University chiefs will be ordered to hand over a counter-radicalisation risk assessment, an action plan and policies for dealing with hate preachers by January 22” – Sunday Times (£)

One in five peers could be sacked

“One in five peers could be sacked to help control the size of the House of Lords, David Cameron’s official reviewer into reforming the second chamber will suggest next month. Lord Strathclyde, who was asked by the Prime Minister to look at the Lords after they blocked Tory tax credit cuts, is expected to give a ‘nod’ to the idea in his report” – Sunday Telegraph

Army poised to cover for striking NHS doctors

Army“Army medical staff are expected to be drafted into NHS hospitals as cover for striking junior doctors, according to a document uncovered by The Telegraph. The first of three strikes by junior doctors is due to begin on Tuesday Dec 1… In official guidance on industrial action issued by the British Medical Association (BMA), it said it expects medics from the Armed Forces will be used to help plug the gap on strike days” – Sunday Telegraph

News in brief