Referendum 1) Gove: Vote Leave to restore democracy across Europe

michael-gove‘Michael Gove has insisted the EU could crumble like the Soviet Union if Britain chooses to leave – urging voters to ‘liberate’ the continent. The Justice Secretary said the UK had a chance to restore ‘democracy’ and control immigration in the referendum on June 23, dismissing fears that the country would be punished economically for abandoning the union. The emotional appeal came in a speech as Tory infighting on the issue grew increasingly bitter.’ – Daily Mail

  • The Justice Secretary argues trade will thrive after Brexit – FT
  • Speculation grows that he will become Deputy Prime Minister – FT
  • Juncker accepts the EU is “losing economic clout” – Daily Mail
  • Craig Oliver is set to take over the pro-EU campaign’s messaging – FT
  • Eurosceptics accused of trying to aggravate the Chancellor – FT
  • Expats fight court case to try to secure a vote on the EU – Daily Telegraph





Referendum 2) Lord Green: The public won’t put up with endless immigration

‘The Government’s report on Brexit is amazing. It calmly assumes that immigration will be nearly twice its target of 100,000 a year and will continue for the next 15 years. At the end of that period our population will have increased by six million — six times Birmingham or 12 times Liverpool…To be frank, the public are reaching the limits of their patience with successive governments that seem unable to get a grip of immigration. It quadrupled under Labour, then continued to increase under the coalition and even under the present Conservative Government.’ – Lord Green, The Sun (£)

Referendum 3) Government backs down on union reforms to keep members sweet on the EU

ConHome EU shirt Cameron‘Ministers have scrapped plans to abolish the automatic payment of union subscriptions through payrolls as part of a series of compromises over the trade union bill. The concessions in the House of Lords came after unions warned David Cameron that they were unable to throw their full weight behind the campaign to remain in the EU because they were too busy fighting the “draconian” legislation.’ – FT

  • 200 entrepreneurs come out for pro-EU campaign – The Sun (£)
  • Eagle attacks Leavers’ ‘utopian rubbish’ – The Guardian
  • Who knows what might happen if we Vote Leave? – Martin Wolf, FT


Millions in British aid lost, stolen or channeled to terrorists

‘Millions of pounds of British aid spending cannot be accounted for, MPs revealed yesterday. Officials are unsure how much cash has reached the poor instead of going on overheads. And they do not even know which groups they are funding in wartorn states such as Syria and Somalia. The shocking findings mean taxpayers’ money is at risk of being stolen or diverted to terrorism.’ – Daily Mail

Hammond: No vote on sending 1,000 troops to Libya for ‘training exercise’

Army‘MPs will not get a vote on whether British troops are sent to Libya in the battle against ISIS, the Foreign Secretary has said. Labour has demanded a gurantee that MPs will be granted a veto on the expected deployment of 1,000 British troops to the war-torn state. But yesterday on a trip to Tripoli Philip Hammond insisted there would be no Commons vote as any deployment would be a training exercise rather than a combat mission.’ – The Sun (£)

  • It would be a disaster – Peter Oborne, Daily Mail
  • Decisive action is needed to stop the flow of migrants across the Med – The Times Leader (£)
  • Jihadi suspect arrested in Majorca – Daily Mail
  • Prison inmates allowed to fundraise for charity facing extremism allegations – The Times (£)
  • Get rid of extremist prison chaplains – The Sun Says (£)
  • Turkish border guards shoot dead Syrian children – The Times (£)

>Today: Local Government: Sadiq Khan is still dodging questions on his extremist links

Truss is out to end the US ban on British beef

‘British beef and lamb is set to be sold to the United States for the first time in two decades under moves to end a ban imposed after the outbreak of BSE in the late 1990s. Exporting red meat across the Atlantic could eventually be worth £60 million a year to farmers who have paid the price for global health fears. Liz Truss, the environment secretary, is in Washington to push the Obama administration to agree to tests this summer to prove that British meat is safe to eat.’ – The Times (£)

MPs demand ministers identify failing universities

BARRIE CHARACTER EDUCATION‘A leaked memo said the “quality and teaching” at some unis is not up to scratch. Part of the document was photographed late on Monday being carried by an official as he left No10 and walked to the Cabinet Office. It questioned whether students were getting good value for the £9,000-a-year they pay in tuition fees. MPs demanded the Government play fair and named sub-standard unis.’ – The Sun (£)

Rudd plays down concerns about losing Hinkley Point

‘The proposed £18 billion nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in Somerset could be abandoned without risking power cuts, contrary to the government’s previous claims, the energy secretary has admitted. There would be no significant cost to consumers and no taxpayer liability if the project were cancelled, Amber Rudd said in a letter to MPs. The letter suggests that the real reason the government is pressing ahead with Hinkley is to meet the UK’s climate change targets. An expert said Ms Rudd “had let the cat out of the bag”.’ – The Times (£)

General Medical Council warns doctors against all-out strike

NHS_Logo‘An all-out doctors’ strike cannot be justified in struggling hospitals, the General Medical Council has said, as it urges medics to think twice before downing tools. Thousands of junior doctors are due to withdraw all labour on Tuesday 26 April and Wednesday 27 April, in the first ever full walkout by medics in the history of the NHS. The strikes will see junior doctors walk out of Accident & Emergency departments, intensive care and maternity units. New guidance issued by the watchdog describes a “worrying” situation and urges doctors to “pause and consider again the possible implications for patients.”’ – Daily Telegraph

Top Corbyn adviser boasts to Momentum about Labour benefiting from Port Talbot

‘Jeremy Corbyn’s top policy adviser has been caught bragging to hard-left comrades that the threat of thousands of steel job losses was good for Labour. Speaking to the militant Momentum group last week, red aide Andrew Fisher admitted he was “quite cynical” as he boasted that the Tata crisis had “played very well for us”. Last night angry government MPs rounded on the comments, accusing Labour of “petty political point-scoring”.’ – The Sun (£)

  • Tata director set to launch management buyout of Port Talbot – The Times (£)
  • McDonnell urges protests to ‘bring down’ the Government – Daily Mail
  • I’ll die soon, Castro tells comrades – Daily Mail
  • Obama didn’t offer to meet Corbyn – The Sun (£)

Sturgeon plans to squeeze the middle classes

Tax Take‘Nicola Sturgeon will today base her pitch for re-election as first minister squarely on her ability to revive the Scottish health service by taxing middle-earning Scots more than those south of the border. The SNP leader will promise not just to deliver an above-inflation budget increase for the NHS for every year of the next parliament but to inject another £500 million over and above that level as well. She will announce that the money will be found by not passing on the income tax cut for those earning more than £43,000 announced by George Osborne.’ – The Times (£)

Thurso elected to Lords with 100 per cent of the vote

‘Viscount Thurso hit a Saddamite level of support in yesterday’s hereditary peers by-election, winning 100 per cent of the vote. Admittedly, there were only three electors — 11,984 fewer than the number who voted for Thurso, an MP since 2001, when he was kicked out of the Commons last May. It was, of course, limited to Lib Dem hereditary peers and means that he has a greater mandate than more than 700 other members of the House of Lords. Thurso was the only one of the seven candidates not to submit a manifesto.’ – The Times (£)

New York votes for Trump

TRUMP hair‘Donald Trump won a landslide victory in his home state of New York on Tuesday, giving the property mogul his first win in a month and providing a boost in his quest to win enough delegates to avoid a contested Republican convention in July. The frontrunner for the Republican nomination had won at least 89 of the 95 delegates at stake in the Empire State. With 98 per cent of the ballots counted, Mr Trump had secured 60.5 per cent of the vote.’ – FT

  • Clinton wins, too – FT

News in Brief

  • Hancock to save vellum – Daily Telegraph
  • £14 million to run a company is ridiculous – Daniel Finkelstein, The Times (£)
  • Prince George poses for his first postage stamp – Daily Mail
  • Whittingdale visited lap dancing club as part of inquiry into lap dancing clubs – The Guardian
  • Dementia rate falls among men – The Times (£)
  • Former UKIP agent convicted of electoral fraud – The Sun (£)
  • Brighton and Hove Council asks four-year-olds to choose what gender they identify as – Daily Mail
  • British hiker found dead in Peru – The Guardian
  • Boris unveils 3D printed Palmyrene arch in Trafalgar Square – The Times (£)
  • The Cameron’s celebrate Samantha’s birthday – The Sun (£)