Referendum 1) Cameron attacks Boris and Gove – while saying he doesn’t want ‘blue-on-blue conflict’

ConHome EU shirt Cameron‘The PM said BoJo had “told a lot of people he’d never been a leaver” before opting for Out. He also used an LBC radio interview to say Boris was “wrong” to compare the European Union to Hitler. He was “sad and disappointed” that BoJo and Michael Gove had opted for Brexit. But in a thinly-veiled swipe at the pair he said: “I’ve got no other agenda than saying what I think is right for our country. I’ll let Boris explain his thinking and Michael ditto.” It came as Mr Cameron said he was ducking TV debates because “I don’t want too many blue-on-blue conflicts”. Earlier Tory MP Steve Baker called for a clean fight in the referendum. Mr Baker accused No10 of orchestrating Lord Heseltine’s attack on Boris this week and being behind “smears” against other key figures.’ – The Sun (£)

>Today: Iain Dale’s Friday Diary: My interview with the Prime Minister

>Yesterday: Steve Baker on Comment: Remain campaigners – including Downing Street – must stop these nasty personal attacks

Referendum 2) The EU says we need more houses, after 2.1m migrants arrive in the UK

‘Britain has been ordered by Brussels to build more houses – to cope with all the EU immigrants. The European Commission warned the UK is heading for an ‘acute’ housing crisis caused by massive population growth. It admitted that first-time buyers were being hit particularly hard and the situation could worsen, with official projections saying the UK needs at least 220,000 new houses a year…The housing revelations follow the news that there are now 2.1million EU workers in the UK. Some 800,000 citizens arrived last year, many more than previously thought.’ – Daily Mail

  • Brussels helps to make the Leave case – Daily Mail Leader
  • First-time buyers would benefit from Brexit, says Moody’s – The Guardian
  • Shadow Europe Minister calls voter ‘horrible racist’ for having concerns about immigration – Daily Mail
  • Labour’s lazy europhilia – Tom Harris, Daily Telegraph
  • Voters don’t believe Cameron’s doom-mongering, but Remain is 11 points ahead – Daily Mail
  • The EU doesn’t want to talk about Greek debt – Ed Conway, The Times (£)

Referendum 3) Brexiteers force the Government to amend the Queen’s Speech over TTIP

Queen‘David Cameron was yesterday forced to agree to amend the Queen’s Speech, after Tory Brexit rebels joined with Labour over the exclusion of the NHS from the terms of a controversial EU-US trade deal. Downing Street agreed to sign up to an amendment that expresses “regret” at the lack of a government bill to shield the health service from the transatlantic trade and investment partnership (TTIP). The move is an embarrassment for the prime minister, who was forced to agree to the change after more than 25 Conservative MPs, including Iain Duncan Smith and Liam Fox, joined forces with Labour.’ – The Times (£)


Referendum 4) Hilton: Both campaigns are treating people like simpletons

‘The professionalisation of politics — yes, the professionalisation of which I was part — has left too many people feeling as if politics is a game played by an insular ruling elite of politicians, advisors, pollsters, donors, journalists and assorted hangers-on. This is a ‘game’ from which most people are excluded, even though it is their lives that are affected most deeply by it. Meanwhile, the players of the game are often insulated from the real consequences of their actions. Right now you see this played out in the EU referendum campaigns, with their outlandish claims of dire outcomes, whether it’s invoking world war if we leave, or Hitler if we stay. Both campaigns, frankly, are treating people like simpletons.’ – Steve Hilton, Medium

  • Brexit campaigners are banking on anger – Philip Stephens, FT
  • Remain would be mistaken to rely on the student vote – FT
  • And expats aren’t registering either – FT
  • Leave targets Asian voters – FT
  • Luvvies rally to Remain – Daily Telegraph
  • EU plans attack on Netflix and Amazon – Daily Mail

Sterling rallies on the back of retail and jobs figures

pound-coin‘The pound soared against the euro yesterday courtesy of record jobs figures and higher retail spending. Sterling has rallied to a three-and-a-half-month high against the euro. It was trading above 1.305 euro yesterday, the currency’s best level since early February. The pound strengthened on the back of figures showing sales in shops were 4.3 per cent higher last month than a year earlier.’ – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: Local Government: The home ownership rate has stabilised – will it now rise?

Ministers face rebellion against crackdown on term-time holidays

‘Yesterday, Nick Gibb told MPs a trip to Disney World should not ‘trump the importance of school’ and the government would do ‘everything in its power’ to stop parents flouting the rules. He said councils and schools should instead work to shift around their term time dates so that parents can still take children on holiday at off-peak times. But Steve Double, the Tory MP for St Austell and Newquay, who requested an urgent question on the matter, said the policy was damaging the economy of tourist areas, where parents risked ‘losing their job or having hours cut’.’ – Daily Mail

Davidson fills Holyrood shadow cabinet with new MSPs

Ruth Davidson‘Ruth Davidson has brought a series of her new Conservative MSPs straight into her Shadow Cabinet and argued that Holyrood would benefit from their experience outside politics. Only three of the nine members with policy portfolios are experienced politicians, with the remainder having a wide variety of backgrounds including business, farming, academia, the diplomatic service and even a football referee. However, the Scottish Tory leader said they would provide the strong opposition to the SNP she promised during the Holyrood election campaign, after the Conservatives overtook Labour to become the parliament’s second largest party.’ – Daily Telegraph

Fox urges Cameron to save HMS Illustrious

‘Furious Tories are demanding David Cameron bin “appalling” plans to scrap HMS Illustrious – and preserve it as a Falklands memorial. The PM is being urged to over-rule MoD chiefs and use the legendary carrier as the centrepiece of a permanent exhibit with HMS Conqueror – the ‘Gotcha!’ sub that sunk the Belgrano…Ex-Tory Defence Secretary Liam Fox stormed: “Illustrious is a pivotal part of our naval heritage and deserves to be kept as a monument to our maritime tradition. There is no justification for our history to be scrapped in this way.”’ – The Sun (£)

  • Sneak peek at new aircraft carriers – FT
  • Soldiers complain new body armour isn’t up to scratch – Daily Mail

Now junior doctors threaten revolt against the BMA over contract deal

NHS_Logo‘Junior doctors are in mutiny against their union for climbing down to the Government over a controversial new contract. They have accused the British Medical Association of ‘making us look like fools’ for staging a series of high profile strikes – apparently all in vain…in order for the deal to be introduced, it must now be voted on by 55,000 junior doctors in a referendum next month. Senior officials at the BMA are worried that the majority will say ‘no’.’ – Daily Mail

>Today: ToryDiary: Peter Lilley, champion of the NHS

Whitehall efficiency drive delivered a net cost £4 million

‘An efficiency drive in Whitehall that was designed to make savings by merging back office services has actually cost £4 million, the spending watchdog will reveal today. A critical report from the National Audit Office says that the scheme, which involved two private contractors, has failed to make any net savings after being beset by delays and design faults. The Cabinet Office expected the policy to save £128 million a year. Instead the project, which was set up in 2013, has cost £94 million to introduce but saved only £90 million — a net cost of £4 million. “[It] has not achieved value for money to date,” the auditors say.’ – The Times (£)

Heath: Plain tobacco packaging is a bad, infantilising policy

Smoke‘The problem with treating adults like children is that they eventually start behaving immaturely. Yet unless we all act like adults, accepting individual responsibility for our actions and the principle of caveat emptor – let the buyer beware – in our choices, a free and prosperous society becomes impossible. Instead, we end up with a decaying and stagnant bureaucracy, governed by an unaccountable technocracy. It’s not good news. The policy won’t even work on its own terms: in other words, it alone won’t reduce smoking by more than the habit would have declined anyway.’ – Allister Heath, Daily Telegraph

Injunction judges accused of creating a privacy law

‘Senior judges have been accused of creating “a full-on privacy law” after a celebrity battling to keep his name secret over a sexual threesome won the right to anonymity. Media experts predicted that the ruling would prompt a rush to the courts by celebrities seeking privacy injunctions and put an end to “kiss and tell” stories that have been the stock-in-trade for tabloid newspapers for decades. The ruling by a majority in the Supreme Court means the personality, known only as PJS, will remain anonymous until a full trial takes place over whether the ban should be permanent.’ – The Times (£)

Labour MPs plan exodus, as mayoralties offer an escape from Corbyn

LABOUR holes‘Leading Labour figures in Westminster are planning their exit from the Commons, tempted by opportunities to gain power outside parliament, such as alongside the new London mayor, or to earn better money in the private sector. The imminent departure of some MPs and aides comes amid widespread concerns in the party about Jeremy Corbyn’s ability to win the general election in 2020. Labour is viewed as less prepared to form a government than it was during Ed Miliband’s first year as leader, with 22 per cent of the public thinking that Mr Corbyn is ready to be prime minister, an Ipsos Mori poll for the London Evening Standard showed yesterday. Several present and former frontbench MPs are eyeing up influential mayoral positions, which will be contested for the first time next May.’ – The Times (£)

  • I’m northern, reveals Andy Burnham – The Guardian
  • Khan repeats his invitation to Trump – Huffington Post
  • What Cameron said to the Labour leader before the Queen’s Speech – The Sun (£)
  • Balls to tell all about Miliband’s fall – The Sun (£)
  • Livingstone offers to buy a meal for anyone who can prove he was wrong about Hitler – The Sun (£)
  • Left-wingers baffled after Corbyn is replaced by cardboard box at lecture – The Mirror

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: The impact of the new city and regional mayors could be huge – but hardly anyone has noticed

News in Brief

  • One Briton among 66 missing on EgyptAir flight – Daily Mail
  • Concerns about radicalisation of airport staff – The Times (£)
  • Canada’s Trudeau shows his nasty side – The Sun (£)
  • Gold club rejects women members – FT
  • Antique dealers forced to smash valuable items to remove ivory – The Times (£)
  • Parliamentary expenses rise 40 per cent – The Sun (£)
  • Trespasser arrested at Buckingham Palace – Daily Telegraph