Chequers Brexit Cabinet 1) Is the Chancellor an obstacle to controlled immigration?

HAMMOND Philip white background“Senior Tories say Philip Hammond, the chancellor, is resisting plans by other ministers to pull out of the EU single market. A Whitehall turf war has broken out, with the Treasury muscling in on Brexit negotiations — to the irritation of David Davis and Liam Fox, the ministers appointed to lead the planning…Hammond has privately insisted that “everything is on the table” and Treasury officials believe access to the single market for the financial services industry should be the top priority. But senior government sources say Davis, Fox and May’s closest adviser, Nick Timothy, believe Britain will have to leave the single market to fulfil her pledge to impose border controls” – Sunday Times (£)

  • Soubry joins McFadden and Lamb in “Open Britain” plea – Sunday Times (£)
  • “Calls for reform must sit with a positive argument about the benefits that immigration brings”. Lamb/McFadden/Soubry article in full – Sunday Times (£)
  • Merkel’s deputy says she underestimated migrant challenge – Observer
  • Brexit is our chance to ensure British jobs go to Britons, says Iain Duncan Smith – Sunday Telegraph
  • We must have work permits for unskilled EU workers – Andrew Green, Mail on Sunday

> Today: Sunder Katwala on Comment: You get what you pay for with immigration control. Voters want more – which means higher spending

Chequers Brexit Cabinet 2) Rentoul: Hammond – a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma within a Remainer

“All of which is a long way of saying that our new Chancellor is more interesting than his “safe suit” persona on TV suggests. Gregson says, “underneath he’s an absolute dynamo”. Treasury civil servants have already been amused by his pedantic comments on official papers. But we know even less about his politics, except that he was more of a Remainer, than we do about his Prime Minister’s.  There was one suggestive part of his interview with me six years ago. He described the “Thatcher thing” as “unfinished business”. He said: “She’s gone down in history as an uncaring, economics first, last and only thinker. But she wanted to move on to education and what we now call broken society problems.” – Independent on Sunday

Chequers Brexit Cabinet 3) May to rein in the three Brexiteers…

DAVIS LOOKING“According to sources, she will also ‘bang a few heads together’ in an attempt to stop the feuding between Liam Fox, David Davis and Boris Johnson – the Ministers who are on the frontline of the Brexit negotiations. Dr Fox, the International Trade Secretary; Mr Johnson, the Foreign Secretary; and Mr Davis, the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, were already wary of each other before Mrs May handed them overlapping briefs in her first Cabinet. The three Ministers – known as the Three Brexiteers – have spent the summer jostling for position.” – Mail on Sunday

Chequers Brexit Cabinet 4) …and to ask Ministers what they can do for Leave (not what Leave can do for them)

“The Prime Minister will demand action plans from each colleague about how their department can make Brexit work at a meeting at Chequers, her country retreat, this week. Mrs May has challenged each minister – more than three quarters of whom campaigned for Britain to stay in the EU – to identify Brexit opportunities in their areas of responsibility…The moves come as government sources blamed officials in the Treasury and the Foreign Office for frustrating the early days of the new Department for Exiting the European Union. The source blamed jealousy among officials for negative stories about the workings of the new department.” – Sunday Telegraph

The cost of independence is too high a price for Scots to pay, says Davidson

Ruth Davidson“Ms Davidson said that figures published last week showing Scotland had a £14.8bn deficit in 2015/16 demonstrated “the cost of independence”. Ms Davidson said: “In the aftermath of the EU referendum, we now need a Scottish Government which is prepared to put stability first. Instead we have a First Minister doubling down on division by threatening yet another referendum. “The SNP has a choice – to be Scotland’s builders or Scotland’s wreckers. To look to the future, or to take us back to the battles of the past. It is high time we had a Scottish Government that acted for all of us, not just its own narrow interests.” – Independent on Sunday

Conservative membership “up by 50,000”

“Nearly 50,000 people have joined the Conservative Party since Theresa May became leader, swelling the ranks of grassroots Tories by nearly 40% in just six weeks. Party bosses say they have also had “a record-breaking number of registrations” for the Tories’ conference in Birmingham in October, where May will make the first set-piece rallying cry by a female prime minister since Margaret Thatcher’s in 1990.” – Sunday Times (£)

  • Elliott Johnson’s father criticises McLoughlin –  Mail on Sunday

> Today: ToryDiary – An opportunity for McLoughlin to welcome 50,000 new Party members

Aid: Patel to break with Cameron legacy. Development to focus on “national interest”

Patel Union Jack“In a radical break with the David Cameron era, new International Development Secretary Priti Patel is to cut spending on traditional aid projects and use the money to help promote ‘national security and the national interest’. It could lead to Defence Secretary Michael Fallon handing to Ms Patel his responsibility for funding British troops combating Islamic insurgencies in global hotspots – freeing up more of his resources for frontline troops.” – Mail on Sunday

Neither Greening nor Johnson will resign over Heathrow…

“Boris Johnson, the Foreign Secretary, and Justine Greening, the Education Secretary, are unlikely to resign despite the impact it would have on their constituencies, The Sunday Telegraph understands. Mrs May is prepared to push ahead with a third runway in October if she concludes that it is in the “national interest”, despite previously opposing plans to expand the airport. Whitehall sources made clear that she will not give in to resignation threats and that “she doesn’t do deals”…The decision on whether to build a new runway at Heathrow or Gatwick, expected in October, comes after more than 15 years of delays by both Labour and Conservative governments.” – Sunday Telegraph

…And Gimson writes that the Foreign Secretary’s decision to play cricket the day after Brexit’s victory “cost him the chance to be Prime Minister”

GIMSON Andrew Krieg“He also blundered by holding a boozy barbecue at his £1.5million farmhouse the next day, and by failing to gain Tory leadership rival Andrea Leadsom’s support. The claims are made in a sensational new book by acclaimed author and Tory insider Andrew Gimson. Mr Gove, then Justice Secretary, stood shoulder to shoulder with Mr Johnson in the battle to lead Britain out of Europe. But he would leave BoJo’s lifelong ambition to be Tory leader in tatters after an extraordinary 11th-hour knifing as he made his own pitch for the top job.” – Sun on Sunday

Poulter calls for new tax to fund NHS and social care

“He told the Observer: “On the hospital wards I often see people who are medically fit to go home, but who are forced to stay in hospital because of difficulties arranging their social care package or because of a lack of appropriate housing. Good healthcare cannot be delivered without properly funded social care. A long-term plan to ensure a properly funded and sustainable health and social care system is urgently required, and I believe a health and care tax – perhaps introduced through raising national insurance – offers one of the simplest ways forward.” – Observer

  • The NHS will simply collapse unless politicians have the courage to reform it – Simon Heffer, Sunday Telegraph

McDonnell gives Corbyn train row new steam

John McDonnell 30-04-16“Writing exclusively in the Sunday Mirror, Shadow Chancellor John ­McDonnell slams the Virgin billionaire as a “tax exile who thinks he can try and intervene and ­undermine our democracy”.  He brands fatcats who avoid paying full UK tax as “freeloaders” who are shirking their “public duty” – also singling out shamed rag trade tycoon Sir Philip Green .  And calling for a radical overhaul of the honours system, he adds: “Run off to tax exile if you want. But you leave your titles and your honours behind when you go.” – Sunday Mirror

  • Model train maker makes fun of Corbyn – Mail on Sunday
  • Labour leader ‘would build 1m new homes’ in five years of Labour – Observer
  • Corbyn’s campaign director faces claims of electoral fraud – Sunday Times (£)
  • Smith goes on and on and on about no Commons vote on Article 50… – Independent on Sunday
  • …and is branded a terrorist sympathiser – Sunday Times (£)
  • Greens hint at electoral pact with Labour – Independent on Sunday
  • Luciana Berger interview: ‘I have been contending with issues surrounding my safety and security for years’ – Observer

Adam Boulton: Trade union affiliate members will decide the leadership election

“The 120,000 or so “new members” who have joined since 2015 are reckoned to back Corbyn 60% to 40%. But the 140,000 “registered supporters” who have paid £25 to vote are probably against him. Last time the registered supporters, who paid only £3 to vote and came in heavily for Corbyn, were from a very different demographic. If these calculations are remotely accurate, there will be a near tie among individual members and supporters, and the contest will be decided by the “affiliates”, the comparatively small group of working members of trade unions who opt to pay the political levy and vote in internal party elections.” – Sunday Times (£)

  • Labour’s ‘interesting experiment’ in comradeship will run and run – Andrew Rawnsley, Observer
  • How Labour is failing voters – Thom Brooks, Sunday Express
  • Why didn’t Corbyn take the First Class seat on that half-empty Virgin train? – Tony Parsons, Sun on Sunday

> Yesterday: LeftWatch – “I don’t consider myself wealthy” – will Corbyn therefore exempt those earning less than him from any tax hikes?

Trump “will win at least 20 states”

TRUMP hair“Despite campaign troubles and low favorability ratings, Trump will almost certainly win at least 20 states, if not 25 – half the US – on election night. In a different decade, a candidate plagued by controversial statements, with a historically underfunded campaign, and who many party elites have publicly denounced might have been tanking in more states…The phrase “swing state” wasn’t mentioned in books until the 1950s, according to Google Ngram Viewer, a service that shows how often phrases have been used in texts over time. But between 2000 and 2008, usage of the term more than tripled. During that period, Ohio, Florida, Virginia and a handful of others coalesced into the group we now think of as swing states.” – Observer

John Naughton: Forget ideology, liberal democracy’s newest threats come from technology and bioscience

“There’s a sense, therefore, that we are approaching another “end of history” moment – but with a difference. In his famous 1989 article, the political scientist Francis Fukuyama argued that the collapse of the Soviet empire meant the end of the great ideological battle between east and west and the “universalisation of western liberal democracy as the final form of human government”. This was a bold, but not implausible, claim at the time. What Fukuyama could not have known is that a new challenge to liberal democracy would eventually materialise, and that its primary roots would lie not in ideology but in bioscience and information technology.” – Observer

News in Brief

  • Barrel bombs hit funeral for children killed in air strikes in Aleppo – Independent on Sunday
  • Terror as ‘Kurdish militants’ fire rockets at civilian airport in major Turkish city – Sunday Express
  • Soldiers with families “may quit” if homes are axed – Sun on Sunday (£)
  • Osborne moved (briefly) into parents’ home – Sunday Times (£)
  • Andrew RT Davies says that Wales would reject devolution now – Sunday Times (£)
  • Private schools price out middle class – Sunday Times (£)
  • Government pouring millions into steeling power plants from potential terror attacks – Independent on Sunday
  • Number of abortions of cleft-lip babies rises after new in-womb tests are offered – Mail on Sunday
  • Cliff Richard going ‘all guns blazing’ as BBC refuse to pay out over the screening of police raid – Sun on Sunday
  • Bank Holiday weekend weather: sunshine for all the UK on Monday after more than 3,000 lightning strikes in a day – Sunday Telegraph

(And finally…May’s motto is: Don’t let the bastards get you down – Mail on Sunday)