Brexit 1) May pledges to trigger Article 50 by the end of March

mailmay“Theresa May has sent an emphatic message to bitter Remainers that she will deliver a full-blooded Brexit by early 2019. Making her first Tory conference speech as Prime Minister yesterday, she vowed to restore control over Britain’s borders and make the nation sovereign again. In the clearest hint yet of a clean break from the single market, she insisted the UK would end free movement of EU workers, determine its own laws and become a global trade giant…she told the country to ignore ‘pessimists’ who claim Britain can succeed only if it is shackled to the EU. She accused some Remainers of trying to ‘subvert democracy’ with their bids to frustrate the will of the people – and declared she will trigger Article 50 by the end of next March.” – Daily Mail

  • PM promises to restore faith in Honours System – The Sun
  • “Tory scum get out of Brum” rages the Left – Michael Deacon Daily Telegraph
  • This is madness says Farron – Daily Express
  • Don’t be “gung ho” pleads Anna Soubry – Independent
  • Referendum result has driven me to drink jokes Neil Carmichael – Independent


  • The monumental task has just begun – Leader Daily Telegraph
  • May is the capable PM we can be proud of – The Sun Says
  • No soft option – Leader The Times(£)
  • Now the real work begins – Leader Daily Mail
  • How sweet it is to hear the PM honour the will of the British people – Stephen Glover Daily Mail
  • Her Brexit plan will leave the UK shipshape – Trevor Kavanagh The Sun
  • Rejoice at the avalance she has started that will set Britian  free – Norman Tebbit Daily Telegraph
  • Golden opportunity for a free trade bonanza – Matt Ridley The Times(£)
  • May was in a mood to kick some shins – Quentin Letts Daily Mail



Brexit 2) EU leaders refuse to start negotiating

“Theresa May put Britain on the path to “hard Brexit” yesterday but her appeal for negotiations to begin straight away ran into instant opposition from Angela Merkel and other EU leaders. Mrs May pledged to trigger the formal two-year exit negotiation by next March and all but ruled out seeking privileged access to the European single market for UK companies…However, other EU leaders rejected her appeal for immediate talks about Britain’s new deal, heightening fears of a disorderly exit from the bloc.” – The Times(£)

Brexit 3) MSPs “could block” EU Great Repeal Bill

“Scotland’s Brexit minister has warned the Scottish Parliament might block Theresa May’s “Great Repeal Bill”. The prime minister has said the bill would remove the European Communities Act 1972 from the statute book as a prelude to EU withdrawal. But Mike Russell said it would require Scottish Parliament approval, which may be denied if Scotland’s interests are not represented in negotiations. Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson said there would be full consultation.” – BBC

Brexit 4) General Election could be held in 2018 if Parliament blocks Brexit Bill

“Theresa May has opened the door to a 2018 general election if she fails to get her landmark Brexit bill through Parliament. The PM yesterday unveiled her plan for a Great Repeal Bill next year to make sure Britain is ready to leave the EU as soon as an exit deal with Brussels is done. Mrs May pointedly refused to rule out going to the country if her plan is blocked in the Commons or the Lords. But some pro-Remain peers and MPs – such as Tory veteran Ken Clarke – have already pledged to vote down any law authorising Brexit.” – The Sun


Brexit 5) Davis “unfazed” by job loss claims

“David Davis appeared unperturbed by the prospect that “hard” Brexit could result in 75,000 job losses, The Times has been told. At a meeting with business leaders last week, the Brexit secretary was presented with analysis suggesting the scale of job losses under various scenarios, one of which suggested that 75,000 City jobs could be lost.” – The Times(£)

>Today: Howard Flight on Comment: Negotiating a Brexit passport to success for the City of London

>Yesterday: MPsETC: Britain the soft-power superpower of global liberalism. Boris Johnson’s Conservative Conference speech: full text

Brexit 6) Rudd turns on Oliver

“Top Remain donor Roland Rudd has launched a blistering assault on ex-No10 spin doctor Sir Craig Oliver, accusing him of gagging the pro-EU camp from talking about immigration. Corporate lobbyist Roland Rudd, who was a central figure in the campaign to Remain in the EU, has said allowing No10 to “dictate” their referendum messaging was “a huge mistake.” – The Sun

  • Oliver not Conservative Party member – The Sun

Brexit 7) Cameron attacked BBC for not being anti Brexit enough

“David Cameron used a private discussion with the director-general of the BBC about its future to put pressure on the corporation over its coverage of the EU referendum. The former prime minister complained about the BBC’s business and economic unit during a conversation about controversial plans to change the way the corporation is governed. He used the charter renewal process to interfere with the BBC’s editorial approach and press it into delivering more pro-Remain coverage.” – The Times(£)

  • Boris blasts BBC’s “shamelessly anti Brexit reports” – Daily Mail

Brexit 8) Don’t trust “three blind mice” says Herbert

“The three cabinet ministers in charge of Brexit – Boris Johnson, Liam Fox and David Davis – resemble “three blind mice” stumbling around the world with inconsistent messages on how to leave the EU, a Conservative former minister has said. Nick Herbert, who led the Conservative remain campaign during the referendum, joined a number of senior Tories who are warning that there are still severe risks to the economy as government ministers try to work out a Brexit plan.” – The Guardian

Hammond 1) Chancellor promises more “pragmatic” approach to economy than Osborne…

“Chancellor Philip Hammond is to say he will manage the public finances in a different way to his predecessor, George Osborne. Speaking at the Conservative Party conference, Mr Hammond will promise “a new plan for the new circumstances Britain faces” after the Brexit vote. He will say his “pragmatic” approach allows greater scope for investment to boost the economy. ” – BBC

  • Osborne charging £75,000 for an after dinner speech – The Sun

Hammond 2) £5 billion to package to fund 225,000 new homes

“THE CHANCELLOR will today open the spending taps for a housebuilding boom in a bid to keep the economy on track. Unveiling a £5 billion package to fund the construction of up to 225,000 homes, Philip Hammond will declare the Government is committed to bringing down the deficit.” – The Sun

  • Let’s build on the green belt says Javid – Daily Mail

Hammond 3) Fox calls for a deadline to eliminate the deficit

“The Chancellor should set a date for when Britain will eliminate the deficit to help “maintain the confidence of international investors”, Liam Fox has suggested. The International Trade Secretary said that the Government must be “very clear” that it is still committed the balancing the books as Britain prepared to leave the EU. However Philip Hammond, the Chancellor, will today reiterate his view that the decision to leave the EU means that there should not be a deadline for clearing the deficit.” – Daily Telegraph

  • I don’t want to stay at Chevening says Fox – The Sun
  • Don’t laugh at Corbyn warns Fox – The Sun

Hammond 4) Montgomerie warns against a spending spree

“At the foreign office Mr Hammond didn’t appear a natural diplomat and at defence he didn’t seem much interested in, er, defence but it’s round peg, round hole time for spreadsheet Phil now. Surrounded by high-spending Tory ministers and “scrutinised” by a media that is a zillion times more likely to put an anti-cuts NGO on air than a representative of taxpayers, we desperately need his waste-finding, balloon-popping, taxpayer-protecting uber-accountancy. Protect us, Mr Hammond, from the worst ideas of bigger-government Conservatives . . . and, yes, that includes from me.” – Tim Montgomerie The Times(£)

Boris speaks up for western values

“Russia’s powerful Foreign Minister accused the West of “imposing democracy” on them during a furious row with Boris Johnson. Lifting the lid on the extraordinary allegation made by Sergei Lavrov, the Foreign Secretary told the Conservative Party Conference that he was “startled by this.” The revelation raises the prospect that Mr Lavrov – one of Russian president Vladimir Putin’s closest allies – would rather rule the former Soviet state by dictatorship. …Mr Johnson told party delegates: “I was a bit startled by this, and I decided I couldn’t let it go unchallenged, and I said ‘hang on, Sergei, aren’t you in favour of democracy’?” – The Sun

  • Global order out of control as Russia swaggers says Rory Stewart – The Guardian
  • I’ve got more confidence in Boris now says Ruth Davidson – Independent

>Today: Nadhim Zahawi on Comment: Russia has to make a choice about its role in the world

>Yesterday: MPsETC: Britain the soft-power superpower of global liberalism. Boris Johnson’s Conservative Conference speech: full text

Cameron 1) Where is Dave?

“David Cameron is conspicuous by his absence from the gathering of the party faithful in Birmingham. John Major and Margaret Thatcher both attended the first Tory conference after they were ousted from power, and Ted Heath never missed one either (though that was partly to wind up Mrs Thatcher). Perhaps Mr Cameron is too busy planning the next phase of his business career. I can disclose he was spotted having a drink at the George private members’ club in Mayfair with Tony Fernandes, the Malaysian entrepreneur who owns AirAsia and is chairman of Queens Park Rangers football club.” – Andrew Pierce Daily Mail

Cameron 2) He was a PR obsessed control freak says Clarke

“Ken Clarke rebukes David Cameron today for aping Tony Blair’s “disastrous” style of media-driven government in a blistering attack on the former Downing Street regime. In his memoir Kind of Blue, serialised this week in The Times, he says that Mr Cameron failed to keep an initial promise to return to “proper” cabinet government and instead relied increasingly on PR experts to set policies that would win good headlines…Mr Cameron, he said, was a “huge admirer” of Mr Blair’s presidential style, referring to him as “The Master”.” – The Times(£)

Truss to stop taxpayer funding for vexatious claims against troops

“Justice Secretary Liz Truss declared war on the tank chasers hounding our troops yesterday by vowing to stop taxpayers’ cash funding their “vexatious” claims. The Tory rising star promised far-reaching changes to the legal aid regime to ensure spurious allegations never get off the ground.” – The Sun

Grammar schools won’t be in every town

“The plan to lift the ban on grammar schools is not about reintroducing them to every town and city in England, Prime Minister Theresa May has said. Speaking on BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show, she said it was about raising the level of education across the country. “Taking off the ban on a particular type of school is not saying we want one of this here and one of that there,” she said. “It’s about ensuring we have good school places for every child.” – BBC

  • Tutor proof test to improve mix – The Times(£)
  • Independent heads warn against being forced to sponsor state schools – BBC

Grayling says Heathrow decision will be made “shortly”

“A decision over where to site a new runway in the south east of England will be taken “shortly”, Transport Secretary Chris Grayling has said. The decision has been deliberated for years and was delayed most recently by the upheaval caused by the Brexit vote. In July 2015, Heathrow looked close to being the winner, after an official commission recommended its plan. But in December the decision was delayed for further studies.” – BBC

Tory MPs call for unaccompanied children to be moved out of Calais camp

“A group of Tory MPs have written to the Home Secretary urging her to ensure unaccompanied children with family in Britain are moved out of the Calais jungle before it is torn down.  Nicky Morgan, the former Education Secretary,  is among the signatories calling for the government to “do more” to find a legal and safe way to get unaccompanied children out of the hands of people traffickers.” – Daily Telegraph

Struggling secretaries are the new target voters

“There are 2.1 million of them, they live outside London, most of them are under 50, many work in administration and all of them are about to feel Theresa May’s focus and affection. Downing Street has identified people earning between £16,000 and £21,000 as their target audience, as they identify policies for a cohort of people they see as “just managing”. Mrs May wants to help people who earn an income lower than the average but who do not receive significant state benefits, including tax credits.” – The Times(£)

Raab: The Conservatives must champion real capitalism

“Conservatives shouldn’t be afraid to defend capitalism – as the surest way to boost living standards for the poor – nor tackle its abuses. The best way to stop tax avoidance is to simplify the tax code, not give the taxman authoritarian powers, which are more likely to be wielded to bully small businesses and individuals than multinationals. And we shouldn’t flinch from taking on the vested interests in monopolised markets. Retail banking and energy remain ripe for competitive reform to loosen behemoths’ grip and give consumers the clout to get better deals.” Dominic Raab Daily Telegraph

News in brief

  • Investigation into Janner “not dropped – BBC
  • Clean up your act Bradley tells FA – The Sun
  • Columbian voters reject FARC peace deal – BBC
  • Clinton extends her lead over Trump – The Times(£)
  • Tube strike ballot on job cuts – BBC
  • Hungarians reject migrant quotas but poll invalid – Reuters