UKIP Leader Diane James standing down after just 18 days

diane-james“UKIP leader Diane James is standing down from her role 18 days after she was elected. In a statement to the Times newspaper, she said she would not be “formalising my recent nomination”. The 56-year-old MEP for South East England said she did not have “sufficient authority” to see through changes she had planned. Ms James succeeded Nigel Farage on 16 September after he quit in the wake of the UK’s vote to leave the EU. She had not appointed a deputy and UKIP officials were unable to say who was leading the party.” – BBC

Rudd outlines tougher policies on immigration…

“New curbs on foreign workers and students may be needed to “change the tide” of public opinion on immigration, Home Secretary Amber Rudd has said. She told the Conservative conference companies were “getting away” with not training British workers and tougher recruitment tests were needed. Students on “low-quality courses” could also face tougher entry rules. She promised councils £140m to address migration pressures and moves to deport EU criminals for “minor crimes”.” – BBC


…but Souby says migration moaners are hypocritical

“People who complain about migrants are being hypocritical if they enjoy foreign cuisine, a Tory MP has suggested. Anna Soubry, who has emerged as a leading pro-Remain voice on the Tory back benches, said that the public had been fooled by “myths” about migration and the benefits of leaving the EU. She launched a fierce defence of immigration during a fringe event at the Conservative conference, pointing out the inconsistencies of enjoying the benefits of migration while complaining about it.” – The Times(£)

May 1) The PM will turn her guns on the “sneering” establishment

telegraphsneer“The establishment must stop sneering at the patriotism of ordinary Britons, Theresa May will say today. During her keynote speech to the Conservative conference, the Prime Minister will proclaim that the Tories are now the party of working class people. In a bid to attract millions of disaffected Labour voters across the country, she will add that concerns about immigration have for too long been dismissed as “distasteful” and “parochial”. She will attack the condescending views of politicians and establishment figures who are “bewildered” by the fact that more than 17 million people voted for Britain to leave the European Union.” – Daily Telegraph

  • May will reach out to blue collar workers – Daily Mail
  • Tory euphoria may be short lived – Philip Johnston Daily Telegraph
  • I’ve spent three days at the Tory conference, now I know what death feels like – Michael Deacon Daily Telegraph
  • John Kerry warns May against hard Brexit – The Sun

>Today: ToryDiary: The Conservative Party, the practiced political survivor, adapts again

May 2) She will embrace the “new centre ground”

“Theresa May will call for a “new approach” to politics where the government is a “force for good” as she closes the Conservative conference. The PM will call on Tories to “embrace a new centre ground… built on the values of fairness and opportunity”. She will promise to use the power of government to help “ordinary working-class people”. The government should protect jobs and “repair” free markets when they do not work properly, she will say. And she will promise working people will no longer be ignored by the “powerful and the privileged”.” – BBC

  • The economy can withstand Brexit turbulence says May – BBC

>Today: Columnist Alex Morton: Theresa May and the common or middle ground – are we to lead or follow?

May 3) Her husband Philip also a staunch Conservative during their student days

pmay“He is the prime minister’s closest adviser and their 40-year relationship has spanned the political as well as the personal. Now, as Philip May prepares to watch his wife speak at the Conservative Party conference today, his student days reveal that his passion for Conservatism rivalled that of the future Tory leader… After climbing the ranks, he won the presidency in 1979, at the second attempt, narrowly defeating a Labour Party candidate. Several of Mr May’s contemporaries are now prominent members of his wife’s team.” – The Times(£)

May 4) Child abuse inquiry defended

“Theresa May launched a passionate defence of the controversial child abuse inquiry yesterday as she said the Government owed it to victims waiting “decades for justice”. The Prime Minister – who set up the investigation as Home Secretary – denied claims the abuse inquiry was broken after a spate of resignations. And she said it was vital Ministers didn’t turn a blind eye to children who have been abused.” – The Sun

May 5) Can she match Roosevelt? Finkelstein asks

FINKELSTEIN Danny“Theodore Roosevelt, the eccentric but brilliant Republican president of turn-of-the-century America embraced a progressive idea that challenged traditionalists in his party. He defended the interests of labour and the public against monopolists and elites; he pressed for a muscular foreign policy and an emphasis in national security; he demanded a “square deal” for workers and rights in the workplace. He argued for free trade and low tariffs. He chafed against those who claimed the federal government lacked constitutional authority to act….a turn towards the national greatness agenda of Roosevelt is what the prime minister is now contemplating.” – Daniel Finkelstein The Times(£)

Other comment

Greening announces social mobility “opportunity areas”

“Education Secretary Justine Greening has announced six “opportunity areas” in England in a £60m scheme to promote social mobility, supporting schools and links with employers. The first areas will be Blackpool, Derby, Norwich, Oldham, Scarborough and West Somerset.” – BBC

  • Careers advice boost for poor kids – The Sun

Fallon announces army cadet units for 150 schools

Fallon “Armed Forces cadet units are to be set up in 150 schools including an academy in Birmingham that was embroiled in the Trojan Horse extremism scandal. Defence Secretary Michael Fallon announced the first of the new units would be established in Birmingham’s Rockwood Academy to boost efforts to instill ‘British values’. In 2014, when it was then known as Park View School, the school was found to have been infiltrated by Islamic extremists who promoted al-Qaeda inspired views to pupils.” – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: MPsETC: “Leaving the EU does not mean we are stepping back from our commitment to the security of our continent.” Fallon’s Conference Speech: full text

Conference in tears after as speech tells of child’s death due to NHS failings

“A brave young mum whose child died in A&E due to NHS blunders moved Tory delegates to tears yesterday as she spoke at party conference. Speaking ahead of the Health Secretary’s speech, Melissa Mead fought back her own tears as she told how son William’s poor care fell below standard “forming a catastrophic chain of events” that led to his death from deadly sepsis in 2014. ..During his speech Jeremy Hunt vowed to dismantle the “blame culture” within the NHS to allow healthcare professionals to learn from their mistakes. He told conference that “closing ranks against families who want to know the truth about their loved ones has no place in the NHS”.” – The Sun

  • Anti foreigner agenda will devastate the NHS – Diane Abbott City AM

>Today: Jeremy Hunt on Comment: We will train the doctors we need – but we are entitled for them to be loyal to the NHS in return

Cairns attacks mismanagement of £4 billion of EU grants to Wales

cairns“Alun Cairns has launched a fierce attack on the “mismanagement” of £4bn of EU grants by the Welsh Government intended to help the poorest areas. The Welsh secretary said Labour had let down west Wales and the valleys. Speaking at the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, Mr Cairns said some areas, which had the most EU funds, voted more heavily to leave.” – BBC

Fox says EU nationals here are bargaining chips

“The status of EU nationals living in Britain is “one of our main cards” in Brexit bargaining and cannot be guaranteed yet, Liam Fox has said. The suggestion by the International Trade Secretary is likely to anger those worried that the status of people from countries such as Poland is being used as a “bargaining chip”. Dr Fox said he wanted to guarantee the status of the estimated three million EU citizens living in Britain, but wanted the same assurances about UK citizens living abroad.” – Sky News

Don’t believe Scots wants independence Davidson tells the English

Ruth Davidson 07-07-16“Ruth Davidson is to make a direct appeal to the English not to “believe a word” of Nicola Sturgeon’s claims Scotland is agitating for independence or that the break-up of the UK is inevitable after the Brexit vote. The Scottish Tory leader will use her speech to the Conservative conference to tell people across the rest of the UK that Ms Sturgeon is at odds with the majority of Scots, who want to “move on” from constitutional upheaval.” – Daily Telegraph

  • May has helped women at every turn says Davidson – The Guardian

Cabinet colleagues turn on “doom monger ” Hammond

“Philip Hammond was facing an extraordinary Cabinet backlash last night over his ‘tirade of negativity’ about the dangers of Brexit. The Chancellor’s claim that the economy faces a ‘rollercoaster’ ride as Britain leaves the EU dismayed some Cabinet colleagues who are urging him privately to try to boost confidence rather than undermine it. On Monday, Mr Hammond repeated claims from the Remain campaign that the British economy is set to be four per cent smaller as a result of Brexit. The Chancellor, who campaigned hard for Britain to remain in the European Union, insisted the Treasury was ‘ready to take whatever steps are necessary to protect this economy from turbulence’.” – Daily Mail

IMF upgrade growth forecast for this year – but downgrade it for next year

growth flag“The International Monetary Fund has cut its forecast for UK economic growth next year as it warned that the global recovery remains “weak and precarious”. Although the IMF raised its prediction for UK GDP growth this year to 1.8%, the figure for 2017 was cut to 1.1%. Its assumptions are based on “smooth post-Brexit negotiations and a limited increase in economic barriers”. The IMF’s latest World Economic Outlook predicts “subpar” global growth this year of 3.1%, rising slightly in 2017.” – BBC

  • FTSE 100 soars as pound slides – BBC
  • UK selling tea to China as exports surge – The Sun

There’s nothing wrong with being a nimby says Prince’s charity

“The Prince of Wales’ charity says that it is “perfectly reasonable to be a Nimby”, because developers too often build ugly homes. The Prince’s Foundation for Building Community said it was acceptable for communities’ “default setting to be a Nimby” until developers built more attractive homes.” – Daily Telegraph

Fernandes: To help the next generation we must teach personal finance in school

fernan“Financial education needs to start early on. Attitudes to spending, saving and wealth creation are formed in childhood. By the age of seven, most people will have their personal “financial culture”.  There are also so many more opportunities to spend money and more financial decisions to make than previous generations. Some children grow up today without having any awareness of coins, paper notes or cheques, as there has been a shift towards an increasingly cashless society.” – Suella Fernandes Daily Telegraph

Behr: Tory backing for Brexit has a religious flavour

“It is the quasi-religious mood in Birmingham that makes Cameron’s reign feel so remote. For years, the balance of Tory grassroots opinion was hostile to the power they called Europe. The demand for rupture was voiced by a small minority, but more would have joined in had they believed it was possible and available. Now they are told it is both, by a leader who – crucially – has far better credentials as an orthodox Tory than her predecessor. May, the provincial vicar’s daughter, has done her time tramping the streets, stuffing envelopes, working the local Conservative association circuit. Her conversion is not mistrusted as some tactical ruse but celebrated as the completion of a journey on behalf of the whole party.” – Rafael Behr The Guardian

Clarke recalls Black Wednesday

Ken Clarke 01-11-15“At one point, I resorted to black humour, remarking that I had never been in a government with absolutely no economic policy before. Sadly, this was only too accurate. More than any other aspect of our economic policy, our membership of the ERM had been emphasised as a guarantee of stability and a signal of our determination to reduce inflation. We were now a government with its economic middle stump flying through the air.” – Ken Clarke, memoirs serialisation The Times(£)

Vice Presidential candidates clash in debate

“Donald Trump was likened to a “fool or maniac” while Hillary Clinton was dismissed as “weak and feckless” in a punchy vice-presidential debate. Democratic Virginia Senator Tim Kaine and Republican Indiana Governor Mike Pence clashed on a series of topics ranging from abortion to Russia. But they focused their sharp exchanges on Mrs Clinton and Mr Trump.” – BBC

News in brief

  • Man accused of Jo Cox’s murder refuses to enter plea – BBC
  • Cancer care below standard in eight out of ten regions – The Times(£)
  • Danczuk will not be charged with rape – The Guardian
  • Man charged over offensive email to Angela Eagle – BBC
  • Davies backs blue passports campaign – Independent
  • Hardline schools excluding more pupils – The Times(£)
  • Greens attack Mayor Khan betrayal – The Guardian
  • Charities oppose child protection changes – Independent

And finally…Osborne’s family firm to profit from Brexit

Osborne“He may have predicted a catastrophe, but George Osborne’s family firm is expecting to do rather well out of Brexit. Upmarket wallpaper and furnishings company Osborne & Little – run by the former chancellor’s father Sir Peter Osborne – this week revealed it had not yet been affected by the EU referendum. In fact, its bosses said they expected the weaker pound to eventually give their profits a boost.” – Daily Mail