Social Care 1) Tory lead slashed with Survation as social care fallout continues

“The Conservatives’ shrinking lead in the polls should “focus minds” among the party’s supporters that the election victory is not assured, a Cabinet minister has said. Two polls published on Sunday and Monday give the Conservatives single digit leads over Labour – the party’s smallest advantage this year. A Survation poll for ITV’s Good Morning Britain gives the Tories a nine point lead, putting the Conservatives on 43 per cent, ahead of Labour on 34 per cent.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Labour hopes to win over pensioners angered by Tory plan – FT
  • Conservatives make ground across Britain’s rust belt – Matt Singh, FT

More older voters:

  • BBC considers means-testing free TV licences for over-75s – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Courage means sacrifices. May pays a price for her social care plan in today’s opinion polls.

Social Care 2) Senior Tories ‘kept in the dark’ over plans

“Theresa May failed to consult some of her most senior colleagues over plans to overhaul the social care system, which has become the most criticised policy in last week’s Tory manifesto. The plan, dubbed the “dementia tax”, was added at the last minute by Nick Timothy, the prime minister’s co-head of staff, party figures have admitted. Both Boris Johnson, foreign secretary, and Damian Green, welfare secretary, refused to say whether the cabinet was briefed ahead of the policy announcement, which would see those needing care having to pay for it from the value of their property until their last £100,000. But one senior Tory told the Financial Times that the policy “wasn’t really run by anyone outside the inner circle”. Party figures said that John Godfrey, head of the Downing Street policy unit, had advised against the move.” – FT

  • Cabinet at odds over care proposals – Daily Telegraph
  • Johnson hints at ‘softening’ of social care plan – Daily Mail
  • Conservatives claim plan will protect poorer Brits from tax bombshell – The Sun
  • Proposals based on ‘shaky foundations’, says Webb – The Independent
  • Social care crisis threatens to scupper May’s reforms – The Times (£)

More policy:

  • May insists she hasn’t abandoned Thatcher’s Conservatism – The Sun
  • Prime Minister drops long-standing pledge to scrap mixed-sex wards – Daily Telegraph
  • Tories tack left on housing market and drops focus on first-time buyers – FT


  • Crosby deserves respect as a strategist – John McTernan, FT


>Yesterday: ToryDiary: The Treasury may be weakened, but its interests still count – as May’s social care scheme suggests

Social Care 3) Matthew d’Ancona: We wanted a politics of audacity, and May’s manifesto delivers it

In the seven years since she became a senior cabinet minister, it has been commonplace to describe Theresa May as risk averse. I have done so myself. Well, no more. Whatever you think of the Conservative manifesto, it is emphatically not a blueprint for hedge-betters, difference-splitters, or cautious technocrats. This document represents the most adventurous restatement of Conservatism since Margaret Thatcher and her allies smashed the Butskellite postwar consensus. In an age of verbless sentences and drearily safe political language – the Tories’ own “strong and stable” slogan springs to mind – this manifesto reflects an intelligence, ambition and opposition to populist simplicity that is intrinsically welcome. No less intrinsic, however, are the perils it has courted.” – The Guardian

  • If you can’t care for your elderly parents, don’t complain when their home is used to pay – Dominic Lawson, Daily Mail
  • Solve social problems by helping families stay together – Ed Davies, Times Red Box
  • It’s good the Tory poll lead has slipped: fear can be a tonic – Tim Stanley, Daily Telegraph
  • May has got it right about business – Philip Stephens, FT

>Yesterday: Sanjoy Sen in Comment: Beware, voters. An energy price cap won’t suddenly slash your energy bill.

Ministers 1) Davis threatens that Britain will walk away if Brussels insists on ‘divorce bill’

“David Davis has warned he is ready to walk away from Brexit talks if Brussels demands a €100billion divorce bill. The Brexit Secretary declared that he would view £1billion as a ‘lot of money’ as he made clear he was braced for a ‘turbulent’ showdown with the EU. The tough line comes amid signs that the EU stance has hardened on the scale of the settlement demand. States who are net contributors to the bloc’s coffers are said to be unwilling to pump in more money to cover the huge hole left by Britain’s departure. Meanwhile, members who are net recipients of funds are refusing to accept low handouts.” – Daily Mail

  • May insists that the EU owes Britain £8.5 billion – The Sun
  • Prime Minister says talks will start just 11 days after the election – Daily Telegraph
  • Brexit without deal on services ‘could cost £36 billion a year’ – The Times (£)
  • Conservative candidates wipe slate clean on Brexit – FT
  • May warns Brexit could have ‘dire consequences’ if wrong team at the helm – The Independent


  • Corbyn signals that sky-high immigration would continue under his government – The Sun
  • How Labour will try to square the Brexit circle – The Independent


  • May’s obsession with immigration is her great weakness – Ian Birrell, The i
  • The Conservative manifesto revolves around Europe – Tim Bale, Times Red Box


Ministers 2) Patel pledges end of ‘nice-to-do vanity projects’ funded from aid budget

“No more foreign aid money will be wasted on ‘nice-to-do vanity projects’ such as the Ethiopian version of the Spice Girls, the foreign aid minister has vowed. International Development Secretary Priti Patel suggested wasted aid cash would instead by handed to the military to carry out defence-related missions that help with development. Miss Patel, who is in charge of Britain’s ballooning £13billion overseas aid budget, said there were many areas in which the deployment of soldiers could be re-classified as aid spending. She revealed she persuaded Theresa May to rip up the rules on foreign aid spending in the Tory election manifesto.” – Daily Mail

  • UN health body spends more on travel than aids and malaria – The Times (£)
  • British designers produce world’s cheapest solar lamp – FT


  • A single goal for aid would silence sceptics – Clare Foges, The Times (£)
  • Reforming aid rules would be good for Britain – Adrian Lovett and Loretta Minghella, Times Red Box
  • The chaotic charity sector requires radical reform – Jawad Iqbal, The Times (£)

>Yesterday: Fiona Hodgson in Comment: While the election rages on, we have chance this month to reduce starvation and hunger worldwide

Ministers 3) Green challenges McDonnell on manifesto funding

“A Tory Cabinet minister accused John McDonnell of wanting to ‘tax the hell out of the economy’ today as they had a furious bust up on live TV. Damian Green took the shadow chancellor to task after he repeatedly dodged questions about how Labour’s spending binge can be funded. The Work and Pensions Secretary said the veteran left-winger did not ‘understand capitalism’ as the pair faced off on the BBC’s Andrew Marr show. But Mr McDonnell shot back by branding Mr Green ‘fatuous’ and pointing out that he once sat on the board of a water company.” – Daily Mail

  • Gauke also clashes with the Shadow Chanellor – Daily Express
  • Politicians call campaign truce in memory of Jo Cox – The Sun

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: Green to McDonnell – “You don’t appear to know what Government borrowing is”

Davidson attacks Sturgeon’s independence obsession in TV debate

“Ruth Davidson has accused Nicola Sturgeon of duping Scots who do not want a second independence referendum into believing it was “safe” to vote SNP during an extraordinary confrontation in a live TV debate. The First Minister attacked the Scottish Tory leader for being “obsessed” with independence and using the issue as a “smokescreen” to stop her party being “toxic” north of the Border. But Ms Sturgeon was then subjected to a furious tirade from Ms Davidson, during which she accused the SNP leader of lying to Scots during last year’s Holyrood election that there would not be another independence vote without popular support.” – Daily Telegraph

  • First Minister criticised on health and education record – FT
  • Scottish nurse savages Sturgeon from the audience – The Sun

More SNP:

  • Sturgeon urges Scots to reject ‘extreme Brexit’ – The Independent
  • SNP’s Black heckled after Sturgeon closes children’s ward – Daily Express

Corbyn still refuses to condemn the IRA

“Jeremy Corbyn has refused to condemn the IRA directly and blamed the British government for seeking a ‘military solution in Ireland’ during the 1980s. The Labour leader insisted he was against bombings that ‘killed large numbers of innocent people’. But asked if he could condemn the terrorist group without ‘equating’ its violence, Mr Corbyn replied: ‘No.’ The comments were described as ‘outrageous’ by senior Tories, and will fuel concerns about the stance taken by Mr Corbyn and his key allies.” – Daily Mail

  • Labour leader defiant as past comes back to haunt him – The Times (£)

More Labour:

  • Corbyn’s key ally branded ‘disgrace’ for tweeting fake headline – Daily Mail
  • Internal research suggests Labour could lose 91 seats – Daily Express
  • Opposition risk losing more minority voters to the Tories – The Guardian
  • Labour put tuition fee pledge at heart of plea to students to register to vote – Daily Telegraph
  • Aide tells candidates not to mention Corbyn – The Sun


  • Corbyn has defied his critics to become Labour’s best hope for survival – Gary Younge, The Guardian


  • Weasel words on the IRA which shame Labour – Daily Mail

>Today: Nicky Morgan’s column: If you see him, tell Jeremy – we don’t want to go back to the 1970s

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: WATCH: Corbyn suggests the IRA’s murders were no different from the army’s actions

Blair’s secret talks with Labour donor who wants a new party

“Tony Blair has held secret talks with a major Labour donor who wants to form a new party. The former PM and businessman Dr Assem Allam discussed “whether the Labour party can be saved,” a source revealed. Dr Allam – the multi-millionaire owner of Hull City football club – donated more than £700,000 to Labour under Ed Miliband. But following the disastrous leadership of Jeremy Corbyn he offered to fund moderate Labour MPs set up a new “centrist” party. The secret meeting – which took place last month – is the latest sign Mr Blair is plotting a Labour split after the election and follows his decision to return to frontline politics to fight Brexit.” – The Sun

Farron faces fresh questions over his religious beliefs

“Tim Farron has refused five times to say whether abortion is ‘wrong’ as he faced more questions about his religious beliefs. The Liberal Democrat leader repeatedly sidestepped the moral issue despite stressing women should have access to abortion which is ‘legal and safe’. He also complained that voters would find it ‘bizarre’ for journalists to be ‘banging on about someone’s faith’. The comments came after a 2007 interview surfaced with a Salvation Army publication in which he reportedly said ‘abortion is wrong’.” – Daily Mail

  • Stop banging on about my faith, Liberal Democrat leader tells critics – Daily Telegraph
  • Farron admits he’ll quit if election strategy fails – Daily Express

More abortion:

  • ‘Undesirable’ babies could be aborted due to new NHS tests, experts warn – Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • Trump urges Muslims to join ‘battle of good and evil’ – The Times (£)
  • Special Forces frogmen fight ISIS tanker plot – Daily Mail
  • North Korea says new ballistic missile test confirms warhead guidance – Daily Telegraph
  • Conference to clarify the rules of warfare in space – The Times (£)
  • Imperial engagement worsens Japanese royalty shortage – FT

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