Grenfell Tower 1) May faces angry protests

“Grief over the Grenfell Tower disaster turned into angry protests on Friday as the official death toll rose to at least 30 and dozens more deaths were feared. Prime Minister Theresa May faced cries of “coward” and “shame on you” as she returned to the site of the devastating fire in west London after being criticised for not meeting victims in the wake of the tragedy.” – Daily Telegraph

  • May accused of “inhuman” TV interview – Daily Mail
  • “Decent Homes” programme caused new set of risks – Anne Ashworth, The Times(£)
  • Insensitive reaction puts her in political danger – Jane Merrick, Daily Telegraph
  • The Queen’s surprise visit – Daily Mail
  • People rehoused in three weeks – BBC
  • £5 million emergency funding – Daily Telegraph


Grenfell Tower 2) Javid pledges to take whatever action is needed for other blocks

“The Communities Secretary vowed to do whatever it takes to prevent another tower block fire even if means stripping off cladding or re-housing thousands of people. Sajid Javid accepted the cost could run to the billions of pounds but insisted any repeat of the Grenfell tower tragedy was unacceptable in 21st Century Britain. …Mr Javid promised: ‘Whatever (the experts) tell us to make these people safe – whether it is changes to these buildings, whether it is rehousing – that is what will be done.’ ” – Daily Mail

  • Local authorities unlikely to prosecute themselves – The Times(£)

Grenfell Tower 3) Demos hijacked by the far Left

“One group marched on Downing Street chanting “Justice for Grenfell”, staged a sit-down demonstration at Oxford Circus and observed a minute’s silence outside the BBC’s Broadcasting House. While “local” protesters were generally directing their anger at the prime minister, a significant number of far-left political activists had joined the protests. Leaflets advocating a revolution to “bring down the government” were being handed out.” – The Times(£)

  • Momentum activists invade Kensington Town Hall – The Sun
  • Political exploitation could foment violence on the streets – Leader, Daily Telegraph
  • The shame of playing politics with tragedy – Leader, Daily Mail
  • Cynics exploit tragedy for their own gain – Brendan O’Neil The Sun

Grenfell Tower 4) Boris hits back at Khan

“Boris Johnson last night launched an extraordinary broadside at his successor as London Mayor, accusing Sadiq Khan of “outrageous politicking” over the Grenfell tragedy. The Foreign Secretary insisted London fires went down by 50 per cent under his watch as he branded attacks on the Tories as “political game playing” about the “terrible” event.” – The Sun

Grenfell Tower 5) May needs to show she cares says Oborne

“I believe Mrs May is every bit as concerned about social justice as Mr Corbyn — which is why, for example, she has promised to raise the minimum wage again. She is a true One Nation Conservative in the tradition of Disraeli — which is why this vicar’s daughter must strive to bring together the two Britains that sit cheek by jowl in West London. Though her early response was awkward, she has done exactly the right thing by calling a full-scale public inquiry, and now committing £5 million to help victims. She simply has to show that she cares — and then act accordingly to stop such a tragedy ever happening again.” – Peter Oborne, Daily Mail

  • The Tories need a social justice message. What happened to the ladder? – The Sun Says
  • A fairer society must arise from the ashes – Janice Turner, The Times(£)
  • May lacks authority – Leader, The Times(£)

Parris: The sooner May steps down the better

“There is no need and no public appetite for an immediate general election, but under a new leader the party can rediscover confidence in Conservative beliefs and begin its recovery from a fiasco with which she has become indelibly associated. The sooner this happens — next week, this summer, surely before the autumn party conference — the better: before things slide further. But the repair of the party’s and the government’s fortunes cannot begin until a new leader is found.” Matthew Parris, The Times(£)

  • If politicians are pygmies then that’s our fault – Iain Martin, The Times(£)

Hammond pushing for “softer” Brexit….

“Britain should aim for a softer Brexit, Chancellor Philip Hammond declared yesterday, as it emerged that Prince Andrew backs Brexit. Speaking in Luxembourg, Mr Hammond said the UK must take a “pragmatic” approach prioritising jobs and the economy. It came as British officials made their first major concession – agreeing to sort out divorce issues before moving onto trade talks. At a meeting of EU finance ministers, the Chancellor said: “My clear view, and I believe the view of the majority of people in Britain, is that we should prioritise protecting jobs, protecting economic growth, protecting prosperity as we enter those negotiations and take them forward.” – The Sun

  • If Hammond succeeds it would cause a schism – James Forsyth, The Sun
  • UK hires top New Zealand trade negotiator – Daily Telegraph
  • Keep membership of the Single Market – Chuka Umunna The Guardian

>Yesterday: Ashley Fox on Comment: The election doesn’t change the fundamentals of our negotiations with Brussels

…as he plots to kill off energy price caps

“Chancellor Philip Hammond is flexing his political muscles by trying to kill off the Tories’ energy price cap. The flagship policy could be dramatically watered down or even ditched in next week’s Queen’s Speech. The Conservative manifesto promised to put a maximum price on gas and electricity tariffs to end rip-off bills for customers who do not change providers. But sources said several Cabinet ministers – including the Chancellor – were lobbying for it to be dropped.” – Daily Mail

Food won’t get cheaper with Brexit says Gove

“Britain will not get cheaper food by tearing down old trade barriers, the environment secretary said yesterday, as he appeared to contradict a claim he made during the Brexit campaign. Michael Gove said he had no intention of undermining protections that shield UK farmers from cheap, lower-quality food imports, despite saying last June that leaving the EU would extend “new opportunities to developing nations and in the process [allow] prices in Britain to become cheaper”.” – The Times(£)

Moore: Without a full Brexit the Tories are finished

“The point about no deal being better than a bad deal is not to seek no deal, but to show a bottom line. What we want is a free trade deal with the EU, and for that we should ask politely, since it is up to them. If they don’t want it, we have the WTO fall-back. The alternative the Remainers are pushing is not an agreeable consensus, but a betrayal of the biggest vote for anything in our history. How could any Conservative government survive the consequences of that?” Charles Moore, Daily Telegraph

Civil servants fear of “terrible twins”

“In their time in government, The Times has been told, Nick Timothy and his fellow chief of staff Fiona Hill forced out or sidelined supposedly independent civil servants — some after a period of alleged bullying — in direct contravention of Whitehall codes of conduct. As far back as 2011 Ms Hill was officially reprimanded by Gus O’Donnell, the cabinet secretary, for her behaviour. On several occasions the senior civil service union was called in to represent those who had fallen foul of Ms Hill. Now that they have departed serious questions are being asked about how two unelected political aides could ride roughshod over the civil service while exercising such an iron grip on everything the prime minister saw or heard.” – The Times(£)

DUP will seek to tone down “austerity”

“The Democratic Unionist party has said it will act as a “brace against hard austerity” in its deal with the Conservatives, as rebel Tory MPs suggested that they could torpedo unpopular policies by tacitly backing Labour amendments to the Queen’s speech. The DUP’s leader, Arlene Foster, said it was “right and proper” that her party would vote for Theresa May’s Queen’s speech next week. However, DUP sources told the Guardian on Friday that the party wanted a “more compassionate approach to austerity” in any deal.” – The Guardian

Unions plan a “Summer of Discontent” to bring down the Government

“Union leaders are plotting a ‘summer of discontent’ to cause chaos and force Theresa May from power. Militants linked to Unite, rail guards, teachers and junior doctors told followers this week to prepare for co-ordinated strikes and national protests, which would bring the country to a standstill. They pledged to defy the election result and help the Labour Party seize power like the Bolsheviks in 1917, stating: ‘We will have a Red October with Jeremy Corbyn as our Prime Minister!’ The sinister campaign will start in days, with a protest planned outside Parliament on Wednesday to coincide with the Queen’s Speech.” – Daily Mail

>Today: Jamie Whyte on Comment: The Conservatives didn’t win because they rejected Thatcher’s beliefs – a small state and free markets

Knighthood for Eurocrat

“A retired Eurocrat tasked with trying to persuade Britain to stay in the EU has been knighted in the Queen’s Honours list. Jonathan Faull, who was Jean-Claude Juncker’s most senior British official, will become a Sir for “services to UK relations with the European Union”. He headed up a task force negotiating a package of reforms aimed at persuading Brits to stay in the EU prior to the referendum. Earlier this year he said people who believed Britain would get an easy ride in Brexit talks were “deluded”.” – The Sun

Sandbrook: The hounding out of Farron was a victory for the fascist Left

“What a grim irony that, even as the world prepares to mark the anniversary of the Reformation, new zealots are trying to slam the door on free speech. For if freedom means anything, it means the right to hold unfashionable opinions, to say the unsayable and to stand in the last ditch, when every man is against you, for what you truly believe. Tim Farron put his faith above his political career. Good for him. He has shown himself a far better man than the so-called liberals who brought him down. But I fear he will not be the last victim of the new intolerance. Unless the rest of us stand up to the zealots, they will not rest until all dissent is silenced. They are a threat to everything this country stands for. They must be fought. They must be beaten.” – Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Mail

News in brief