1922 1) May accepts voters have lost patience with further austerity

“Theresa May is poised to bring to a close seven years of austerity after Tory MPs warned that they would refuse to vote for further cuts. The prime minister spent the day apologising to her cabinet and backbenchers, saying that she took full responsibility for losing the party’s Commons majority and running a poor campaign. “I’m the person who got us into this mess and I’m the one who will get us out of it,” she told a meeting of the 1922 Committee last night. Sources said that she accepted that voters’ patience with austerity was at an end after Boris Johnson, David Davis and a series of Tory MPs told her that she had misjudged the public mood.” – The Times(£)

  • Labour “tapped into austerity” says Barwell – BBC
  • “I got us into this mess and I’ll get us out of it.” – Daily Telegraph
  • The Tories need an optimistic offer – The Sun Says


>Today: Terry Barnes on Comment: May would have seen her snap election fiasco coming, if only she’d looked abroad to…Australia

1922 2) Tory MPs welcome contrite tone

“The prime minister said more would be done to reach out to young voters and those working in the public sector. “She was contrite and genuine, but not on her knees,” said one senior MP who attended the meeting, adding that May had shown a warmer side. “There was none of the Maybot,” the person added, claiming that any talk of a leadership challenge had been silenced, for now at least. Speaking after the meeting, MPs made clear that the prime minister had bought herself time – with hopes that she could make it to the end of Brexit talks in two years.” – The Guardian

1922 3) Backing for PM to stay on for two more years

“Tory MPs are coming round to allowing Theresa May two more years as PM so she can see Brexit talks through,The Sun can reveal. Her resurrection comes as she narrowly escaped a lynching on Friday following the party’s general election disaster. Yesterday Mrs May faced the fury of all her MPs and lords on their return to Westminster. They crowded into the Commons’ biggest meeting room — Committee Room 14. But in stark contrast to the small amount of desk banging that met her arrival, the PM walked out of the gathering to cheers, and 30 seconds of applause.” – The Sun

Talks with DUP continue to close the deal…

“Theresa May is set to to welcome the leader of the Democratic Unionist Party to Downing Street as she seeks a deal to enable the Conservatives to govern. The prime minister will host Northern Ireland’s first minister Arlene Foster to thrash out the terms of the DUP’s backing for her minority government. She has said telephone talks had been “productive” but told her MPs the DUP would not get a “veto” on key policies. Ms Foster has said her party has the “national interest” at its heart.” – BBC

  • A “tremendous opportunity” for Northern Ireland says Foster – BBC
  • Sectarian issues off the agenda – The Guardian
  • Call to end taxpayer funding for abstentionist Sinn Fein MPs – The Times(£)
  • Sinn Fein MPs might take their seats – The Sun
  • Belfast Blues – Leader, The Times(£)

….as Queen’s Speech may be delayed for talks to continue….

“The Queen’s speech may not go ahead as planned next Monday, No 10 has suggested, which would allow the Conservatives more time to reach a formal agreement with the Democratic Unionist party. The prime minister’s official spokesman declined to confirm that the Queen’s speech would be held on 19 June as previously announced. The leader of the Commons, Andrea Leadsom, would release a statement about the date soon, the spokesman said.” – The Guardian

…and Labour charged with hypocrisy for opposing deal

“Labour was accused of rank hypocrisy last night after it emerged Gordon Brown had tried to negotiate a deal with the DUP seven years ago. Senior Labour figures – including Tony Blair’s former spin doctor Alastair Campbell – have spent the days since the election criticising Theresa May for entering into talks with the Northern Irish party. They say it is wrong that she should be seeking a deal because the party has old-fashioned views on issues such as abortion and homosexuality.” – Daily Mail

  • Vilification of DUP shows faith has become toxic – Tim Stanley, Daily Telegraph

>Yesterday: Jeffrey Dudgeon on Comment: I’m Northern Ireland’s best-known gay rights campaigner. And I see no problem with a Tory-DUP deal.

Remain MPs in cross-party talks to secure “soft” Brexit

“Senior Cabinet ministers are engaged in secret talks with Labour MPs to secure cross-party backing for a soft Brexit, it has emerged. Some of the most senior members of Theresa May’s team have been discussing how to force the Prime Minister to make concessions on immigration, the customs union and the single market. There have also been discussions of a cross-party Brexit Commission to agree common ground between the parties and ensure an orderly withdrawal from the EU. Labour is expected to use the talks as leverage to demand an end to the public sector pay freeze among a series of concessions in next week’s Queen’s Speech at the State Opening of Parliament.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Davidson urges May to “reach out” for consensus – Daily Mail
  • Manufacturers call for Brexit rethink – BBC
  • EU asks Britain for £58 million to knock down and rebuild HQ – Daily Mail
  • Only Brexit can save our values from an abyss – Melanie Phillips, The Times(£)
  • Suicidal folly of the “cabinet sensibles” – Leader, Daily Mail
  • No time to waste says Barnier – Financial Times
  • A cross-party commission should be considered – Leader, Daily Telegraph
  • “Soft Brexit” is meaningless – Daily Express


Gove says he is “proud” to serve May…

“Over many years of working with Theresa I have seen again and again that she is driven by two great leadership qualities. She always puts what is right for the country above any other consideration. And she has the determination to see vital jobs through to the end – whatever the opposition. From deporting hate preachers who sow division in our society to reforming the criminal justice system so it treats all citizens fairly, Theresa has consistently shown both a deep commitment to serving others and the moral courage to make a decisive difference. Those are the two qualities we need at this critical time for our country, and I am proud to be serving alongside her.” – Michael Gove, Daily Telegraph

…as he hits back at critics over climate change

“Michael Gove’s first act as environment secretary was to issue a denial yesterday that he had ever intended to remove climate change from the national curriculum. The Green Party had said he was “entirely unfit” for the brief because of his “attempt to wipe the subject from our children’s curriculum”. This was a reference to claims in 2013 that Mr Gove, when education secretary, had removed climate change from a draft of the updated geography syllabus. Mr Gove authorised officials to point yesterday to a strongly worded rebuttal issued by the Department for Education at the time.” – The Times(£)

Halfon sacked as Apprentices Minister…

“An ally of George Osborne has been sacked from the Government by Theresa May as she continues to carry out the post-General Election reshuffle of her ministerial team. Apprenticeships Minister Robert Halfon was asked to leave by Mrs May and revealed she did not give a reason for her decision, adding: “The Prime Minister has to make these decisions, I wasn’t really given a reason”.” – Daily Mail

  • Drivers champ gets boot – The Sun

…as Raab returns to Justice

“Former businessman and remain campaigner Mel Stride has been appointed the financial secretary to the Treasury. Nick Hurd, whose father Douglas served in both Margaret Thatcher and John Major’s governments, has been selected as Home Office minister. Dominic Raab returns to the justice ministry. He previously served as parliamentary under secretary between May 2015 and July 2016.” – City AM

Ashcroft polling shows the Tories lost among voters in their 40s

“Lord Ashcroft, the former Tory deputy chairman, revealed the conclusions of his post-election poll that diagnosed what went wrong for the party. He found that the youngest age group to vote Tory decisively was the 55s to 64s, suggesting that the manifesto damaged the party’s credibility with those in their 40s who had previously backed Mrs May.” – The Times(£)

>Yesterday: Nicholas Mazzei on Comment: Changing the Party to attract the youth vote

Contest in the SNP for new Westminster leader

“Four SNP MPs have said they are hoping to be the party’s next leader at Westminster. The position became vacant after Angus Robertson lost his seat in the general election. Ian Blackford, Joanna Cherry, Tommy Sheppard and Drew Hendry have all confirmed their candidacy. They were all first elected in 2015.” – BBC

Corbyn urged to put centrist MPs on the front bench

“A Labour frontbencher urged Jeremy Corbyn yesterday to “strengthen the squad” by inviting centrist MPs into his shadow cabinet. Jon Ashworth, shadow health secretary, signalled that portfolios should be handed to moderates despite John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, appearing to reject such a move….Speculation has grown that Yvette Cooper and Chuka Umunna could be drafted in.” – The Times(£)

  • I’m sick of the Left pretending that Jeremy Corbyn won the election – Rupert Myers, Daily Telegraph
  • Tribune Group call for existing Shadow Cabinet to be reappointed – The Guardian
  • Labour in a muddle over Single Market policy – Daily Telegraph
  • This is Corbyn’s moment – Polly Toynbee, The Guardian

RSPCA in crisis as chief executive resigns

“The RSPCA was in turmoil last night after its new chief executive walked out before implementing a recovery plan. Membership of the charity, which has been accused of aggression towards pet owners, hostility to farmers and mounting wasteful anti-hunting prosecutions, has fallen below 20,000 for the first time in decades. Fee income from members, already down a third in ten years, is falling at an accelerating rate. The Charity Commission is under renewed pressure to step in and improve the running of the world’s oldest animal welfare organisation, which has an annual income of £144 million and employs more than 1,500 staff.” – The Times(£)

  • “No chance” of hunting ban repeal says Shapps – The Sun

Sylvester: Stop Boris, Get Ruth campaign has begun

“As the Conservative Party braces itself wearily for another leadership contest, a “Stop Boris” campaign is already under way. “Boris is disgracing himself and has almost no support in the Commons,” one minister told me yesterday. “He is reviled in Europe and ridiculed in British politics. He’s become a negative on the doorstep and amongst Conservative activists because he’s not a serious person. If he stands he’ll be destroyed.” There are many Conservatives desperate to get Ms Davidson down to Westminster — either as chairwoman of the party, with a seat in the Lords, or parachuted into the Commons in a by-election, ready to stand in a leadership contest.” – Rachel Sylvester, The Times(£)

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Davidson desires neither to lead nor split the Conservative and Unionist Party

Hannan: The Commons has never been more pro Brexit

“First things first. Eighty-five per cent of us voted for parties that pledged to leave the EU. The parties that wanted a rerun — Lib Dems, Greens and SNP — all lost ground. There has never been a more Brexit-friendly Commons. What kind of Brexit, though? Is there now a majority in Parliament for a so-called “soft Brexit”, in which we end up being bossed about by EU judges? Might Europhile Conservative and Labour MPs leave us with a Brexit that happens in name only? No. That option has never been on the table. As Donald Tusk, the President of the European Council, says: “The only real alternative to a hard Brexit is no Brexit.” – Daniel Hannan, The Sun

Clark: Osborne’s attacks amount to betrayal

“Theresa May has been compared in recent days to former PM Edward Heath, who in 1974 called an unnecessary election and emerged the loser. But if you are looking for a latter day Ted Heath, George Osborne is a far closer match. The last 27 years of Heath’s political career were described as “the incredible sulk”, so bitter was he at losing the Tory leadership to Margaret Thatcher.  The difference is that Heath was 58 when he lost his post as leader. Osborne is still only 46. Either he snaps out of his bitterness or some very long and very tragic decades lie ahead.” Ross Clark, Daily Express

News in brief

  • Jihadi fighting to stay in Britain handed £250,000 in Legal Aid – Daily Mail
  • Pound slide amidst the political uncertainty – BBC
  • Tech giants that promote extremism face new fines – The Times(£)
  • Panama cuts ties with Taiwan – BBC
  • Trump’s travel ban blocked again – Independent
  • Boris urges Qatar to crack down on extremists – The Guardian