Brexit 1) Transition must end by 2022 says Hammond

“Any “transitional deal” in the period after Brexit must end by June 2022, the time of the next general election, Philip Hammond has said. But the chancellor said there must be “business as usual, life as normal” for Britons as the UK left the EU. “Many things would look similar” the day after Brexit – on 29 March 2019 – as the UK moved gradually towards a new relationship with the EU, he said. The EU has said it is too soon to discuss a transitional deal. A European Commission spokesman said: “We are about to discuss the specifics of separation and once this is done to the satisfaction of everyone, we may move to the second step.” – BBC

  • The Conservatives must come clean about their plans – Leader, Daily Telegraph
  • Hammond’s dismal tone – The Sun Says
  • We will be watching like hawks say Tory Eurosceptics – Daily Mail
  • Stay in the EU during transition says aerospace body – BBC
  • While the Cabinet’s away the Remoaners play – The Sun
  • UK in “strong position” to negotiate trade deal with EU – Daily Express
  • Small firms hit by draconian new EU data protection rules – The Sun

>Today: Henry Newman on Comment: There will be a Brexit transition period – but it is unlikely to be via the EEA or EFTA

Brexit 2) EU citizens will still be able to work here says Rudd

“EU citizens will still be allowed to come to the UK to live and work after Brexit as long as they register with the Home Office, Amber Rudd has announced. The Home Secretary said that freedom of movement will officially end in March 2019 when Britain leaves the EU, but revealed plans that suggest the existing immigration regime will remain largely unchanged during the transitional period after Brexit. Government sources conceded that the rules governing EU migrants coming to Britain during the transitional period “may look like a similar arrangement” to free movement.” – Daily Telegraph

Brexit 3) Labour can still stop it happening says Khan

“Sadiq Khan has set out the possibility of Britain remaining within the EU, arguing that Brexit could be legitimately stopped if the Labour party included the pledge in an election manifesto or committed to a second referendum.  In a considered and powerful intervention that could raise the hopes of remain supporters, the London mayor described himself as “an optimist” about the possibility of the UK staying part of the European Union.” – The Guardian

  • “Tide is turning” against Brexit says Maltese PM – The Guardian
  • More confusion from Diane Abbott – The Sun

Brexit 4) DUP scuppers plan for new Irish border

“The DUP has promised to use its alliance with Theresa May to scupper Irish plans to draw the post-Brexit border with the UK in the Irish Sea. As the Irish prime minister said that he had started formally working with the leaders of Scotland and Wales to block Britain’s plans to leave the customs union, the prime minister’s allies in Westminster warned that Dublin’s hardening stance would imperil devolution and put the peace process at risk.” – The Times(£)

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: The DUP are right to reject the Irish Government’s border demands

Brexit 5) Put the economy first says Street

“The Conservatives’ most senior directly elected politician has urged Theresa May to protect the economy before meeting the party’s immigration target. Andy Street, who became West Midlands mayor in May, warned that leaving the European Union was “high stakes” for the region and that securing the economy “must take precedence”. In his most prominent comments on Brexit since his election, Mr Street called on the prime minister to stop including students in immigration statistics, so protecting universities from a rush to cut applicants from overseas.” – The Times(£)

Brexit 6) Don’t allow the Remainers to fudge it says Moore

“Think of that phrase “cliff-edge”. It is a metaphor designed to inspire fear. We are standing on high ground, it suggests, and now we are going to tumble off it, falling to death or injury on the rocks beneath. Some of us might prefer the metaphor of leaving an open prison. Yes, we will need help with adjusting to freedom, but freedom is what it will be…So while we don’t want the break to be violent, we do need it unambiguously to happen. If we fudge this, we will get a worse deal – which perhaps, at a subconscious level, is what some Remainers want.” – Charles Moore, Daily Telegraph

Give household cash rebates for slow broadband says Shapps

“Dozens of MPs are calling for the urgent introduction of an automatic compensation scheme for broadband users amid warnings that millions of connections are not reaching the minimum standard. In the report – signed by 57 MPs from across the political spectrum — it is argued that urgent action is needed from Government to investigate poor broadband customer service. Organised by the British Infrastructure Group of MPs (BIG) and chaired by the Conservative MP Grant Shapps, it also calls on ministers to “finally introduce minimum standards for the broadband sector” and urges Ofcom to add more pressure on broadband services to deliver better standards.” – Independent

  • Fears that pledge of legal right to faster broadband will be abandoned – Daily Telegraph

Government acts to speed up Business Rates relief for small firms

“The government has stepped in to try to speed up business rate relief to thousands of small firms. Businesses in England, hit by huge hikes in their rates bills, were promised millions of pounds in support by the chancellor in March. But months on from the start of the new tax regime in April, many are still waiting for their bills to be adjusted. Local Government Minister Marcus Jones has called the main software providers to councils into Whitehall for talks.” – BBC

Corbyn attacked for hypocrisy on gender pay gap

“Jeremy Corbyn has been branded a “hypocrite” after it emerged he employs more men in top jobs than women and that female staff are paid less than their male colleagues. Of the seven members of staff paid top rates just two are women and one, who is as senior as the most well paid male member of staff, is paid less than his deputy. The figures, released by the House of Commons, come just days after Mr Corbyn criticised the BBC for failing to pay its female members of staff the same as men.” – Daily Telegraph

Labour MP who attacked grammar schools as “horrible” sent her sons to one

“Labour faced accusations of hypocrisy after one of its new MPs was criticised for sending her sons to grammar school despite describing selective education as “horrible and divisive”. Rosie Duffield attacked Theresa May’s plans to build new grammar schools as a “vanity project” during the election campaign and has been attacked by a local rival over her stance. Labour has campaigned aggressively against new grammars since Mrs May signalled her intention to end the longstanding ban on opening selective schools in September.” – The Times(£)

O’Flynn quits UKIP’s front bench

“A leading member of UKIP has resigned from the party’s front bench for the second time, saying he is worried about the direction the party is taking. Patrick O’Flynn, who is standing down as economics spokesman, claims the “centrist approach” advocated by him and others “is falling by the wayside”. The ex-journalist made the announcement as nominations are set to close in the contest to replace leader Paul Nuttall.” – BBC

£2 billion a year in aid to countries with dire human rights records

“Britain ploughs almost £2 billion of aid each year into countries with dire human rights records, it can be revealed. The Foreign Office has put 30 countries on its human rights watch-list for overseeing rape, torture and extrajudicial killings. But despite this, the Daily Mail can reveal the UK’s aid department last year funnelled development cash into more than half of these countries. It means hundreds of millions are being poured into 17 of the worst human rights offenders, such as Zimbabwe, Burma and the Palestinian Occupied Territories.” – Daily Mail

More than 1,250 university staff earning over £150,000 a year

“A staggering 1,250 vice chancellors and senior staff at top unis are pocketing more than £150,000 a year as student tuition fees rocket. Theresa May has been urged to CAP university pay after disbelief at the spiralling wages now paid at Britain’s biggest campuses. An investigation of salaries at 29 unis such as Cambridge and London’s Imperial College revealed 4,220 staff pocketed more than £100,000 in 2015-2016. Some 1,254 earn more than the PM – over £150K. Labour peer Lord Adonis accused staff of “enriching themselves” on the back of debt-riddled students forking out £9,000 a year in tuition fees. He demanded pay was capped at £150,000 to find the money to bring back maintenance grants so poorer kids could pursue a higher education.” – The Sun

Housing associations can conceal tower block safety fears

“Residents of dozens of unsafe tower blocks could be kept in the dark about failed fire safety tests because commercial interests mean that housing associations will not be forced to reveal which buildings are dangerous. The government revealed yesterday that 82 buildings had been found to use the same combination of cladding and insulation as Grenfell Tower, which failed the fire safety test used under present guidelines. The latest tests were more rigorous than those carried out previously, looking at the whole system rather than just cladding, which has been widely blamed for spreading the fire that killed at least 80 people. Cladding panels on 149 tower blocks had already been found to be combustible.” – The Times(£)

Trump names new chief of staff

“US President Donald Trump has named General John Kelly, who currently heads the Department of Homeland Security, as his next chief of staff. The announcement, made on Twitter on Friday afternoon, removes Reince Priebus from the role. The embattled former chief of staff had faced pressure since being named as a possible leaker by Mr Trump’s newly appointed director of communication.” – BBC

North Korea says all of USA within missile range

“North Korea has hailed as a success its latest test of an intercontinental ballistic missile describing it as a “stern warning” for the US. North Korean leader Kim Jong-un said the test proved that the entire US was within striking range, state media reported. The launch came three weeks after North Korea’s first ICBM test. US President Donald Trump called it “only the latest reckless and dangerous action by the North Korean regime”.” – BBC

Oborne: A star is born

“Less than two months have passed since she was elected as an MP for the first time, but already a star is born. I predict a brilliant future for Kemi Badenoch, the new Tory MP for Saffron Walden in Essex. I don’t want to jinx her Commons career, but it must be said that the 37-year-old delivered one of the most impressive maiden speeches heard in recent years. She told how she was brought up in Nigeria, where she did her homework ‘by candlelight because the state electricity board could not provide power’. She said she ‘fetched water a mile away in heavy, rusty buckets because the nationalised water could not get water to flow from the taps’.” – Peter Oborne, Daily Mail

Forsyth: Opposition to a leadership contest is hardening

“Theresa May should go on holidays more. Her Italian break has coincided with a halt to the Tory plotting that has been rumbling on since the General Election. Partly it is because Parliament’s summer break makes scheming more difficult. You can’t have a quiet word in the corridor when everyone is hundreds of miles away from each other. But it is also because Tory opposition to a leadership contest is hardening. MPs are aware of how it could rip the party apart.” James Forsyth, The Sun

Parris: I’m ashamed of Conservative incompetence

“The prime minister has gone away. “Ladybird, ladybird,” we might cry, “fly away home! Your house is on fire, your children are gone!” Except that we’re better off without her flapping around, spouting implausibilities. Perhaps reality in the shape of Philip Hammond may gradually bear down upon fantasy; perhaps forlorn hopes may steal silently away and various fools, while not repenting of their folly, allow it to slip their recollection. I hope so. I left Spain feeling ashamed to be British. I return to England ashamed to be a Conservative.” – Matthew Parris, The Times(£)

News in brief

  • Charlie Gard has died – Daily Mail
  • Gangs pay teenagers to launder crime cash – The Times(£)
  • Demonstrators block road in Dalston – The Guardian
  • Call to break farmers “subsidy addiction” – BBC
  • Motorway speed limit could be cut to 60 mph – Daily Mail

And finally…MPs photographs “show their human side”

“New portraits of MPs have been produced – and they’ve gone down a storm. Photographer Chris McAndrew, who’s snapped rock stars, actors and ballerinas, took the pictures in the Commons just after MPs were sworn in, following June’s surprise general election. Tory Paul Masterton, the new MP for East Renfrewshire, told Radio 4’s Today programme the pictures went down well on social media – and showed MPs weren’t “alien species” but a “reflection of us as real people”.” – BBC