Fox amongst the chickens in Washington at first meeting of US-UK trade group

“Liam Fox was on Monday challenged to eat a US-style chlorinated chicken in public after he argued against letting a media obsession with food standards undermine transatlantic trade negotiations. Campaign group Open Britain threw down the gauntlet to the UK’s international trade secretary after he cast doubt on whether Britain would continue to adhere to EU rules banning imports of chlorinated chicken after Brexit. Mr Fox’s stance during a trip to the US highlighted the potential for the UK to make significant compromises as it starts preparatory work on striking bilateral trade deals with countries after Britain leaves the EU.” – FT

  • He makes light of food safety fears – The Times (£)
  • And says it’s only “a detail” – Daily Mail
  • But is he too chicken to eat it? – The Sun
  • Cabinet splits over chlorination technique – Daily Telegraph
  • Rees-Mogg says it should be up to Britons to choose – Daily Express
  • Lords committee warns that quick deal could lead to standards disaster – Independent


  • This represents opportunities and dangers presented by Brexit – Independent


  • Get over the chicken thing. We need US trade – Ben Southwood, Daily Telegraph
  • Fox “stumbled at the first fence” – Polly Toynbee, Guardian

Johnson in New Zealand. He dismisses leadership bid speculation

“Boris Johnson has said the general election “did not evolve entirely in the way the Government had hoped”, as he dismissed speculation about a leadership bid. … He was speaking during a press conference at New Zealand’s parliament buildings in Wellington, during a two-day trip designed to strengthen ties with the Commonwealth state as the UK seeks new trading links after leaving the European Union. Mr Johnson is on the latest leg of a nine-day international tour that will see him head to Australia next.” – Daily Telegraph

  • He says the “political kerfuffle” should end – Daily Express


  • A fresh leader wouldn’t help anything – Anthony Seldon, Daily Telegraph

Javid to announce leasehold changes and crackdown on unfair ground rents

“The government is to end the “great scandal” of new houses sold on leases that force owners to make escalating rental payments on top of their mortgages. Plans to ban the practice and reduce ground rent payments to almost nothing will be outlined in a consultation launched today by Sajid Javid, the communities secretary. Most flats are sold as leaseholds, allowing the owner of the building to pay for their upkeep.” – The Times (£)

  • He says “enough is enough” – Daily Express
  • Plans will ban “feudal” practices – Daily Telegraph
  • Ground rents will be restricted to “peppercorn” levels – Guardian
  • The proposals are subject to an eight-week consultation – Independent
  • And follow up on a manifesto pledge – The Sun 
  • Recent government report found 1 in 5 homes are leasehold – FT


  • Developers are using ground rent as an “unjustifiable licence to print money” – Sajid Javid, The Times (£)

Clark announces plans to overhaul electricity use

“Household appliances could be switched off remotely when electricity supplies are scarce and programmed to run when power is plentiful under an energy revolution designed to save consumers up to £40 billion by 2050. Greg Clark, the business secretary, yesterday announced government proposals to overhaul the way Britons use electricity. The government wants to encourage energy suppliers to charge different prices through the day and will regulate new standards so that home appliances can be remotely controlled online.” – The Times (£)

  • Regulatory changes hoped to encourage more battery storage – FT

Fallon visits Britain’s “most powerful warship”

“Armchair critics of the military need to “shut up” said Michael Fallon as he declares “big decks and fast jets” are back on board Britain’s most powerful warship. The Defence Secretary said the 280-metre, 65,000-tonne aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth was “great for British industry” as he visited her at sea for the first time. During his address to the crew gathered on the four-acre flight deck of the vessel on Monday, he said it has “been a while since HMS Illustrious”, adding: “But big decks and fast jets are now back. “This ship is so much bigger than Illustrious and it combines, of course, sea power with air power.” – The Sun

  • He celebrates its “big decks and fast jets” – Daily Mail

Stanley: Transgender proposals show Greening to be a “libertine cross-dressing as a conservative”

“Justine Greening is a libertine cross-dressing as a conservative. The equalities minister wants a shake-up of trans rights that would make it far easier to change one’s gender. This is not only a revolutionary thing to do, it is politically stupid. It was not in the Tory manifesto; actual conservatives will hate it. The Government is picking a fight with its own supporters, and for what? To impress its friends at dinner parties.” – Daily Telegraph

  • So-called “Grassroots spokeswoman” says members are worried about this… – The Times (£)
  • …And that Greening’s sexuality may “possibly” have something to do with suggested reforms – Independent

More comment:

  • We need to “jerk at the reins of the runaway horse of liberal idealism” – Libby Purves, Daily Mail

>Today: Graeme Archer in Comment: I’m a gay man – not “LGBTQ+”. Here’s why Tories mustn’t play the transgender identity politics game.

Gardiner: It’s not possible for us to remain in customs union

“I campaigned to stay in the EU, but as a democratic politician, I have to recognise that these objectives provide the benchmarks by which leave voters will judge the future trade relations we negotiate with the EU. Unless the new agreement delivers these objectives in substantial measure, we will find it difficult to justify the final result to the 52% who voted leave. Some have suggested we should retain membership of the customs union … But that is not possible. The only members of this union are the member states of the EU, and they alone have negotiating power.” –  Guardian

  • Shadow international trade secretary confuses Labour stance further – The Times (£)
  • Corbyn criticised for party contradictions – Independent
  • As Umunna and Jones press for Remain – Daily Express
  • Following their leader’s weekend comments – Herald
  • Here are Labour’s eight Brexit positions – The Sun
  • Meanwhile, more complaints about its tuition fees stance – Spectator

>Today: ToryDiary: The great Conservative student panic

Khan calls for late-night theatres, restaurants, and shops

“London nightlife must encompass more than just after-hours drinking in pubs and clubs, the city’s mayor has said, announcing plans to support late-night theatres, restaurants and shops. Sadiq Khan wants “London at night to be welcoming and accessible for all” and will set out plans on Tuesday to help more businesses to open later, balanced with the needs of residents. Philip Kolvin, a lawyer specialising in licensing who is running the mayor’s Night Time Commission, said the mayor’s office wanted to challenge the view that nightlife was a “negative beast to be tamed”.” – FT

Starmer criticised for considering second job with Article 50 law firm

“Sir Keir Starmer was accused of a conflict of interest last night after it emerged that he was in talks to accept a role with a law firm that challenged the government over Article 50. The shadow Brexit secretary was offered a job by Mishcon de Reya, the law firm behind the court case that forced Theresa May to give parliament a vote on Article 50. A Conservative MP accused Sir Keir of a “conflict of interest” over the putative role.” – The Times (£)

  • He’s in talks with Mishcon… – FT
  • …which represented Miller – Daily Mail
  • Cleverly demands Starmer makes an explanatory statement – The Sun

>Today: ToryDiary: The great Conservative student panic

Trump criticised for talking politics to Boy Scout jamboree

“Parents have expressed anger at a politically charged speech that Donald Trump delivered to tens of thousands of Boy Scouts on Monday. … “Who the hell wants to speak about politics?” Mr Trump said, telling the boys at the National Scout Jamboree he wanted to talk about how to achieve their dreams. But politics proved too hard for Trump to resist on a day he spent pleading for Republican senators to vote to advance his long-promised health care overhaul and watching his son-in-law Jared Kushner being grilled on Capitol Hill about contacts with Russia.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Here are some “highlights” from the speech – Guardian

More Trump

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