May resigns

“Theresa May bowed to cabinet pressure yesterday and tearfully announced that she would resign within two weeks, triggering aleadership contest that could plunge the nation into a constitutional crisis. Mrs May confirmed that she would stand down as Tory leader on June 7 in an address that concluded with a declaration of gratitude for the “opportunity to serve the country I love”. Watched by her husband, Philip, Mrs May said that she had done everything she could to deliver Brexit and defended her attempt to win Labour backing for her deal, the move that precipitated her ejection from No 10.” – The Times

  • Brexit claims another victim – FT
  • Outgoing Prime Minister was met with wall of applause after speech… – The Times
  • …as she offers ‘tearful apology’ to staff – The Sun
  • Ex-aide reveals moment May purportedly ‘cracked’ under pressure – Daily Express
  • What the cameras didn’t see – Daily Mail


  • May’s departure won’t break the deadlock – FT
  • Author of her own downfall – The Sun
  • Premiership sank without trace – Daily Telegraph
  • Self-inflicted failure – The Times

>Today: ToryDiary: How Dinah Glover brought down Theresa May


She will remain an MP

“Theresa May will stay in the Commons as a backbench MP when she leaves No 10 in July, her local party chairman has said.The prime minister telephoned Richard Kellaway, who chairs the Conservative association in Maidenhead, before she addressed the nation from Downing Street yesterday morning. “The main concern for us as her association is that she’s not going to resign her seat,” Mr Kellaway said. “She will carry on as a member of parliament, which is welcomed by us.” Mr Kellaway, who has known the prime minister for most of the 22 years that she has been Maidenhead’s MP, described her as a “remarkable” constituency representative who still canvassed regularly.” – The Times

  • Daughter of Kindertransport founder criticises May – The Times


  • How the new ‘Iron Lady’ crumbled – Camilla Tominey, Daily Telegraph
  • Meagre legacy of a short reign – Henry Zeffman, The Times
  • How May’s mistakes stacked up – Jim Pickard, FT
  • I’ve seen how Prime Ministers handle crises – Gyles Brandreth, Daily Telegraph

>Yesterday: MPs Etc.: Tributes to the Prime Minister. Senior Conservatives, leadership candidates.

Daniel Finkelstein: Whatever the reason, May failed

“Theresa May’s premiership has ended in failure. Nobody can seriously argue with this conclusion, however well disposed they are to her. No historian, however revisionist, is likely to revise that. She set herself the task of delivering Brexit smoothly and on time and she has not. She committed herself to an ambitious attempt to take the problems of those just about managing and she has not been able to make much headway. She sees herself as someone who profoundly understands the Conservative Party, yet she has been deserted by its members and its voters. Much more open to debate will be the reasons for that failure. There are two broad and conflicting accounts.” – The Times

  • Next Tory leader must learn from her mistakes – Charles Moore, Daily Telegraph
  • She ran on self-pity and lack of empathy – Matthew Parris, The Times
  • The real problem? May wasn’t a Conservative – Madeline Grant, Daily Telegraph
  • A political tragedy like no other – Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Mail
  • Finally, too late, she showed some passion – Jane Moore, The Sun
  • Her failures could bring the Tories back together – Dia Chakravarty, Daily Telegraph
  • May was set up to fail – Stefan Stern, The Guardian
  • You’d need a heart of stone not to feel for her – Henry Deedes, Daily Mail
  • May had many Victorian virtues, but Gladstone’s weaknesses – Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, Daily Telegraph

Johnson vows to take Britain out, deal or no deal…

Boris Johnson has vowed to take Britain out of the EU on October 31 “deal or no deal” if he becomes Prime Minister as his leadership bid received heavyweight backing. Hours after a tearful Theresa May announced June 7 as the date she will step down as Tory leader, Mr Johnson insisted there would be no further extension of Article 50 if he wins the race to succeed her. His campaign received a major boost as both Philip Hammond and Amber Rudd indicated they could back him, suggesting he could receive top-level support from both Remain and Leave campaigners. Mrs May broke down as she told the nation it had been an honour to serve “the country I love”, admitting she had failed to deliver Brexit and it was time for a new leader to try to do better.” – Daily Telegraph

  • MPs fear contest will devolve into Eurosceptic ‘arms race’ – FT
  • EU leaders say hard Brexit is nearly ‘impossible’ to stop… – The Times
  • …as they pledge to stand firm behind Withdrawal Agreement – The Guardian
  • Sorting out backstop will be top of new leader’s in-tray – The Times


  • Compromise is a dirty word when it means betraying Brexit – Iain Duncan Smith, Daily Telegraph

>Today: Sir Geoffrey Cilfton-Brown in Comment: May failed to lead Britain out of the EU – but her successor can yet succeed

>Yesterday: Iain Dale’s column: The stars are aligning for a Johnson premiership

…as Goodman warns of ‘danger’ he faces with grassroots…

“Boris Johnson faces this “danger” among the Conservative grassroots and the Brexiteer MPs in the Tory Party as he attempts to become Prime Minister… Paul Goodman, the Editor of the Conservative Home website, told Channel 4 News: “The question about Boris Johnson is, does he catch the public imagination and restore, repair some of the damage to the Conservative share of the vote that’s kicked in over the last few months.” … He added: “I think there’s a slight danger for him here in that his base is the Brexiteer vote, but he has a reputation for unreliability.”” – Daily Express


  • Only I can save your jobs, favourite tells MPs – The Times
  • Trump could use visit to endorse Johnson – The Sun

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: After May, Johnson? And No Deal?

…and Rudd says she might back him

“Amber Rudd has signalled she could work with Boris Johnson if he becomes Prime Minister as she formally rules herself out of the Tory leadership race. The Work and Pensions secretary left the door open to the creation of a ‘Bamber’ joint leadership ticket in next month’s battle to succeed Theresa May. Amid speculation she could become Mr Johnson’s Chancellor, she said “would like to lower taxes – we have to be the low tax party because people have certain expectations and they need to be able to look after their own money”. Ms Rudd also waded into the row over the UK’s new mobile 5G network, saying “we should be able to do business with China and Huawei”.” – Daily Telegraph

  • But Stewart says he ‘could not serve’ a no-deal administration – Daily Telegraph


  • Johnson is rascal enough to rat on Brexit – Matthew Parris, The Times
  • He is the paradoxical choice – Camilla Cavendish, FT
  • So flawed, yet the public forgives him – Simon Walters, Daily Mail
  • Raab is the serious Brexiteer who can save the Tories – Mark Brolin, Daily Telegraph

>Today: MPs Etc.: Leadership election candidate MP support numbers: Hunt 27, Johnson 19, Raab 13, Gove 12, Javid 10

Hancock will run

“Remainer Matt Hancock has confirmed he will run to replace Theresa May as PM. The Health Secretary said this morning: “I am running to win.” And he added: “I believe from the bottom of my heart that we need a leader for the future, not just for now.” The Sun revealed the 40-year-old was set to launch his bid today, after he told fellow MPs the night before last at a function: “I am ready to lead”. And he said this morning on Radio 4 he was “honoured” by the number of MPs who had demanded he run to be PM. He promised to “be honest about the trade offs” of Brexit to build a mandate to get us out of the EU without having a general election.” – The Sun

  • Fox refuses to rule himself out – Daily Mail
  • Successor must be ‘less wooden than the Maybot’ – The Times
  • Activists demand candidates face 18 gruelling hustings – The Sun


Tory MPs warn against snap election…

Tory MPs have warned Theresa May’s successor that the Conservative Party needs an early general election like it needs a “hole in the head” amid calls for a snap poll to break the Brexit deadlock. Europhile and Eurosceptic Tories are united in their opposition to holding an election immediately after Mrs May is replaced. Both wings of the party are adamant Brexit must have been resolved before voters are asked to elect a new House of Commons for fear of the party being annihilated at the ballot box. Jeremy Corbyn, Nicola Sturgeon and other senior figures have demanded an early general election but the majority of Tory MPs are vehemently against the move.” – Daily Telegraph

  • The slow demise of Conservative England – Geoffrey Wheatcroft, FT
  • How the Conservatives can avoid plunging into oblivion – Leo McKinstry, The Sun

>Today: Nick Hargrave’s column: Why a referendum and not an election could offer the new leader a Brexit answer

…as Corbyn’s Labour braced for ‘worst election result in 35 years’

“Jeremy Corbyn’s  crumbing Labour Party suffered their worst election day in 35 years, according to an MP out on a “dispiriting” campaign trail during the crunch European ballot. Ben Bradshaw aired his views on what appeared to be a dire day of campaigning for the party, whose mandate includes a so-called people’s vote or final say on the Brexit deal… Labour remain behind Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party in the early opinion polls of the European election results.” – Daily Express

  • Brexit Party landslide in waiting? – Daily Mail

Cable announces departure date

“Vince Cable has set the date for his departure as Liberal Democrat leader, saying he will hand over a “bigger, stronger party” to his successor on 23 July. With the party expected to do well when the results of Thursday’s European elections are announced on Sunday, Cable said it was time to fulfil his promise to step aside. The contest to succeed the 76-year-old former business secretary features the former business minister Jo Swinson and the former energy secretary Ed Davey among the frontrunners. Lib Dem MPs can be nominated up until 7 June, which is also the cut-off date for new members to join the party in order to vote in the contest.” – The Guardian

  • Brexit Party’s energy leaves rivals in the shadows – John Harris, The Guardian

Inside Trump’s re-election war room

“Welcome to the Trump 2020 campaign headquarters. It is from this 14th-floor office on the edge of Washington, DC, looking across the Potomac River on to the capital’s famous white monuments, that the president’s re-election bid is being plotted. There may be 18 months until the country goes to the polls, but Mr Trump’s behemoth of a campaign is already up and running – as became clear to us when The Telegraph became the first British publication to look around inside. The campaign is well funded, with more than $100 million banked since the last election. It is well organised, with a set-up that dwarfs his 2016 effort in scale and depth. And it is well drilled, delivering messages honed over years, which already secured one victory.” – Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • Johnson will have to win a General Election if he wants to deliver Brexit – Steve Moore, Reaction
  • The leadership race is his to lose – Matt Singh, CapX
  • The grave mistake that has killed May’s Brexit deal – James Forsyth, The Spectator
  • Why Brown should get back in his box – Douglas Murray, UnHerd
  • The EU is a betrayal of Europe’s exceptionalism – Douglas Carswell, 1828