Letwin backs latest Labour move to thwart no-deal exit

“Labour will on Wednesday lead a cross-party move to stop Britain leaving the EU without a deal, laying down the gauntlet to Boris Johnson who will launch his Tory leadership bid with a promise to complete Brexit by October 31. Mr Johnson will break cover at a campaign launch where he will promise to take Britain out of the EU with or without a deal. “After three years and two missed deadlines, we must leave the EU on October 31,” he is expected to say. But Labour has tabled a motion designed to prevent a no-deal Brexit. Tory grandee Oliver Letwin has backed the move. Britain’s opposition party — backed by the Liberal Democrats, the Scottish National party and other smaller parties — will use an opposition day debate on Wednesday to try to seize control of the parliamentary agenda on June 25.” – FT

  • Boles flying back specially to support it – Twitter
  • Stewart ‘expresses sympathy’ with plan – Daily Telegraph


  • How Labour plan to wrest control of Parliament – Nikki da Costa, Daily Telegraph
  • I’d lead the Lib Dems into government to stop Brexit – Sir Ed Davey, Times Red Box
  • Brexiteers’ dreams are dying before their eyes – Rafael Behr, The Guardian
  • Proroguing Parliament would blow up British politics, but isn’t illegal – Henry Hill, Daily Telegraph

>Today: ToryDiary: Corbyn will win if today’s Commons motion is passed. And Tory leadership candidates know it.

Ministers clash over preparations

“Ministers clashed at a cabinet meeting yesterday over preparations for a no-deal Brexit. Steve Barclay, the Brexit secretary, criticised the Treasury as part of a complaint at Whitehall “drift” over planning for October 31 — the deadline for leaving the European Union. Sajid Javid accused Philip Hammond of ignoring a request for more money to keep Britain’s border forces on full no-deal readiness. After the meeting he submitted a formal demand for up to £1.2 billion extra cash — a request described by Home Office sources as “a reminder”. The chancellor said that he had not seen a Home Office bid for more cash. Allies described the home secretary’s four-paragraph reminder as “political posturing”.” – The Times

  • Javid demands Hammond release £1.2 billion in funding – The Sun
  • Leadsom insists Brexit will happen on October 31 – FT


  • May commits UK to tough climate action in teeth of opposition – The Times

Johnson launches his campaign…

Remain-backing MPs will attempt to thwart Boris Johnson’s plans for a no-deal Brexit on the day he launches his campaign to become the next prime minister. The former foreign secretary will deliver a pledge on Wednesday to take Britain out of the EU on October 31 with or without a deal, as he tells MPs the Tory Party will “kick the bucket” if there is any further delay… It comes as a new poll suggests that Mr Johnson could win a landslide victory in a general election if he wins the Tory leadership race. The ComRes poll suggests Mr Johnson could win a majority of up to 140 seats as the only leadership candidate who could beat both Jeremy Corbyn and Nigel Farage at the ballot box.” – Daily Telegraph

  • Front-runner to ‘break cover’ to launch bid – The Guardian
  • City grandees give him the thumbs down and back Gove… – FT
  • …but Johnson wins over other executives – The Sun
  • Polling suggests ex-Mayor would win a landslide – Daily Telegraph
  • Cabinet Secretary ‘facing the axe’ if he wins – Daily Mail


  • Only he can deliver – Richard Drax, Lucy Frazer, Marcus Fysh, and Damien Moore, Times Red Box
  • Northern Tories have designs on Labour heartlands – Sebastian Payne, FT
  • New leader must be a champion for consensus – Sir Lynton Crosby, Times Red Box

>Today: MPs Etc.: Leadership election candidate MP support numbers: Johnson 79, Hunt 37, Gove 34, Raab 23, Javid 19, Hancock 16


…as does Javid…

“Sajid Javid will today urge Tory MPs to look beyond their “comfort zone choice” in a speech setting out his stall as a leader who can widen the party’s appeal. The home secretary will warn that the leadership contest is repelling voters as other hopefuls line up to attack the frontrunner, Boris Johnson. However, Mr Javid will play on fears that the former foreign secretary would limit the party’s electoral appeal, particularly in areas such as Scotland. “I believe now more than ever that this is a moment for a new kind of leadership and a new kind of leader,” he will say. “A leader is not just for Christmas, or just for Brexit. So we can’t risk going with someone who feels like the short-term, comfort zone choice. We need tomorrow’s leader, today.” He will be introduced by one of his most high-profile backers, the Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson, and will say that her part of the party succeeded when they “threw out central casting and picked someone totally different”.” – The Times

  • He vows to give poor Brits the same chances he had – The Sun



  • Next Tory leader needs to tell us a story – Daniel Finkelstein, The Times


  • Brexit must come before talk of a new politics – The Sun

>Today: Daniel Hannan MEP’s column: Better to select the Tory leader like the Dalai Lama than elect him in this preposterous way

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: Javid’s new video. “I know better days lie ahead.”

…whilst Stewart promises ‘grown-up approach’

“Rory Stewart officially launched his Conservative party leadership campaign on Tuesday, pledging a grown-up approach to resolving Brexit while improving the UK’s public services and international standing. Mr Stewart told several hundred activists, gathered in a packed circus tent on the south bank of London’s Thames river, that he would show strong leadership — based on his broad experience before entering politics — and attacked the “fairy stories” from his rivals about a no-deal Brexit. “It is not just no to a deal. It is no to everything. It is no to Europe, it is no to trade, it is no to parliament, it is no to reality. We are not a ‘no’ country. Underlying all these stories that the other candidates are putting forward that masquerade as optimism is a failure — a failure to grasp reality. What they are giving you is fairy stories.”” – FT

  • He brands Johnson a ‘clown’ who can’t be trusted with nukes – The Sun


  • Cunning rise should terrify Tory Thatcherites – Tom Harwood, Daily Telegraph
  • Rivals’ spending promises aren’t realistic – Rory Stewart, FT


Candidates attack BBC’s licence fee decision

“Three Conservative leadership candidates have pledged to ensure over-75s continue to receive free television licences if they become prime minister, even though this could result in further cuts to the BBC’s budget. Tory leadership hopefuls Sajid Javid and Andrea Leadsom became the latest to speak out on the issue, following the BBC’s announcement on Monday that most older viewers would have to start paying the £154.50 fee from next year. Esther McVey had already said on Monday she was “ashamed” of the BBC’s decision, implying the corporation should instead make deep spending cuts of about £750m a year. The 2017 Conservative manifesto contained a pledge to maintain the benefit, even though the party later suggested this was a mistake made as a result of a copy-and-paste error.” – The Guardian

  • McVey is a showbiz pariah after her bust-up with Kelly – Jon Roseman, Daily Mail

Leadsom pressed over Scottish independence remarks

“PM hopeful Andrea Leadsom stunned Westminster by opening the door to a second vote on Scottish independence. The former Commons Leader said she would “never say never” to the prospect of another indy vote. And she insisted it would be “disrespectful” to the Scottish Parliament for the UK Government to rule it out. It sparked a furious backlash among MPs and threatened to derail her bid for No10. Speaking at a lunch with journalists in Westminster, Mrs Leadsom said: “The reason I say ‘never say never’ is because I do not think that there should be another independence referendum in Scotland, I do not think it’s in their interest, but on the other hand I am a big believer in devolution.”” – The Sun

  • Hunt withdraws support for Sturgeon’s ‘meaningless’ trip – Daily Express
  • Foreign Secretary faces ‘scathing’ report into handling of sanctions regime – The Guardian

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: “Our country needs a leader who will be decisive, who will get things done” – Leadsom

Sarah Vine: Gove is passionate about giving people second chances, and was right to be honest

“That is why, when it became clear that a private conversation Michael had had about the fact that — long before he even thought about entering frontline politics – he had taken drugs was about to be revealed, I had no hesitation. Just be honest, I told him. Tell the truth on television, rather than shy away or dodge questions. Face up to it and accept the consequences, however embarrassing and damaging they may be. It would have been better, of course, not to have done it in the first place. But given that he did, lying about it would only make things worse. Despite the repercussions, I still think that was the right decision. If you’re putting yourself forward to run the country, you cannot have something like that hanging over you, playing on your conscience in the dead of night.” – Daily Mail

  • Johnson must explain past drug use, says Leadsom – The Sun

>Today: Michael Gove MP in Comment: I have shown in government that I deliver. And as Prime Minister, I will deliver Brexit – and stop Corbyn.

Corbyn ‘condemned by allies’ over Europe and antisemitism

“One of Jeremy Corbyn’s most important allies hit out at the Labour leader’s critics yesterday after the party’s divisions were exposed yet again over Brexit and antisemitism. Ian Lavery, the party chairman, told a meeting of the shadow cabinet that MPs had been disrespectful when Mr Corbyn addressed them on Monday night. One Labour MP told The Times that the meeting had been the worst of his leadership as Mr Corbyn came under fire from usually loyal MPs, especially over the party’s stance on a second EU referendum. Yesterday Mr Lavery insisted that the party should not change its Brexit policy. He has emerged as the most vocal opponent of a second referendum in the shadow cabinet. Two weeks ago he said that supporters of it were “left-wing intellectuals” who seemed to be sneering at “ordinary people”.” – The Times

  • Bosses back the Opposition’s vision, McDonnell tells CEO summit – The Times

>Yesterday: Left Watch: Labour MPs are testing Corbyn’s diminished authority, but that doesn’t mean they’re about to revolt

News in Brief:

  • Johnson supporters want no-deal Brexit and less talk of climate change – Tim Bale and Paul Webb, The Conversation
  • Why I’m backing Hunt – Nick Herbert MP, CapX
  • Dublin’s Brexit policy is in tatters and its bluff is now being called – Ray Bassett, Brexit Central
  • Raab is refusing to lift an NDA with a female former colleague – Alberto Nardelli and Alex Wickham, Buzzfeed
  • How we got so divided over Brexit – George Maggs, Reaction