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Leadership 1) Fulfil Brexit or face extinction, Johnson warns MPs at first hustings

‘Boris Johnson has warned that the Conservative party faces an “existential crisis” if it does not see Brexit through by October 31, ruling out a snap general election, a second referendum or a further delay to the UK’s exit from the EU. In the party’s first leadership hustings, held in parliament for the One Nation group of MPs, the Eurosceptic former foreign secretary made the case that he was “best placed to beat Jeremy Corbyn, excite people about conservatism and conservative values”… “In order to be successful, we must get ready for it. We’ve been sending mixed signals to business — they’ve heard from government that no-deal will never happen but we have to get people ready with enthusiasm,” he said. “The more determined we are to pursue no-deal, the less likely we will have to deploy it . . . I would immediately step up no-deal preparation but I do not believe that is what will happen. It is not in the EU’s interests.” Mr Johnson said a second referendum would be “divisive” and he would “be against it with every fibre of my body”. To win a general election he argued that the party must first resolve Brexit. – FT

>Today:

Leadership 2) Hancock argues that the UK must drive out Huawei by developing its home-grown technology industry

‘Calling on the UK to take on China as the dominant player in the global technology market, the Health Secretary will argue the case for a “British champion” rather than seeking to banish competition from overseas. Amid an ongoing row over the involvement of Huawei, the Chinese telecoms giant, in the UK’s 5G network, Mr Hancock will warn against “simplistic answers” that ignore the need for Western companies to step up and compete. Arguing that the UK cannot ban Huawei until a home-grown replacement is found, he will add that the “most effective response” to “competitors or adversaries is to forge a long-term strategy of our own.” In a speech at the Policy Exchange think tank on Wednesday, he will point to the UK’s defence industry as proof of what can be done by a government prepared to create the right market conditions.’ – Daily Telegraph

  • Further delay to an official decision on the question – FT
  • Britain faces a growing threat from cyberattack and online fraudsters – The Sun

Leadership 3) Leadsom presents plan for a ‘managed exit’, and rules out further delay

‘“I don’t regret supporting the Withdrawal Agreement. The reason I supported it three times was because legally we would be leaving the EU. It was deeply uncomfortable for me on a number of occasions but I always took the view that staying in government and voting for Brexit was the right thing to do, right up to the time when a second referendum became a condition of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill being passed. That for me, is no longer Brexit, that’s why I had to call the PM and offer my resignation…“But we can leave with a managed exit,” she added. “As leader of the Commons I’ve presided over a huge raft of secondary legislation to prepare for no deal – that’s all in place – it’s done. The Withdrawal Agreement Bill won’t get passed by parliament but the sensible measures that will smooth our exit from the EU most certainly could be passed by parliament. There is time if we introduce those bills before summer recess – you could programme the business to receive royal assent by the end of October.” Mrs Leadsom has ruled out extending Brexit beyond Halloween, saying: “The only way to successfully negotiate is to walk away, that’s the only way to get movement.”’ – Daily Telegraph

  • Prime Minister Leadsom would hold monthly public phone-ins – Daily Mail
  • Talk of No Deal spells doom for the Tories – Polly Toynbee, The Guardian
  • The EU requests more information on plans for share trading under No Deal – FT
  • NAO raises questions about farm subsidies in such a scenario – FT

>Today: ToryDiary: How much does a Party leader’s back story matter?

Leadership 4) Cleverly and Malthouse withdraw from the race as new rules raise the bar

‘The new rules from the 1922 Committee benefit the more established candidates who have already built up support, with Johnson currently totalling almost 40 public endorsements from MPs. Gove and Hunt have about 30 public supporters each. There were at one stage 13 candidates who had declared they wanted to succeed Theresa May, with more expected to enter the race in the coming days, but two ministers, Kit Malthouse and James Cleverly, withdrew on Tuesday acknowledging they did not have enough support to make the final two. Cleverly said his candidacy had required MPs to take “a leap of faith, [to] skip a generation and vote for a relatively new MP” but that it was clear he did not have the backing of colleagues to progress. Malthouse said: “The last few days have demonstrated that there is an appetite for this contest to be over quickly and for the nation to have a new leader in place as soon as possible.” Under the new structure, Rory Stewart, Mark Harper, Esther McVey, Andrea Leadsom, and Sam Gyimah are the most vulnerable of the remaining contenders to falling out at the first round.’ – The Guardian

>Yesterday:

Leadership 5) Baker might yet stand if no candidate backs his Brexit proposals

‘Arch Eurosceptic Steve Baker will pave the way for his own Tory leadership bid by demanding candidates back a Hard Brexit masterplan. And he is expected to say that if Boris Johnson and other leading Eurosceptic contenders don’t back his proposals – he will stand himself. Sources claimed the self-styled Brexit ‘Spartan’ has been preparing a bid for weeks. One of the Tory contenders told The Sun: “Steve is setting the bar too high purposely, so he can run himself. His plan is a one way ticket to No Deal. He’ll have 15 members of the (Tory Eurosceptic group) ERG that (Tory MP) Mark Francois will whip up for him and then he’ll get knocked out”… Allies of Mr Baker insisted that he still hadn’t decided if he would stand… But his new plan – backed by 16 Eurosceptic Tories – comes just days before nominations for the contest close. And it is thought the document – demanding a “clean, managed Brexit” – has already been circulated around some leadership contenders’ camps. Under the plan, Mr Baker says the UK should be prepared to leave without a formal deal in place, and trade on WTO terms before a free trade agreement can be struck.’ – The Sun

  • Mordaunt or others could yet join the race, too – Daily Telegraph
  • Lord Sumption floats the idea of pulling out of the ECHR – The Times
  • Stewart attacks other candidates’ ‘unfunded promises’ – Bloomberg

>Today: ToryDiary: Key questions for candidates 3) Gove

Trump 1) He clarifies that the NHS would not be on the table in trade talks

‘Trump has insisted the NHS would not be on the table in a Brexit trade deal after sparking a massive row. The US President rowed back on his suggestion that access for US firms to the NHS must be part of trade talks in an interview with Piers Morgan. When the Good Morning Britain host asked whether the NHS would be discussed as part of the trade negotiations, Mr Trump said: “I don’t see it being on the table. Somebody asked me a question today and I said everything’s up for negotiation because everything is. But I don’t see that as being… that’s not something that I would consider being part of trade. That’s not trade.” The US President prompted an outcry during his state visit by saying American firms must have access to the health service after Brexit. But Tory leadership contenders insisted they would protect the NHS during talks over a transatlantic trade deal.’ – The Sun

  • As ever, he is a source of mixed messages – FT
  • Meghan is now ‘very nice’ – The Times
  • My night at the state banquet – Sarah Vine, Daily Mail
  • He defended the US’s ‘clean’ climate record to Prince Charles – The Guardian
  • Farage, Paterson and IDS meet the President – Daily Mail
  • Don’t make the mistake of thinking the UK could bear a leader who swaggers like the President – Rafael Behr, The Guardian

>Yesterday: WATCH: “The US is committed to a phenomenal trade deal” with the UK, Trump says

Trump 2) Corbyn wanted to meet me, but I turned him down

‘Mr Trump revealed the request at a news conference with Theresa May, minutes after the Labour leader finished addressing an anti-Trump protest in Whitehall at which he accused the president of spreading “hatred” and “racism”. Mr Corbyn boycotted the state banquet held in Mr Trump’s honour on Monday night, saying it was wrong to “roll out the red carpet” for the president. Asked what he thought of Mr Corbyn’s decision to address protesters, Mr Trump answered that he did “not know him, never met him, never spoke to him” and did not plan to, having turned down his request. “He wanted to meet today or tomorrow and I decided that I would not do that,” Mr Trump said. “I think he is, from where I come from, somewhat of a negative force. I think the people should look to do things correctly as opposed to criticise. I really don’t like critics as much as I like and respect someone who can get things done.”’ – The Times

>Yesterday: The Moggcast. Why Trump’s “bold approach to politics is a good one”.

We have a responsibility to take back the children of ISIS members, Mordaunt says

‘Britain has an obligation to take back “innocent” children born to Islamic State fighters in Syria, the defence secretary has said, arguing that the UK needs to resolve its failure to repatriate minors caught up in the Syrian civil war. Penny Mordaunt said she wanted to “build up a very clear picture” of where children have been taken into camps as Syria’s violent conflict has subsided and be prepared to allow them to come to the UK. Speaking at a military conference in Westminster, she said: “I think the British public would agree we absolutely have an obligation to innocents who were taken into a war zone.” Mordaunt added: “Extracting them would be a very difficult thing to do and would in all practical honesty require the practical consent of the parents who were there.”’ – The Guardian

  • The Defence Secretary also suggests military schools could save children from knife crime – Daily Telegraph
  • Javid allows Commonwealth soldiers to bring their families to the UK – Daily Mail
  • Mother tells of the moment her son told her he was in Syria – The Times
  • Brother in law of terror attacker warned authorities about him months before he struck – Daily Mail
  • Head of the army calls for a strategic rethink – FT
  • 16 nations sign D-Day declaration – The Times

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Mordaunt leads the pack in our latest Cabinet League Table

Brexit Party ‘confident but not complacent’ in Peterborough

‘Mr Farage’s party is riding high after coming first in May’s European Parliament elections with 30 per cent. It has thrown resources at Peterborough, which voted 61 per cent for Leave in the 2016 referendum and 38 per cent for the Brexit party in last month’s EU vote. Mr Greene, a businessman, is also well known locally: he was a trustee of the cathedral and appeared on The Secret Millionaire, a reality show in which wealthy people mix incognito with the less fortunate. But he conceded the by-election will be a “close race”, adding: “We’re giving it all we’ve got. I’m confident but I’m not complacent.” An official at Brexit party headquarters concurs: “It is going to be very very tough for us; we’re coming from a standing start.” Much of the party’s strategy consists of winning over legions of Conservative voters infuriated by Mrs May’s failure to see through Brexit.’ – FT

  • A populist backlash seems likely – The Guardian Leader
  • Brussels gives Farage 24 hours to explain alleged undeclared funding from Banks – The Guardian

Truss: Only defence, security and aid are protected from the spending review

‘A SENIOR minister has warned that only defence, security and overseas aid major projects are safe from the axe. Liz Truss said that all other big Government plans could be scrapped under a massive review, including the controversial £56billion HS2 rail scheme… Ms Truss, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, told peers on the Economic Affairs Committee yesterday: “We’re currently conducting a zero-based capital review at the Treasury, looking at the overall question of how we prioritise capital funding. “There are only three areas of capital funding excluded from that review, which are the defence budget, the SIA [single intelligence account] and the ODA [official development aid] budget. All other projects that have not yet been fully committed are part of that review.” She said her review would look at whether or not big projects still on the drawing board could be delivered for the money and in the time originally claimed, and how they would boost the economy. The final decision on whether to scrap HS2 would have to be taken by the end of the year, she said.’ – The Sun

  • The review is delayed by the leadership contest – FT
  • M4 relief road scrapped – The Times
  • Police say they lack the resources to take on County Lines drug gangs – The Guardian
  • Gauke still intends to scrap jail sentences under six months – Daily Telegraph
  • 400 per cent increase in stop and search in crime hotspots reduces stabbings – The Times
  • Government and business have a responsibility to green the economy – Nicky Morgan, The Times

A majority of Change UK’s MPs have left the party

‘Six of Change UK’s 11 MPs, including its spokesman, Chuka Umunna, and interim leader Heidi Allen, have abandoned the fledgling party after its dire performance at the European elections. Change UK announced that it now had just five MPs, who will be led by the former Conservative business minister and anti-Brexit campaigner Anna Soubry. The others remaining are the former Labour MPs Mike Gapes, Chris Leslie, Joan Ryan and Ann Coffey. In their statement, they said they would embark on a “nationwide programme of deliberative democracy”, across the UK… Several of the MPs who have quit the party are believed to be considering defecting to the resurgent Liberal Democrats, although they issued a statement saying that they would initially sit as a group of independents. Allen and Umunna have both been advocating closer cooperation with Vince Cable’s party. Some of their erstwhile colleagues suspect they may have been offered plum seats, or the backing of Lib Dem activists in their existing constituency, if they defect.’ – The Guardian

News in Brief

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