Patel pledges a return to zero tolerance policing

“Priti Patel today signals the return of zero-tolerance policing to make criminals ‘feel terror’ on the streets. In her first interview as Home Secretary she pledges to restore flagging public confidence in law and order by ‘empowering’ officers to go after thugs. ‘Offenders should be fearful of committing any criminal activities on our streets,’ she tells the Daily Mail. ‘Quite frankly, with more police officers out there and greater police presence, I want them to literally feel terror at the thought of committing offences.’ Miss Patel also warns chief constables not to ‘turn a blind eye’ to cannabis offences…Figures released last month showed 5.9million crimes were recorded in the past year – a 15-year high. Violent offences in England and Wales rose 20 per cent to 1.6million, the highest total since 2002. Only one in 12 crimes leads to a charge or summons, leading to claims that officers have ‘given up’.” – Daily Mail

  • A pledge to “empower” the police – BBC
  • Home Secretary demands answers after Carl Beech VIP paedophile abuse ring inquiry – The Times

Brexit 1) Trade deal with Australia could be “as soon as next year”

“Australia could do a trade deal with Britain as soon as next year, according to its man in London. In a big boost to Boris, High Commissioner George Brandis declared himself a big fan of the “optimism” of the new PM as well as his “quirky” side. And he is hopeful that a post-Brexit agreement can be signed Down Under by the end of 2020, possibly leading to cheaper wines on our shelves. Mr Brandis also revealed he is an “old friend” of Boris’s election guru Lynton Crosby, in another sign of good relations between the two governments even as their cricket teams battle for the Ashes.” – The Sun

Brexit 2) Jenrick tells councils to step up “no deal” preparations

“Councils across England have been ordered by the government to appoint no-deal tsars to lead local preparations for Britain’s departure from the European Union. In a letter to all local authorities Robert Jenrick, the communities and local government secretary, said it was imperative that councils “step up vital preparations” ahead of October 31. He announced that local authorities would share an additional £20 million to pay for the extra work preparing for no deal on top of the £58 million allocated by the Treasury in January. Council leaders welcomed the money but said extra help would be needed in parts of the country likely to be most affected by a no-deal. These include port areas where council staff will be responsible for many of the new regulatory checks that will be needed. This has involved hiring vets and environmental health officers as well as ensuring that the local roads network can cope with any disruption.” – The Times

  • Remainers urge Ruth Davidson to lead the resistance – The Sun

Brexit 3) Cummings “not expecting a deal”

“So now he is in Downing Street what is the Cummings strategy? Unlike Mr Johnson’s public pronouncements he does not think that the EU will offer an acceptable deal, even at the 11th hour. He is also not afraid of the disruption of no-deal. To him, if Britain leaves on October 31, even if it is disastrous, the chances of ever going back in are much less than if it never left in the first place. Leaving is the first and only objective — nothing else matters. He sees Brexit as a way of rebuilding the country outside the shackles of protectionist European bureaucracy. He also sees it as a once-in-a-generation chance to reshape the British state that he railed against in government… Mr Cummings is the ultimate risk-taking, conviction campaigner prepared to lose it all. Mr Johnson, despite recent pronouncements, is perhaps his antithesis, caring much more about power itself and being liked.” – The Times

  • Direct and decisive, but he’s not the devil – Camilla Tominey, Daily Telegraph
  • He is a genius – Kevan Christe, The Scotsman
  • The EU has most to fear – Leader, The Sun


Brexit 4) Forsyth: A serious offer from the EU could destabilise the Government

“When Boris told Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the EU Commission, a willingness to drop the backstop was a prerequisite for talks, Juncker made very clear they weren’t willing to negotiate on that basis. If the EU did make an offer, though, it would cause divisions in Downing Street and the Cabinet. Some think talks should begin only if the EU offers to drop the backstop. Others argue that a willingness to reopen the withdrawal agreement would be a suitable basis on which to resume negotiations. There are Cabinet ministers who would be cross if Boris Johnson rejected such an offer. When I put this scenario to one Secretary of State, they replied: “I’m going to have to take every day as it comes.” One of Boris’s allies admits that “if the EU did make a serious offer, that would destabilise things”. There is little sign of the EU adopting such a strategy, though.” – James Forsyth, The Sun

Brexit 5) Baker set to become new ERG Chairman

“Steve Baker who refused to accept a job in the Brexit department is set to be made chairman of the hardline European Research Group next month. Mr Baker – who held the job before Mr Rees-Mogg – said that he will seek to replace him next month when MPs return to Parliament after their summer break. Mr Baker’s likely election to the role could be a headache for Boris Johnson if he seeks to bring back Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement before Oct 31. Mr Rees-Mogg insisted that there was “no conflict of interest” in him staying on as ERG chairman for a few weeks because the policies of the ERG and Government were aligned.” – Daily Telegraph

Plan to speed up extra NHS funding

“Boris Johnson’s team is planning to fast-track billions of pounds of extra funds to the NHS to fulfil early the central pledge of the Leave campaign. Downing Street aides are looking at bringing forward Theresa May’s commitment to give the NHS an additional £20 billion by 2023. During the EU referendum campaign Mr Johnson controversially pledged to spend on the NHS the £350 million a week he said would be saved by EU membership fees, a figure that was emblazoned on the Vote Leave bus. That would equate to £18.2 billion a year. But under existing government plans the health service will only see £7.3 billion extra this year and £11 billion the year after. Even by the time of the next scheduled general election in 2022 the NHS will only have seen three quarters of the promised money and less than the prime minister’s original pledge.” – The Times

Johnson visits Whaley Bridge

“The prime minister has visited the Derbyshire town of Whaley Bridge, where at least a thousand residents were forced to flee their homes amid fears a dam could collapse, engulfing the community of 6,500 people. Boris Johnson met a number of families affected by the evacuation. He told them he had flown over the dam twice and it was “dodgy but stable”, but police warned there was still “a substantial threat to life” if the dam wall fails. Water levels at the Toddbrook reservoir have been reduced by half a metre following extensive pumping but engineers remain “very concerned” about the integrity of the damaged 180-year-old structure, which contains around 1.3m tonnes of water.” – The Guardian

  • No sense of panic – Robert Hardman, Daily Mail

Farage urges the Conservatives to agree to an electoral pact

“Nigel Farage has urged Boris Johnson to do a deal with him to let his Brexit party win seats in Labour heartlands. The politician, 55, declared “we’re here to stay” despite claims that his new party could stop the Prime Minister from winning an election. Polling suggests the pro-Leave vote is now split between the Tories and the Brexit Party, meaning Boris could struggle to get enough MPs to form a Government. Some commentators blamed the Brexit Party after a Lib Dem Remainer MP nabbed a Tory-held seat in the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election on Friday. But Farage pointed out his party did to the Tories in Brecon what the Tories did to them in the Peterborough by-election in June, where the Brexit Party came second to Labour.” – The Sun

  • Forget liquid lunches. I’m so bloody busy now, I only have time for yoga – Interview with Nigel Farage, The Times
  • Trump’s ‘Go Back’ remarks were ‘genius’ – Daily Telegraph
  • Johnson has to knit the Leave coalition back together – Leader, Daily Telegraph

Lib Dems aiming to raise £10 million for a snap election

“The new leader of the Liberal Democrats said that she would not put any limit on her party’s ambitions. Jo Swinson, who is preparing to embark on a tour of the UK, revealed that she wanted to raise a war chest of £10 million to fight a potential snap general election. The Lib Dems spent £6.8 million fighting the 2017 general election, compared with the £18.5 million spent by the Conservatives and £11 million by Labour, official figures show. Ms Swinson claimed that the party’s polling showed it had the potential to be the biggest at Westminster after the next election.” – The Times

  • Lee is still thinking about defecting – The Guardian
  • By-election victory offers a route to their resurgence – Sean Kemp, The Guardian
  • Corbyn’s silence as Labour comes fourth – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: Phillip Taylor on Comment: CCHQ cannot be complacent about the resurgent threat of the Liberal Democrats

Field to stand as a social justice candidate

“Veteran MP Frank Field, who resigned the Labour whip last year, is to stand for a new party at the next General Election. Mr Field, 77, who has been MP for Birkenhead for 40 years, said he would defend his seat as the Birkenhead Social Justice Party candidate. Announcing his plans at Birkenhead town hall, he said: “Reports of my political death have been wildly exaggerated.” He quit Labour in August saying it had become “a force for anti-Semitism”. The MP also blamed a “culture of intolerance, nastiness and intimidation” in local parties.” – BBC

Oborne: The Conservatives would easily win an early election

“Last week, I took soundings with a respected politician who has reason to understand the mind of Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage. I was told that, despite all Farage says, he is ready to order Brexit Party candidates not to stand because he thinks they would have scant chance of victory with Johnson having successfully rebranded the Tories as the dominant anti-EU party and the only one with a chance of being in government… Johnson would — unimpaired by a rival Brexit Party — lead the Tories into battle as sole representatives of the Brexit cause. This means he ought to be able to rely on more than 40 per cent of the national vote — which in normal circumstances is easily enough to win a General Election. But these are not normal circumstances. I believe the Tories ought to reach more than 40 per cent, as the parties that still favour the UK staying in the EU are hopelessly split.”- Peter Oborne, Daily Mail

  • Johnson is clinging on by his fingertips – Robert Shrimsley, Financial Times

Parris: By-election shows that pacts are the future

“Ooh Boris, how tempting — but not quite! The Brecon and Radnorshire by-election has taught Tory Brexiteers the hard truth they must face as they contemplate a snap general election. And taught us too, the ragged band of out-and-out Remainers, People’s Vote campaigners and seasick no-Brexit-without-a-deal stragglers. And the lesson? It’s a pact, stupid. Neither side can be confident of winning a general election without some kind of alliance. Prepare for months of fantasy coalition-making because the next election looks set to see Leavers and Remainers trying to restitch the all-party coalitions they put together for the 2016 referendum campaign. Some would call it a coupon election, as candidates bid for the “Brexit-approved” or “Remainer-recommended” ticket. In Brecon on Thursday a huge turnout of nearly 60 per cent makes the result a useful telltale for a general election. The Lib Dems squeaked through thanks to a non-aggression pact with two other minority, anti-Brexit parties. Without the extra votes this brought them from supporters of Plaid Cymru and the Green Party, the Tories would probably have won.” – Matthew Parris, The Times

  • The Boris Bounce is real, but the lesson from Brecon is: ‘Vote Farage, Get Swinson’ – John Curtice, Daily Telegraph
  • Result was “frustrating” says Cleverly – Daily Telegraph
  • Grief-stricken Remainers have unforgivably poisoned our politics with their Brexit despair – Douglas Murray, Daily Telegraph

Moore: The presumption of innocence must be restored

“In 2014, pursued by Tom Watson and co, the then home secretary, Theresa May, set up an ever more absurdly wide-ranging and over-powered inquiry (IICSA), which is free to accuse individuals with impunity and can cut across legal processes. Then she repeatedly allowed her proposed appointments to its chairmanship to be rejected because they were too “establishment” – e.g. one nominated chairman had given dinner to the Brittans, and was chucked out, although, as it still seems necessary to repeat, they were never shown to be guilty of anything. The victims of this weakness are not unjustly accused individuals alone, but entire institutions – schools, churches, council homes – which are supposed to care for children. Who, ultimately will want to work in these vital areas if the authorities indiscriminately tarnish the people who do so? Behind these trends lies a twisting of the real problem that victims of sexual abuse have often found it hard to win a hearing. This is the modern doctrine that “the victim must be believed”. It is the opposite of justice, because it overturns the presumption of innocence. From that, only evil can flow.” – Charles Moore, Daily Telegraph

  • Met is trying to ruin me, claims Harvey Proctor – The Times

Trump withdraws intelligence pick

“US President Donald Trump has withdrawn his choice for director of national intelligence amid criticism that the Texas congressman was under-qualified. Mr Trump tweeted that he told Texas Republican John Ratcliffe that the nomination process would be “miserable” for him due to unfair media coverage. Mr Ratcliffe thanked Mr Trump and said he did not want the job to become “a purely political and partisan issue”. Critics have accused Mr Ratcliffe of padding his intelligence credentials.” – BBC

Power sharing deal agreed in Sudan

“Sudan’s ruling military council and main opposition coalition have agreed on a constitutional declaration which will pave the way for a new period of transitional government. African Union mediator Mohamed Hassan Lebatt made the announcement early on Saturday, without giving any details. Sudan has been in turmoil since the military ousted President Omar al-Bashir in April. Protracted talks over the declaration have been held amid much violence.” – BBC

News in Brief

  • The gig economy is working – Annabel Denham, CapX
  • A global, free trading Britain should back freeports – Madsen Pirie, The Spectator
  • Tackling plastic waste in the oceans – John Redwood
  • The opposition in Russia can defeat Putin, but only if its message chimes with an impoverished country – Alexander Titov, Independent
  • What should we take home from the Brecon by-election? – Olivia Utley, The Article