Cox lambasts ‘dead Parliament’…

“Parliament is “dead” and “has no moral right to sit”, the government’s top law officer said yesterday in a combative attempt to shame opposition parties into accepting a general election.Geoffrey Cox, QC, the attorney-general, said that parliament was “dead as dead can be” and “a disgrace” as he accused Jeremy Corbyn of being too cowardly to go to the polls. He shrugged off a plea by Amber Rudd, his former cabinet colleague, to stop “pitting parliament against the people”, insisting opponents of Brexit had driven him to such rhetorical lengths.” – The Times

  • Johnson says Commons must stand aside or face ‘day of reckoning’ – Daily Telegraph
  • Anger as Prime Minister tells MPs to deliver Brexit to ‘stay safe’ – The Times
  • He lambasts MPs for not ‘trusting the people’- The Sun
  • Premier branded ‘disgrace’ for Jo Cox comments – The Guardian



…as the Prime Minister might prorogue it again…

“Boris Johnson is drawing up plans to suspend Parliament again – just days after the Supreme Court ruled his first attempt “unlawful”. The Prime Minister told MPs he intends to crack on with a Queen’s speech to bring forward new policies and end “zombie” Parliament. Downing Street confirmed a new Queen’s speech to set out a new agenda on the NHS and education would need Parliament to be prorogued. It comes after “scared” Corbyn blocked his attempt to force an election to let the voters end the Brexit deadlock. Mr Johnson said last night: “I will be informing [MPs] as soon as we have assessed the meaning of the court’s ruling.”” – The Sun

  • Johnson lays the ground for a ‘People vs Parliament’ election – FT
  • More than half of voters want to go to the polls now – Daily Mail
  • One Nation Tories ‘sense of doom’ over Government’s tactics – The Guardian


  • Tories retain their polling lead – Chris Curtis, Times Red Box

>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: Ici Londres – This crisis is the result not of Brexit but the absence of Brexit, says Hannan

…and ministers that says judges could face US-style grilling

“Senior judges could face US-style confirmation grillings from MPs before taking up their posts, the attorney-general has suggested as a cabinet divide emerged over attacks on the judiciary. Geoffrey Cox, QC, told MPs that Brexit could prompt a broad constitutional overhaul including “parliamentary scrutiny” of senior judicial appointments. Mr Cox was answering questions from MPs after the Supreme Court ruling that Boris Johnson acted unlawfully in suspending parliament. He sought to defend the independence of judges after Downing Street attacks on them and a suggestion by Jacob Rees-Mogg, leader of the Commons, that their ruling was a “constitutional coup”.” – The Times

  • Government signals reform of the Supreme Court – Daily Express
  • Johnson’s approval rating ‘dented’ by court reversal… – The Times
  • …as he insists that the Supreme Court was wrong – FT
  • Corbyn slammed for supporting judge-killing IRA – The Sun

>Today: ToryDiary: The Supreme Court’s ruling. Why not now go all the way – and let Bercow deliver the Queen’s Speech?


Martin Kettle: Johnson plans to turn court defeat into electoral rocket fuel

“The twin objectives of the Johnson government when it took office after the ousting of Theresa May – Brexit by the end of October and a general election fought on a “people versus the elites” platform – remain utterly unchanged by the supreme court ruling. Johnson’s two-month premiership has been based on an audacious and slightly crazy plan. It still is based on it today, even after Tuesday’s humiliation. That plan is the overriding need, as the Tory right sees it, to deliver Brexit after three years, and in so doing marginalise the Brexit party in a general election… Sooner or later, all this will be put to a general election. When that happens, it is clear that Johnson intends to focus his campaign against the pro-European establishment of liberal Britain.” – The Guardian

  • Call for resignations after the Supreme Court defeat are absurd – Vernon Bogdanor, Daily Telegraph
  • Prime Minister comes out fighting as Commons mood turns ugly – Robert Shrimsley, FT
  • From the rule of law, to the rule of lawyers – Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
  • Johnson has only one way to escape this Brexit mess – Leo McKinstry, Daily Express
  • MPs must accept that nobody can win on Brexit – Jenni Russell, The Times


  • Court ruling leaves the Prime Minister with few options – The Times
  • Labour’s refusal to seek an election is pathetic cowardice – The Sun

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Johnson has lost a battle – and room for manoeuvre. But he can still win the war.

Ministers 1) Raab criticises Iran over attack on Saudi Arabia

“Dominic Raab has blasted Iran for violating international law following a missile attack on an oil plant in Saudi Arabia. The Foreign Secretary said the Government “carefully and independently” came to the conclusion that Iran was responsible for the missile strike. Mr Raab told the Commons this afternoon: “As the UK Government, we took our time to assess the facts carefully and independently. “We are now confident that Iran was responsible. The evidence is clear and there is no plausible alternative explanation. This conduct amounts to an armed attack on Saudi Arabia, a violation of one of the basic principles of international law under the United Nations Charter.”” – Daily Express

Ministers 2) Hancock accused of plagiarising Thomas Cook statement

“The transport secretary was criticised when he appeared to repeat almost word for word parts of a statement made by his predecessor when the last big British travel business collapsed. Grant Shapps’s speech to MPs over the liquidation of Thomas Cook bore an uncanny resemblance to that made two years earlier by Chris Grayling when Monarch Airlines went under… And so it went on, but later Mr Shapps wrote on Twitter that he “wasn’t aware that some of these words had been used before”. Luciana Berger, the Lib Dem MP for Liverpool Wavertree, said: “It’s frankly appalling.”” – The Times

  • Ambassador to Cuba rescues stranded holidaymakers – The Times

>Yesterday: Robert Halfon MP’s column: The Thomas Cook bosses should pay for their greed

Grant to Johnson’s friend is frozen

“More than half of a £100,000 grant given by the government to a company owned by a friend of Boris Johnson has been frozen. Jennifer Arcuri, an American, was awarded more than £126,000 of public funds for her companies after she joined Mr Johnson’s campaign to be re-elected mayor of London while she was at university in the capital. It also emerged last night that Ms Arcuri is being sued over a student loan that part-funded her life in London. One company was allocated the £100,000 grant to train “ethic hackers” months after it was revealed it had employed a computer expert who was wanted for allegedly stealing data from US government agencies.” – The Times

  • Labour raises pressure on the Prime Minister over businesswoman – FT
  • US phone call raises further questions over grant – The Guardian

EU 1) Swinson says Remainers could try to force Johnson to seek a Brexit extension ‘within days’

“MPs could try to force Boris Johnson to seek a Brexit delay within days after the Liberal Democrat leader warned that they could not afford to “wait and see” if the prime minister would obey the law. Jo Swinson said the prime minister had shown he could not be trusted and that MPs had to act. Under the Benn Bill passed by the Commons this month Mr Johnson must ask the European Union for a three-month extension to the UK’s exit process if he fails to get a deal with Brussels by October 19. However, Mr Johnson has said he would rather be “dead in a ditch” than ask for another delay. He has also promised that the UK will leave the EU on October 31, “do or die”.” – The Times

  • Beckett says she could be Prime Minister of ‘national unity’ government – Daily Mail
  • ‘Despairing’ EU officials braced for showdown with Johnson – Daily Telegraph
  • Big business rejects Gove’s assurances on No Deal – The Times


  • Britain needs another extension – Philip Stephens, FT

EU 2) Shadow Brexit Minister quits

“Jeremy Corbyn suffered a major blow last night after his shadow Brexit minister quit in fury at his boss’ refusal to campaign to stay in the EU. Matthew Pennycook said he resigned so he can campaign “unequivocally for the UK to stay in the EU”. His departure is yet another sign of the bitter Brexit civil war tearing Labour apart. The party enraged many of its Brexit-hating MPs and activists by refusing to fully back Remain at their conference in Brighton this week. Mr Corbyn and his allies rammed through a Brexit fudge which only commits the party to deciding whether to back Leave or Remain after an election.” – The Sun

  • Varadkar says Johnson must table backstop plan by week’s end – The Sun

Labour Conference votes to extend free movement to more countries…

“Labour will campaign to extend free movement to more countries and give foreign nationals living in the UK the right to vote, under plans endorsed by the party’s conference yesterday. As politicians rushed back from Brighton following the Supreme Court ruling on prorogation, party and trade union delegates pressed on with their work as Labour moves towards its most radical manifesto in decades. A motion on immigration said that Labour must at the next election vow to “campaign for free movement, equality and rights for migrants”, to “maintain and extend free movement rights” and to “extend equal rights to vote to all UK residents”.” – The Times

  • Opposition would hand foreign nationals right to vote – Daily Telegraph
  • Study suggests adjusting immigration system could help Scotland – FT

…as well as seizing homes and setting price controls on property

“Labour would seize private family homes and introduce price controls into the market in a bid to tackle the UK’s housing crisis under a plan passed by party members today. Delegates at the party conference in Brighton also committed the party to a 20-year council house-building blitz creating two million homes as part of a sweeping plan to revolutionise the way people live if it wins a general election. A 32-measure motion was passed unanimously at end of the event after MPs and senior figures had flooded back to Westminster to attend the re-opened Parliament. The ‘composite’ motion, brought by the local part in South East Cornwall and backed by Young Labour.” – Daily Mail

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Progressive Conservative reformers 3) Thatcher – and the sale of council houses to their tenants

Sturgeon warned that independence push could harm her domestic agenda

Nicola Sturgeon is pushing ahead with her second independence referendum plans despite her most senior mandarin warning her they could hit her government’s efforts to improve Scotland’s public services, secret documents have disclosed. Leslie Evans, the Scottish Government’s permanent secretary, sent a “sensitive” memo to the First Minister stating she would provide an analysis of the “impact” of devoting civil servants to another separation vote instead of the SNP’s domestic policy agenda. She said she would “identify where we see scope for deprioritisation of activity” in the government’s existing responsibilities, to free up the necessary manpower for dealing with Brexit and another referendum “in parallel”.” – Daily Telegraph

News in Brief:

  • A message from your polarised future, Britain – Daniel Kalder, UnHerd
  • Blistering Boris blows hopeless Corbyn out of the water – Iain Martin, Reaction
  • Since 2016 we have been witnessing the deconstruction of democracy – Patrick Timms, Brexit Central
  • ‘Cameron was a bloody good prime minister’: Michael Gove interviewed – The Spectator
  • Impeachment is as big a risk for the Democrats as for Trump – Oliver Wiseman, CapX

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