Johnson promises ‘decade of prosperity’

“Britons are becoming more optimistic about the economy as Brexit uncertainty lifts, with one in five expecting to be richer by the end of the year. Boris Johnson is setting out today a prospectus for “a decade of prosperity and opportunity” as polling for The Times finds that two thirds of voters expect to end this year at least as well off as they are now. In a new year message, the prime minister claims that Britain’s certain departure from the European Union on January 31 will allow people to “turn the page on the division, rancour and uncertainty” of the Brexit debate and look forward to “a fantastic year and a remarkable decade”.” – The Times

  • He promises to be ‘Prime Minister for everyone’ – FT


  • US boasts of ‘stratospheric’ decade of trade – Daily Express
  • Carney warns that post-Brexit deals will be harder – The Sun


>Yesterday: Video: WATCH: Johnson’s New Year Message. “Together, folks, let’s make 2020 the start of something special.”

‘Cash boost’ for low-paid workers

“Low-paid workers will receive a 6.2 per cent rise from next April as Boris Johnson seeks to shore up support among working class voters who helped deliver him a thumping victory in this month’s general election. The government said it was delivering the “biggest cash increase ever” as it announced plans to lift the national living wage for workers aged over 25 from £8.21 an hour to £8.72. In the previous three years, the rise in minimum wage varied between 4.2 per cent and 4.8 per cent. “Hard work should always pay, but for too long, people haven’t seen the pay rises they deserve,” said Mr Johnson in a statement released by the Treasury.” – FT

  • Government misses target Tories set in 2015 – The Guardian


  • Voters prefer more cash for public services to tax cuts – The Times

>Today: Ben Houchen in Local Government: Freeports are a key priority for the North

Smeeth says no Labour frontbencher deserves the leadership

“No Labour frontbencher deserves to win the leadership due to their “cowardice” in failing to tackle the party’s anti-Semitism scandal, the parliamentary chair of the Jewish Labour Movement has said. Ruth Smeeth, who lost her seat at the general election, said on Tuesday that none of the shadow cabinet contenders vying to replace Jeremy Corbyn are fit to succeed due to “their silence” over the issue. Writing in the Jewish Chronicle, Ms Smeeth accused the likes of Rebecca Long-Bailey, Keir Starmer, Emily Thornberry and Ian Lavery of “indifference” to the pain of British Jews. “They chose to sit by when we needed them to stand up,” she wrote. “If they were not our allies when we needed them, we should not be their ally when they want us.”” – Daily Telegraph

  • She says Shadow Cabinet should be banned from the race – Daily Mail


  • Left splits in race to replace Corbyn – FT
  • Fears Corbyn allies will ‘stitch up’ contest – The Sun
  • Rayner to endorse Long-Bailey – The Guardian

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Conservative Party members think Keir Starmer would be the most effective Labour leader

Corbyn rebuked as address fails to mention election loss

“Jeremy Corbyn has been castigated by past and present Labour MPs after delivering a New Year’s Eve message in which he did not mention the party’s catastrophic general election result, saying only that it had been “quite the year”. The video address, in which the Labour leader said the party was now “the resistance” to Boris Johnson’s government, was rounded on in comments on social media from his critics, including those in heartland seats who lost their constituencies to the Tories. Phil Wilson, who lost Sedgefield – the former seat of Tony Blair – to the Conservatives, tweeted: “No Jeremy Corbyn you are not part of the resistance to Boris Johnson you are one of enablers of Boris Johnson.”” – The Guardian

Burgon to run for Labour deputy

“One of Jeremy Corbyn’s most loyal lieutenants has announced he will run to be Labour’s next deputy leader. Richard Burgon, the shadow justice secretary, said he had consulted MPs and Labour members before deciding to throw his hat into the ring to replace Tom Watson. Mr Burgon, 39, said he would be “outlining more in the new year”. Mr Burgon has been the MP for Leeds East since the 2015 election. Soon after entering the Commons he nominated Mr Corbyn for the Labour leadership and he has been an enthusiastic backer ever since. He is the third declared candidate for the position vacated by Mr Watson, who stood down at the general election. The others are Dawn Butler, the shadow equalities minister, and Khalid Mahmood, the shadow Europe minister.” – The Times


  • The only way Labour can win is by ditching ‘Labourism’ – Jeremy Gilbert, The Guardian

Danny Finkelstein: The decade we opened our eyes to ‘fake news’

“This was the decade when we began to open our eyes to the truth. We are less ignorant, less deferential, more sceptical. We appreciate better how easy it is to say something untrue in politics and get away with it, an appreciation that is in itself a piece of the truth that has arisen from political science. We are less able and less willing to sweep uncomfortable truth under the carpet. We challenge more. Yes, Donald Trump is remarkably cavalier with the facts. But he is hardly the first president of whom this can be said. To read transcripts of President Nixon’s Watergate tapes is to be left open-mouthed at the scale and extent of the lying. The same attitude runs through Lyndon Johnson’s conduct of the Vietnam War. Or the exploits of Jack, Bobby and Ted Kennedy.” – The Times