Jeremy Corbyn will go to Buckingham Palace in a cab to tell the Queen “we’re taking over” if Boris Johnson loses a vote of no confidence, John McDonnell has claimed. The Shadow Chancellor said Mr Corbyn’s party was preparing to bring down Mr Johnson’s government and block a no-deal Brexit with cross-party support. He said Labour would demand the keys to Number 10 from prime minister Mr Johnson if he loses his grip on power, and would call on the monarch to appoint Mr Corbyn. Speaking at Edinburgh Festival Fringe on Wednesday, Mr McDonnell said: “I don’t want to drag the Queen into this but I would be sending Jeremy Corbyn in a cab to Buckingham Palace to say we’re taking over.”
John McDonnell has threatened to drag the Queen into a constitutional crisis by claiming Labour would “take over” if Boris Johnson refused to quit were he to lose a confidence vote. The shadow chancellor suggested he would send Jeremy Corbyn to Buckingham Palace “in a cab” to tell the 93-year-old monarch the party was ready to assume power, in the latest sign that MPs seeking to stop a no-deal Brexit are planning to embroil Her Majesty in politics as they run out of parliamentary options.
John McDonnell has threatened to send Jeremy Corbyn to Buckingham Palace in a taxi to tell the Queen Labour is “taking over” if Boris Johnson loses a no-confidence vote. The shadow chancellor’s comments at Edinburgh Fringe Festival on Wednesday suggested that MPs attempting to block a no-deal Brexit would involve the monarch if they ran out of options. Mr McDonnell said Labour would ask the Queen to appoint party leader Mr Corbyn as prime minister if Mr Johnson refused to step down.
Jeremy Corbyn will go to Buckingham Palace in a taxi to tell the Queen “we’re taking over” if Boris Johnson loses a vote of no confidence, John McDonnell has said. The shadow chancellor said Labour was preparing to bring down Mr Johnson’s government next month and form a “caretaker government” with cross-party support whose mission would be to block a no-deal Brexit. The Times revealed this week that Mr Johnson might refuse to resign if he lost a confidence vote and instead wait two weeks for a general election to be triggered.
John McDonnell says Labour would demand the keys to No10 from Boris Johnson if he loses a confidence vote but refuses to quit. The Shadow Chancellor said he would be ‘sending Jeremy Corbyn in a cab to Buckingham Palace’, at an Edinburgh Festival Fringe event. It comes after allies of the PM have made clear he will simply refuse to resign if rebel Tories join forces with Labour, the SNP, the Lib Dems and independents to pass a no confidence motion.
TORIES erupted in fury last night at Labour’s “Marxist revolutionary” plot to demand the Queen installs Jeremy Corbyn in No 10. The Labour leader will turn up at the gates of Buckingham Palace to demand he is made prime minister if Boris Johnson loses a confidence vote in the Commons, Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell declared yesterday. Labour will tell the Queen, “We’re taking over,” he said. Conservatives said the shameless plan showed Labour could not be trusted with power. MP Andrew Bridgen said: “We know that McDonnell is a revolutionary Marxist and he clearly believes if the Conservative government fails a confidence motion that the revolution will have started.
Rebel Conservative MP Dominic Grieve claimed the Queen would “have to sack” Boris Johnson if he lost a no-confidence vote in the House of Commons. The prime minister’s senior adviser Dominic Cummings responded by saying MPs “don’t get to choose which votes they respect”. Mr Cummings also dismissed claims of arrogance, stating: “I don’t know very much about very much.” Tory grandee Sir Malcolm Rifkind also warned the PM he could trigger “the gravest constitutional crisis since the Civil War” if he refused to step down in a no-confidence vote scenario.
HARD-LEFT firebrand John McDonnell last night threatened to drag the Queen into a constitutional crisis over Brexit. The Shadow Chancellor said Labour would “take over” if Boris Johnson refused to quit in the wake of a no confidence vote. And his party would send leader Jeremy Corbyn to Buckingham palace “in a cab”. He also threatened to jail Tory MPs over benefits cuts if the party ever comes to power. McDonnell said: “I don’t want to drag the Queen into this but I would be sending Jeremy Corbyn in a cab to Buckingham Palace to say we’re taking over.”
As the Queen’s powers have been cited in the no-deal Brexit debate, constitutional experts are divided on whether she could intervene to dismiss Boris Johnson and invite a new prime minister to form a government should he lose a vote of no confidence and schedule an election for after the Halloween exit date. “Short answer: the Queen could dismiss Boris Johnson if he lost a vote of no confidence and refused to resign,” said Robert Hazell, professor of government and constitution at University College London. “But she would only do so if the House of Commons indicated clearly who should be appointed as prime minister in his place.” Under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 there is 14-day window after a vote of no confidence in which to find an alternative government capable of securing the confidence of the Commons.
No deal Brexit
LEO VARADKAR is set for a Brexit showdown with Prime Minister Boris Johnson after issuing a number of relentless no deal threats. The Taoiseach will meet the new Tory leader, who is ploughing on with preparations for a no deal Brexit, after he was accused of Project Fear. A disagreement between London and Ireland over plans for Ireland’s border have become the most contentious issue in negotiations with the EU over a divorce deal. The Irish premier invited Boris Johnson to Dublin during a telephone call last week, but the prime minister did not immediately take him up on his offer.
A no-deal Brexit could leave the nation’s orchestras struggling to make music abroad. Uncertainty over work permits, difficulties crossing European borders and taking instruments into different countries could mean touring is no longer a viable option for many orchestras in Britain. Mark Pemberton, director of the Association of British Orchestras (ABO), told the BBC: “We’ve got orchestras that are going on tour in November who do not know what the work permit restrictions and extra costs are going to be in, say, France or Germany.
Boris Johnson’s most senior adviser has suggested in his first public comments since being appointed that Dominic Grieve, the Tory rebel, will be unable to stop a no-deal Brexit. Dominic Cummings denied claims by Mr Grieve, a former attorney- general, that he was “arrogant” as he insisted that politicians did not “get to choose which votes they respect”. Mr Cummings had told colleagues that Mr Johnson would not resign even if he lost a vote of confidence and would instead push for a general election.
A GENERAL Election could be held on November 1 — the day after Britain is set to leave the EU. The Downing Street plan would mean Prime Minister Boris Johnson could tell voters he has delivered Brexit. No10 aides think holding a vote hours after we quit Europe would give the Conservatives a boost from Leave voters. Today’s Spectator magazine reports that officials are keen to negate the threat posed to the Tories by Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party. The timing of the poll would also hamper Remainers who currently claim that they can stop us crashing out of the EU without a trade deal. PM Johnson has promised Brexit will happen on October 31.
PRIME Minister Boris Johnson could call a snap general election before the October 31 Brexit deadline, Tim Bale, a politics professor at Queen Mary University in London, has warned. The London-based political expert ruled out a possible Tory-Brexit Party alliance, saying the PM’s plan was to “destroy” the anti-EU movement by delivering Brexit as soon as possible. A national election in the coming weeks or months is “highly possible,” Mr Bale told France’s Les Echos newspaper. He said: “It’s a risky gamble but Boris Johnson could do so before October 31.”
John McDonnell has deepened the row with Scottish Labour by claiming Jeremy Corbyn backs the decision to rewrite Labour’s stance on a second independence referendum. The shadow chancellor provoked a furious row with the Scottish party after revealing on Tuesday evening he believed a future Labour government should allow Holyrood to stage a fresh independence vote – directly contradicting party policy. He had failed to warn Richard Leonard, the Scottish Labour leader, who issued a statement after the two men met on Wednesday morning implying he strongly disagreed with McDonnell’s new stance.
LABOUR splits have emerged on the subject of a second Scottish independence referendum – with shadow Chancellor John McDonnell backtracking on the idea of a vote after an intervention from the party’s leader north of the border, having floated the possibility the day before. Mr McDonnell’s latest remarks came after Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard publicly insisted the pair were “firm agreement” against the idea. Speaking during a Fringe event on Wednesday in Edinburgh, Mr McDonnell said: “I’ve reinforced the view that a referendum isn’t the solution to the problems in this country.
Labour’s splits over Scottish independence burst into the open again yesterday as John McDonnell reaffirmed his pledge to sanction a second referendum in the face of an intensifying backlash from his party. Despite being told by the leader of Scottish Labour in a meeting yesterday morning that there was “no case” for another referendum and condemned by more than a dozen Westminster candidates, Mr McDonnell refused to back down. The shadow chancellor, who is Jeremy Corbyn’s closest political ally, dismayed his colleagues in Scotland on Tuesday when he made the significant shift of policy at an event in Edinburgh.
John McDonnell has refused to back down from his position that Labour would not block a second Scottish independence referendum, despite facing a growing backlash from furious party figures. The shadow chancellor reiterated his stance that a Labour government would not use “parliamentary devices” at Westminster to block the will of either the Scottish parliament, or people. He claimed that by doing so would mean falling into a trap “set up” by the SNP to cast a future Labour government and the “big bad English” as standing in the way of their proposals.
The Labour Party has descended into fresh turmoil after John McDonnell’s highly contentious comments last night saying that Labour “would not block” IndyRef2. Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP naturally jumped all over it and are now gleefully trying to widen the rift between Scottish and UK Labour. Unsurprisingly Scottish Labour themselves have erupted at the news which threatens to rip out their electoral base yet further. To be fair, they could have seen it coming given Corbyn himself said he was “absolutely fine” with another go at Scottish independence two years ago… Scottish Labour Leader Richard Leonard held what will have been a fairly robust meeting with the Shadow Chancellor this morning, issuing a statement: I made clear to him that a second independence referendum is unwanted by the people of Scotland and it is unnecessary…
IRANIAN ships are posing as US or British warships and interfering with the GPS of oil tankers so they can seize them, officials have warned. A new alert has been issued to commercial ships in the Strait of Hormuz and Persian Gulf amid an escalating tanker row with Iran. US officials revealed vessels have reported “spoofed bridge-to-bridge communications” from unknown ships falsely claiming to be US or coalition warships. Tensions with Iran have reached breaking point in the past few weeks, with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard seizing three tankers in a month.
A new £250million artificial intelligence laboratory will help boost dementia research, Boris Johnson announced last night. The Prime Minister pledged the lab will also improve the lives of cancer and heart disease patients. The money will fund ground-breaking research to spot the signs of dementia, enabling patients to receive treatment far earlier – and perhaps even help prevent the onset of the disease. Mr Johnson said the funding would enable up to five million people to be given a free personalised health report based on their DNA. He added: ‘The NHS is revered for the world-class care it provides every day.
A new £250m investment in “robot” technology to treat cancer, dementia and heart disease in the NHS is being promised by Boris Johnson in his latest pledge on health spending. The government says the aim is to make the NHS a world leader in artificial intelligence – digital computers or computer-controlled robots that perform tasks normally undertaken by humans – and health research. Up to five million people will also receive a free personalised health report based on their DNA, in a move that is part of a health spending “blitz” championed by Mr Johnson’s controversial adviser Dominic Cummings.
British Airways is facing a multimillion-pound compensation bill after at least 70,000 passengers had their plans thrown into chaos by an IT failure. The airline cancelled almost 130 flights and delayed at least 300 after check-in technology failed yesterday morning. The problems mainly affected its three main London airports — Heathrow, Gatwick and London City. BA reverted to manual check-in systems, which caused long queues in departure halls. Aircraft were cancelled or delayed to resolve the backlog. Passengers who did fly faced waits of up to five hours for take-off. The problem was resolved by about 3.30pm but knock-on delays continued.
British Airways warned of “knock-on” disruption as services return to normal on Thursday following an IT glitch which caused the cancellation of more than 100 flights. And passengers face the threat of future disruption after British Airline Pilots Association members at BA voted on Wednesday to take industrial action in a dispute over pay. Tens of thousands of passengers attempting to travel to or from Heathrow, Gatwick or London City were affected by the IT problem on Wednesday. Some 117 flights due to depart or arrive at Heathrow were axed.
Holidaymakers were facing airport misery last night amid crippling IT failures and the threat of strikes. The chaos began yesterday when a check-in system meltdown hit tens of thousands of British Airways passengers at Heathrow and Gatwick. More than 400 flights were cancelled or delayed before the issue was fixed, leaving BA facing a £16million compensation bill and knock-on disruption that could continue today. Ryanair pilots – who are already paid up to £180,000 a year – added to the agony last night by announcing plans to strike later this month in a dispute over pay and benefits.
The future of the privatised rail system has been thrown into doubt after the government scrapped a competition to run one of the busiest commuter lines. Grant Shapps, the transport secretary, cancelled the process to find a replacement for Southeastern, which runs trains between London, Kent and East Sussex. A new franchise was due to be issued in November, but the contract has been halted because of concerns about rising costs to the taxpayer and uncertainty that a new operator would be able to ensure proper benefits for passengers. The search for a new company to run the franchise was launched in late 2017 and the decision to scrap the process could leave the taxpayer with a multimillion-pound bill.
TRANSPORT unions have warned that Britain’s railways are “falling apart at the seams” after it was announced the government has scrapped competitive bidding on services in south-east England. The Department for Transport (DfT) confirmed today that the competition to run trains between London, Kent and parts of Sussex has been cancelled. The contract, which has been held by Southeastern since 2006, was due to expire in November. However the DfT has said that this has now been extended until April 1 2020, on the grounds that competition would not deliver enough benefits for the public.
International rail travel
Passengers with a European-wide Interrail ticket will be barred from using it in the UK after British rail companies pulled out of the 47-year-old scheme. More than 300,000 travellers a year will no longer be able to use the Interrail pass to access Britain’s domestic railway from January after a dispute over revenues. Only the Eurostar service will be covered. European backpackers who want to travel within most of the UK will be forced to buy a separate ticket — the BritRail pass — which costs up to £570 a month. British rail companies were accused of putting profits before passenger interests.
Backpackers visiting Britain are to be hit by a controversial decision to end the country’s decades-long membership of the Interrail scheme, it emerged yesterday. The Rail Delivery Group [RDG], which represents Britain’s railways, confirmed train companies will no longer be part of the Interrail and Eurail schemes which allow tourists to travel across Europe on a single pass. The body blamed a dispute with the Eurail Group, which runs the schemes, for the cancellation, saying it was based on a Britain’s decision to end a trial run with Eurail.
Energy bills for 11 million households will fall by about £75 a year from October as the price cap forces suppliers to reduce their standard tariffs by 6 per cent, Ofgem has announced. A further 4 million households with prepayment meters would get a reduction of £25 a year, or 2 per cent, the regulator said. The cuts follow significant falls in wholesale gas and electricity costs and will together result in more than half of UK households seeing their energy prices fall before the winter.
Engineers and other Thames Barrier staff members are planning to strike over a long-standing salary dispute. As part of their protest, the barrier workers have specifically chosen dates during which the tide is expected to be particularly high. Walk-out dates are planned two weeks a fortnight apart next month, from September 2 to 8 and September 23 to 29. The city’s landmarks vulnerable to rising tides include Tower Bridge, Westminster, the O2 Arena and built-up areas near the river including Southwark and Whitechapel.