Any Conservative leadership contender who fails to win the backing of more than 10 MPs next week could be “culled” after the first round of voting under plans to be discussed by backbenchers on Tuesday. The senior Tory MPs who run the party’s 1922 committee of backbench MPs will discuss how to whittle down the 13 MPs who have declared they will stand to a short list of two MPs to be put to the party’s grassroots membership. Under a proposed timetable to accelerate the process, discussed by officers on Monday, four rounds of voting among Tory MPs are planned with the final two candidates selected by Thursday June 20.
SQUABBLING Tory rivals were on Monday urged to finish the leadership contest by July – as powerful Tories mull rule changes to speed it up. The Conservative backbench 1922 Committee will on Tuesday debate proposals that could force the 13 contenders to have a minimum number of MP backers before they can stand in an effort to slim down the huge field. They will also consider a plan to boot candidates out after the first round of voting if they fail to secure a minimum level of support – such as five per cent of all Tory MPs.
Boris Johnson has launched his official leadership campaign as his rivals jostled for Brexiteer support by saying they would keep no deal on the table. Mr Johnson’s campaign video shows him canvassing voters and repeats his pledge to leave the EU on October 31, deal or no deal. This morning Jeremy Hunt has said he would be prepared to take the UK out of the EU without a deal, but said he would do so “with a heavy heart”.
Boris Johnson has surged into the lead in the race to be prime minister as he launched his campaign to be Tory leader with a vow to leave the EU at the end of October with or without a deal. Yesterday the former foreign secretary gained 12 new parliamentary backers, meaning that he has 35 public supporters, 9 more than Michael Gove.
Boris Johnson is way out in front of the Tory leadership race, with more than double the number of Tory MPs set to back him compared to his nearest Brexiteer rivals, his allies have told HuffPost UK. Johnson is understood to have more than 80 Conservative backbenchers privately signed up – a quarter of the entire parliamentary party.
BORIS Johnson vowed to “lift the nation” as he leapt in front of bitter rival Michael Gove as the clear man to beat in the Tory leadership contest. More than a dozen prominent Tory MPs openly declared their support for the ex-Foreign Secretary in a coordinated plan after he launched his campaign on social media. It means with half of the party having declared for a candidate, Mr Johnson so far has 42 MPs on his side – ahead of Mr Gove and Jeremy Hunt, both on 29.
Boris Johnson has pulled ahead of his closest Tory leadership rivals with a slew of endorsements from prominent party moderates and Brexiters as outsider candidates warned against a “stitch-up” barring them from the ballot. Johnson, who has kept a low profile in the contest so far, launched his campaign in earnest with a video posted on social media highlighting his credentials. His team then released endorsements throughout the day from MPs across the party’s spectrum.
A DIRTY tricks spying operation on Boris Johnson by Michael Gove’s team was foiled tonight as the race to replace Theresa May turned nasty. The Environment Secretary sent out MPs to find out when Boris was planning his much-anticipated campaign launch. Mr Gove is desperate to avoid it clashing with his own launch for fear of being overshadowed. But MPs rumbled the plot tonight, with one telling The Sun: “Gove is frantically sending out spies for when Boris is doing his launch. He doesn’t want to be blown out of the water.
MICHAEL GOVE has been accused of spying on Boris Johnson on the eve of the former foreign secretary’s Tory leadership campaign launch. Party sources said members of Mr Johnson’s team foiled attempts by Mr Gove’s allies to get inside information on the launch. One insider described the discovery of the alleged spies as dirty tricks and warned the race to replace Theresa May at Number 10 was turning nasty.
Conservative leadership candidates have given their backing to Donald Trump and criticised Sadiq Khan following the latest row between the pair. Esther McVey, the former work and pensions secretary, said the London mayor was “churlish and childish”, while Jeremy Hunt, the foreign secretary, accused him of “virtue signalling”. The US president caused uproar by attacking Mr Khan on Twitter moments before landing in the UK for a three-day state visit. He called him a “stone cold loser” who had “done a terrible job” as mayor and should “focus on crime in London”.
The Tory leadership hopefuls need to explain how they stop themselves becoming “Theresa May mark two” stuck in a Brexit impasse, Philip Hammond, the chancellor of the exchequer, has warned. Hammond sounded a disparaging note about the prime minister as he told the candidates they needed to show how they would be different from the current occupant of No 10.
THE Tories need to build two million new homes in five years in a state led blitz to compare with 1950 new towns, a shock leadership contender declares today. Rory Stewart vows that if he made it to PM he would lead a £100billion housing revolution to end one of the “hundreds of injustices” facing voters. It would essentially be led by the public sector with the building contracted out and financed through bonds raised against the homes.
ChUK MPs will meet tomorrow (Tuesday) to discuss the future of their fledgling party. Guido understands that five of their eleven MPs think the game is up and will push to disband the party, with some even wanting to move to join the Lib Dems, just a week after their humiliating defeat at the European Elections, where they failed to get even one MP elected. Guido hears that MPs like Heidi Allen and Chuka Umunna are angry at what they saw as an Anna Soubry-Chris Leslie nexus seizing control of Change UK, with both of their spouses being appointed to key internal positions. They were also behind the, in hindsight, disastrous decision to not seek a pact with other Remain parties. Heidi is apparently ready to jump ship to the Lib Dems, who now control her local council…
One hundred current and former Labour staff have demanded that Jeremy Corbyn “get our house in order” over claims that his office blocked the suspension of a senior aide who was accused of sexual harassment. In an open letter to the Labour leader they have demanded “urgent clarification” of the “extremely serious” claims about David Prescott, 49, who works for Mr Corbyn and is the son of Lord Prescott, the former deputy prime minister.
A letter from 100 current and former Labour members of staff calls on Jeremy Corbyn to “get our house in order” over claims that a senior aide accused of harassment was not suspended from the party on the advice of the Labour leader’s chief of staff. David Prescott, the son of the former deputy prime minister John Prescott, was suspended from his position in Corbyn’s office in 2017 after allegations were made against him by a Labour MP, but he retained his party membership.
More than 100 Labour staffers wrote to Jeremy Corbyn last night to demand he get the party’s ‘house in order’ over sexual harassment. They demanded action over claims that the Labour leader’s office blocked the suspension of John Prescott’s son following a complaint of alleged sexual harassment. David Prescott, 49, was allegedly accused by a young female Labour MP of making ‘unwanted sexual advances’ in November 2017.
Labour staff have written directly to Jeremy Corbyn to demand he take urgent action to tackle allegations that party staff are being sexually harassed. The letter, signed by 101 current and former staff members of both Labour MPs and the party centrally, demands that Jeremy Corbyn “get our house in order”. It comes after The Sunday Times reported that his office had stepped in to block the suspension of an advisor David Prescott in November 2017, following accusations of sexual harassment which are denied.
Jeremy Corbyn has unveiled plans for a new tax raid on middle-class homeowners which will see those with larger family homes and gardens pay significantly more. A new report, commissioned by Labour, suggests that council tax should be scrapped and replaced with a “progressive property tax”. The tax would be payable by property owners, rather than tenants, and would be based on “regularly updated” property values. The report says there would be a “progressively higher rate of taxation” for each of top four property bands by value.
Labour was accused of pursuing the policies of Venezuela last night as it unveiled plans for a tax raid on middle-class homeowners and powers to force landlords to sell on the cheap. A report, called Land for the Many, said council tax should be replaced with a new ‘progressive’ levy targeting larger homes with gardens. And it suggested scrapping the single person discount – which gives widows and others 25 per cent off their bill.
Jeremy Corbyn is facing a fresh challenge to his leadership after MPs from across his party warned that Labour cannot win power through populism and the “politics of hate”. Several former shadow cabinet ministers, current frontbenchers and the party’s former policy chief are among MPs behind the Labour Together group, which will run its own policy-making process in in the hope of shifting the party’s stance on key issues, The Independent can reveal.
With no MEPs for the first time since 1999, just a handful of councillors and only two full time elected officials (both in the Welsh Assembly), Gerard Batten’s remodeled NewKip is on its last legs. That doesn’t stop them launching the third leadership battle currently waging on, after the Lib Dems and the Tories, as former leader Gerard Batten announced his term had come to an end today. Now Guido brings you the runners and riders for the leadership…
Boris’ court case
Boris Johnson will seek a judicial review of the decision to summon him to court to face a private prosecution, it has been claimed. The Tory leadership contender has been ordered to appear before a judge to answer three charges of misconduct in a public office following an allegation that he lied about how much Britain gives to the EU. Marcus Ball, a Remain campaigner, took out a private prosecution claiming Mr Johnson was wrong to say that Britain gives £350million a week to Brussels.
Boris Johnson has launched an appeal against the summons issued to him over allegations of misconduct in a public office, the businessman prosecuting him has announced. Campaigner Marcus Ball said Johnson had launched a judicial review application in the administrative court. The former foreign secretary’s lawyers would argue the summons issued to him last Wednesday by district judge Margot Coleman was unlawful and that the criminal proceedings against him should be suspended until the judicial review application was determined, Ball said.
PETERBOROUGH heavily backed Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party in last month’s European elections and this graph predicts voters will follow suit in next week’s by-election. Former Labour MP Fiona Onasanya was removed from her position as MP on May 1 after she was convicted of perverting the course of justice. Ms Onasanya was found guilty of lying to police to avoid being prosecuted for speeding and a by-election was prompted in Peterborough to elect her replacement.
By elections in marginal constituencies often attract protest votes. Peterborough, where they are voting on Thursday, is certainly marginal – and as a Brexit voting area could be said to have plenty to protest about. Last time, in the general election of 2017, it was a tight race in which Labour narrowly defeated the Conservatives. This time it could be the Brexit party that wins – and produces its first MP. For more than a century the safest bet you could place in Peterborough was on its people sending a Tory or Labour MP to Parliament, but not anymore.
EMMANUEL Macron today ruled out yet another Brexit delay as he called on EU leaders to crackdown on Britain unless the new prime minister offers a second referendum. The French President insisted that October 31 should be the “final, final deadline” to prevent Britain meddling in EU affairs. He conveyed his take-it-or-leave-it ultimatum in English as a warning to Theresa May’s successor in No.10. Speaking from the Elysee Palace, Mr Macron said: “I think this is the final, final deadline because I don’t want to have the New Commission and this new executive to deal with this.
EMMANUEL Macron has said Britain should be kicked out of the EU with or without a deal on October 31 – unless it agrees to a radical rethink. The French President said our current exit date should be the “final, final deadline” in a boost to Brexiteer PM hopefuls like Boris Johnson. But he added holding a second referendum or a devising a “totally new scheme” on the future relationship could justify another extension. Speaking in Paris, Mr Macron warned the next British PM that trying to renegotiate the backstop would be a “non-starter”.
Jean-Claude Juncker has complained that as president of the European Commission he does not have a “stately home” to live in or a personal aircraft like the US president’s Air Force One. The top EU official has revealed his personal embarrassment at not having an impressive official residence to entertain European or world leaders. “The commission president doesn’t have a residence. I have been living in a hotel apartment measuring 50 sq m for €3,250 [per month, £95 a night],” he told Germany’s Bild.
Angela Merkel‘s government is facing another crisis and possible collapse after the leader of her main coalition partner resigned. Andrea Nahles quit as chief of the centre-left social democrats (SPD) after a series of terrible election results which saw her party eclipsed by the Greens. “The discussions within the parliamentary faction and feedback from within the party have shown me that I no longer have the necessary support to carry out my duties,” the outgoing leader said.
Jeremy Hunt has warned Donald Trump that the NHS will remain off-limits to American companies, whoever wins the Tory leadership race to become Britain’s next prime minister. The foreign secretary became the second candidate to rule out allowing US firms access to NHS contracts in a post-Brexit trade deal after Woody Johnson, the US ambassador to the UK, said on Sunday that the “entire economy” would have to be “on the table” in any deal.
Thousands of men with incurable prostate cancer are set to benefit from a “search-and-destroy” type of radiotherapy that doctors believe is “the next big thing” in treating the disease. The method, which targets cancer cells with a nuclear payload, was hailed as potentially game-changing by experts at the world’s biggest cancer conference. Although results are only now starting to emerge, doctors said that targeting radioactive chemicals precisely to kill tumour cells while avoiding side-effects could be a huge step for men with prostate cancer.
Jeremy Corbyn will lead a demonstration against Donald Trump on Tuesday as he was accused of bringing “shame” on his party by trying to hijack the US president’s state visit. The Labour leader, who harbours ambitions of being prime minister within months, promised to “stand in solidarity” with anti-Trump protestors after boycotting Monday night’s formal banquet for Mr Trump hosted by the Queen. Thousands of protestors are expected to descend on London’s Trafalgar Square where Mr Corbyn will whip up the crowd with a speech about Mr Trump’s “misogyny and climate change”.
Jeremy Corbyn is to join a protest today against Donald Trump’s state visit. The Labour leader, who chose to boycott a banquet in the US president’s honour at Buckingham Palace last night, told supporters in a tweet that the protest was “an opportunity to stand in solidarity with those he’s attacked in America, around the world and in our own country, including . . . Sadiq Khan”.
The Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn will join thousands of anti-Trump protesters on the streets of central London today, as Scotland Yard’s Commissioner warns her officers will take firm action against any protesters who break the law. Mr Corbyn, who snubbed last night’s state dinner at Buckingham Palace, said he wanted to show solidarity with demonstrators and planned to address the protest.
Jeremy Corbyn will attend a major protest tomorrow against Donald Trump’s UK State Visit. The Labour leader will speak at a demo that is expected to be attended by thousands of people in central London. The rally will march from Trafalgar Square down Whitehall to Parliament Square – while the President holds talks with lame duck Theresa May in Downing Street. A Labour spokesman confirmed: ” Jeremy Corbyn will attend and speak at the demonstration tomorrow against President Donald Trump’s state visit.”
Jeremy Corbyn will speak at the huge demonstration in London against Donald Trump’s state visit, it has been announced. The Labour leader – who has snubbed the US president’s banquet with the Queen at Buckingham Palace – will join hundreds of thousands of people at the protest on Tuesday. Earlier, Jeremy Hunt, the foreign secretary, condemned Labour’s opposition to the pomp-filled visit as “virtue-signalling”.
Donald Trump today mocked London Mayor Sadiq Khan for being a ‘stone cold loser’ as the US President arrived in Britain for his three-day state visit. In return the mayor’s office immediately fired back, saying Mr Trump was offering ‘childish insults which should be beneath the President of the United States’. Mr Trump said Mr Khan had done a ‘terrible job’, hitting back after the mayor compared the language used by him to that of ‘fascists of the 20th century’.