Brexit

Remoaners are still trying to thwart the will of the people – an failing – says the Mail.

High Court judges today took just an hour to throw out ‘premature’ legal action to force a ‘soft Brexit‘ and thwart Theresa May.
The new group of campaigners – including some granted anonymity on safety grounds – want Parliament to vote on keeping Britain in the European single market.
They include Peter Wilding, chairman of the pro-Europe pressure group British Influence, who is credited with coining the word Brexit and Conservative lobbyist Adrian Yalland, who voted Leave and runs the Single Market Justice Group.
The case started at 10.30am this morning but by 11.30am the judges refused to give the green light for the new challenge – but the group could still appeal.
Mr Yalland and Mr Wilding said later in a joint statement: ‘We were right to bring this challenge, and unless the Government gives business and the country the certainty it needs and deserves, it is highly likely we will be here again’.

The Independent also has the story.

The High Court has blocked a fresh attempt to challenge Brexit through the legal system.
Campaigners had argued that Parliament needed to separately give consent to take Britain out of the European Economic Area (EEA).
Although the single market was not mentioned in June’s referendum question, Theresa May says she will be taking the UK out of it on the back of the vote’s result. A number of countries sit outside the European Union but retain access to the EEA, most notably Norway.
Parliament is in the process of giving consent to the Government to trigger Article 50 and begin Brexit negotiations. The High Court previously ruled that MPs had to be given a vote on the process to delegate the power to the Government.
However, the new challenge, brought by Adrian Yalland and Peter Wilding, who runs pro-single market organisation British Influence, argues that the EEA is a separate organisation and should require separate consent. Other plaintiffs have also joined the challenge but asked not to be identified for fear of media backlash.
Judges have now refused consent for the challenge to go ahead and said they will give their reasons later.

The Sun also reports the High Court case.

A FRESH challenge to Brexit was blocked by the High Court this morning – in a blow to Remoaners who wanted us to stay in the EU’s Single Market.
Theresa May will breathe a sigh of relief after judges rejected arguments that there should be ANOTHER vote in Parliament before the UK can come out of the European Economic Area.
The case focused around triggering Article 127 of the European Economic Area agreement (EEA), which allows non-EU members the same freedoms as those available to EU members.
The EEA gives countries access to the Single Market – but in return they must allow free movement of people and implement some EU laws. Norway, Iceland and Lichetenstein have this special status.
Lawyers argued that MPs need to give their permission before taking us out of the area – but judges refused to give it the green light.

The Guardian reports that plans to curb immigration are ‘impossible’.

People who backed Brexit in the belief it would lead to a cut in immigration into the UK were voting for something that is in effect impossible, a former member of David Cameron’s cabinet has said.
Stephen Crabb, a former work and pension secretary, said that Theresa May urgently needed to outline a new set of values for a post-Brexit immigration system, or the public may face a rude awakening.
“For many, a vote for Brexit was indeed a vote to take back control and return to Westminster the full tools to cut immigration,” Crabb said in a article for the Guardian.
“The problem is that, set against the popular expectation that Brexit means cutting immigration, there is nothing on the horizon to suggest that achieving any significant reduction is achievable or even desirable.”
Crabb argued the fallout from US president Donald Trump’s “toxic immigration decree” had increased the need for a clearer definition of British values towards immigration.

But a trade deal could be completed within two years, says Sky News

A trade deal with Europe alongside a divorce settlement is possible within the two-year negotiation timetable, according to an EU leader.
The Latvian Prime Minister told Sky News that a reasonable solution should be sought with the UK and any differences could be overcome.
The intervention came at an EU summit in Malta in which the 27 other leaders discussed Brexit as part of wider talks on the challenges facing the union.
Maris Kucinskis said: “What is most important is to think about a beneficial partnership (and) find an amicable solution to all of this.
“There are negotiators who are taking care of the best possible deal for both sides so that’s the top priority at the moment.”

EU

Over in the European Union, the Times reports Juncker’s drunken comments.

Jean-Claude Juncker’s drinking habits at European summits came under renewed scrutiny last night after the European Commission president joked to journalists that he was the “biggest threat to the future of the EU”.
After a long summit lunch including traditional Maltese dishes of cauliflower soup, stewed beef and olives and lampuki pie washed down with local wines, Mr Juncker appeared not to be too focused at an official EU press conference.
European leaders had only just finished discussing their fears that both Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin posed a threat to the EU and wider international order.

But the financial war between the UK and the EU has not been ruled out, says the Independent.

Angela Merkel has hit back at Theresa May’s threat to slash taxes to undercut the EU if it blocks a Brexit deal, warning taxes are the price paid for a just society.
The German Chancellor insisted her country had no intention of joining a race to the bottom, by following in the footsteps of Britain and Donald Trump.
“We have a tax system in Germany that has weathered challenges well. I see no reason for entering a race for who has the lowest corporation tax,” she said.
We need tax revenues, we need a fair tax system, in order to make necessary investments in our society.”

The Express reports that the Prime Minister has started talks with EU figures.

THERESA MAY has held informal talks in Malta on Brexit with senior EU figures including Angela Merkel and Jean-Claude Juncker.
The Prime Minister also made it clear that Britain wants to remain friends with the EU after Leaving by agreeing to offer cash and assistance to persuade Asian and Latin American countries to take refugees who have landed in Europe.
But with EU leaders wanting to have a united hard response to Donald Trump, Mrs May has defended her position of seeking close ties with the new US President.
Mrs May used the opportunity of a walking tour of Valletta to talk with some of the key players in the forthcoming Brexit negotiations.
The Prime Minister and her European counterparts visited some of the Maltese capital’s historic sites during the excursion.

Labour Party

The party is haemorrhaging members, says the Sun.

MORE than 7,000 people have QUIT the Labour Party in the last week after Jeremy Corbyn ordered his MPs to back triggering Article 50.
Over a fifth of the Labour leader’s MPs defied his wishes earlier this week and voted against the Government’s Brexit bill.
Ten frontbenchers and three whips were among 47 MPs who rebelled against Mr Corbyn in a chaotic night for the party.
Overall the Bill passed through to the next stage, with 498 MPs backing it, and 114 opposing.
A handful of Shadow frontbenchers resigned before the vote itself – as they were not prepared to back Labour’s position. The rest of the rebels have yet to face punishment for defying their leader’s orders.
The New Statesman reported that around 7,000 people have now resigned their membership in protest at the party’s stance.
Activists said there was a “feeling of betrayal” among those who voted for him – who now thought he had given up his principles.
For many members, supporting Remaining in the EU was a requirement of their support. But Mr Corbyn opted to whip his MPs to vote with the Government to start Brexit talks – and told people the party “respected the result of the referendum”.

The Express report the party leader’s desperation.

JEREMY Corbyn was branded “desperate” tonight after Ed Miliband made it clear he would reject any attempt to bring him back into the hapless Labour leader’s top team.
With Mr Corbyn unable to fill his shadow cabinet and Remoaner rebels walking out over his agreement to allow Brexit to be triggered, Mr Corbyn has reportedly turned to his failed predecessor to save his flagging leadership.
But with the party on the brink of collapse it is understood that Mr Miliband has told friends he would reject any overtures.
Friends of Mr Miliband last night said he “has said consistently that he wants to make his contribution supporting Jeremy and the party from the backbenches”, adding they “do not expect that to change”.
It caps a terrible week for the hard Left Mr Corbyn who has lost 7,000 party members over Brexit.
He is also under pressure to sack his close ally shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott after she failed to turn up to vote for triggering Article 50 on Wednesday.

Breitbart also reports on the plight of the party.

The passage of a Brexit bill through parliament is reopening deep divisions among lawmakers in Britain’s opposition Labour party, as they struggle to reconcile their pro-European views with voter concerns over immigration.
Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn ordered his MPs to support the first stage of a bill on Wednesday empowering the government to begin negotiations on leaving the EU, but 47 MPs rebelled — and a dozen others were absent.
Further rebellions are likely when the legislation returns to the House of Commons next week, if — as is expected — Labour fails to push through amendments seeking to ease the terms of the divorce.
The disagreements raise further questions about Corbyn’s leadership, which has seen the party’s poll numbers sink to 24 percent — 16 points behind Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservatives.
But the divisions reflect wider problems in the Labour party, which has for years been balancing its liberal, pro-European instincts with the concerns of many working-class voters about mass migration.

NHS

In other news, our National Health Services continues in crisis, says the Mail.

Millions of patients are being left in the hands of nurses and paramedics out-of-hours instead of GPs, an investigation has found.
A tenth of health trusts admitted they were unable to find GPs for overnight or weekend shifts on at least one occasion last year.
They cover a population of about four million but the true figure is likely to be even higher because some areas did not supply figures.
The revelation will fuel concerns that problems in the GP system are adding to the pressure on A&E departments.
Managers in Tower Hamlets, east London, admitted a quarter of a million patients had been left without a doctor on 12 separate occasions during 2016.
Patients were told to contact the community night team which is staffed by nurses or paramedics, or go to the nearest A&E.
In Peterborough the population of 237,000 was left without a GP out of hours on nine occasions. Each time, parents with sick children were told to go straight to A&E.

The Mirror claims doctors are leaving the service after their training.

Soaring numbers of junior doctors are leaving the NHS after their foundation training, an official report has revealed.
Just half of those who finished their first two years on the job in 2016 went straight into NHS training to become a specialist or GP.
That was down from 52% in 2015, 58% in 2014, 64% in 2013, 67% in 2012 and 71% in 2011.
Meanwhile the proportion taking a career break was 13.1% last year, the same as in 2015 but nearly triple the 4.6% in 2011.
And 12.7% were either training abroad, taking a job abroad or applying for one, a four-year high.

The Morning Star says it’s the government’s fault.

THE government are “failing to protect our NHS for the future” Labour warned yesterday as shocking figures revealed a staffing crisis in the health service.
Under guidance introduced by Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, NHS trusts in England are expected to cap the rates paid to temporary staff working through agencies.
From April 2016, the cap was set at 55 per cent above the basic rate of pay. Anything above this could only be paid on “exceptional safety grounds.”
The cap has been breached an astonishing 2.7 million times in the last nine months, fresh figures from NHS England revealed yesterday.
And figures from college admissions service Ucas showed applications for nursing courses are down a staggering 23 per cent as cuts to the NHS bursary take effect.

Tube strikes

In happier news, the Mail reports that the proposed train strikes have been called off.

Planned strikes by London Underground workers from Sunday evening have been suspended.
Members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union were due to stage two walkouts from Sunday evening in a dispute over jobs and ticket office closures.
LU said if the strikes go ahead there will be a significant impact on Tube journeys from 6pm on Sunday until around 11am on Wednesday.
Many Tube stations, including most of those in Zone 1, were not due open or, in some cases, open or close at short notice.
But today, the RMT union announced that the strikes have been suspended.

Energy prices

It looks like the cost of gas and electricity is rising, says the Times.

Npower faced heavy criticism yesterday after announcing that it was raising energy prices by an average of 10 per cent, adding £109 a year to the typical bill of 1.4 million households.
The company blamed a combination of rising wholesale gas and electricity costs and government policies for the increase, despite Ofgem, the regulator, saying that its analysis showed no “obvious reason” for major suppliers to raise their standard tariff.
The government said that Npower’s customers were “already paying more than they need to” and threatened to intervene over the price rises.
A spokesman for Theresa May said: “We are concerned by Npower’s planned increases.

End of the world

And, as usual, the Star has a scare story.

A TOP secret mission is under way to hide a giant alien planet that is going to obliterate Earth, according to astounding claims.
The mission – dubbed Operation Indigo Skyfold – allegedly involves numerous planned military assignments to cover up evidence of the threat.
It revolves around a long-standing conspiracy that a mythical planet known as Nibiru is on a collision course for our planet.
Nibiru, which is also known as Planet X, is believed by many people online to be roughly 10 times the size of Earth with a massive gravitational pull.
And now conspiracists believe they know exactly how the existence of the colossal celestial body being hidden from the public.
So-called “truth-seekers” believe Operation Indigo Skyfold involves the use of military aircraft to create “chemtrails” in the sky which block out the visibility of approaching Planet X.

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