Nigel

The former UKIP leader has reiterated his vow to return to front line politics, says the Express.

NIGEL FARAGE has vowed to return to politics if Brexit does not happen and accused Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn of colluding with Brussels over his U-turn on a customs union.
The former 
Ukip leader said he “would not rule out” coming back into the fray, saying: “If Brexit doesn’t happen then I will have no option.”
He accused Labour of collusion with the EU after Mr Corbyn called for the UK to remain in the customs union after Britain leaves the EU – contrary to what the party pledged in its manifesto last year. The Labour leader’s U-turn came after he paid a second visit to the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier on October 19.
Just 11 days later arch Remainers Sir Nick Clegg, the former Lib Dem leader, Tory ex-chancellor Ken Clarke and Labour’s Lord Adonis also met Mr Barnier in Brussels.
Last week former prime minister Tony Blair met with the federalist Brexit coordinator for the EU Parliament Guy Verhofstadt.
Mr Farage said: “If you look at the timing of all this none of it is coincidental. It’s a co-ordinated attempt to bounce the UK into membership of a customs union, paving the way for us to remain in the single market too. The establishment has been working against Britain and with Brussels throughout this entire process.

Brexit

The Sun claims an exclusive interview with Brexit Secretary David Davis.

BOLD. New. Positive. The Prime Minister used these words to describe Britain’s future outside the EU in her important speech on ­Friday.
And it’s the same upbeat approach we’ve taken throughout our negotiations with the EU, and one I’ve articulated to leaders right across Europe.
Because now is not the time to “do down” Britain.
We’re making good on that referendum result — the biggest democratic exercise this country has ever seen — and are fighting to get the best deal for the UK.
I’ve travelled the length and breadth of Europe in recent months to explain ­Britain’s ambitious and pragmatic vision of the future partnership  we want with the EU to government ministers and business leaders.
That vision recognises that we want close ties with Europe as our neighbours, trading partners and allies, but also sees the UK regain control of its borders and be able to strike its own trade ­agreements with growing economies around the globe.

The Telegraph claims house building will become easier from Brexit day.

Red tape holding back house-builders and restricting the hiring of apprentices will be torn up on the day after the Brexit transition period under plans being drawn up as part of a major government review, The Telegraph can disclose.
A group of senior Remain and Leave-supporting figures is preparing around 50 “fixes” that will scrap unnecessary rules and regulations derived from Brussels, as soon as the UK becomes fully independent from the EU.
The proposals, designed to address dozens of problematic examples of red tape identified by businesses, trade ­unions and regulators, include an overhaul of “state aid” diktats preventing the Government from offering cut-price loans to builders.

Devolved governments

Problems in Scotland and Wales are still being addressed, says ITV News.

Theresa May and Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon have agreed to work to break a deadlock over crucial Brexit legislation, Downing Street said.
After her high-profile speech on Friday, the Prime Minister telephoned Ms Sturgeon and Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones to discuss her Brexit vision.
The Scottish and Welsh governments have proposed their own legislation as an alternative to the UK Government’s European Union (Withdrawal) Bill amid a row on devolved powers returning from Brussels.
They argue that clause 11 of the Government’s flagship Withdrawal Bill amounts to a Westminster “power grab” and have consistently refused to recommend granting legislative consent for it as it stands.

EU

And in what the Telegraph claims is an exclusive, an ex White House spokesman has slated the EU.

The EU’s treatment of Britain in the Brexit negotiations has been “vicious and dismissive”, Steve Bannon, the former White House chief strategist, told The Telegraph.
Mr Bannon is in Rome to observe the outcome of Italy’s closely fought election on Sunday, in which the anti-establishment, Eurosceptic Five Star Movement is expected to emerge as the most popular party.
The fiercely anti-immigration League party, which has promised to expel half a million migrants if elected, is also expected to perform well.
Italy encapsulates the populist and nationalist revolt that produced Brexit and the victory of Donald Trump, Mr Bannon, the president’s former right-hand man, said.

The Express also quotes the American.

THE TREATMENT of Britain by European Union officials has been “vicious and dismissive”, Steve Bannon has declared ahead of a formal response from Brussels to Theresa May’s major Brexit speech on Friday.
The former White House chief strategist said the EU’s approach to Brexit  negotiations has been “nothing sort of shocking” as he predicted a hard Brexit outcome.
Mr Bannon told the Telegraph: “Brussels has been vicious and dismissive [towards the UK].
“The contempt that Brussels has shown for the mandate of the working men and women of Great Britain, who want out, has been to me nothing short of shocking.
“They haven’t accommodated anything, they have made everything as tough as possible. It’s not even been a negotiation. It’s been by fiat.”

Elsewhere on the Continent, the Express reports on today’s Italian elections.

ITALIANS will head to the polls on Sunday in what is set to be a hung parliament, according to the latest polls. But what would a Forza Italia win mean for Brexit and the EU?
Silvio Berlusconi’s party Forza Italia (FI) is currently third place in the polls, with 15.9 percent of the vote, which is not enough to form a majority government.
FI is allied with Matteo Salvini’s Lega, a right-wing party that has modelled itself as an anti-immigrant, eurosceptic party and Brothers of Italy which has a strong focus on immigration.
The parties hold between 35 to 37 percent of the vote, latest polls show, however Lega and Brothers of Italy hold far more Eurosceptic views compared to FI.
However in a move that will send a calming message to EU allies, Britain and financial markets that any centre-right government would not be hostile to the European Union, Berlusconi has announced European Parliament President Antonio Tajani would be his choice to head any future government.

Fox News also covers the election.

Italians go to the polls Sunday in an election where mass migration is a top issue, and where populists and the right wing could sweep out the sitting left-wing government — or there could be a stalemate.
The election takes place amid a tumultuous political backdrop. A lagging economy, high youth unemployment, concerns about the European Union and widespread concerns about mass migration are the main issues at the heart of the election — all which have led to a surge in popularity for right-wing and populist parties.
The voting on Sunday will likely be only the first step, with polls indicating a hung parliament is the most likely outcome, with no party or coalition having the votes needed for a majority government.
In the lead, according to the polls, is the populist 5-Star Movement — a party founded by Italian comedian Beppe Grillo that eschews traditional left/right labels, rejects traditional Italian parties. It has dropped its calls for a referendum on Euro membership and also kept its distance from some of the hardline immigration rhetoric pulsing through the country.

ITV News reports a potential hung parliament.

The centrist Democratic Party, centre-right Northern League and the populist Five Star Movement all concluded their campaigns late on Friday ahead of Sunday’s parliamentary elections in Italy, with pollsters expecting a hung parliament after the vote.
Silvio Berlusconi, the 81-year-old Forza Italia leader and a former prime minister, could emerge kingmaker with his centre-right alliance (Forza and the Northern League) likely the largest bloc in the chamber.
The populist Five Star Movement, which is expected to be the biggest single party in the parliament, has run on a plank of anti-austerity and euroscepticism, and has promised find an alternative to the Euro.
Founded by comedian and activist Beppe Grillo, the party is currently led by 31-year-old Luigi Di Maio, a man whose inexperience has proved an asset against the backdrop of a broken system of aging career politicians.

And it seems the US President is looking hard at protectionism, says Breitbart.

U.S. President Donald Trump is getting tough on the European Union, after the bloc’s unelected leaders threatened to levy punitive tariffs on iconic American brands in response to his attempts to protect American steelworkers.
“So now we will also impose import tariffs,” threatened Jean-Claude Juncker, the president of the unelected European Commission, at a black-tie event in Hamburg, Germany.
“This is basically a stupid process, the fact that we have to do this. But we have to do it. We will now impose tariffs on motorcycles, Harley-Davidson, on blue jeans, Levis, on bourbon. We can also do stupid. We also have to be this stupid,” he huffed.
Unphased, the U.S. President fired back on Twitter: “If the EU wants to further increase their already massive tariffs and barriers on U.S. companies doing business there, we will simply apply a Tax on their Cars which freely pour into the U.S.,” he wrote.
“They make it impossible for our cars (and more) to sell there. Big trade imbalance!”

Lib Dems

The Times the Liberal Democrats have mobilised their youth members.

Sir Vince Cable reveals today that the Liberal Democrats have set up a Momentum-style youth army to fight Brexit and to press Labour politicians to quit Jeremy Corbyn’s party and join forces with them.
In an interview with The Sunday Times to mark the 30th anniversary of the creation of the Lib Dems, 74-year-old Cable said his young supporters were “very active and fighting the Brexit war” and made clear his plan to emulate Labour’s army of young foot soldiers.
“The Labour Party started out with a good idea but it became a ramp for a takeover by revolutionary hardliners,” Cable said. “But we have the youngest membership of the major parties. We have 100,000 members.”

Benefits

It seems plans to reform the benefits system may not happen, says the Independent.

Ministers are accused today of breaking a promise to introduce a reform to cut the huge number of benefit sanctions, plunging people into the misery of hunger and eviction from their homes in some cases.
A “yellow card” system, giving claimants 14 days to challenge a decision to dock their benefits on the grounds it was imposed wrongly, was pledged more than two years ago in October 2015.
But the Department for Work and Pensions  (DWP) has now quietly admitted that the move has been shelved indefinitely because “an evaluation has proved complex”.
The stance has been condemned by Frank Field, the chairman of the Commons Work and Pensions Committee, who highlighted the appalling distress that sanctions are still causing.
It comes as the number of sanctions starts to rise again, driven by an explosion in the number of punishments imposed on claimants of universal credit.

Northern Ireland

The disagreement over the province rumbles on in the Guardian.

Jacob Rees-Mogg has accused Ireland and the European Union of risking a “no deal” Brexit with their “absurd” suggestion that Northern Ireland  should be in a common regulatory area with Brussels to avoid a hard border on the island.
The leading Tory Brexiter blamed “irresponsible, vote-chasing immaturity” from the Irish prime minister, Leo Varadkar, and “clear disregard” for the Good Friday agreement from the EU chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, for the row over the Irish border.
The MP said it was clear that a solution could not be found to maintain a soft Irish border until Britain and the EU had finalised their future trading relationship.
Theresa May has already rejected the EU’s demand, arguing it would threaten the constitutional and territorial integrity of the UK by keeping Northern Ireland in a de facto customs area with Brussels that the rest of the country would be outside.

Westmonster also quotes Jacob Ress-Mogg.

Staunch Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg has hit back against the outrageous attempt from the European Union to divide the United Kingdom earlier this week, writing in the Belfast News Letter that: “We entered the EU as one country and we will leave as one country, whatever the European Commission might desire.”
His words come after the EU put forward a proposal for Northern Ireland to “be considered to be part of the customs territory of the union” in a move that was labelled “offensive” by the DUP’s Westminster Leader Nigel Dodds.

And the Independent claims the problems could result in a resumption of the ‘troubles’ there.

Direct rule in Northern Ireland or a hard border after Brexit could lead to “serious trouble” and a return to the violence of the 1970s and 1980s, one of the key brokers of the Good Friday Agreement has warned.
George Mitchell, who as United States Special Envoy for Northern Ireland chaired the talks that led to the historic agreement, said a hardening of the border could mean “stereotyping resumes, demonisation resumes and people turn inward”.
He also warned that failure to restore power-sharing at the Stormont assembly could lead “regressive forces” to reignite their campaign of violence.
The British and Irish governments and the EU have all ruled out a hard border in Northern Ireland after Brexit, but European leaders have said the only way to guarantee this is through some form of customs union – something the UK has repeatedly ruled out.

The Guardian also quotes the former US senator.

The former American senator who brokered peace in  Northern Ireland has warned there could be “serious trouble ahead” if border checks were reinstated because of Brexit.
George Mitchell, who worked with Tony Blair and Bertie Ahern to strike the peace deal in 1998, said he did not think a return to violence was inevitable in the region. But he said “the risk is high enough” for politicians to take action before any “regressive” forces in society resurge. He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme that the greater danger was the “change in attitude” between communities that had been in conflict or had lived with physical or social barriers in the past.
“When there was a hard border, there was very little commerce, there was very little interaction between the people of Northern Ireland and the people of the Republic, and that led to stereotyping, to the demonisation of others, to attitudes that were based upon acts from the distant past,” he said.
“The open border has meant people travelling back and forth, a degree of social interaction, of commerce, of people working together. If you reinstate a hard border, you go back to the delays when stereotyping resumes, demonisation resumes, and people turn inward as opposed to outward, and they lose the benefits that come from open borders.”

Electoral fraud

The Independent claims a clampdown on election fraud is ineffectual.

Fresh doubts have been cast over government plans to tighten voter identification measures after official figures revealed only one person was prosecuted for electoral fraud last year.
A study by the Electoral Commission found just 28 allegations of someone having lied about their identity at a polling station in 2017, despite almost 45 million votes having been cast.
Only one of these allegations resulted in a conviction. The man in question was fined after admitting to voting twice for Labour.
The figures suggest public concern over voter fraud is overblown, and led critics to suggest “draconian” government proposals to force members of the public to show ID before voting are not justified by any evidence of a problem.

FGM

Maybe reports of female genital mutilation are over-hyped, says the Mail.

Controversial statistics on the number of British victims of female genital mutilation are being falsely inflated, it can be revealed today.
The NHS has admitted that some doctors are wrongly including newborn babies in the figures if their mothers have undergone the banned practice.
A footnote to the statistics admits: ‘We are aware that babies have been recorded in the dataset in error, and are working with the affected organisations to delete these records.’
NHS Digital, the health statistics body, admitted it did not know how many babies had been wrongly added to the figures. A spokesman said: ‘We are unable to verify which incidents have been recorded in error.
‘We have included the caveat as a warning that there may be some data quality issues with the published figures and that the numbers should be treated with caution.’

Bio-weapons factory

The Star claims ISIS may be creating biological warfare weapons here in the UK.

SPY chiefs believe terrorists are developing biological weapons in secret UK labs.
MI5 believes Islamic State fanatics back from Iraq and Syria are attempting to make deadly ricin and anthrax.
Both poisons – which could kill hundreds of people – can be made by anyone with basic scientific knowledge, according to senior intelligence sources.
It is feared the terrorists could use them to poison food in supermarkets or contaminate water supplies.
The warning follows mounting concerns by security chiefs that the UK is not prepared for even a basic bio-terror attack.
The new threat comes as one senior intelligence source revealed that security agencies are now disrupting up to one terror plot every month.

NHS

Treatment for cancer comes under the spotlight in the Times.

Forcing cancer patients to travel for two to three hours daily for up to seven weeks to receive routine treatment is “frankly cruel” and “more like Third World care”, doctors and politicians have warned.
Patients are having to make round trips of up to 100 miles for radiotherapy because the treatment is not provided locally.
Pat Price, a professor at Imperial College London and chairwoman of Action Radiotherapy, a charity working to improve treatment, said: “The thought of patients travelling for hours, often feeling sick and vomiting in cars, for radiotherapy every day for four or five weeks is more like Third World care.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email