Foreign secretary lambasted over ‘levelling down’ plans labelled ‘a ticking time bomb’
Tory leadership frontrunner Liz Truss’s rapidly-abandoned policy of slashing public sector pay for workers outside London was “just bonkers” and would probably have cost her party the next general election, an influential Konserwatief mayor has warned.
Tees Valley mayor Ben Houchen and former health secretary Matt Hancock – both Rishi Sunak supporters – were among those who likened the “poorly-judged” policy to the “dementia tax” fiasco which partly saw Theresa May fail to secure a majority in the 2017 general election.
Tory MP Mark Harper claimed that Margaret Thatcher “would be livid” over the £8.8bn hole left in Ms Truss’s plans after the U-turn, and urged the foreign secretary to “stop blaming journalists” after she sought to claim she had been “misrepresented” in entirely accurate reports of her press release on the policy.
Ms Truss also sparked fury after branding Scotland’s first minister Nicola Sturgeon an “attention-seeker” who should be ignored, in comments at the Tory hustings in Exeter on Monday dubbed “deeply troubling” by Ms Sturgeon’s deputy, John Swinney.
Liz Truss widens poll lead over Rishi Sunak – YouGov
Liz Truss has increased her lead over her Tory leadership rival Rishi Sunak, according to a new YouGov poll.
N somtotaal van 1,043 Tory members were surveyed between 29 July and 2 Augustus.
Sixty-nine per cent said they were in favour of Ms Truss – an increase of 7 persent. Intussen, 31 per cent were in favour of Mr Sunak – a decrease of 7 per cent since the last poll.
When asked how they would vote in the Conservative leadership election, 60 per cent of them said they would vote for foreign secretary Ms Truss, in vergelyking met 26 per cent for former chancellor Mr Sunak.
In a previous poll a fortnight ago, 49 per cent of the Tory members said they would vote for Ms Truss and 31 per cent they would vote for Mr Sunak.
Leadership vote ballots ‘delayed in order to reduce fraud risk’
Additional security measures have reportedly been added to the Tory leadership voting process for party members.
According to an email to the Tory selectorate, shared by James Heale of Die Toeskouer, organisers have “taken some time to add some additional security to our ballot process which has delayed us slightly”.
It states that “unique one-use codes” are now required to vote digitally in order to reduce “the risk of any fraud”.
Truss vows to order review into decriminalising BBC licence fee non-payment
Liz Truss has told the Daaglikse pos daardie, if she enters No 10, she will order a review into whether or not failure to pay the BBC licence fee should remain a criminal offence.
Here is the reaction from one commentator and policy expert:
‘Bonkers’ Truss policy would probably have cost Tories general election, Conservative mayor says
Liz Truss’s now-abandoned public sector pay cut plans were “just a bonkers policy” and a “hugely retrograde step” which would probably have cost the Tories the next general election if implemented, an influential Conservative mayor has said.
“Trying to suggest that nurses, police officers, forces personnel and others in the north of England doing the same job as their counterparts in the south and southeast should be paid less is just not going to fly,” Tees Valley mayor Ben Houchen told TalkTV, toevoeging: “It would have been hugely damaging had they stuck to it.”
Hy het voortgegaan: “I genuinely think had that policy been followed through and had Liz been able to implement that as the prime minister it would have seen huge sways of the north of England not voting Conservative.
“We would have seen red wall seats go elsewhere … and we would have lost our majority, so absolutely I do think the policy … would have absolutely put at risk the general election.”
Asked about what the debacle showed about the foreign secretary’s judgement, hy het gesê: “It calls into question the people who allowed that statement to go out, did Liz sign it off? But fundamentally the important thing is she’s recognised this is a silly idea and she’s run back from it.”
Opinie | Hou daarvan of nie, Trussonomics is what we look likely to get
In his latest Independent Voices column, Hamish McRae takes a look at leadership frontrunner Liz Truss’s plans to cut taxes and the impact they could have upon inflation.
He argues that “the impact would be marginal”, toevoeging: “In the last financial year the government raised £915bn in tax and other receipts. In that context tax cuts of £30bn might add a bit to inflation, but they are not so big as to add massively. A fall in the global price of gas is much more important.”
“There is a general case for tax cuts,” he suggests. “The Sunak plan will increase the tax burden to the highest level of GDP since the late 1940s and we are already at the highest since the 1980s.”
You can read his thinking in full here:
There are some glints of light ahead. Inflation will ease next year and maybe fall quite sharply, skryf Hamish McRae
‘Lying is in Tory DNA’ says Labour MP over Liz Truss U-turn
Liz Truss has been accused of lying after she claimed that she never intended to change the work terms and conditions for teachers and nurses.
Tory leadership hopeful Ms Truss told the BBC earlier today that her policy on regional pay boards had been “misrepresented”.
Mike Amesbury, Labour MP for Weaver Vale, who had resigned as shadow local government minister at the end of June, commented: “Good god, lying is in their Tory DNA make up isn’t it.”
It comes after members of the Labour frontbench, as well as some Tory MPs, criticised Ms Truss for her U-turn on public sector pay during the last days of the Conservative leadership race.
Boris Johnson’s successor, which will either be Ms Truss or former chancellor Rishi Sunak, will be announced on Monday 5 September after a vote of 160,000 Tory members.
SNP formally seeks to intervene in Indyref2 court case
The SNP has formally submitted an application to intervene in a case that could allow the Scottish Parliament to legislate for an independence referendum.
In a 15-page submission to the court, lawyers Claire Mitchell QC and David Welsh argue that it would “fair, just and reasonable” to allow the SNP to intervene in the proceedings.
Verlede maand, the Lord Advocate – Dorothy Bain QC – asked the Supreme Court to decide whether a prospective Bill which would legislate for another referendum would be within the powers of Holyrood, filing a written submission that leaned heavily on any vote being purely advisory and not self-executing.
The court said it would hear oral arguments from both sides on October 11 en 12, and now the SNP has requested the chance to lay out its case for another vote as well.
The rules of the court, the submission says, allow for “any official body or non-governmental organisation seeking to make submissions in the public interest” to apply to intervene.
“In all the circumstances, it would be fair, net, and reasonable for the applicant to be granted permission to intervene in these proceedings in order to make submissions on the matters set out above,” the submission continued.
“The submissions will be of assistance to the court and no party will suffer prejudice as a result of the applicant being able to take part in these proceedings.”
Labour’s lead over Tories ‘shrinks to 1 per cent’ – YouGov poll
Labour has a 1 per cent lead on the Tories in a new YouGov poll that asked respondents how they would vote if a general election were to be “held tomorrow”.
YouGov said that Labour’s lead over the Conservatives shrunk in a “sharp move” from 7pts to 1pt.
It tweeted: “It will be worth waiting to see whether further polls replicate the extent of this narrowing of the gap before we can be certain of a Tory recovery.”
N somtotaal van 1,797 adults were surveyed on 27 en 28 Julie.
The government has said it is “deeply concerned” by claims that millions of factory farm chickens died during the recent record-breaking heatwave, prompting an investigation by officials.
The birds – confined to industrial farm sheds – suffered in temperatures of up to 45C and died slowly of heat exhaustion, it was alleged.
Some large producers made little or no effort to ease the pressure of the heat on the animals, the insiders told Die Onafhanklike on condition of anonymity for fear of losing their jobs.
My colleagues Anna Isak en Jane Dalton have the exclusive report here:
Eksklusief: The government says it is ‘deeply concerned’ about scale of fatalities as officials launch investigation into the deaths
‘Demoralised’ civil servant accuses government of using sector as a ‘target’
A “demoralised” civil servant has lamented the onslaught of attacks on the sector by ministers and leadership hopefuls.
“It just feels as though we’re sort of puppets, and whenever the government need an escape or an easy way out, or a cost-saving measure, we’re a target,” they told LBC.