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No 10 refuses to confirm if budget will go ahead as scheduled – live news No 10 refuses to confirm if budget will go ahead as scheduled – live news
(32 minutes later)
Rolling coverage of the day’s political developments as they happen, including Boris Johnson chairing a meeting of the new cabinet and further government reshuffle developmentsRolling coverage of the day’s political developments as they happen, including Boris Johnson chairing a meeting of the new cabinet and further government reshuffle developments
From Sky’s Joe Pike
The Institute for Government has been looking at how much cabinet experience Boris Johnson’s new team has. Quite a lot, it says. “Only three full members – Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Amanda Milling and George Eustice – and Suella Braverman, the new attorney general who attends cabinet - have not been around the table before,” Gavin Freeguard writes at the IfG blog.The Institute for Government has been looking at how much cabinet experience Boris Johnson’s new team has. Quite a lot, it says. “Only three full members – Anne-Marie Trevelyan, Amanda Milling and George Eustice – and Suella Braverman, the new attorney general who attends cabinet - have not been around the table before,” Gavin Freeguard writes at the IfG blog.
The government reshuffle seems to be running out of steam. No 10 has just issued a press release of 25 appointments, which all involve ministers staying in the same posts.The government reshuffle seems to be running out of steam. No 10 has just issued a press release of 25 appointments, which all involve ministers staying in the same posts.
Earlier today Downing Street announced seven junior-level promotions, of which more than half involved women.Earlier today Downing Street announced seven junior-level promotions, of which more than half involved women.
Amanda Sollaway has been made a business minister. She was a backbencher.Amanda Sollaway has been made a business minister. She was a backbencher.
Victoria Prentis has been made an environment minister. She was a backbencher.Victoria Prentis has been made an environment minister. She was a backbencher.
Rachel Maclean has been made a transport minister. She was parliamentary private secretary to Sajid Javid.Rachel Maclean has been made a transport minister. She was parliamentary private secretary to Sajid Javid.
Nigel Huddleston has been made a culture minister. He was a government whip, and will continue with that role alongside his ministerial job.Nigel Huddleston has been made a culture minister. He was a government whip, and will continue with that role alongside his ministerial job.
Theodore Agnew was made joint minister of state at the Cabinet Office and in the Treasury. He had been a junior education minister.Theodore Agnew was made joint minister of state at the Cabinet Office and in the Treasury. He had been a junior education minister.
Nicholas True has joined the government has a minister of state in the Cabinet Office.Nicholas True has joined the government has a minister of state in the Cabinet Office.
Elizabeth Berridge has been made an education minister. She was a government whip in the Lords, and will continue in that role alongside her education post.Elizabeth Berridge has been made an education minister. She was a government whip in the Lords, and will continue in that role alongside her education post.
The full list of appointments is here, on the No 10 website.The full list of appointments is here, on the No 10 website.
These are from my colleague Heather Stewart, who has been at the Downing Street lobby briefing.These are from my colleague Heather Stewart, who has been at the Downing Street lobby briefing.
Three Labour leadership candidates, Sir Keir Starmer, Rebecca Long-Bailey and Lisa Nandy, are guaranteed a place on the final ballot, and all five deputy leadership candidates – Angela Rayner, Dawn Butler, Richard Burgon, Ian Murray and Rosena Alin-Khan – have also got the CLP or affiliate nominations they need.Three Labour leadership candidates, Sir Keir Starmer, Rebecca Long-Bailey and Lisa Nandy, are guaranteed a place on the final ballot, and all five deputy leadership candidates – Angela Rayner, Dawn Butler, Richard Burgon, Ian Murray and Rosena Alin-Khan – have also got the CLP or affiliate nominations they need.
Emily Thornberry, a candidate for the leadership, is the only person still looking for CLP nominations. As of last night she had 30. She needs three more by the deadline at midnight tonight. Around 18 CLPs are supposed to be nominating today.Emily Thornberry, a candidate for the leadership, is the only person still looking for CLP nominations. As of last night she had 30. She needs three more by the deadline at midnight tonight. Around 18 CLPs are supposed to be nominating today.
In an article for PoliticsHome, Thornberry has floated a new policy idea. She says the government is going to have problems in the decades ahead meeting its unfunded public sector pension liabilities, and she proposes a solution: letting people with only limited contributions (two years’ worth initially) take out 75% of their money now, but foregoing their pension when they retire.In an article for PoliticsHome, Thornberry has floated a new policy idea. She says the government is going to have problems in the decades ahead meeting its unfunded public sector pension liabilities, and she proposes a solution: letting people with only limited contributions (two years’ worth initially) take out 75% of their money now, but foregoing their pension when they retire.
She says this would free up money for people who need it now, as well as reducing the long-term pension liabilities. And it would be good for the public finances, she claims.She says this would free up money for people who need it now, as well as reducing the long-term pension liabilities. And it would be good for the public finances, she claims.
The Jewish Labour Movement has also announced its stance on the Labour leadership. It is nominating Lisa Nandy for leader, and Ian Murray for deputy leader.The Jewish Labour Movement has also announced its stance on the Labour leadership. It is nominating Lisa Nandy for leader, and Ian Murray for deputy leader.
Here are the results of its ballot.Here are the results of its ballot.
And, while we’re on about Boris Johnson’s proposed bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland, my colleague Dan Sabbagh has spoken to bomb disposal experts who say the plan is flawed because the bridge would span a vast offshore munitions dump.And, while we’re on about Boris Johnson’s proposed bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland, my colleague Dan Sabbagh has spoken to bomb disposal experts who say the plan is flawed because the bridge would span a vast offshore munitions dump.
The leftwing TSSA transport union has announced that it is nominating Sir Keir Starmer for the Labour leadership, and Angela Rayner for the deputy leadership. Manuel Cortes, the TSSA general secretary, described them as “fantastic candidates, both of whom have made commitments to public ownership of our railways”.The leftwing TSSA transport union has announced that it is nominating Sir Keir Starmer for the Labour leadership, and Angela Rayner for the deputy leadership. Manuel Cortes, the TSSA general secretary, described them as “fantastic candidates, both of whom have made commitments to public ownership of our railways”.
Starmer has posted this on Twitter in response.Starmer has posted this on Twitter in response.
Ministers from the Scottish government and the Northern Ireland executive have criticised the plan floated by No 10 earlier this week for a bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland, the Press Association reports.Ministers from the Scottish government and the Northern Ireland executive have criticised the plan floated by No 10 earlier this week for a bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland, the Press Association reports.
The Scottish transport secretary, Michael Matheson, has said:The Scottish transport secretary, Michael Matheson, has said:
And the Stormont infrastructure minister, Nichola Mallon, has said:And the Stormont infrastructure minister, Nichola Mallon, has said:
Here are the main points from Rebecca Long-Bailey’s “Labour’s path to power” speech in Salford this morning. It was well-written and well-delivered, and John Rentoul has posted a link to the full text.Here are the main points from Rebecca Long-Bailey’s “Labour’s path to power” speech in Salford this morning. It was well-written and well-delivered, and John Rentoul has posted a link to the full text.
Much of what Long-Bailey said repeated points she has already made in the campaign, but here are the new or newish lines that stuck out.Much of what Long-Bailey said repeated points she has already made in the campaign, but here are the new or newish lines that stuck out.
Long-Bailey said Labour should not let the Tories present them as an establishment, “shiny suit wearing” party. This seemed a clear jibe at Sir Keir Starmer, the favourite in the leadership contest, although Long-Bailey did not make this explicit. But she did make the argument twice. In her speech she said:Long-Bailey said Labour should not let the Tories present them as an establishment, “shiny suit wearing” party. This seemed a clear jibe at Sir Keir Starmer, the favourite in the leadership contest, although Long-Bailey did not make this explicit. But she did make the argument twice. In her speech she said:
And in her Q&A, Long-Bailey said:And in her Q&A, Long-Bailey said:
It is obvious why Long-Bailey is making this argument when she appears to be trailing badly behind Starmer in the contest and looking “establishment” could be seen as one of his weak points. But having an establishment, “shiny suit” image has never stopped Conservative leaders winning general elections, so the premise of her argument is questionable. And Long-Bailey may be wrong to claim that being credible with the chattering classes is not the same as being credible with the public. She seemed to accept that Starmer has credibility with the former, but the polls suggest he has more credibility with the latter too.It is obvious why Long-Bailey is making this argument when she appears to be trailing badly behind Starmer in the contest and looking “establishment” could be seen as one of his weak points. But having an establishment, “shiny suit” image has never stopped Conservative leaders winning general elections, so the premise of her argument is questionable. And Long-Bailey may be wrong to claim that being credible with the chattering classes is not the same as being credible with the public. She seemed to accept that Starmer has credibility with the former, but the polls suggest he has more credibility with the latter too.
She criticised colleagues in the party who had said they would vote remain in any second referendum on Brexit instead of backing a deal negotiated by Labour. In the Q&A, talking about the problems with Labour’s Brexit policy at the election, she said:She criticised colleagues in the party who had said they would vote remain in any second referendum on Brexit instead of backing a deal negotiated by Labour. In the Q&A, talking about the problems with Labour’s Brexit policy at the election, she said:
The official party policy, agreed at conference last autumn, was to reserve any decision about how to campaign in a second referendum until after a Labour government had renegotiated the withdrawal agreement. Jeremy Corbyn himself would not say how he would campaign, and eventually resolved this conundrum by saying he would be neutral. But Long-Bailey’s comment seemed aimed at colleagues such as Starmer and Emily Thornberry who were explicit about wanting to back remain.The official party policy, agreed at conference last autumn, was to reserve any decision about how to campaign in a second referendum until after a Labour government had renegotiated the withdrawal agreement. Jeremy Corbyn himself would not say how he would campaign, and eventually resolved this conundrum by saying he would be neutral. But Long-Bailey’s comment seemed aimed at colleagues such as Starmer and Emily Thornberry who were explicit about wanting to back remain.
She described herself as someone who was good at both details and big vision. And she said that, as a working-class woman, she was used to having to prove she was much better than middle-class men. In her speech she said:She described herself as someone who was good at both details and big vision. And she said that, as a working-class woman, she was used to having to prove she was much better than middle-class men. In her speech she said:
She said she felt sad that the party had not focused more on its plans for a green industrial revolution during the election campaign. (See 11.04am.) And she gave an example of how she thought it could have helped the party win in Falmouth. (See 11.05am.)She said she felt sad that the party had not focused more on its plans for a green industrial revolution during the election campaign. (See 11.04am.) And she gave an example of how she thought it could have helped the party win in Falmouth. (See 11.05am.)
She said Labour should be more robust in tackling negative coverage in the media. In her speech she said:She said Labour should be more robust in tackling negative coverage in the media. In her speech she said:
This implies that Labour hasn’t tried this before. It has, repeatedly, including employing people to focus on digital media, although admittedly there is always room for improvement.This implies that Labour hasn’t tried this before. It has, repeatedly, including employing people to focus on digital media, although admittedly there is always room for improvement.
She said Labour should support a mass trade union membership drive and back workers in every dispute and strike against exploitative bosses. She said:She said Labour should support a mass trade union membership drive and back workers in every dispute and strike against exploitative bosses. She said:
She implied that she does not see a case for keeping on Diane Abbott, John McDonnell or Corbyn in any frontline roles in Labour. She said:She implied that she does not see a case for keeping on Diane Abbott, John McDonnell or Corbyn in any frontline roles in Labour. She said:
She quoted Tony Blair approvingly. She said:She quoted Tony Blair approvingly. She said:
Last night Jake Berry announced that he was leaving the government. He had been the Northern Powerhouse minister, but Boris Johnson wanted him to move to the Foreign Office and Berry refused because he said the foreign travel meant he would not see enough of his three young children.Last night Jake Berry announced that he was leaving the government. He had been the Northern Powerhouse minister, but Boris Johnson wanted him to move to the Foreign Office and Berry refused because he said the foreign travel meant he would not see enough of his three young children.
Berry’s portfolio has been handed to Simon Clarke, who has moved from the Treasury to be a minister in the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, although it is not clear whether or not Clarke will call himself the Northern Powerhouse minister. He says he’s in charge of levelling up.Berry’s portfolio has been handed to Simon Clarke, who has moved from the Treasury to be a minister in the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, although it is not clear whether or not Clarke will call himself the Northern Powerhouse minister. He says he’s in charge of levelling up.
Berry was one of the 10 ministers who used to attend cabinet without being a full member. Clarke won’t do that, which could be seen as a downgrade, although the PM has taken a deliberate decision to reduce the number of of cabinet non-member attendees from 10 to four, because it was felt that their numbers were getting out of hand.Berry was one of the 10 ministers who used to attend cabinet without being a full member. Clarke won’t do that, which could be seen as a downgrade, although the PM has taken a deliberate decision to reduce the number of of cabinet non-member attendees from 10 to four, because it was felt that their numbers were getting out of hand.
Rather than going to the pub (see 11.51am), Julian Smith, the former Northern Ireland secretary, has been visiting a school in his Skipton and Ripon constituency. It turned out the pupils hadn’t been keeping up with the news.Rather than going to the pub (see 11.51am), Julian Smith, the former Northern Ireland secretary, has been visiting a school in his Skipton and Ripon constituency. It turned out the pupils hadn’t been keeping up with the news.
Julian Smith, who was sacked as Northern Ireland secretary yesterday, was doorstepped by Sky News this morning. Asked about his future plans, he replied:Julian Smith, who was sacked as Northern Ireland secretary yesterday, was doorstepped by Sky News this morning. Asked about his future plans, he replied:
Jackson Carlaw has been elected the new leader of the Scottish Conservatives.Jackson Carlaw has been elected the new leader of the Scottish Conservatives.
Carlaw, who had been filling the role on an interim basis since Ruth Davidson stepped down last August, comfortably defeated his rival, Michelle Ballantyne, the party’s social security spokesperson at Holyrood by 4,917 votes to 1,581.Carlaw, who had been filling the role on an interim basis since Ruth Davidson stepped down last August, comfortably defeated his rival, Michelle Ballantyne, the party’s social security spokesperson at Holyrood by 4,917 votes to 1,581.
Carlaw promised to offer voters a “clear, focused, ambitious alternative to the SNP”, which will include a refreshed approach to the union that would be “positive and forward-looking, not lazy and historical”.Carlaw promised to offer voters a “clear, focused, ambitious alternative to the SNP”, which will include a refreshed approach to the union that would be “positive and forward-looking, not lazy and historical”.
Insisting that he would be “an ambassador for Scotland to the UK government”, Carlaw said he would have no problem speaking up against Boris Johnson where necessary.Insisting that he would be “an ambassador for Scotland to the UK government”, Carlaw said he would have no problem speaking up against Boris Johnson where necessary.
During his leadership campaign, Carlaw, who has served as an MSP since 2007, signalled that he wants to put forward a more populist policy agenda, to dovetail with Johnson’s plans for the UK party, and win over blue-collar voters disillusioned with the SNP and Labour.During his leadership campaign, Carlaw, who has served as an MSP since 2007, signalled that he wants to put forward a more populist policy agenda, to dovetail with Johnson’s plans for the UK party, and win over blue-collar voters disillusioned with the SNP and Labour.
Q: If the UK goes into recession, how would that affect your plans?Q: If the UK goes into recession, how would that affect your plans?
Long-Bailey says the economy is vulnerable because the economic model is broken.Long-Bailey says the economy is vulnerable because the economic model is broken.
She refers to the film The Big Short. That shows how people have not learned lessons from the financial crash, she says.She refers to the film The Big Short. That shows how people have not learned lessons from the financial crash, she says.
She says government should invest more in the UK. It is too unequal, she says. She says the green industrial revolution would spread power.She says government should invest more in the UK. It is too unequal, she says. She says the green industrial revolution would spread power.
She says people think of collective ownership as an obsession. But it is not, she says. It is about spreading power.She says people think of collective ownership as an obsession. But it is not, she says. It is about spreading power.
Q: What would you replace the House of Lords with?Q: What would you replace the House of Lords with?
Long-Bailey says she does not support the Lords, because it is the only unelected chamber in Europe.Long-Bailey says she does not support the Lords, because it is the only unelected chamber in Europe.
There are some great Labour peers, she says. But a second chamber should be democratically accountable, she says. It should be replaced with an elected senate outside of London.There are some great Labour peers, she says. But a second chamber should be democratically accountable, she says. It should be replaced with an elected senate outside of London.
That would be one step towards restoring faith in politics, she says.That would be one step towards restoring faith in politics, she says.
And that’s it.And that’s it.
I will post a summary shortly.I will post a summary shortly.
Q: How much would your policy on freedom of movement affect the wages of workers?Q: How much would your policy on freedom of movement affect the wages of workers?
Long-Bailey says the UK will be out of the single market. She says she wants an immigration system based on values, not on targets.Long-Bailey says the UK will be out of the single market. She says she wants an immigration system based on values, not on targets.
She says she is worried EU nationals could be facing deportations.She says she is worried EU nationals could be facing deportations.
And she says Labour has a moral duty to oppose the far right, and to make the positive case for immigration. She says she is a child of immigrants. She is proud of that, she says.And she says Labour has a moral duty to oppose the far right, and to make the positive case for immigration. She says she is a child of immigrants. She is proud of that, she says.
She says the impact of immigration on wages is “negligible”. But she says communities are right to be angry about how services are not working for them.She says the impact of immigration on wages is “negligible”. But she says communities are right to be angry about how services are not working for them.
That’s not an immigration problem, she says. She says that is because the Conservative government has starved public services of resources.That’s not an immigration problem, she says. She says that is because the Conservative government has starved public services of resources.
Q: Do you think it was a mistake backing the election to take place? And what would you do to stop a no-deal Brexit at the end of this year?Q: Do you think it was a mistake backing the election to take place? And what would you do to stop a no-deal Brexit at the end of this year?
Long-Bailey says she would rather not have had the election. But the party was not in a good place. Many people in Labour communities saw the party as one trying to overturn the referendum. And remain supporters did not like the party’s stance either, she says.Long-Bailey says she would rather not have had the election. But the party was not in a good place. Many people in Labour communities saw the party as one trying to overturn the referendum. And remain supporters did not like the party’s stance either, she says.
She says it did not help that people in the party were saying different things.She says it did not help that people in the party were saying different things.
And she says it was “really bad” that Labour could not even say it would campaign for its own Brexit deal.And she says it was “really bad” that Labour could not even say it would campaign for its own Brexit deal.
She says Labour needs to scrutinise the government, and make sure it does not water down standards.She says Labour needs to scrutinise the government, and make sure it does not water down standards.
And she says businesses will need support. They have been preparing for the worst, she says. But smaller businesses do not have the resources to prepare, especially firms in the supply chain. Labour should be demanding the government support these firms, she says.And she says businesses will need support. They have been preparing for the worst, she says. But smaller businesses do not have the resources to prepare, especially firms in the supply chain. Labour should be demanding the government support these firms, she says.
Rebecca Long-Bailey is now taking questions.Rebecca Long-Bailey is now taking questions.
Q: This room isn’t full. Are you worried that your campaign is not going as well as you hoped?Q: This room isn’t full. Are you worried that your campaign is not going as well as you hoped?
Long-Bailey does not accept this. She says she has got some of her finest supporters in the room this morning.Long-Bailey does not accept this. She says she has got some of her finest supporters in the room this morning.
It is a long campaign, she says. And she did not have a campaign ready to go. She was concentrating on trying to win the election.It is a long campaign, she says. And she did not have a campaign ready to go. She was concentrating on trying to win the election.
She says she thought members would go through a grieving process. But she is standing to tell people that their ambitions are not wrong.She says she thought members would go through a grieving process. But she is standing to tell people that their ambitions are not wrong.
Q: Do you only see a path to power outside parliament?Q: Do you only see a path to power outside parliament?
She says Labour will only get into power if it has a strong membership. She wants to have a million members. And she thinks the party needs a more robust media strategy.She says Labour will only get into power if it has a strong membership. She wants to have a million members. And she thinks the party needs a more robust media strategy.
The government wants Labour to be seen as the establishment, she says. It would like Labour to go down the route of “shiny suit wearing”, so they can tell Labour voters the party is unrepresentative.The government wants Labour to be seen as the establishment, she says. It would like Labour to go down the route of “shiny suit wearing”, so they can tell Labour voters the party is unrepresentative.
Long-Bailey says Tories want to portray Labour as an establishment, “shiny suit wearing” party.Long-Bailey says Tories want to portray Labour as an establishment, “shiny suit wearing” party.
She says parliament has to have a role in giving power away. She wants the nations and regions to be given far more power.She says parliament has to have a role in giving power away. She wants the nations and regions to be given far more power.
She says they also need to define what the role of the government is. She supports a written constitution, so that every decision a government makes should be based on how much it improves people’s lives.She says they also need to define what the role of the government is. She supports a written constitution, so that every decision a government makes should be based on how much it improves people’s lives.
UPDATE: This picture helps to explain the question about the room not being full.UPDATE: This picture helps to explain the question about the room not being full.
Long-Bailey is now winding up.Long-Bailey is now winding up.