Headlines 

Conservatives open up 19-point lead with 47% share of the vote

Latest Opinium/Observer poll shows Tories capitalising on retreat of Brexit party as manifesto is unveiled The Conservatives have taken a commanding 19-point lead over Labour with less than three weeks to go before voters head to the polls, according to the latest Opinium poll for the Observer. The news comes as Boris Johnson launches the Tory election manifesto on Sunday, a moment seen by many Conservative MPs as the most dangerous of the campaign. It was Theresa Mays botched manifesto in 2017, which included an unpopular social care policy dubbed…

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Jennifer Arcuri says Boris Johnson left her to be ‘fed to the lions’

US businesswoman says she told PM last week she would speak out against him Jennifer Arcuri, the US businesswoman at the centre of conflict of interest allegations against Boris Johnson, has said she warned the prime minister last week that she would speak out against him after he repeatedly refused to take her calls. In a round of live broadcast interviews on Monday, Arcuri said Johnson should apologise for ignoring her and allowing her to be fed to the lions since news of their relationship became public. Speaking on the…

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Headlines 

Fish puns and testicles: the strangest moments from Johnson’s speech

In his first conference speech as leader, PM offered a clutch of unusual analogies plus brain fades With Theresa Mays legacy of being handed a P45 and having letters fall off a promotional board behind her, Boris Johnson had a low hurdle to clear in his first speech to Conservative party conference as prime minister. Here are seven times he failed the task. Kangaroo testicles for Bercow Johnson may well have been the first British prime minister to use the words kangaroo testicle in a conference speech. In a segment…

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Odds and Ends 

How #TCOT gave birth to Trump

If you search #TCOT on Twitter these days, sure, youll get results. You might even see a tweet from a few minutes ago. But, it will likely have only have a few favs, and a retweet or two. A visit to the top tweets from the hashtag show a particularly dire state of affairs. Few tweets have more than a dozen favs. Some have no engagement at all When will @Twitter block @SpeakerPelosi ? #tcot — Liberty Bell (@libertybell1776) June 6, 2019 #TCOT, which stands for Top Conservatives On Twitter,…

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Headlines 

Colombia leader hits out at ‘hypocrisy’ of middle-class cocaine users

Ivn Duque decries social acceptability of drug that inflicts environmental and social damage on producers Middle-class cocaine users are inconsistent hypocrites if they fail to recognise the environmental and social damage their drug use is inflicting on producer countries, the Colombian president has said during a visit to London. In an interview with the Guardian on Monday, Ivn Duque said that cocaines social acceptability had to end. There are many people who present themselves as environmentalists, and if they want to be coherent, they must understand all the environmental damage…

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Jeremy Hunt claims Merkel is willing to renegotiate Brexit deal

Foreign secretary says chancellor told him Brussels would listen if new PM had right approach The Conservative leadership hopeful Jeremy Hunt has claimed Angela Merkel would be willing to renegotiate the UKs Brexit deal and possibly the Irish border arrangements opposed by Eurosceptics. The foreign secretary said he had spoken to the German chancellor on the sidelines of D-day commemorations last week and she had indicated that the EU was willing to negotiate on the package if a new prime minister had the right approach. His claim flies in the…

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Headlines 

Everyone knows it will be a disaster Mays invisible campaign

As the PM recedes from view, her colleagues are more interested in the race to succeed her than the European elections The room is booked, the camera tripods assembled, the crowd of eager, political types including a healthy smattering of aides, wannabes and reporters in place, ready for the event to get under way. The appointed time ticks past, but thats OK: indeed, for a campaign event, its almost a positive. It suggests the big speaker is late because he or she is in demand somewhere else, that the crowd…

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Headlines 

Ken Clarke: Brexit is like a parody version of student politics

The Father of the House loves the EU but doesnt want another referendum, called Theresa May bloody difficult yet backed her deal three times, and finds the political deadlock both annoying and hugely entertaining The twin pillars of Tory pro-Europeanism, the two men who defended that lonely cause in the Thatcher heyday and through the long trudge of the Major years, have responded very differently to Brexit. On one side stands Michael Heseltine, belated darling of the remainers, the lion in winter who won bloody difficult woman? She is a…

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Brexit secretary David Davis resigns plunging government into crisis

Secretary of states resignation followed by two other Brexit ministers, forcing a reshuffle David Davis has resigned as Brexit secretary, shattering the hard-won consensus around Theresa Mays Chequers deal and plunging her government into crisis. His resignation was swiftly followed by that of fellow Department for Exiting the EU minister Steve Baker. It forces May to reshuffle her government, at the same time as trying to convince backbenchers to support her plan. Davis sent a bluntly worded resignation letter to the prime minister, saying he would not be a reluctant…

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New centrist party gets 50m backing to break mould of UK politics

Plans secretly made for a new political party drawing from left and right A new political party with access to up to 50m in funding has been secretly under development for more than a year by a network of entrepreneurs, philanthropists and donors keen to break the Westminster mould, the Observer can reveal. The movement, spearheaded by a former Labour benefactor, is understood to have been drawn up by a group frustrated by the tribal nature of politics, the polarisation caused by Brexit and the standard of political leadership on…

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Headlines 

Damian Green sacked as first secretary of state after porn allegations

Green admits he made misleading statements after pornography was found on Commons computer in 2008 Damian Green was sacked as first secretary of state on Wednesday after admitting he lied about the presence of pornographic images on his House of Commons computer. An investigation by the cabinet secretary Sir Jeremy Heywood found that Greens vehement denials after a Sunday newspaper reported that porn had been found on his computer were inaccurate and misleading. His departure is a personal blow for Theresa May, who brought him into Downing Street after her…

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‘My love isn’t second-class’: the struggle for marriage equality in Northern Ireland

At a mock wedding in a Belfast cabaret club, a groom cries tears of anger. Same-sex marriage is legal everywhere else in Britain and Ireland, so why not here? The answer lies with Theresa Mays partners, the DUP Were going to fight tooth and nail with them. Im done putting on the kid gloves, Im done pretending this is OK. What are we meant to do, wait another 20 years? Shane Sweeney has just exchanged vows with his fiance of two years, Eoin McCabe. It could be the happiest day…

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Headlines 

Theresa May under pressure over secret advice on halting Brexit

Prime minister is sent FOI request to publish legal guidance thought to argue that UK can stop EU divorce process at any time Theresa May is under pressure to publish secret legal advice that is believed to state that parliament could still stop Brexit before the end of March 2019 if MPs judge that a change of mind is in the national interest. The move comes as concern grows that exit talks with Brussels are heading for disaster. The calls for the prime minister to reveal advice from the countrys…

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Headlines 

Furious Tory MPs reject Theresa Mays threats over Brexit votes

Whips warn pro-remainers over Corbyn support but ex-minister says leadership challenge is likely Theresa May faced a growing Tory revolt over her leadership as it emerged that Remain-supporting Conservative MPs are being told by party whips that they will be seen as supporting Jeremy Corbyn if they attempt to soften the Brexit bill. Furious Conservatives, including former ministers, said such threats and arm-twisting from the whips office would backfire spectacularly, making it more likely the prime minister would face a wants to lead the party into a 2022 general election,…

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