Channel crossings 1) PM could use Parliament Act to defy Lords over small boats Bill

“Rishi Sunak has indicated that he is willing to defy the House of Lords and force his proposed law to tackle small boat crossings through Parliament, as peers threatened to delay the Bill. Speaking to The Telegraph, the Prime Minister said the new measures to reduce migrant crossings were “very strongly” backed by MPs and “incredibly important”. Mr Sunak twice indicated that he was open to using the Parliament Act to ram through the Illegal Migration Bill if needed. The Act allows the House of Commons to overrule the House of Lords if a piece of legislation is voted down by peers, but is rarely used.” – Daily Telegraph

  • “It’s not compassionate to let the tragedy continue” – Interview with Rishi Sunak, Daily Telegraph
  • There is a hard road ahead – Leader, Daily Telegraph

>Yesterday: WATCH: ‘Our plan is starting to work’. Sunak provides an update on his small boats strategy.

Channel crossings 2) French are intercepting more than half the boats

“The French are intercepting more than half of attempted Channel crossings for the first time since migrants started making the journey in small boats five years ago. This year 8,635 people have been stopped from making the crossing by French officials, whereas 7,610 have arrived in the UK. This represents an interception rate of 53 per cent, up from 42 per cent last year. Border Force officials said that the figures were a sign that the £480 million deal Rishi Sunak struck with President Macron in March to boost French patrols was starting to deliver results.” – The Times

  • Two more barges holding 1,000 migrants will be in place within months – The Sun
  • Farage suggests strong winds in recent weeks are behind a drop in small boats – Daily Express
  • Survey finds that half of young Albanians want to come to Britain despite risks of crossing – Daily Telegraph
  • Migrants demanding plush hotels are taking the taxpayer for fools – Richard Tice, Daily Telegraph

AI 1) Sunak leaves for Washington to stress UK’s role in forging regulator framework

“Rishi Sunak flies to Washington today on a two-day mission to prove that Britain remains an important player on the world stage following recent political and economic convulsions in the UK. The UK premier will meet Joe Biden, hoping to convince the US president that Britain has a key role to play in global security and forging a regulatory framework for artificial intelligence.” – Financial Times

  • PM seeks tariffs deal with Biden to protect car industry – The Times
  • Sunak and Biden should not waste time on the ‘Special Relationship’ this week – Andrew Lilico, Daily Telegraph

AI 2) Hague: The greatest opportunity but darkest threat of our lifetimes

“The intimate relationship that the US and UK have built up since the Second World War has a new and immense challenge: how to take trusted co-operation into a new field while also building a global understanding that allows AI to benefit humanity rather than destroy us. As usual, Britain needs America more than the other way round…Yet America also needs Britain, and other G7 nations, if it is to have any chance of ensuring that AI benefits free societies and international order rather than bringing both to an end.” – The Times

  • Robot wars could emerge just two years, expert warns – The Sun

Northern Research Group calls for 500,000 more houses

“Red Wall Tories have told Rishi Sunak to build half a million houses in the North – as the party battles to stop working class voters switching back to Labour. The Northern Research Group of Conservative backbenchers even wants entire new towns springing up across the region. Declaring the property market as “broken”, the influential caucus eyes a Maggie-style revolution of home ownership with 500,000 fresh houses in the next parliament. Chairman John Stevenson is also calling on ministers to slash building red tape and better harness brownfield land.” – The Sun

Johnson’s messages “could be handed to Covid inquiry”

“A government bid to block the release of Boris Johnson’s Covid messages could be abandoned, amid Tory warnings that it will backfire. Cabinet Office minister Jeremy Quin told MPs that ministers were in discussions with the head of the Covid Inquiry in a bid to avoid a damaging courtroom showdown at the end of this month. Ministers confirmed last week they were seeking a judicial review after missing Baroness Hallett’s Thursday deadline for handing over the information ahead of the opening of the inquiry next week.” – Daily Mail

  • Covid inquiry chair ‘may have to quit’ if denied access to WhatsApps – The Guardian
  • Government willing to enter mediation – Daily Telegraph
  • Johnson’s legal fees can be raised ‘in half a day’ if Sunak stops paying his lawyers – Daily Express
  • Why do, even now, so few accept that lockdown was like burning down your home to destroy a wasp’s nest? – Peter Hitchens, Daily Mail
  • Through surveillance and cosy managerialism, our country is busily wrecking its liberal traditions – Sherelle Jacobs, Daily Telegraph

>Today: Lord Ashcroft on Comment: My new poll suggests that Johnson would win a by-election in Uxbridge and South Ruislip

Stewart charged with racially aggravated abuse

“Conservative MP Bob Stewart has been charged with racially abusing a man he allegedly told to “go back to Bahrain”. The Beckenham MP faces two public order charges relating to an incident outside an event hosted by the Bahraini embassy. It occurred after a campaigner pressed him on his links to the country outside the event in December last year. Mr Stewart will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on 5 July.” – BBC

Hancock ordered to apologise for breaking rules

“The former health secretary, Matt Hancock, has been found to have breached Parliament’s rules for attempting to influence an inquiry into a Conservative MP. A standards watchdog ordered Mr Hancock to apologise for the “minor breach”. Mr Hancock wrote a letter defending Tory MP Steve Brine, who was investigated over lobbying allegations. Mr Hancock denied trying to influence the investigation by Parliament’s standards commissioner.” – BBC

Civil servants to continue striking

“Civil servants around the UK are to continue striking despite an improved pay offer from the government. Public and Commercial Services (PCS) union members will take industrial action on Tuesday in Northern Ireland and Wednesday in Wales. The PCS says the stoppages will continue while it considers the “significant concessions” to pay, redundancy terms and job security.” – BBC

Treasury analysis claims Labour’s plans would mean higher interest rates

“Labour’s ‘bonkers’ green energy plans will drive up mortgage rates and make Britain more reliant on foreign oil and gas, ministers warned last night. Treasury analysis suggests that the idea of investing £28billion a year in tackling climate change could increase interest rates by 0.75 per cent, piling misery on millions of homeowners. The study said a rise of that level would see the standard interest payments on a £200,000 home loan go up by £83 a month, almost £1,000 a year. Quizzed about the proposals, Labour hinted the pledge could be scaled back, with a spokesman saying the final plan would be ‘subject to our fiscal rules being met, which includes getting debt falling.’ The Treasury’s analysis warns the unfunded spending would leave the Government and Bank of England ‘pulling in opposite directions’ over inflation.” – Daily Mail

  • Climate spending spree is being partly driven by Extinction Rebellion’s former legal brain – The Sun
  • Labour’s surprisingly bold economic agenda – Financial Times
  • Starmer’s policy of choking off domestic oil and gas production by banning new offshore licences is a dangerous gamble with Britain’s energy security – Leader, The Times
  • The necessity of oil – Leader, Daily Telegraph
  • Labour is revealing its true colours, voters will wake up to it before long – Leader, The Sun
  • Oil and gas ban would be mistake, union boss says – BBC
  • Tories must rip aside the curtain and expose Wizards of Woke Starmer and Davey before next general election – Trevor Kavanagh, The Sun
  • Lord Deben backs Labour’s plan – The Guardian
  • Heat pumps are becoming a plague on all our houses – Ross Clark, Daily Telegraph
  • We need a good dose of optimism in our politics, especially about climate – Adam Hawksbee, City AM

>Today: Columnist Poppy Coburn: The Labour Party donor, the Net Zero consensus – and how positive thinking can’t alter hard reality.

Boost for Starmer as Gray gets clearance to join Labour

“Sir Keir Starmer will be able to appoint Sue Gray as his chief of staff in the autumn after government advisers rejected calls for her to be banned from the role for more than a year. The Times has been told the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments (Acoba) has recommended Gray, a former senior civil servant, should take just six months’ gardening leave.” – The Times

  • Election war chest “will be boosted by £5 million after a businessman signalled his intention to become one of Labour’s leading donors” – The Times

Wagner forces and Russian Army “turn on each other”

“The Wagner mercenary group has taken captive a Russian army brigade commander in one of the most serious cases of infighting within President Putin’s forces since the start of the war in Ukraine. Yevgeny Prigozhin, head of the Wagner group, released a video showing the interrogation of Lieutenant Colonel Roman Venevitin, commander of Russia’s 72nd Brigade. Venevitin, whose face was bruised, “confessed” to ordering his troops to fire on Wagner fighters as they were withdrawing from Bakhmut, the eastern Ukraine town that has witnessed the heaviest fighting of the war.” – The Times

  • Pro-Ukraine rebels seize troops in Russia – The Times
  • Ukraine accuses Russia of destroying a major dam near Kherson – Daily Telegraph

Other political news

  • CBI struggles to secure public backing from big companies for its revamp – Financial Times
  • EHRC discord deepens after inquiry into complaints against chair paused – The Guardian
  • UK named top European destination for finance investment proving Brexit doubters wrong – Daily Express
  • Sunak loses grip on Tory rural heartlands, poll reveals – Daily Telegraph

News in brief

  • Will Sunak ever deliver on his ‘stop the boats’ pledge? – Patrick O’Flynn, The Spectator
  • Backlash grows against the business world of woke – Dr Campbell Campbell-Jack, Conservative Woman
  • The myth of institutional racism – Charlie Peters, The Critic
  • No, Boris didn’t ‘sell out’ British farmers with the Australia trade deal – Catherine McBride, CapX
  • Starmer will regret his Corbynite purge – Ethan Croft, Unherd

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