In today’s newsletter: As suspended backbencher Lee Anderson launches a fresh attack, a former Tory MEP explains how the party got here
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Good morning. Your 7am Lee Anderson update: still not apologised. The reason, he said yesterday, is that “when you think you are right you should never apologise, because to do so would be a sign of weakness”.
Others might feel that the weaknesses of Anderson’s position are apparent enough already. In any case, the Conservatives remain in crisis over his claims that Islamists had “got control” of Sadiq Khan, and their tepid response since he was suspended.
Budget | Jeremy Hunt’s financial planning is “dubious” and “lacks credibility” and the chancellor should not announce tax cuts in next week’s budget if he cannot lay out how he will fund them, an economic thinktank has said. The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) calculates that a spending freeze to fund pre-election giveaways would mean about £35bn in public service cuts.
Israel-Gaza war | Joe Biden has said he believes a new, temporary ceasefire between Israel and Hamas is possible by next Monday. The US president offered the update spontaneously during a visit to New York yesterday, in response to reporters inquiring about when he expected a ceasefire could start.
Russia | Alexei Navalny’s allies allege that Vladimir Putin had the opposition leader killed in jail to sabotage a prisoner swap in which Navalny would have been exchanged for a convicted hitman jailed in Germany. Maria Pevchikh, a close ally of the opposition leader, said Navalny was only days from being freed.
US news | An active-duty member of the US air force has died after setting himself on fire outside the Israeli embassy in Washington DC, while shouting “Free Palestine””. 25-year-old airman Aaron Bushnell said on a livestream that he would “no longer be complicit in genocide”.”
Education | Labour has said it will help schools to train young male influencers who can counter the negative impact of people like Andrew Tate, a self-declared misogynist influencer, if it wins the next election. The party announced plans to pupils how to question the material they see on social media from people like Tate. Continue reading...