Boris Johnson latest: Raab says stability ‘at risk’ after Sinn Fein win
Sinn Fein’s Michelle O’Neill hails ‘new era’ in Northern Ireland after win
Britain’s deputy prime minister said stability in Northern Ireland was “threatened” by problems with his post-Brexit deal, following Sinn Fein’s historic electoral success.
The DUP unionist will refuse to serve with the Republican Party in a power-sharing executive unless there are major changes to NI protocol.
Dominic Raab told Sky News: “It’s clear from the momentum we’re seeing now that we won’t reach that position of stability until it’s corrected.”
In Westminster, Boris Johnson plans to announce new laws that will ‘deliver on the Brexit promise’ as he seeks to bounce back from a series of deadly results for the Conservative Party.
The UK Prime Minister said he would reveal a ‘super seven’ Brexit bills that would cut red tape and ‘unnecessary barriers inherited from the EU’ in the Queen’s Speech next week.
Irish reunification poll ‘will take place’ in next decade, says Sinn Fein leader
Sinn Fein chairwoman Mary Lou McDonald has stepped up the call for a border poll – asking the All Ireland Citizens’ Assembly to discuss the idea now.
“We have always called for a citizens’ assembly to come together, across Ireland, to recognize and engage the change that is clearly happening in Ireland, to ensure we have an inclusive and respectful forum where we can talk about change and, most importantly, plan for Ireland-wide change,” she said on Sunday.
She told BBC Radio 4 The world this weekend“We don’t want to exclude anyone from the change that’s going to happen… over the next decade, no doubt.”
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 2:35 p.m.
Lib Dem ‘not ruling out Labor pact to oust Tories’
The Liberal Democrats would not rule out a pact with Labor to defeat the Tories, the party’s deputy leader suggested.
Daisy Cooper said the Lib Dems had “no interest in forming a coalition with this Conservative government”.
Asked about the job, she told Sky News Sophy Ridge on Sunday programme: “The Liberal Democrats have said that we want to win as many seats as possible from the Conservatives in the next general election and one way or another we would like to play a part in ousting this Conservative government.
“It’s far too early – how it might look, how it might work, but we would like to play a part in ousting this Tory government, that’s our number one priority.”
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 2:15 p.m.
Liz Truss condemns Russian attack on Ukrainian school
Liz Truss accused Vladimir Putin’s forces of war crimes after a Russian bomb destroyed a school in Luhansk, Ukraine, where around 90 people had taken refuge in the basement:
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 2:00 p.m.
Civil servant earns six-figure sum for ‘insidious’ racism from Justice Department
In other news, The Independent revealed that a former civil servant had received a six-figure compensation award from the government for discrimination.
She says she was the victim of ‘insidious’ racism during a 12-year battle with the Ministry of Justice, our race correspondent Nadine White reports.
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 1:40 p.m.
Conservatives should be urged to resist the desire to “destroy” institutions
Damian Green has called for an end to ministers’ ‘culture war’ attacks on the BBC and the justice system.
The senior Tory MP said the strategy was losing party voters in the south of England.
The former minister said poor local election results in the so-called blue wall hearts reflected distaste for an “embarrassing” government.
Voters “want a government that seeks to unite society and resists the urge to declare culture wars against institutions like the judiciary or the BBC,” he also said in an article for the Sunday Telegraph.
Mr Green continued: “They believe that conservatism involves respect for institutions, not a revolutionary desire to destroy them. They also want a calm and competent government that is not embarrassing.
More on this story here by Adam Forest
Lamiat SabinMay 8, 2022 1:20 p.m.
EU ‘frustrating’ lack of flexibility on protocol – Lewis
Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis said he would meet party leaders in Stormont tomorrow to discuss the resurrection of the Assembly.
He urged DUP leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson to appoint a Deputy Prime Minister to make the executive work again, after the Unionist party pledged not to resume power-sharing with Sinn Fein until protocol checks will not be dropped.
But Mr Lewis also said the protocol issue needed to be ‘resolved’ – blaming the EU for not agreeing to give up signed checks under the Brexit deal.
“It is really frustrating that the EU has not shown the flexibility we need to get this resolution,” Sky News said.
EU’s ‘frustrating’ lack of flexibility on protocol, says Northern Ireland secretary
The NI secretary added: “It is more frustrating to hear in recent days that the EU seems to say that it is not willing to show any flexibility to solve this problem.
On the UK government‘s threat of unilateral action, Mr Lewis added: “We have always said we are not taking anything from the table, and that has not changed. We will do what we have to do… There is a time when we have to make decisions.
Telling him the government was “dancing to the tune of the DUP”, Mr Lewis said the idea was a “misnomer” – claiming all communities had problems with the protocol.
Legislation prepared to override the protocol is not expected to be included in the Queen’s Speech next week, but The Independent understands that it could still be introduced later in the parliamentary session.
Lamiat SabinMay 8, 2022 1:00 p.m.
Boris Johnson will survive Partygate ‘distraction’, says Raab
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab has insisted Boris Johnson will remain Prime Minister despite “difficult” local election results and the Partygate scandal which he called a “distraction”.
He told Sky News: “I’m confident he can and will win the next election.”
Then, when asked on LBC if the Prime Minister would face a vote of confidence, the Deputy Prime Minister replied: “No, I don’t think so.”
He added: “Obviously Partygate has been a distraction. We need to get rid of those distractions. But the fact is we are laser-focused on the cost of living.
Mr Raab also admitted that the resurgence of the Liberal Democrats in the south of England would mean he would face a “tough fight” in his own seat of Esher and Walton in Surrey.
Lamiat SabinMay 8, 2022 12:40 p.m.
‘We weren’t immune’ to PM criticism, Scottish Tory leader says of election results
The Scottish Conservative leader blamed problems facing the party in Westminster for the losses in his country.
“Here in Scotland we were not immune to criticism from the Prime Minister and Partygate,” Douglass Ross told the BBC.
He said: ‘Results across the UK show that the public has decided to send in a protest vote against the Prime Minister and Partygate in this election primarily by staying at home and not turning in. other parties.
“We have seen the same thing here in Scotland.”
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 12:32 p.m.
‘Labour gains are a turning point for our party’
Back to the local elections for a second, Lisa Nandy wrote for The Independent on how Labor sees results
“Thursday’s Labor gains are a turning point for our party,” she said.
“Simply put, a Labor party that can win in Worthing, Wandsworth and Cumberland is one that can unite this country and help us move forward after a decade of darkness and division.”
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 12:10 p.m.
No more Partygate fines?
In other news, the Metropolitan Police have reportedly started issuing more fines to Downing Street staff for gatherings held in government offices during Covid lockdown restrictions.
Zoe TidmanMay 8, 2022 11:56 am