Corbyn ‘neutral’ on Brexit as Johnson attacked on trust

Labour leader would negotiate new deal with EU, which would be put to a public vote alongside remain Jeremy Corbyn would take a neutral stance in a future Brexit referendum, he has announced, after facing mounting pressure in recent days to pick a side. Appearing in a special BBC Question Time programme, in which Boris Johnson was attacked over racism and Jo Swinson found herself on the back foot over Brexit, Corbyn confirmed for the first time he would not campaign either for leave or remain. All the leaders faced robust questioning from the studio audience in Sheffield during the two-hour live debate, during which: Swinson faced sustained criticism over her record in the coalition and the Liberal Democrats revoke …

Groping claims against Boris Johnson shrugged off by allies

Prime minister denies allegations that he squeezed the leg of Charlotte Edwardes Boris Johnsons senior ministers have attempted to minimise the allegations that he groped a journalists inner thigh at a dinner in 1999 as the party tried to get its conference back on to the subject of Brexit and domestic policy. Nicky Morgan, the culture secretary and former minister for women, gave her wholehearted backing to the prime minister, saying: there is no truth in these allegations, while housing minister, Esther McVey, suggested journalists needed to go back and check it really happened. Another cabinet minister told the Guardian that the idea of Johnson pinching a knee was not inconsistent with what people already thought about him, given the …

Why The Third Man is an essential primer for no-deal Brexit

As the classic noir gets a 70th anniversary re-release, its hard to ignore the parallels between a shattered postwar Vienna teeming with spivs and the future the Brexiters have in mind What perfect timing for The Third Man to step back out of the shadows. Often hailed as the finest film Britain ever made, a 70th anniversary re-release will see it return to cinemas with the government much in the market for symbols of national grandeur. While Boris Johnson has named his favourite film as Dodgeball for once, eerily believable as the great British breakdown goes on it is easy to imagine him waving a tiny Union Jack at Carol Reeds majestic noir. It is true, of course, that there …

Johnson could sacrifice majority by withdrawing whip from rebel MPs

Rebel Tories face deselection over Brexit, as PM abruptly cancels meeting with group including ex-ministers Boris Johnson is prepared to blow up his own parliamentary majority and withdraw the whip from dozens of Conservative MPs if they back plans to stop no-deal Brexit, Tory whips have warned potential rebels, in an extreme move by Downing Street that would pave the way for an imminent general election. As hostilities escalated, Johnson also signalled how serious his intention is to follow through the threat of deselection by suggestion from Michael Gove that the government may not feel bound by the legislation. Ahead of a historic week in parliament, a fierce briefing war erupted across the Conservative party as whips convened for Sunday …

Trump’s family holiday to UK Disneyland makes for painful viewing | John Crace

With sketch writers banned from his press conference with Theresa May, I was forced to endure it on TV Monday Sometimes I worry I am more psychically connected to Tottenham Hotspur than is healthy. Having done my two events at the festival, I went back to the friends I was staying with to watch the Shoulder to shoulder with the president, negotiating a new trade deal. Instead, she cut a forlorn, diminished figure as she was both patronised and ignored by Trump, who made no secret that he was 75th anniversary commemorations profoundly moving, especially the handful of surviving veterans and letters from the dead. But theyve also generated some anger, because politicians may talk a good game about the …