Theresa May could yet give us the ultimate parting gift: a Brexit referendum | Polly Toynbee

The outgoing prime minister could say that too much is being decided by a tiny Tory electorate, says Guardian columnist Polly Toynbee The obscene sight of Tory leadership candidates wild tax cuts and eye-catching gimmicks from the same austerians who garrotted every public service. Theresa May is the biggest spender, spraying goodbye billions on schools, zero-carbon pledge, while Philip Hammonds Treasury declares it Mail on Sunday report on her has a ring of plausibility. She will keep her Commons seat, she voted for Rory Stewart and she privately vowed to thwart any attempt by Boris Johnson to take the UK out of the EU without a deal. (Never mind that her mantra was no deal is better than a bad …

David Lammy says comparing ERG to Nazis ‘not strong enough’

Labour MP defends comments likening group to Nazi party and white supremacists David Lammy has said comparing the hard Brexit European Research Group of Tory MPs to Nazis and proponents of South African apartheid was not strong enough, and suggested that the Brexit debate has allowed proponents of hard right views to flourish. The Labour MP, who is a vocal campaigner for a second EU referendum, was asked on the BBCs Andrew Marr Show whether a comparison he previously made to the election of Adolf Hitlers party in Germany and to South African white supremacists was appropriate. I would say that that wasnt strong enough. In 1938 there were allies who hatched a plan for Hitler to annex part of …

The confusion around Russian meddling means theyre already winning | Gabriel Gatehouse

Among the legitimate questions is a swirl of speculation. Vladimir Putin and Vladislav Surkov have got in our heads, says Gabriel Gatehouse, a BBC foreign correspondent It is the fashion these days, in certain circles, to see the hand of Moscow behind all of the political turbulence of the present moment: Brexit, Trump, the rise of the European right. John McCain once even suggested that Vladislav Surkov, also known as Putins Rasputin (in the west) or the grey cardinal (in Russia). He rose from a background in the theatre and PR to become the architect of Putinism the undisputed master of Russias internal politics. At the height of his power, he represented a sort of Kremlin svengali, controlling most of …