Maitland Political/AMO Monitor – 3 October 2018

3rd October 2018

Good morning,

Boris Johnson drew blood to rapturous applause yesterday. He savaged Labour, Philip Hammond’s plans for tax rises and Theresa May’s Chequers proposals: “If we cheat the electorate – and Chequers is a cheat – we will escalate the sense of mistrust”.  At one point he even suggested May’s plans could be considered treasonous. Perhaps most stinging, he turned fire on his one time ally, Michael Gove: “Don’t think we can bodge it now and fix it later”. In a speech that ranged widely, from his achievements as Mayor of London to a robust defence of markets and business,  Boris Johnson attempted to position himself as a leader-with-a-vision rather than just Brexiteer-in-chief.

As she takes to the podium today, May will have to convince conference of her vision for Britain post Brexit. While it has largely been overshadowed by the various mishaps of 2017, Theresa May’s speech last year focused on her promise to tackle the housing crisis. Housing is a vital issue for the Conservatives. Rumours suggest this year she could focus on housing again with pledges to make it easier to rent, or even proposals to encourage landlords to sell their properties to tenants. Whatever it is, delegates will be hoping it can unite and inspire a deeply divided party.

Driving the Day

  • Theresa May will close the Conservative Conference with her keynote speech.
  • The government looks set to freeze fuel duty for the night year in a row.
  • DUP leaders have warned Theresa May they will vote down any Brexit deal that would see a customs border in the Irish Sea.

On Manoeuvres

  • 11.45am, Theresa May addresses Conference.
  • Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson attends a meeting of NATO Defense Ministers
  • Transport Secretary Chris Grayling heads to Vienna for a two day EU aviation summit with other EU transport leaders.
  • Housing Secretary James Brokenshire is in India for a trade mission to promote the ‘Midlands Engine’.

Westminster Bubble

Both Houses are on recess. They will return 9 October.  

Top Twittery

Ned Simons@nedsimons

I swear I’ve been in this exact hall for about fourteen Boris Johnson ‘leadership challenge rallies’ in my life.