Government misses warnings on ports
The Daily Mail reports how Government Ministers ignored a string of warnings, (four separate reports), that Britain’s small ports were an easy target for people smugglers.
As evidence grows of smugglers repeatedly targeting small harbours, there are fears Britain’s soft underbelly has been left exposed.
The Express, along with many other national titles, also reports on the issue – sparking growing fears Britain is an easy target. Those who wish to remain in the EU need to answer how those fears will be allayed and how we can stop people trafficking when we cannot control our borders.
Immigration crisis delivers a boost to the Leave Campaign
The Telegraph headlines “A significant poll boost” for the Leave Campaign as a result of the flare-up in the immigration crisis and the problems in the Channel. An ORB poll, previously giving Remain a 13 point advantage, shows the gap closed to 4%. The paper carries an opinion piece by Sir Lynton Crosby discussing this news.
And the other crisis: Greece and the €uro
Cameron has been denied his aspiration to get the referendum over before the immigration crisis blows up in his face. But EU institutions are desperate to keep a lid on the other crisis until after June 23rd. We’ve read lots of stories about how agreement was imminent on a Greek bail-out (the fifth? The sixth? I’ve lost count). We’ve seen reports that it’s been achieved. But the story is different in Greece, where finance Minister Euclid Tsakalotos has written to the EU and the IMF saying that his country is unable to deliver on some of the conditions required by lenders. The Greek crisis (and indeed the wider €uro crisis – see my comments on Liam Halligan’s article in yesterday’s Debrief) has not gone away. They’re just soft pedalling it for the next few weeks.
“Brexit fears will add millions to industry costs”
The Times reports that “Brexit will add millions to industry costs”. The strident headline amounts to little more than large companies spending perhaps a million pounds apiece to game Brexit scenarios and look at contingencies. This is no more than small change – the kind of thing large multinationals will routinely do when facing any new situation.
Meantime the Telegraph runs a story that the new Living Wage will damage hopes of recovery. Three points: first, any faltering in the economy will be seized on by Remain and blamed on Brexit – but there are other factors, like the Living Wage, in play. Second, the Living Wage will massively increase the pull-factor for immigration – swamping any possible benefit from Cameron’s rather trivial “in-work benefits reform”. And third, as of today the FTSE is at 6270, holding up well in terms of the last few months, while the Pound is edging up against the €uro. No sign there of huge economic damage from the possibility of Brexit.
Electoral Commission orders postal vote leaflets pulped
I reported yesterday on the leaflet giving advice to postal voters, and showing a pencil hovering over the “Remain” box. Today, the Telegraph reports that the Electoral Commission has ordered remaining stocks of the leaflet to be pulped. Please stand up and holler if you find that your Council is using this leaflet, or any similar one.
More than a third of Labour voters don’t know their party backs Remain …
Now there’s a surprise – I’m not sure that anyone has told Jeremy Corbyn that he backs Remain, either. And a great many Labour voters are honest decent folk who believe in their country, and will vote Leave whatever the Labour Party says.
… But the “Grey Vote” is holding up for Leave
The FT runs a report by Joshua Chaffin saying that the “Grey Vote” is undaunted by Brexit. And the reason given is worth thinking about – “because they can remember what life was like before we joined the (then) Common Market”. They know that Britain can thrive as an independent global trading nation. Let’s vote for it.