According to a press release, tomorrow’s events at the Cenotaph and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign march will be overseen by approximately 1,850 officers from the Metropolitan and other police forces.
The Met says:
We know the cumulative impact [that] continued protest, increasing tensions, and rising hate crimes are having across London and the fear and anxiety our Jewish communities in particular are feeling. They have a right to feel safe in their city, knowing know they can travel across London without feeling afraid of intimidation or harassment.
Due to the widespread concern in London, the current policing operation has doubled the amount of officers on duty for this weekend’s events. There will be 1,850 officers on duty on Saturday and 1,375 on Sunday.
We will utilize a wide range of powers to ensure that remembrance events are not interrupted in any way. We will closely monitor the demonstration as it moves through different areas of the city, while also safeguarding our communities from those who may try to provoke hate, violence, or chaos.
The measures we have implemented allow us to swiftly and effectively identify and apprehend individuals attempting to exploit these situations for criminal purposes or to incite chaos.
Suella Braverman, you are incorrect in stating that this would be without precedent.
There is a common belief that prime ministers possess great power and have the ability to act as they please. However, this is not entirely true. In reality, all PMs have come to realize that their authority is limited by various factors, such as the limitations of Whitehall, legal restrictions, parliamentary approval, and media tolerance.
The crucial consideration in this situation is the level of tolerance among Sunak’s MPs. In the past, all three of his predecessors were pushed out due to a rebellion from the parliamentary party. Sunak must determine if he can dismiss Braverman without instigating a leadership race. (I believe he likely can, but it is not guaranteed.)
Many prime ministers have faced this situation, including Liz Truss who had to appoint Jeremy Hunt as chancellor. However, it became evident that Hunt was the one running the government instead of Truss. During Theresa May’s tenure as PM, cabinet ministers once defied her orders on a Brexit vote, but she was unable to remove them from their positions due to her weakened authority. Tony Blair and Gordon Brown serve as a modern example of this dynamic. As their time in office neared its end, Blair struggled to work with Brown and contemplated demoting or removing him. However, he was unable to do so because Brown held significant influence within the party.
Steve Richards, in his book “The Prime Ministers”, discusses this topic in great detail. I previously referred to this as “weak”, but Richards presents a compelling argument that this term is misleading. Rather than being limited by a personal characteristic, prime ministers are often shaped by their circumstances. For instance, Richards offers insight on Theresa May.
May was frequently labeled as “weak.” This description does little to help us understand her as a leader. However, if we must attribute something to this term, it actually leads us in the wrong direction. While she may have been politically weaker, her personality proved to be incredibly determined, making her one of the most stubborn prime ministers to reside in No 10 in recent history – potentially even more so than Margaret Thatcher.
In their article for The Conversation, professors Tim Bale and David Jeffery examined the potential makeup of the Conservative party in parliament under three possible election scenarios: a hung parliament, a majority for Labour, and a landslide victory for Labour. While the party’s ideology is not expected to undergo significant changes, there will likely be a decrease in the presence of “red wall” Tories regardless of the outcome, and even in the most favorable scenario, there may be a reduction in MPs representing northern constituencies. Bale and Jeffery state:
Based on our data, it appears that if the Tories experience a significant loss, it may be challenging for them to justify their claim of being a party that represents all of the United Kingdom. This is due to the likelihood of their MPs being predominantly from the southern region, more resistant to change, and with a higher concentration of graduates from Oxford and Cambridge universities.
The graph, created by James Blagden of Onward, a conservative research organization, suggests that members of parliament with significant majorities (who are expected to retain their positions) do not lean more towards the left or right than those with smaller majorities.
It is unlikely that Conservative MPs will hold the same beliefs as party members after the upcoming election. According to this paper, Tory MPs typically hold more conservative views on economic matters compared to party members, but are more progressive on social issues.
The News Agents podcast stated that Suella Braverman is causing difficulties for Rishi Sunak in maintaining her position. When asked if Braverman’s position is now unmanageable, he answered:
I must say, she is not making it simple. This situation needs to be resolved soon, as it is causing significant harm. It is unacceptable for senior cabinet members to openly defy the authority of No 10 and pursue their own agendas. Additionally, some of the statements she has made have not been beneficial. Moreover, many of us are receiving emails from our constituents expressing similar concerns, so this behavior must end.
Loughton expressed disagreement with Braverman’s characterization of the pro-Palestinian demonstrations as “hate marches”. He believed that while their views may differ, most participants had legitimate concerns. He also criticized her anti-police remarks for damaging the police’s credibility, which could make it more challenging for them to oversee the upcoming march on Saturday.
Loughton was asked about the collective opinion of Tory MPs.
The general agreement is that we are facing a significant challenge. Our current standing in the polls is precarious, and recent byelections have not been in our favor. With an election likely to occur within the next year, it is crucial that we avoid division and internal conflicts. The public strongly dislikes this and would prefer to see unity. Therefore, when prominent figures such as ministers seem to be expressing conflicting opinions, it only adds to the problem.
There may be arguments from Suella Braverman, Labour, and others that indicate it was a mistake to appoint her initially. However, this type of argument will not change Sunak’s public perception. Typically, when politicians undo a negative decision and make a better one, they receive some recognition for fulfilling the desires of the people.
It is difficult to predict what impact the removal of Braverman will have on the government, as she is not well-liked by voters. Although her beliefs may align with those of traditional Tory supporters, she has not been successful in convincing the general public that the government is effectively addressing issues such as small boat immigration and crime. There is no concrete proof that she has been a valuable asset in terms of elections.
However, when it comes to managing a political party, the reasoning changes. A number of conservative Members of Parliament and media outlets are strongly backing Braverman, and it is plausible or probable that they would respond with great outrage if she were to be fired. This could potentially give Sunak a chance to demonstrate to voters that he is capable and ready to confront dissent within his party. On the other hand, if he is unable to do so and the party were to become embroiled in internal conflict, removing Braverman could potentially exacerbate the situation.
I carried out a quick examination following Braverman’s address at the party gathering. I expressed a similar idea yesterday.
I understand the need for caution. For numerous journalists and readers/viewers, the terms “far/hard/extreme right/left” lack clear definitions, making their use in reports potentially confusing. It may appear as though a negative label is being applied, rather than contributing to comprehension. This is not beneficial to effective reporting.
However, political scientists do employ these terms with significance. In my blog post following the Tory conference, I referenced a Guardian article discussing far-right parties in Europe where the scholars were cited as having deliberated on whether or not the Conservative party should be classified as far-right.
According to Cas Mudde, a prominent academic who has extensively researched this topic, the far right can be divided into two groups: the extreme right, which completely rejects the core principles of democracy such as popular sovereignty and majority rule, and the radical right, which accepts the basic principles of democracy but opposes key elements of liberal democracy such as minority rights, rule of law, and separation of powers.
Based on these descriptions, it is clear that Braverman does not identify as “extreme right”. However, her frequent display of disrespect towards certain liberal democratic values could be seen as placing her in the realm of the “radical right”.
Part of this can be attributed to the perspective on abiding by laws. It is possible to make a case for leaving the European convention on human rights without aligning with extreme political ideologies. However, as attorney general and home secretary, Braverman has shown disdain towards lawyers and has been more eager to test the boundaries of the law, especially international law, compared to those who held her position before her. Her statements about migrants have deeply concerned those advocating for minority rights. Furthermore, the recent controversy surrounding the Metropolitan Police reveals her desire to expand the authority of the executive branch, particularly in regards to law enforcement, beyond what has been done in the past.
This does not imply that she is identical to Donald Trump, or completely aligned with far-right beliefs. However, she is certainly moving towards that ideology.
The primary function is to perform a write-through process, meaning that it updates the data in real-time as it is written.
On Thursday, Oliver Dowden visited No 10 to talk about Braverman’s potential departure. He is being considered as a reliable candidate to take over Braverman’s position as home secretary and is expected to be more loyal. If chosen, he would continue in his role as deputy prime minister.
Some other potential candidates include Mark Harper, who is the current transport secretary, and Robert Jenrick, the current immigration minister. However, one minister noted that if any of these three were chosen, it would result in all four of the top state offices being held by men.
During an appearance on LBC’s Tonight with Andrew Marr, Sir Bob Neill, the chair of the Commons justice committee, stated that Braverman should be replaced and that Jenrick should be given the position instead. Neill expressed this opinion yesterday.
[Braverman] has a very able minister of state in Robert Jenrick. He is well capable of taking up the matters in the short term.
One idea is to consider Michael Gove, who serves as the secretary for levelling up. He has held cabinet positions for over ten years (with a break after being dismissed by Theresa May), but has never held one of the top government roles such as prime minister, chancellor of the exchequer, home secretary, or foreign secretary. According to Kevin Schofield of HuffPost, it is rumored that he would like to add one of these roles to his resume.
The spokesperson stated that the government is collaborating with the police and others to guarantee the safety of Remembrance events this weekend. They want to ensure that attendees, including veterans, feel secure and that there is no intimidation or harassment towards those in the Jewish or Muslim communities.
According to the spokesperson, Sunak and Braverman have a strong working relationship. During an interview this morning, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt stated that he and Braverman have a positive rapport. When questioned about the productivity of the Sunak/Braverman relationship, the spokesperson responded:
They have a close working relationship, having participated in protests and making arrangements for the upcoming weekend. They are also addressing the issue of small boats and discussing legislation mentioned in the king’s speech to improve safety on our streets.
According to Suella Braverman, those on the right side of the party will seek retribution against ministers who have failed to support her.
I am addressing my colleagues in the Cabinet. Your lack of vocal support for Suella Braverman is being observed by the voters, both within and beyond the Conservative Party. Challenging situations call for honesty, integrity, strong leadership and openness.
Suella Braverman would lose her job. He clarified:
She’s also making the job of all of her colleagues trying to get re-elected in a year’s time more difficult. She is personally on a mission, as far as I can see, to re-toxify the Conservative brand.
She discusses more than just the topics at hand. For instance, in her recent article on protests, she mentioned that some individuals choose to live on the streets.
I believe that a majority of your audience would share her sentiment that we do not want makeshift communities on our roads and we are worried about forceful begging. However, I am not aware of anyone who believes that those on the streets have chosen to be there. Many of them face intricate challenges, not just limited to housing, but also mental health and addiction. They deserve our empathy, assistance, and government involvement to aid in getting them off the streets, instead of labeling them as individuals who have deliberately chosen to act in this manner.
The actions she takes are creating challenges for Rishi Sunak’s role and for every Conservative candidate who wins in the upcoming election.
Therefore, if you identify as a Conservative, she is not providing assistance. Additionally, for those who do not align with Conservative beliefs, she is making the already challenging job of the police even more difficult during this critical time.
The editorial published this morning is more positive for Suella Braverman compared to the Telegraph’s article at 11:25am. It suggests that Rishi Sunak should not dismiss her from her position.
Mrs. Braverman clearly stated what was already known by every dog on the street: that our police forces have, due to being influenced by “wokery,” forsaken the impartiality that they once fiercely protected.
Mrs. Braverman has incited strong opposition due to her criticism of a widely accepted belief in many of our institutions: toxic identity politics.
Upon sensing vulnerability, the Home Secretary’s adversaries have implored Rishi Sunak to dismiss her. Such action would be unforgiving toward a politician who has only brought rationality into the discourse on law enforcement. He should refrain from doing so.
“The Sun is a little more cautious.
However, the Sun has a slightly different perspective. In its editorial, it acknowledges that Braverman’s statements about the police were accurate, but also points out that by making them public, the home secretary has sparked a controversy that ultimately benefits the Labour party. The Sun takes a more cautious approach, stating: “We are somewhat wary.”
It is suspected that they no longer impartially enforce laws. It is believed that they show leniency towards more popular issues.
It is the responsibility of campaigners and commentators, not Home Secretary Suella Braverman, to make this observation.
She holds the authority and has the ability to reprimand police chiefs. However, she expressed her dissatisfaction in The Times, giving the impression that she lacks control over the situation.
This, along with the dispute it has caused with the Prime Minister’s office, has been a boon for the Labour party and its allies in the media.
They can now push aside the internal divisions within their party regarding Gaza…
Let us imagine that Ms. Braverman’s directness is the reason for our dissatisfaction, rather than the alarming anti-Semitism emanating from the Left.
This echoes George Osborne’s criticism of “Connie the commentator” from yesterday. (See 10:06am.)
At 9:08am, she will not be pleased with the opinion piece published by the Daily Telegraph. It suggests that there are others who share her belief that the police have not taken a strong enough stance against pro-Palestinian protests. However, the article continues to state:
Mrs. Braverman has a significant role in the government and holds a complex position within the constitutional system. While she is a Member of Parliament and a member of the Cabinet, her role also entails specific legal responsibilities and duties.
The newspaper article was successful in criticizing Sir Mark Rowley, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, for not asking for a ban on the pro-Palestine march that took place on Saturday. This goes against the tradition of keeping operational decisions separate from political influence, which is important for a good reason.
We do not wish to reside in a nation where government officials have the power to instruct law enforcement to detain specific people or interfere with police choices. If Mrs. Braverman desired to ban the protest on Saturday, she could have proposed an urgent law to make it possible.