Rishi Sunak news – live: Labour demands probe of ex-chancellor’s defunding boast

Sunak boasts of taking money from ‘deprived urban areas’

Labour has urged the government’s levelling up secretary to investigate Rishi Sunak after he was filmed boasting about diverting funding away from “deprived urban areas” towards more prosperous areas that “deserve” it.

In a letter to Greg Clark, Lisa Nandy described the comments made to grassroots Tories in Kent on 29 July – uncovered in footage obtained by the New Statesman – as “deeply concerning”, accusing the ex-chancellor and Tory leadership hopeful of “fixing the rules” to “secure political gain” for himself.

In the video, Mr Sunak told supporters: “I managed to start changing the funding formulas, to make sure areas like this are getting the funding they deserve because we inherited a bunch of formulas from Labour that shoved all the funding into deprived urban areas and that needed to be undone.

“I started the work of undoing that.”

Earlier, the head of an influential think tank warned the next prime minister will have to find “many more billions” of pounds to help households pay soaring energy bills after the Bank of England’s dire economic forecast.


Labour calls for probe into Sunak’s defunding boast

Labour’s shadow levelling up secretary has written to her opposite number Greg Clark to call for an investigation into Rishi Sunak’s “deeply concerning” claims to have funnelled money away from “deprived urban areas” towards more prosperous places that “deserve” it.

In her letter, Lisa Nandy said: “This is deeply concerning. The former chancellor is admitting to fixing the rules to funnel taxpayers’ money to affluent parts of the country at the expense of areas he himself admits are “deprived”.

“Public money should always be distributed fairly and spent in areas where it is most needed. It is completely unacceptable for ministers to allocate taxpayer funds in order to secure political gain for themselves or their party.”

Our Whitehall editor Kate Devlin has the full story here:


Truss acknowledges winter ahead will be ‘tough’

Liz Truss acknowledged there will be a “tough winter” ahead but said there is a need to move away from the “business-as-usual” policies to help “reform the economy”.

The foreign secretary, speaking during a visit to meet key investors in the City of London, told reporters: “The reality is we’re facing a recession if we carry on with our business-as-usual policies.

“People are struggling – whether it’s to pay food bills or fuel bills – that’s why it’s very important we reverse the national insurance increase, we have a temporary moratorium on the green energy levy to help people with their fuel bills.

“The most important thing is getting the economy going so we avoid a recession and the business-as-usual policies aren’t working, we need to do more, and that’s why I am determined to reform the economy and keep taxes low.”

She added: “I know it’s going to be a tough winter, I want to do all I can to make sure we’re releasing the reserves in the North Sea of gas, I want to get on with things like fracking in areas that support it, and I also want to make sure that we’re moving ahead with nuclear power and more renewables.

“Of course, it will take time but the best time to start is today in moving that forward, as well as giving people all the help we can by keeping their taxes low and getting the economy going.”


Viewers react after Kay Burley quotes Eminem as she roasts Liz Truss in leadership debate

Kay Burley has been praised by viewers for her takedown of Liz Truss, which included a nod to an Eminem lyric.

During a debate on Sky News last night (4 August), the broadcaster interviewed Number 10 hopefuls Truss and Rishi Sunak.

At one point, Burley began listing all the different examples of when Truss has made drastic U-turns in her views and policies.

My colleague Ellie Harrison reports:


Long read: Will a new prime minister destabilise Keir Starmer’s leadership of Labour?

Depending on who wins the Tory leadership contest, Starmer will have to redefine his position, writes John Rentoul. But is he even the right person for the job?

Read John’s full piece here:


The Bank of England has confirmed the Tory leadership race as an irrelevant sideshow

Their juvenile ‘my tax cuts are bigger than yours’ competition leaves the Tories fiddling while Rome burns, writes Andrew Grice.

Read Andrew’s full piece here:


Candidates must tackle inflation and recession, CBI director says

CBI director general Tony Danker said the leadership candidates cannot choose between tackling either inflation or growth and must tackle both, and there is a need to look at the whole tax regime without “cherry-picking”.

Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s World at One programme, Mr Danker said: “I think the candidates are having a debate about stagflation actually. Each candidate is sort of picking their worse evil to focus on first.

“But the trouble with stagflation is you don’t get to choose between tackling inflation or tackling recession, you have to tackle both.

“So, that’s challenge number one to the candidates, to not pick which one of inflation or recession they care about more, but to come up with a plan that tackles both.”

He added: “We need a genuine plan about growth, that when it comes to tax we need to talk about the whole tax regime, not cherry-picking the ones that are most totemic.

“We also need to think way beyond tax, we need to think about regulation that’s pro-growth, we need to think about boosting growth markets, and above all, given where most people are in business today, is we need to think about a plan to tackle labour and skills shortages.”


Why are so many comedians left wing? It’s quite simple, really

The glee with which the ‘Mock the Week’ cancellation was greeted forms part of a narrative that has proved extremely valuable to the right in recent years, writes Andrew Woodcock.

Read Andrew’s full piece here:


Truss and Sunak are too deep in fantasyland to weather the coming storm

For an extremely long fortnight, they have been fighting it out to be prime minister of a country of which they appear to be hovering above in some kind of spacecraft, without ever having touched down to see what’s actually going on here, writes Tom Peck.

Read Tom’s piece here:


The surprise winner of the latest Tory TV battle wasn’t Truss – but Sunak

Liz Truss is all too keen to excuse Boris Johnson’s ‘mistakes’ – she could be as dangerous as him, writes Sean O’Grady.

Read Sean’s full piece here:


World Cup 2022: Expert panel to explore how the world can hold Qatar to account on human rights

Join labour rights defender Malcolm Bidali, FairSquare’s James Lynch, BHRRC’s Isobel Archer and The Independent’s chief football writer Miguel Delaney, hosted by international editor David Harding for an expert panel on how the world can hold Qatar to account on human rights.

You can sign up by following this link:

Source: UK Politics -


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