The Repeal Bill already facing challenges?

Yesterday the Repeal bill was published, but it has already run into some difficulties, with the Labour party and the devolved administrations threatening to block it.

The UK is only into the Brexit process by a few weeks, but it looks like the cracks are starting to show for the government, by not having the devolved administrations on side.

Government Ministers are confident about getting it through the commons and have promised an “ongoing intense dialogue” with the devolved administrations.

First Minster of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon and First Minster of Wales, Carwyn Jones, described the bill as a “naked power-grab” by Westminster that undermined the principles of devolution.

The government is also facing criticism from inside the Labour Party, they claim it gives ministers a free hand over huge parts of policy without being scrutinized by Parliament.

From an outsider, it does appear that the government is being pushed and prodded from all angles, and with the shambolic general election result, this government authority does seem to be wavering.

However the Brexit Secretary David Davis, rejected the criticism and said its “one of the most significant pieces of legislation that has ever passed through Parliament”.

He also made the point that the bill does not give ministers “sweeping powers” to make changes to laws as they are repatriated.

The Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn, with his new found confidence, has said his party would not support the bill in its current form and called for concessions in six key areas.

These comments come after the Labour leader was in Brussels meeting the EU’s chief negotiator Michel Barnier.

During his visit Corbyn appeared to go on the attack. He said, “We will make sure there is full parliamentary scrutiny.”

He also added that “we have a Parliament where the government doesn’t have a majority, we have a country which voted in two ways on Leave or Remain.”

With the bill likely to pass in the commons, the Conservative government are just starting the trek through the two year battle ahead. What seems for certain is the UK becoming more and more divided on the Brexit issue.

 

 

North Korea launches an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM).

Yesterday the United States confirmed that North Korea has successfully launched an ICBM that may be capable of reaching the United States.

The news was broadcasted on North Korea TV. The TV spokes women claimed that North Korea was “a strong nuclear power state” and had “a very powerful ICBM that can strike any place in the world.”

The United States and South Korea, today have held a ballistic missile drill, for a show of unity and strength. The US have said that other military exercises would be held if other missiles were tested.

US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, has condemned the missile test. He said the test was a “new escalation of the threat” and he said the US would “never accept a nuclear-armed North Korea”.

Reading between the lines, the USA and her allies only have a few options open to them, none of them are good.

This test is a huge development in the North Korea missiles programme, with many outside experts and even the president court off guard.

Mr Trump expressed himself through his favourite online platform, twitter. Where he mocked the North Korea leader Kim Jong Un.

He said “North Korea has just launched another missile. Does this guy have anything better to do with his life?”

But behind this mocking tweet, Mr Trump must be anxious. Many experts believed that North Korea were at least three years away from having this kind of capability.
Mr Trump has often said at his rally’s that “north Korea will never be able to have a nuclear missile.”

If North Korea is much closer to having a nuclear missile, are we edging closer to a major conflict in the region?

Other key players in the region China and Russia, have urged the North to halt its weapons programme. In exchange the US-South Korean military exercises will stop.

With North Korea showing no intention of slowing down their missiles programme, tensions in the region are set to rise.

 

Munity in the cabinet on public sector pay.

The PM and the chancellor have been put under more pressure today, after another senior cabinet minister calls for a rethink on the 1% public sector pay cap.

The foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, has stepped into the fold, adding his criticism of the government’s position on the cap, calling for a change in the policy.

 

 

His intervention could not come at a worse time for the PM and the chancellor.
Over the weekend, Michael Gove spoke on the Andrew Marr show, suggesting that there could be a change in direction in regards to public sector pay.

He said “it is the ‘collective view of Government’ to ‘respect the integrity’ of independent public sector pay review bodies”.

 

 

He then added, “You sometimes have to suppress your own views, I sometimes might suppress mine in order to ensure that we can operate successfully as a collective team.”
It sounds like the collective team may be feeling the pressure on this issue. Are we seeing the beginning of the end for this minority government?

Michael Gove full interview on the Andrew Marr show.

I think it’s fair to say that Theresa Mays leaderships has been a bit rocky over the last few weeks. And with senior cabinet ministers divided on this issue, this is probably the last thing she needs.

She is also under pressure from her back benchers. Heidi Allen, the MP for South Cambridgeshire, suggested that austerity could be “scaled back”, calling for the “rebalancing” of where money is spent.

But with all this political talk about being part of a “collective team” and making the “hard decisions”, it’s easy to forget the people at the heart of the story. Our public sector works.

With nurses using food banks and with greater pressure on our services, the PM and the chancellor are going to have to grapple with what’s fair, and use the limited money in the public finances to better the many.