Good morning. With just over a week to go, Labour has turned to retail politics, trying to sell the country on the financial benefit of its policies – while the prime minister does his best to dodge his old friend Donald Trump out of fear the president could say something that might hurt his election chances. We have the best of other news – including the Trump impeachment report – and you can read rolling updates of the day’s political news at our live blog.
What’s going on?
Labour will today try to convince voters of the financial benefit of electing a Corbyn government. The shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, will say his party’s policies would save families an average of £6,700 a year by “putting a stop to rip-off Britain” as Labour narrows its focus to bread-and-butter issues.
In a dossier to be published alongside the speech, McDonnell will claim that policies including nationalising utilities and reducing the cost of rail season tickets – as well as free childcare for all two- to four-year-olds, free prescription charges and free school meals – would help the hip pocket of average households.
However, Labour candidates are privately concerned about the scattergun nature of the giveaways, with one saying the manifesto, while good, is “just long and confusing” and some promises could appear too good to be true.
Trump’s presence in the UK for Nato talks continues to loom over the election. The summit started with heated exchanges and further tensions are expected as leaders meet again today. Trump is seen as an electoral liability for the Conservatives over fears that he may be interested in putting the NHS on the table in US-UK trade talks – though yesterday the president categorically denied the US was interested in the health service. Boris Johnson has so far managed to keep his distance from the US president, with Marina Hyde writing that Johnson will continue to studiously avoid the president because “Tories sense even a handshake with Trump could piss their electoral bed”.
At a glance
The day ahead
The prime minister’s time will be split between campaigning in the home counties and hosting leaders for the Nato summit.
Jeremy Corbyn is campaigning in the East Midlands, while John McDonnell gives a speech on the economy in the West Midlands outlining how Labour’s policies will save average people money.
In the Lib Dem camp, Jo Swinson will visit a youth centre in London and then sit down for her Andrew Neil interview, which will be broadcast at 7.30pm.
The Brexit party leader, Nigel Farage, will speak at a public meeting in Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire in the morning while the SNP leader, Nicola Sturgeon, will campaign in Edinburgh and the Ulster Unionist party will launch its manifesto in Belfast.
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Best of the rest
> The US House intelligence committee has voted to adopt Democrats’ damning 300-page impeachment report, moving the inquiry into Donald Trump’s conduct towards its next phase. Trump “abused the power of his office for personal and political gain, at the expense of [US] national security”, the report concludes. It all goes to the judiciary committee next, and then the full House could vote on articles of impeachment by the end of the year.
> Thousands of people in the UK are having their appendix removed unnecessarily, surgeons say. A third of women and 12% of men going in for the surgery end up having a normal appendix removed. Study co-author Aneel Bhangu of the University of Birmingham said: “This is a situation where change can be brought about that will save the NHS potentially millions of pounds a year.” But Prof Neil Mortensen, vice-president of the Royal College of Surgeons, defended the status quo, saying serious complications from removing an appendix were rare but “missing a case of appendicitis is potentially life-threatening and it can also result in infertility in females”.
> All four artists shortlisted for the 2019 Turner prize have been named joint winners and shared the £40,000 prize after they made a plea for judges to recognise the causes of “commonality, multiplicity and solidarity” in what has been a divisive year.
The quartet are Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Helen Cammock, Oscar Murillo and Tai Shani. Guardian art critic Adrian Searle says that for an award with a colourful history this year’s result could be the upset to end them all.
Today in Focus podcast: Could Tory remainers stymie Johnson?
Anushka Asthana visits Winchester to find out which way Tory remainers are planning to vote next Thursday. Plus: Nina Lakhani on seven men convicted for the murder of Berta Cáceres.
Lunchtime read: Attack of the drones
The technology of swarming – drones deployed in squadrons, able to think independently and operate as a pack – is in its infancy, but armed forces around the world, including in the UK, are investing millions of pounds in its development. Israel is already using hordes of drones to overwhelm Syrian air defences, and they have been directed at Russian forces in Syria as well as oil facilities in Saudi Arabia. According to analysts, drone swarms of the future could have the capacity to assess targets, divide up tasks and execute them with limited human interaction, writes Michael Safi.
Pep Guardiola stated it would be “crazy” for Manchester City to think about retaining the title due to the deficit to Liverpool, which is eight points after Tuesday’s win at Burnley. At Selhurst Park, Crystal Palace had Mamadou Sakho sent off in the 19th minute but still managed to beat Bournemouth 1-0 on a night Amazon Prime crept into football’s broadcast jungle. Anthony Joshua has predicted a trilogy of fights with Andy Ruiz Jr, whatever the result of their clash on Saturday. The British & Irish Lions are poised to announce the schedule for their eight‑match tour to South Africa in 2021 but a proposed warm-up game against the Barbarians at Twickenham remains up in the air.
Tiger Woods has said he rejected the opportunity to play in a European Tour event in Saudi Arabia for the second year in succession but defended Phil Mickelson’s decision to travel to the Middle East. For the second time in less than two years England’s Test team have left New Zealand with a 1-0 series defeat to show for their efforts as a supposed new era got off to a flat start. Dozens of Bordeaux fans stormed onto the pitch during their Ligue 1 match against Nîmes, forcing the game to be halted for 25 minutes before coming back on and winning 6-0. And the 2019 Formula One Esports series will come to a climax at a shopping centre in west London today, with prize money of $500,000 (£385,000) up for grabs.
Asian shares sold off heavily overnight after Donald Trump surprised traders by saying that a trade deal with China could wait until after next year’s presidential election. The uncertainty was compounded when the US House of Representatives passed a bill that could require Trump to sanction members of the politburo for their treatment of Uighurs in Xinjiang. Beijing reacted furiously. The FTSE100 is set open flat despite the excitement in Asia while the pound edged above $1.30 and is sitting at €1.173.
What Donald Trump said about the NHS, and whether you’d believe him, is the theme today. The Sun’s position seems to be that if the president said it, it must be true: “Trump thumps chump over NHS lies”. “I wouldn’t want NHS on silver platter” says the Express. “We have no interest in the NHS” is the Telegraph’s splash headline.
The Guardian reports that the Labour leader intends to press the president over his trade machinations. The paper’s headline is “Corbyn ups pressure over NHS as Trump rows back”. The Metro splashes with “Corbyn casts doubt on Trump’s NHS pledge” and adds in a subhead that Tories admit medicines from US drug companies could cost more after Brexit. “We’ll force tech firms to pay more, says PM” is the take in the Times on Boris Johnson’s pledge to have the Googles and the Facebooks of the world make a “fairer contribution”, which the paper says runs the risk of a rift with Trump who has threatened France with tariffs for doing the same.
The Mail sounds the alarm bell over a “Deadly gamble on our health” as an NHS report ties online betting in with social scourges including heavy drinking, obesity and chronic disease. “Labour to put £6,176 in your pocket” says the Mirror as it tots up the benefits of Corbyn’s plans to end “rip-off Britain”.
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