Dominic raab

Sunday shows round-up: Raab sets out his leadership pitch

Dominic Raab –  I’m ‘willing to walk away’ The starting gun for the Conservative leadership race has been fired and there are currently eight declared hopefuls jockeying for position. Dominic Raab, the former Brexit Secretary, who resigned in protest last year over the government’s draft withdrawal agreement, sat down with Andrew Marr to outline his bid for the top job. Unsurprisingly, the issue of where the government now takes the Brexit negotiations featured highly on the agenda: Conservative Party leadership contender Dominic Raab tells #Marr he wants a #Brexit deal, with changes to the Northern Irish backstop, but otherwise he is “willing to walk away” with no deal —

Tory Brexiteers divided over how to kill off May’s deal

Will Theresa May face a vote of no confidence? Graham Brady has been touring the studios over the weekend making it clear that the full 48 letters required to trigger such a vote are yet to be received. That’s not to say it won’t happen in the near future – there’s plenty that could happen in the next week to irk MPs further – though European Research Group members seem a little down-hearted by the slow pace to proceedings. The problem is Tory Brexiteers are not united when it comes to a response to May’s EU withdrawal agreement. There are a small number of Tory Leave MPs who actually support

Dominic Raab: Why I had to resign as Brexit Secretary

Dear Prime Minister, It’s been an honour to serve in your government as Justice Minister, Housing Minister and Brexit Secretary. I regret to say that following the Cabinet meeting yesterday on the Brexit deal, I must resign. I understand why you have chosen to pursue the deal with the EU on the terms proposed, and I respect the different views held in good faith by all of our colleagues. For my part, I cannot support the proposed deal for two reasons. First, I believe that the regulatory regime proposed for Northern Ireland presents a very real threat to the integrity of the United Kingdom. Second, I cannot support an indefinite

Sunday shows round-up: Dominic Raab – ‘We need to hold our nerve’

Dominic Raab – ‘We need to hold our nerve’ Andrew Marr was joined by the Brexit Secretary as the deadline for achieving a deal with the European Union draws ever closer. Marr asked Dominic Raab about rumours that the mood in the party is restless enough to trigger a leadership contest against Theresa May, with the influential 1922 Committee of Conservative backbenchers reportedly nearing the critical threshold of 48 signatures. Raab told his colleagues that now was the time ‘to play for the team’: AM: What is your message to all of your colleagues who look at this and say ‘This is a complete shambles’? DR: We’re at the end

Dominic Raab takes a dig at David Davis

After a welcome reprieve from parliamentary scrutiny over the summer, DExEU Secretary Dominic Raab was back in the hot seat today as he took questions from the House of Lords EU committee about the state of Brexit negotiations. While the tone of the questioning was mostly serious, and occasionally antagonistic, Raab couldn’t quite help lightening the mood when talking about his predecessor David Davis. Discussing the flexibility Britain and the EU had demonstrated in order to reach an agreement, Raab pointed out: ‘We’ve made proposals which clearly involve political compromises and pragmatism. That’s why you’re hearing from me, not my predecessor.’ Mr S isn’t quite sure if Raab thinks that

Sunday Shows Roundup: Dominic Raab – Brexit deal should be agreed ‘in October’

The House of Commons breaks for recess on Tuesday, and accordingly the Sunday shows will be taking a break. For his last show until September, Andrew Marr was joined by the Brexit Secretary Dominic Raab, who has taken over the reins after David Davis’ resignation and has already made the headlines by insisting that the UK could tear up the agreed £39 billion ‘divorce bill’ if the two sides do not reach a trade deal. Raab told Marr that he was ‘striving every sinew’ to get the best deal for the United Kingdom, and insisted that his government was on course to agree a deal in the timeframe they expected:

Why No 10 made Dominic Raab Brexit Secretary

Dominic Raab has this morning been appointed as David Davis’s successor as Brexit Secretary. Raab moves from his role as minister of state for Housing to his first Cabinet post as Secretary of State for Exiting the EU. Well-liked among colleagues, Raab is someone who is seen to have been consistently overlooked for promotion. He was recently asked in a television interview, why he hadn’t been promoted given that he was so consistently loyal in defending the government’s position. He is also a savvy hire by No 10 thanks to the fact Raab is a Davis ally and a dedicated Leaver. It will help to send the signal that this

Sunday shows round-up: Nicola Sturgeon, Keir Starmer, Ken Clarke, Dominic Raab

Keir Starmer – Tory Remainers should vote with us The week ahead promises a showdown in the House of Commons as the government’s EU Withdrawal Bill will face several key votes which could decisively impact the future of Brexit. The votes come after the bill was substantially amended by the House of Lords back in April, with peers notably seeking to keep the UK in the EU’s customs union and to give Parliament a ‘meaningful say’ on the final Brexit deal. Shadow Brexit Secretary Sir Keir Starmer joined Andrew Marr to discuss Labour’s approach to the bill, with Marr highlighting that Labour was not seizing the opportunity to keep the

What Westminster eats for lunch

Dominic Raab has found himself the subject of much mockery today after one of his aides allegedly told an undercover reporter about his rather repetitious lunch habits: ‘He has the chicken Caesar and bacon baguette, superfruit pot and the vitamin volcano smoothie, every day. He is so weird. It’s the Dom Raab Special.’ Happily, Mr S’s mole reports that he has not been put off – he was spotted back in Pret this lunchtime. Still, just so he is not alone – Mr S has reached out to MPs, ministers, SpAds and staffers to discover the eating habits of Westminster’s big beasts: Sadiq Khan: The Mayor of London varies his


Dominic Raab’s lunch scandal

Dominic Raab has awoken to a scandal relating to his team. The Daily Mirror reports that one of the Housing Minister’s staff has been ‘selling sex to sugar daddies’. While the paper refrains from identifying the staffer in question, it does publish their account of life working under Raab – and this is where the real scandal emerges. The woman in question has revealed Raab’s lunch order: ‘He has the chicken Caesar and bacon baguette, superfruit pot and the vitamin volcano smoothie, every day. He is so weird. It’s the Dom Raab Special.’ Well, at least it’s a more down to earth option than daily visits to Roux…

Grauniad’s Dominic Raab attack falls short

The Grauniad is on a mission this week to expose the shortcomings of the government’s crackdown on unpaid internships. The paper reported that Dominic Raab, the Conservative minister, had advertised an unpaid internship to support his constituency work just hours before the government published its plan to tackle unfair working practices. Only, Mr S can’t help but wonder whether the paper ought to take heed of the old adage ‘people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones’. After all, the Grauniad is the proud owner of the ‘positive action scheme’ which offers two week placements to BAME candidates… for no money. ‘The scheme is unpaid, though reasonable daily travel expenses


One can push many things — a pen, one’s luck or (up) daisies. But the MP Dominic Raab told the Daily Telegraph last week that Theresa May and Boris Johnson ‘are demonstrating courage in pushing the diplomatic envelope’. Since the most famous envelope recently enclosed Mrs May’s letter to Donald Tusk, this figure of speech might have obscured rather than illuminated his meaning. I don’t mean to write about pushing the envelope, on which I’ve remarked before. The metaphor is from aeronautics, where it refers to parameters (often confused with perimeters) or limits. The late Gerald Kaufman complained of this Eurojargon 37 years ago, explaining in a book that ‘an

Tory Brexiteers pressure May to quit EU single market and customs union

Normally, the Saturday before an autumn statement would be dominated by speculation about what is in it. But, as I say in The Sun today, both Number 10 and the Treasury are emphasising that while there’ll be important things on productivity, infrastructure and fiscal rules in Wednesday’s statement, there’ll be no rabbits out of hats. Partly, this is because of  Philip Hammond’s personality: he’s not a political showman. But it is also because he’s not got much room for manoeuvre.  As he has emphasised to Cabinet colleagues, the growth forecasts might not be dramatically lower than they were in March, but cumulatively they have a big effect—limiting what the government

The reshuffle hasn’t mollified everyone

With Dominic Raab’s appointment as Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Justice, a pattern is starting to emerge in David Cameron’s reshuffle of reconciliations with old foes in a new parliament. Raab organised one of the most effective rebellions of the last Parliament on the Immigration Bill, which left the Tory whips in complete chaos. Now he has been brought into government. Cameron is also – belatedly – handing out jobs to members of the ‘Curry Club’: a group of Conservatives who are pretty savvy at sniffing out policies that won’t work on the doorstep (and who have rather proven this by increasing their majorities). Curry Club members include Tracey Crouch, who will

Labour tries to avoid Commons humiliation over the West Lothian question

MPs are preparing to debate devolution this afternoon, with a motion from Dominic Raab which includes a call for a review of the Barnett formula and a resolution to the West Lothian question. It’s a backbench business debate, so it is not binding on the government, but it is causing trouble for a number of reasons. The first is that Raab has managed to get an impressive sweep of the political spectrum on his list of supporters for the amendment. It includes senior Tories such as 1922 Committee chairman Graham Brady, former Attorney General Dominic Grieve (not someone who often agrees with Raab), and Andrew Mitchell. But it also has

Rebel Raab cut down to size

Pint-sized Tory MP Dominic Raab ruffled the feathers of the powerful with his amendment to the Immigration Bill last month, which forced the government into a humiliating abstention. Raab has a growing group of supporters (who call themselves the Raabels) on the backbenches. His popularity has made an impression in the corridors of power. I hear that spinners for one Cabinet minister have taken to turning down broadcast bids by saying: ‘Try Dominic Raab, he’s always keen for publicity!’

Dominic Raab is a brilliant fighter. It’s time he focused on Labour

Dominic Raab is one of the most impressive members of the Tory back benches, able to pick a string of good fights and – even rarer – able to win them. He’s a black belt and seems to regard politics as karate by other means. He’s a 3rd Dan in fighting and a 10th Dan in rebellion. But his latest victory – forcing the government into a humiliating climbdown over deporting foreign prisoners – was one too far. Thanks to Labour votes, his amendment failed so all he really achieved was embarrassing the Home Secretary. Yes, Raab can fight. Yes, he can win. But in my Daily Telegraph column today,

Raab amendment fails – but govt left looking weak and confused

So Labour did save the government’s bacon by voting against the Raab amendment on deportation while the government abstained on it. 97 MPs backed Dominic Raab’s amendment with the two tellers, that’s 99 MPs): a very clear message to ministers. This includes 86 Conservatives, according to the vote analysis, and 9 Labour MPs. The Mills amendment wasn’t voted on, so we’ll never know how successful the whips were in driving that rebellion to ground. There are a number of things that are remarkable about this. The first is the utter disorganisation not just within the parties but also across the parties. The Opposition decided to vote against something that the

Isabel Hardman

Breaking: Labour to vote against Raab amendment

In another twist of this Raab rebellion, Labour have just announced that they’re voting against the amendment on deportation of foreign prisoners. There had been a moment where they would abstain, but now the party has decided that as the government itself as said it is illegal and would be counterproductive, it cannot do anything other than vote it down. The party says it will come forward with proposals in the progress of the bill to facilitate and not hinder the removal of foreign prisoners. A Labour source tells me: ‘Weak and chaotic from the Prime Minister and Home Secretary on this so-called flagship bill.’ But this is interesting, because

Isabel Hardman

The whips are getting stronger – but will it be enough to stop Raab?

So now that the Speaker has called Dominic Raab’s amendment on deportation, the government whips have a frenzied few hours ahead of them as they try to peel off rebels. But this amendment has 106 signatures (two have joined since yesterday) and the rebels are expecting more to back it too. Labour told Coffee House yesterday that it will not support something that is illegal – but that still leaves room for the party to abstain rather than vote against. So we now have a situation where the amendment that caused all the fuss over the past few months – the Mills amendment on transitional controls for Bulgarian and Romanian