This week on The Points, we look at Starmer’s gaining lead, Mackay and his resignation, the new ambassador to the US and Begum’s appeal.
Starmer’s gamble pays off?
Article of choice: Evening Standard – Rebecca Long-Bailey is least popular leadership contender
Last week, we mentioned that Keir Starmer started to move to the left to try and take away ground from Rebecca Long-Bailey, and it seems to have paid off. Long-Bailey has dropped to 14% in the Evening Standard poll, with Starmer leading the pack with 32%. However, this might of opened the door for Lisa Nandy, who has risen to 23%. One thing is clear, the race is far from over.
Raab starts his tour of Asia
Article of choice: BBC – Raab in Australia at start of trade mission
As the UK leaves the EU, Britain begins the challenging task of agreeing completely new trade deals with each country. Dominic Raab therefore, has started a tour of Asia, meeting each country individually. Raab started with Australia last week. In 2019, trade between the UK and Australia in 2019 was worth £18.3 billion.
It all comes out just before budget reveal
Article of choice: BBC – Derek Mackay: Scottish finance secretary quits over messages to boy
Hours before the Scottish finance minister was meant to reveal the Scottish budget for the coming years, scandal hit. Derek MacKay resigned after it was revealed he was messaging a 16 year old boy. Included in the messages was an invitation to Parliament and calling him cute. Although he has been suspended, the question is how Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP will deal with this. Her office could face intense scrutiny after it was accused of trying to cover it up.
Shamima Begum’s citizenship yet to be reinstated
Article of the week: The Guardian – Shamima Begum loses first stage of appeal against citizenship removal
Shamima Begum’s citizenship continues to be stripped despite her appeals. People are still extremely divided about whether or not her citizenship should of been removed. Some say she lost her citizenship when she left to be an ISIS wife. Others argue she must be brought back to face trial in the UK, and punished accordingly. Maybe more worryingly, this decision has led to others in a more vulnerable position losing citizenship.
New US ambassador announced and it marks an important landmark
Article of choice: BBC – UK names first women US ambassador
Sir Kim Darroch, former US ambassador, left the position last year on a very controversial tone. His departure was overshadow by leaked emails calling the Trump administration ‘clumsy and inept’. To try and mend relations, Johnson has chosen the incredibly experienced Dame Karen, who is currently the UK’s representative to the UN. She will be the first women to occupy this role.
If you would like to read last weeks point, click here