Morning Call: pick of the papers

The ten must-read comment pieces from this morning's papers.

1. Miliband's big speeches raise more questions than they answer. Now is the time for policy (Independent)

The temptation to say little is immense, given his poll lead; but voters will ask what he stands for, writes Steve Richards.

2. Lib Dems are having a nervous breakdown (Daily Telegraph)

The coalition’s junior partner started well, but is now a threat to good government, says Peter Oborne.

3. Perils of supermarket cost-cutting machines (Financial Times)

The switching of horsemeat for beef is a spectacular signal that a limit has been reached, says John Gapper.

4. If you're opposed to drones, then think again (Times) (£)

The arguments against them collapse under scrutiny – and they are the most ‘democratic’ weapon ever invented, says Paddy Ashdown.

5. Why I'm standing for Labour in the Eastleigh byelection (Guardian)

Suddenly, I feel really lucky to have an outlet for the profound sense of outrage I feel about this coalition government, writes John O'Farrell.

6. Why the consensual Barack Obama is becoming confrontational (Guardian)

The president knows Republicans aren't going to compromise, but can he get Americans to back him in the coming battle, asks Martin Kettle.

7. Turkey and Europe (Financial Times)

Both sides would benefit from reviving accession talks, says an FT editorial.

8. What's the point of a food safety quango that couldn't save us from eating stallion burgers? (Daily Mail)

 The Food Standards agency is failing miserably in its job of safeguarding the integrity of our food chain, writes Leo McKinstry. 

9. The Woman's Hour list proves that there is nothing soft about real power (Guardian)

A recent rundown of the nation's most powerful women is a painful reminder of the weak state we are in, writes Suzanne Moore. 

10. A President at the very height of his power (Independent)

Obama is confident in his power and visibly liberated by the knowledge that he will never face the voters again, says an Independent editorial.

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Benn vs McDonnell: how Brexit has exposed the fight over Labour's party machine

In the wake of Brexit, should Labour MPs listen more closely to voters, or their own party members?

Two Labour MPs on primetime TV. Two prominent politicians ruling themselves out of a Labour leadership contest. But that was as far as the similarity went.

Hilary Benn was speaking hours after he resigned - or was sacked - from the Shadow Cabinet. He described Jeremy Corbyn as a "good and decent man" but not a leader.

Framing his overnight removal as a matter of conscience, Benn told the BBC's Andrew Marr: "I no longer have confidence in him [Corbyn] and I think the right thing to do would be for him to take that decision."

In Benn's view, diehard leftie pin ups do not go down well in the real world, or on the ballot papers of middle England. 

But while Benn may be drawing on a New Labour truism, this in turn rests on the assumption that voters matter more than the party members when it comes to winning elections.

That assumption was contested moments later by Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.

Dismissive of the personal appeal of Shadow Cabinet ministers - "we can replace them" - McDonnell's message was that Labour under Corbyn had rejuvenated its electoral machine.

Pointing to success in by-elections and the London mayoral election, McDonnell warned would-be rebels: "Who is sovereign in our party? The people who are soverign are the party members. 

"I'm saying respect the party members. And in that way we can hold together and win the next election."

Indeed, nearly a year on from Corbyn's surprise election to the Labour leadership, it is worth remembering he captured nearly 60% of the 400,000 votes cast. Momentum, the grassroots organisation formed in the wake of his success, now has more than 50 branches around the country.

Come the next election, it will be these grassroots members who will knock on doors, hand out leaflets and perhaps even threaten to deselect MPs.

The question for wavering Labour MPs will be whether what they trust more - their own connection with voters, or this potentially unbiddable party machine.