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15 August 2019updated 07 Jun 2021 4:44pm

Five things you need to know this morning: Corbyn offers to be caretaker PM

By New Statesman

Corbyn offers to lead caretaker government

Jeremy Corbyn has called on other opposition leaders to back him as caretaker prime minister in order to prevent a No Deal Brexit. The Labour leader laid out his plan in an open letter to the LibDems, SNP, Plaid Cymru and Greens, writing that he would table a Vote of No Confidence in the government at the “earliest possible moment”. “I would then, as Leader of the Opposition, seek the confidence of the House for a strictly time-limited temporary Government with the aim of calling a General Election, and securing the necessary extension of article 50 to do so”.

LibDem leader Jo Swinson immediately dismissed the idea Corbyn could command a majority as “nonsense”. You can find Stephen Bush’s take here.

Wollaston joins LibDems

The former Tory Dr Sarah Wollaston has become the latest MP to join the Liberal Democrats, taking the party’’s numbers in the House of Commons to 14. 

Wollaston, first elected in Totnes in 2010, was one of three Tory MPs to quit the party in February to join the group that became Change UK, but she left the new party in June. She follows the former Labour MP for Streatham Chuka Umanna in joining the LibDems to fight against Brexit.

A-level results arrive

Watch out for gratuitous pictures of blonde girls jumping: A-level results day is here again, and 300,000 sixth formers across England, Wales and Northern Ireland will receive their results today. Recent reforms mean that the percentage receiving top grades is unlikely to change much, and that coursework has largely been abolished, making final exams more important than ever.

The Guardian is live-blogging results day here.

War of words over Kashmir

The leaders of Pakistan and India have each used their independence day speeches to reiterate their positions over the latter’s troubled province of Kashmir, whose decades-old special constitutional status  the Indian government of Narendra Modi revoked last week.

In a speech yesterday, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan, who has asked the UN Security Council to discuss the province at an emergency session, said that, “We have decided that if India commits any type of violation we will fight till the end.”

But in his own independence day speech at Delhi’s Red Fort earlier today, Modi defended the move, and accused domestica political rivals of “playing politics” by criticising his Kashmir policy. “We don’t believe in delaying solving problems,” he said.

Home Office launches #knifefree chicken boxes

Home Secretary Priti Patel has launched a campaign against knife crime in the unusual medium of fast food. More than 300,000 special “#knifefree” boxes will replace standard packaging at fried chicken outlets such as Chicken Cottage and Morley’s. Each contains stories of real young people who have opted to pour their energies into other past times, such as boxing or music, rather than carrying a knife.

David Lammy, the Labour MP for Tottenham, accused the government of “pushing the stereotype” that black people love fried chicken. “This ridiculous stunt is ether epxlicitly racist, or, at best, unfathomably stupid,” he said, and called for investment instead.

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