Boris Johnson news latest: Raab rules out enshrining women’s right to abortion in law

Dominic Raab refuses to add women’s right to choose on abortion to Bill of Rights

Dominic Raab has ruled out enshrining women’s right to abortion in law, as he stood in for Boris Johnson at prime minister’s questions.

Mr Raab, the deputy PM and justice minister, said the legality of abortion in the UK was settled, when he was asked to support an amendment on the issue to his proposed Bill of Rights.

He was filling in for the prime minister, who is at the Nato summit in Madrid.

Elsewhere, Mr Johnson is facing calls to increase UK defense spending, as one senior Tory warned current global events echo the lead up to the Second World War.

Tobias Ellwood, chair of the Commons defense committee, said Britain’s armed forced were overstretched in trying to deal with the challenges of a world that now had a “1930s feel”.

Labor has also called on the government to act. Shadow housing minister Lisa Nandy said the party has been: “warning the government for some time that there is a problem” with military funding.

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Harriet Harman will lead probe into whether PM misled parliament on Partygate

Labor grandee Harriet Harman has been selected to lead the Commons investigation into whether Boris Johnson lied to parliament over Partygate.

The privileges committee issued a call for witnesses to come forward with evidence of the prime minister’s knowledge of rule-breaking gatherings in No 10.

Ms Harman, a former acting leader of the Labor Party, was unanimously elected to chair the committee, which will be advised by Sir Ernest Ryder, a former lord justice of appeal.

Our politics editor Andrew Woodcock will have more on this story as it comes in:

Matt MathersJune 29, 2022 3:02 p.m.

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16% of public still believe Brexit is going well, poll finds

A full 16 per cent of the British public still believe Brexit is going well, a new poll has found.

A new survey by pollsters YouGov found a significant majority of people, 54 per cent, think Britain’s EU exit is going badly, with 20 per cent saying neither.

A policy correspond Jon Stone reports:

Matt MathersJune 29, 2022 2:46 p.m.

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More than half of voters support Brexit’s NI protocol

A majority of voters in Northern Ireland support the Brexit protocol, according to a new poll.

Some 55 per cent said they viewed the new trading arrangements as appropriate for managing the impact of being outside of the EU.

Meanwhile, some 53 per cent said, overall the trading arrangements are a “good thing for Northern Ireland.

38 per cent and 37 per cent of respondents respectively are of the opposite view, according to the survey by Lucid Talk and Queens University Belfast.

Matt MathersJune 29, 2022 2:15 p.m.

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Boris Johnson says he won’t boycott G20 even if ‘pariah’ Putin goes

The prime minster has ruled out a British boycott of the forthcoming G20 summit, indicating that he would go even if Russian president Vladimir Putin chose to turn up.

The prospect of an extraordinary showdown between western leaders and the Russian president was raised after the Kremlin said Mr Putin would go to November’s conference in Indonesia.

Jane DaltonJune 29, 2022 1:58 p.m.

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Boris Johnson keen on forging ‘Roman Empire’ of wider Europe

Boris Johnson says he is keen to forge a loose political alliance of European and north African leaders – comparing it to the Roman Empire in its pomp.

French president Emmanuel Macron raised the idea of ​​a new “European political community” with the prime minister when the pair met at the G7 summit in Germany.

Jane DaltonJune 29, 2022 1:32 p.m.

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It’s no wonder the PM has fled the country, claims Rayner

Angela Rayner said it was no wonder Boris Johnson had fled the country after Labour’s victory in Wakefield, as she clashed with Dominic Raab over strikes, taxation and the prime minister’s job.

She said she would “revel in the opportunity” to have more than just by-elections, adding: “Call a general election and see where the people are.”

She added: “This is the man who once said a high level of Government taxation was hurting UK competitiveness. Now he is backing the Prime Minister who wants to put taxes up 15 times. At this rate, working people will be paying £500 billion more in tax by 2030.

“How high does he think the burden on working people should get before he says enough is enough?”

Dominic Raab replied the Government were “the ones helping working people with a tax cut of £330”, and listed a series of other measures the Government has taken to help with the rising cost of living.

He added: “We are the ones with a plan for low unemployment, a high-wage, high-skill economy, and Labor – it is back to year zero.”

The full exchange: Angela Rayner and Dominic Raab clash over tax rises

Jane DaltonJune 29, 2022 1:22 p.m.

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Raab attack ‘champagne socialist’ Rayner

As Dominic Raab an Angela Rayner clashed over striking railway workers, he criticized her as a “champagne socialist” for going to the opera.

He asked where she was when the Labor frontbench were on picket lines last week, he asked.

Dominic Raab criticizes ‘champagne socialist’ Angela Rayner for going to opera

Jane DaltonJune 29, 2022 1:13 p.m.

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Abortion laws in the UK: what’s allowed and what is not

Only women in Northern Ireland have a legal right to an abortion in the UK.

But abortions may legally be carried out within the first 24 weeks of pregnancy in England, Scotland and Wales.

As the deputy prime minister rules out changing UK abortion laws, here’s a run-down of what abortion laws in the UK state:

Jane DaltonJune 29, 2022 1:09 p.m.

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Raab: No strong case for change on UK abortion law

Dominic Raab has ruled out enshrining the right to abortion in law, following the US legal judgment repealing the right.

The deputy prime minister said the legality of abortion in the UK was “settled” when he was asked to support an amendment on the issue to his proposed Bill of Rights.

Labor MP Rosie Duffield said: “So far this year, 52 women have been killed in the UK. Our rights to free speech, safe spaces, fairness in sport and even the words we use to describe our own bodies are all under threat.

“Will the Deputy Prime Minister send a clear signal, as some of his Cabinet colleagues have done this week, that Britain respects the rights of women, and will he accept the cross-party amendment to his forthcoming Bill of Rights which enshrines a women’s right to choose in law?”

Jane DaltonJune 29, 2022 1:00 p.m.

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‘Lessons’

Responding to Rayner’s questions about how many Britian troops would have to lose before Raab quits, the deputy PM says there is in fact a £24bn spending increase on the way.

He says the UK will spend 2.3 per cent of GDP on defense “making us the largest military spender in Europe”.

He says the government won’t take “lessons” from Labor on defence, pointing out that Rayner voted against Trident when she entered parliament in 2016.

Matt Mathers29 June 2022 12:39

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