PM warned against copying UKIP

Ministers have warned David Cameron to resist a "lurch to the right" after the Conservatives finished third behind UKIP in the Eastleigh by-election. The PM also faces pressure over departmental spending ahead of this month's Budget.

Live updates

'Anti-EU posturing' could make UK a criminal safe haven

The Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has warned that Britain could become a "safe haven" for foreign criminals if it pulls out of the European Arrest Warrant.

The Conservative Home Secretary Theresa May plans to opt out of 133 EU-wide justice and policing measures, including the EAW.

While some measures of European co-operation on crime are old, out of date or defunct, the police and other law enforcement agencies consistently tell us that other measures are essential for our national security and public safety.

The European Arrest Warrant is one of those key the police say, without it Britain could become a safe haven for Europe's criminals.

We want to improve the way the arrest warrant works.

But this key crime fighting tool should be reformed, not abandoned.

One of Mr Clegg's aides went further, telling the Financial Times:

It is incredible that people would risk the security and safety of British citizens for some anti-European posturing.


Grayling: Human rights comments 'not off-message'

The Justice Secretary Chris Grayling has said that his remarks about scrapping the Human Rights Act were not off-message, despite David Cameron saying there would be no "lurch to the right" in the Conservative Party.

The Justice Secretary insists his comments about the Human Rights Act were "not off-message" Credit: ITV News

Mr Grayling said: "What I've set out in the last few days is the same approach that I set out at the party conference last year.

"The Conservative Party will go in to the next election with a plan to tackle the frustrations on human rights, which are shared by people across our society - not by those on the right but the public as a whole."

His remarks come as cracks over immigration and the Human Rights Act appear to be splitting the party after the poor Eastleigh by-election results, which saw the Conservative fall to third place behind UKIP.

Read: Nick Clegg on 'Stunning' Eastleigh win

Clarke: 'Lurch to right is most certain way to lose election'

The former Conservative Cabinet minister Ken Clarke has warned David Cameron that any attempt to imitate UKIP will "drive moderate people to stick with the Liberal Democrats", adding: "I can't think of a more certain way to lose the general election than to go for a lurch to the right."

The now Minister Without Portfolio went on to say that talk of the Human Rights Act being scrapped was not something he recognised as government policy, or "any policy likely to be adopted by a Conservative Party that I can recognise."

Cameron to pledge to stick to economic policy

Cameron's speech on the economy takes place three weeks before the Budget Credit: PA Wire

David Cameron is set to attempt to calm Conservative nerves with a major speech on the economy on Thursday.

Downing Street aides said it will aim to drive home the Prime Minister's message on the need to stick to the course on economic policy.

Ministers have been voicing their opposition to any potential cuts to their departmental spending ahead of the Budget later this month.

Yesterday, the Defence Secretary Philip Hammond called for the welfare budget to bear a greater share of the cuts than the Armed Forces.

Cable warns Cameron against a 'lurch to the right'

The Lib Dem Business Secretary Vince Cable has told ITV News that the Coalition would run more smoothly if the Prime Minister resisted efforts to move the Conservative Party further to the right.

Vince Cable said: "It would certainly help the workings of the coalition if he remained in a moderate, central position."


Back to top