Politics news - latest: Number 10 doesn't deny claim top civil servant may have failed to pass on written Dominic Raab complaint (2023)

Key points
  • Rishi Sunak has full confidence in top civil servant - as Number 10 fails to deny report he may not have passed on Dominic Raab complaint
  • Rob Powell: Downing Street response has striking similarities to handling of Nadhim Zahawi affair
  • What you need to know about the Raab controversy|Who is Cabinet Secretary Simon Case?
  • Another headache looms for PM as BBC chairman and former adviser set to be grilled by MPs
  • Beth Rigby:There's little warm glow around Rishi Sunak's leadership - but supporters see 'very narrow path' to victory at next election
  • The U-turns and scandals of his premiership so far
  • Live reporting by Tim Baker


'He's trying to paint me into something I'm not' - Corbyn hits back at Baddiel after Beth Rigby interview

Jeremy Corbyn has hit back at David Baddiel after the comedian suggested on Sky News' Beth Rigby Interviews that the former Labour leader subconsciously saw antisemitism "as a lesser evil".

Speaking to our political editor last month, Mr Baddiel said he did notthink the MP was "straightforwardly" an antisemite, but said he "comes from a tradition that sees antisemitism as a lesser evil compared to say capitalism".

Pointing to a row that erupted over Mr Corbyn's remarks about an antisemetic mural - something he later apologised for - Mr Baddiel added:"The reason in my mind that Jeremy Corbyn can't see that that mural of men playing Monopoly on the back of the world's poor might be antisemitic is because he just sees rich men playing Monopoly on the backs of the world's poor because he is interested in destroying and fighting against capitalism.

"Unfortunately it is very clear to Jews that they all look really Jewish and they are part of a tradition that feels like a Nazi caricature of the idea of the rich capitalist Jew."

Mr Corbyn - who remains suspended from the parliamentary Labour party after his response to a report into antisemitism within the membership - told The News Agents podcast had accepted his mistake over the mural.

But, he added: "It was a very long time ago and nobody said anything about my response at the time.

"So why is it that seven years later, David Baddiel brings this up as something at the back of my mind?"

The MP continued: "He accepts that I am not a racist in any term, fine. So why does he then sort of construct something that is allegedly at the back of my mind?

"I've never actually met him, I've never had a discussion with him. How does he know what's going on in my mind?

"Maybe what he is trying to do is paint me into something I'm not."

You can watch Beth Rigby's full interview with Mr Baddiel below:


Sunak's survived in Number 10 twice as long as his predecessor - but it's not been a smooth ride

Rishi Sunak may have already outlasted Liz Truss by quite a margin, but the 100 days he's been in office have not been short of scandals.

Our political correspondent Amanda Akasslooks back at the rockier moments of PM's tenure so far:


'Designer dogs' and animal abuse inquiry launched

MPs have launched an inquiry into "designer dogs" and other types of animal abuse following an increased demand for pets during the pandemic.

The Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee will look into a variety of abuses committed against pets and is calling for experts to submit written evidence now.

Read more from political reporter Alix Culbertson here:


From Zahawi and Raab to seatbelt gaffe - the U-turns and scandals of Sunak's first months as PM

Rishi Sunak's first three months as prime minister have been far from plain sailing.

Significant storm clouds are hanging over the government as the prime minister looks to overturnLabour's commanding lead in the polls.

DespiteMr Sunaktrying to distance himself from the turbulent premiership ofBoris Johnson, rows over propriety and standards have continued.

Here, Sky News looks at the scandals and U-turns during his time as PM - includinghis sacking of Tory chairman Nadhim Zahawi:


What you need to know about the Dominic Raab bullying allegations

The news agenda in Westminster today has again been dominated by the bullying allegations against Dominic Raab.

As we've been reporting, Cabinet Secretary Simon Case has been dragged back into the row, amid continuing questions about who knew what and when.

This is what you need to know about the controversy:


Truss to give 'hawkish' speech on China

As our political correspondent Mhari Aurora reported yesterday, Liz Truss appears to be circling the wagons and preparing for her comeback to the political stage.

And now we hear part of the return will be a "hawkish" speech on China, expected to put pressure on her successor Rishi Sunak.

The former PM - who became the UK's shortest serving premier after her resignation in October - will address a conference of international politicians in Japan later this month, with her speech billed as focusing on Beijing's threat to Taiwan.

She is also expected to be joined by two other former prime ministers, Australia's Scott Morrison and Belgium's Guy Verhofstadt.

An ally of Ms Truss said: "She's expected to address Sunak's decision to brand China a strategic competitor rather than a threat."


Who is Cabinet Secretary Simon Case?

The youngest cabinet secretary in more than a century, Simon Case was appointed to his role by Boris Johnson.

There are now questions about what Mr Case knew about Dominic Raab and the bullying allegations against him.

He has also been in the headlines over the Richard Sharp matter, where the BBC chair was appointed to the role after helping Mr Johnson secure an £800,000 loan while he was PM.

As a civil servant, Mr Case tends to be unable to publicly comment and defend himself.

Political correspondent Amanda Akass explains all you need to know about Mr Case.


Who is striking, when they're walking out and why

Tuesday saw the UK's biggest day of industrial action in more than a decade as teachers, university staff, train drivers, civil servants, bus drivers and security guards all went on strike.

But this is far from the end of the industrial action, with train drivers walking out today and tens of thousands of workers set to stage further strikes in the coming weeks and months.

Read more about the industrial action - and why it is taking place - here:


Beth Rigby on Raab and Zahawi. Plus, guest Mike Pompeo

Political editor Beth Rigby sits down with Mike Pompeo, secretary of state during President Trump's administration, and a former CIA director - the first person to have held both positions.

He says President Xi of China is a bigger threat to the world than Russia's Vladimir Putin - and accuses President Biden of weakness and allowing the war in Ukraine to happen.

Plus, producer Mollie Malone joins to debrief on the political stories from the UK this week, including accusations against Deputy PM Dominic Raab and Nadhim Zahawi’s sacking as Conservative Party chairman, as well as answering more listener emails.

On the Zahawi and Raab controversies, Beth says: "Rishi Sunak stood on the steps of Number 10 and said, I will lead a government of integrity and accountability.

"Every time there is a sort of sleaze or scandal or bullying allegations levelled at someone in his cabinet, the first question is, well, if you lead a government of integrity, why did you put this person into your cabinet?

"And then if he can't clearly defend the fact that he was completely unaware of it, it's uncomfortable for him."

You can email the team at bethrigbypodcast@sky.uk.

Click to subscribe to Beth Rigby Interviews… wherever you get your podcasts


Runners and riders to replace Zahawi as Conservative Party chair

Speculation is continuing about who will replace Nadhim Zahawi as Conservative Party chair after he was sacked over his tax affairs last weekend.

These are the runners and riders for the role:

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