Election latest: Conservatives to launch manifesto this morning (2024)

Manifesto week
  • Tories launching manifesto - with tax cuts set to be focus
  • Another national insurance cut expected - despite Hunt saying two weeks ago it is 'unlikely to change the calculus'
  • Politics at Jack and Sam's:The day...of the Tory manifesto launch
  • Battle For No 10:PM and Starmer taking part in Sky News special
  • Live reporting byTim Baker
Expert analysis
  • Gurpreet Narwan:Echoes of Truss in Reform's economic plans
  • Tamara Cohen:Labour takes on enormous childcare challenge
  • Politics at Jack and Sam's:The Day... Of the Tory manifesto launch
Election essentials
  • Manifesto checker:Lib Dems
  • Campaign Heritage:Memorable moments from elections gone by
  • Trackers:Who's leading polls?|Is PM keeping promises?
  • Follow Sky's politics podcasts:Electoral Dysfunction|Politics At Jack And Sam's
  • Read more:Who is standing down?|Key seats to watch|How to register to vote|What counts as voter ID?|Check if your constituency is changing|Your essential guide to election lingo|Sky's election night plans

07:51:31

The Day... Of the Tory manifesto launch

Sky News' deputy political editor Sam Coates and Politico's Jack Blanchard with their guide to the election day ahead.

This is day 20 of the campaign. Jack and Sam discuss the Conservative manifesto launch, the Lib Dem and Labour positions on capital gains tax, and the Scottish five-way leaders' debate... featuring a soon-to-be-departing Tory leader there Douglas Ross.

Email Jack and Sam: jackandsam@sky.uk

👉Tap here to follow Politics at Jack at Sam's wherever you get your podcasts👈

07:41:59

Cabinet minister goes on attack ahead of manifesto launch

Mel Stride, the work and pensions secretary, is back on the morning media round today.

It is his third time doing the job in under a week.

Mr Stride does not give much away regarding what the contents of the manifesto will be - although he says that "cutting people's tax" will be "at its heart".

He spends much of the interview with Kay Burley attacking the Labour Party for their spending plans - and repeating the disputed figure about the so-called "black hole" in Sir Keir Starmer's plans.

Sky economics and data editor Ed Conway went into the details of this claim here.

Mr Stride is also asked about the conviction of two 12-year-olds for murder (read more here).

He says the case is "terrible" - and highlights that his party reached its goal of hiring 20,000 new police officers this parliament to return numbers to around pre-austerity levels.

It has now pledged to recruit another 8,000 officers.

The Conservative manifesto launch will be taking place at 11.30 - follow live updates here.

07:14:26

Hopes for pre-election interest rate cut suffer further blow

By James Sillars, business reporter

The prospect of a pre-election interest rate cut by the Bank of England has been damaged by official figures showing no progress in bringing down the pace of wage growth.

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed basic pay rising at an annual rate of 6% in the three months to April.

That was flat on the figure reported by the ONS a month ago.

The measure that includes bonuses actually rose to 5.9% from 5.7%.

While it is good news for voters as it leaves pay growth at way more than double the 2.3% inflation rate, it will not help persuade the Bank of England that the time is right for an interest rate cut when it reveals its latest decision on 20 June.

Rishi Sunak would be keen for the Bank, which is independent of the government, to impose a cut to borrowing costs on that date to bolster his case that the outlook for household and consumer finances is improving.

With the Conservatives far behind Labour in the polls, the employment figures from the ONS are the last before polling day on 4 July.

The rate of unemployment in the UK rose to 4.4% in the three months to April, up from 4.3% in the previous three months, the ONS added.

Read more below:

06:54:35

National insurance cut expected in manifesto - despite Hunt saying it wouldn't help polls

It is expected the Conservatives will promise to cut national insurance by a further 2p in today's manifesto launch.

Rishi Sunak and Chancellor Jeremy Hunt have already knocked 4p off the levy in the past six months - and stated they have an ambition to get rid of it in its entirety.

But despite offering the tax cuts, the Tories have not managed to salvage their poll ratings, which are currently at their lowest since the last election.

Even Mr Hunt acknowledged almost a fortnight ago the tax cuts had not made an impact - and said further movement would not likely shift the dial.

He told the Mail on Sunday on 2 June: "The fact that we've had two significant tax cuts that haven't really changed the polls demonstrates to me that having a third one with the same again is unlikely to change the calculus."

06:23:44

The Battle For Number 10: How Sky News' special leaders' event will work

Rishi Sunak and Sir Keir Starmer will face questions from Beth Rigby and members of the public during Sky News' special leaders' event on Wednesday, the broadcaster has confirmed.

Award-winning political editorRigbywill scrutinise the leaders of the Conservative and Labour parties on their commitments to the country during 20-minute in-depth interviews.

The Battle for Number 10 - a Sky News Leaders Special Event will air live on Sky News on Wednesday at 7.30pm from Grimsby - an area expected to play a key role in the election.

Sky News' lead UK presenterSarah-Jane Meewill be among the representative audience - drawn from the local area and nationally - as they put their questions to Mr Sunak and Sir Keir in 25-minute slots. There will be a coin toss to decide who goes first.

It will be the second televised event with the two party leaders, coming halfway through the general election campaign and just three weeks ahead of polls opening.

Sky News executive editor and managing editor Jonathan Levy said: "People said they wanted to hear more from Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer, so Sky News is giving them more time to tell you about their plans for your future. Each candidate - 45 minutes, not 45 seconds... in-depth and unfiltered.

"We're giving the nation the full story, first."

The Battle For Number 10 Leaders Special Event, Wednesday 12 June 7pm-10pm on Sky News - free wherever you get your news.

Freeview channel 233, Sky 501, Virgin 603, BT 313 and streaming on the Sky News website, app and across social channels. It is also available to watch on Sky Showcase.

06:15:56

Good morning

Welcome back to the second day of manifesto week.

Today, we will be hearing from the Conservative Party about their policy platform - with tax cuts and offers to pensioners set to be at its heart.

It is also likely to include the policies that have already been announced during the campaign, such as Rishi Sunak's plans for a form of national service.

Labour, meanwhile, have announced plans for an extra 100,000 urgent and emergency dental appointments for children.

The other parties will also be keeping up their campaigns, and we will let you know all the major moments from the campaign trail as they happen.

Speaking to us this morning will be:

  • 7.15am: Work and pensions secretary Mel Stride;
  • 8.15am: Shadow health secretary Wes Streeting.

Below is a preview of today's manifesto launch from political reporter Alexandra Rogers that will get you up to speed with what we know.

23:01:01

Goodnight

We are going to pause coverage now so we can all get some shut eye before another busy day.

Remember to join us in the morning ahead of the Conservatives' manifesto launch, where we will bring you all the news and analysis first.

And our correspondents will be out on the road, getting the reaction of all the rival parties in another busy day of campaigning.

For now though, sweet dreams!

22:33:01

Tories to launch manifesto after torrid few days for Sunak

The Conservatives will put their offer to pensioners at the heart of their election manifesto when it is published on Tuesday.

The document will reiterate already-announced pledges to introduce the so-called"triple lock plus" for pensioners- which will create a new "age-related" tax-free allowance - as well as promises not to increase major taxes.

Its publication follows a torrid for days for the prime minister, who has been forced toquash rumours he considered resigningover the backlash he received over his early departure from the D-Day commemorations last week.

In an attempt to get back on the front foot, Mr Sunak will stress that as the "party of Margaret Thatcher and Nigel Lawson" the Tories believe in "sound money" and will ensure "we have lower welfare so we can lower taxes".

Read more ahead of the launch from our political reporter Alexandra Rogers below:

22:19:01

Analysis: Step aside Boris Johnson, there is a new king of stunts in town

After launching his party's general election manifesto, Sir Ed Davey jumped on a rollercoaster and rode on a big swing.

His aim? To show theLiberal Democratsare on a rollercoaster ride to gaining seats, with a big swing to the party from the Tories.

Sir Ed'svisit to Thorpe Park, in Surrey, was just the latest in a gallery of wacky and often silly election stunts and photo-ops that have gained him priceless publicity.

In this election campaign he's confirmed his status as the king of the photo-ops. Remind you of anyone? Yes, he's snatched that title from Boris Johnson.

Read more from Jon below:

22:02:01

What you need to know from the campaign trail

Welcome to our final rundown for today of the main things you need to know from the campaign trail.

We've had a manifesto launch, a Reform policy event, and seen a grilling of the prime minister, amongst other things.

So, if you are settling down with your cocoa before bed, here's what you need to know before you start counting sheep:

  • The Liberal Democrats have launched the first manifesto of the election, vowing to "save the NHS";
  • Leader Sir Ed Davey saidfixing social care would be key, while other pledges included stopping raw sewage being dumped into Britain's waterways and improving ties with the EU;
  • But the party leader (who enjoyed a trip to Thorpe Park this afternoon) refused to say austerity - enforced by the Tory-Lib Dem coalition - was a mistake during an interview with our deputy political editor Sam Coates;
  • You can flick through the party's manifesto pledges in our snazzy tool below:
  • Rishi Sunak continued to bat away questions over his early exit from D-Day commemorations last week, insisting rumours he considered quitting over the row were untrue;
  • However, another significant figure from the Conservatives, Scottish leader Douglas Ross, did quit following a furore about his candidacy at the election;
  • Home Secretary James Cleverly admitted he had heard some "concerns" on the campaign trail about his party's performance, but insisted he remained positive about the Tories' chances at the ballot box;
  • And the PM faced a 30-minute grilling from the BBC over tax, immigration and the NHS.
  • Reform's tax-cutting agenda has been outlined by the party leadership today, with ambitions to raise the threshold for paying income tax to £20,000and the point at which small business pay VAT from £90,000 to £150,000;
  • This so-called "great British tax cut" would be funded by overhauling the Bank of England, though it's seen Reform accused of pursuing a strategy of "Trussonomics on steroids";
  • Nigel Farage also used the event to double down on his criticism of the prime minister for leaving last week's D-Day commemorations;
  • But his party came in for some extra scrutiny today after it was revealed one of Reform's candidates had said Britain should have "taken Hitler up on his offer of neutrality" instead of fighting the Nazis in an old social media post.
  • Elsewhere, Labour announced it will honour the government's commitment to expand free childcare;
  • Our political correspondent Tamara Cohen says the party has taken on an "enormous challenge" by pledging to take up the policy, which the government has faced serious trouble implementing;
  • Labour has also said it will offer 100,000 new nursery places, and claimed the Tories' spending pledges "do not add up";
  • And in a late announcement tonight, the party pledged to ban the sale of high caffeine energy drinks to under 16s.

That's all your bulletins for this evening, but we'll have a few more bits of news coming your way so do stay with us.

Election latest: Conservatives to launch manifesto this morning (2024)
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