Top story: ‘Drastically increased’ penalties for crime Good morning and welcome to this Monday briefing with Alison Rourke. Violent criminals and sexual offenders will face drastically harsher penalties to be laid out in the Queen’s speech this morning, as the government sets out its legislative agenda. Law and order will top the bill, including “drastically increased” penalties for foreign nationals who breach deportation orders. No 10 hopes it will wrestle the spotlight from this week’s delicate Brexit negotiations and set the stage for a general election that few in Westminster think will be long in coming. But it’s hard to see how any speech, from the Queen or not, will divert from this week’s political drama, with some EU capitals concluding over the weekend that it may now be impossible for the UK to leave the EU by 31 October with a deal. The EU’s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, told diplomats last night that Boris Johnson’s Irish border proposals remained an “untested” risk that the bloc could not countenance. A leaders’ summit is due to take place on Thursday, when it may become clear if a deal is doable or not. On Saturday the PM will either present the Commons… Read full this story
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