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Justice Secretary Robert Buckland said he would resign if he saw ‘the rule of law being broken in a way I find unacceptable’ (PA)


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Justice Secretary Robert Buckland has been accused of not fulfilling “his oath to stand up for the rule of law” after suggesting he was willing to go along with Boris Johnson’s plan to break an international treaty.

He refused multiple times in a series of media appearances on Sunday morning to say if he will resign as Lord Chancellor over the controversial planned changes to the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement.

Instead he said he would only be willing to step down if the rule of law is “broken in a way that I find unacceptable”.

But Labour’s shadow Attorney General Lord Falconer said: “if this is his idea of behaving honourably then there is absolutely no hope for the rule of law in this government”.

When he was sworn in last year as Lord Chancellor, and effectively put in charge of the court system, Mr Buckland took an oath pledging to “respect the rule of law, so help me God”.

By accepting the clauses in the upcoming Internal Market bill he was accused of failing to uphold that, making his position untenable.

However he told the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show: “If I see the rule of law being broken in a way I find unacceptable then of course I will go.

“I don’t believe we’re going to get to that stage. I know in my mind what I have to do.

“But the government collectively here also has a responsibility, we’ve got to resolve any conflict, that’s what we will do.”

And on Sky News he insisted the legislation, which his Cabinet colleague Brandon Lewis confirmed could break international law by overriding the existing Brexit deal, is the actions of a “responsible Government”.

He said it was in accordance with “the most honourable traditions of the British state”, and again dodged the question about his own position.

“It’s not a question about me or my position, the whole Government is actually committed to the rule of law,” he told Sophy Ridge On Sunday.

Labour’s shadow Lord Chancellor David Lammy said it was a “fatuous and slippery performance” from the cabinet minister.

“It is clear he is not prepared to fulfil his oath to stand up for the rule of law. He is letting down the position of Lord Chancellor,” he tweeted.

Mr Lammy added: “Each time the government breaks the law it’s a travesty. By ignoring this, the Lord Chancellor is putting career before country.”

And the shadow Attorney General Lord Falconer, a former Lord Chancellor, tweeted: “It’s up to Robert Buckland whether he stays. He’s going along with the breaches of law so he’s not going to be sacked.

“He swore to uphold the law. If this is his idea of behaving honourably then there is absolutely no hope for the rule of law in this government.”

The Liberal Democrat justice spokesperson Wera Hobhouse said: “As Lord Chancellor, Robert Buckland swore an oath to respect the rule of law. It is utterly appalling to see him shrug his shoulders like this when the Conservative Government is preparing to break it.

“It seems that under Boris Johnson, accepting the rule of law has become optional. For the sake of the future of our country, ministers must stop playing fast and loose with the rule of law. 

“Far from protecting the national interest, Boris Johnson’s Government seem content to see the UK’s international reputation trashed.”

Shadow chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Rachel Reeves confirmed Labour will vote against the Internal Market bill as it stands when it comes to the Commons this week, saying she and Keir Starmer can’t back legislation “knowing that we are deliberately and consciously breaking international law”.

“It is the wrong thing to do for our moral standing in the world, but it is also absolutely counterproductive in achieving what we want to achieve, and that is a free trade agreement with the European Union – but indeed, free trade agreements around the world,” she added.

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McDonald’s new pastries are here. Here’s how to get them for free

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The expansion of the company’s McCafé lineup adds three new sweets — an apple fritter, a blueberry muffin and a cinnamon roll — to menus as it finds itself in a competitive battle with rivals over the first meal of the day.

McDonald’s is giving away one of the new items free with a purchase of a hot or iced coffee on orders placed through its app. The promotion runs from November 3 through November 9 and is valid once per day at any time.

McDonald’s (MCD) regularly tries to entice customers to use its app with a variety of promotions and coupons, as well as a limited rewards program aimed at boosting coffee sales. Increasing the app’s user base is “key,” according to Morningstar analyst R.J. Hottovy, because the promotion could build customer loyalty: Customers might be coaxed to come back because of future offers.
The chain could use the boost, as it faces more competition at breakfast. Its most notable rival is Wendy’s (WEN), which launched its own breakfast menu nationwide for the first the time earlier this year. It features a mix of salty and sweet items such as the Breakfast Baconator and Frosty-ccino.
Breakfast now accounts for 8% of Wendy’s total sales, and the company also launched a robust rewards program on its app this summer.

Meanwhile, the future of McDonald’s own All Day Breakfast remains hazy. The chain has not announced when or even if it will bring that menu back after cutting it in March because of the pandemic. The new sweets launching Wednesday might partially fill the void.

In the US, McDonald’s sales have finally turned a corner following a bleak spring. Sales at US stores open at least a year jumped 4.6% in the third quarter compared to the same period last year, the company said in a regulatory filing earlier this month. The company said it grew sales during “all dayparts,” an encouraging sign that it finally stemmed its declines during breakfast hours.
Sales improvements in the US were driven in part by “strong performance” at dinner and new items and stunts, including the Travis Scott Meal and spicy nuggets. This month, it hopes to replicate the success with a new J. Balvin meal — and now, new baked goods.

McDonald’s will release full third-quarter results on November 9.

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Tony Chung: Hong Kong activist detained near US embassy charged

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Hong Kong teen activist Tony Chung has been charged under a new national security law, just days after he was detained outside the US consulate.

Mr Chung, 19, had reportedly planned to enter the consulate and claim asylum.

The activist faces the possibility of life in prison if found guilty of secession, conspiracy to publish seditious content and money laundering.

Mr Chung, the second person to be charged under the law, was denied bail by the court.

The controversial law was imposed by China on Hong Kong in June, making it easier to punish protesters and reducing the city’s autonomy.

What do we know about his detention?

According to the South China Morning Post, Mr Chung was detained on Tuesday morning at a coffee shop opposite the US consulate.

UK-based activist group Friends of Hong Kong said he had planned to enter and claim asylum. Instead, footage taken from near the consulate showed him being carried away by plain-clothes police.

Mr Chung, who was a former member of pro-independence group Studentlocalism, said activists had not given up fighting.

“At the right moment, we will come out to protest again,” he told BBC Chinese in a recent interview.

“Yes we lose at this moment. But the road to democracy is always long.”

He will remain in custody until his next court appearance on 7 January next year.

What is Hong Kong’s new security law?

Hong Kong’s national security law was imposed by Beijing in June after months of huge pro-democracy protests last year against an extradition bill.

The new law makes secession, subversion of the central government, terrorism or collusion with foreign forces punishable by up to life in prison.

In July, several were arrested under the new powers, including a man carrying a “Hong Kong Independence” flag.

  • China’s new law: Why is Hong Kong worried?

  • UK makes citizenship offer to Hong Kong residents

The law gives Beijing extensive powers it has never had before to shape life in the territory.

Critics say it effectively puts an end to the freedoms guaranteed by Beijing for 50 years after British rule ended in Hong Kong in 1997, but China says it will return stability to the city.

After the passing of the security law, the UK’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he would offer up to three million Hong Kong residents a chance to settle in the UK and ultimately apply for citizenship.

China has condemned this, saying it would take countermeasures against the UK should it grant residency to Hong Kong residents.

Related Topics

  • Hong Kong national security law

  • China
  • Hong Kong

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AOC: ‘I don’t know if I’m really going to be staying in the House forever’

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President Donald Trump has taken particular pleasure in warning that Ocasio-Cortez poses a threat to Schumer, while describing prominent Democratic leaders including presidential nominee Joe Biden as beholden to her more liberal agenda.

Ocasio-Cortez is also viewed as one of the likeliest inheritors of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ progressive coalition if she were to run for president. The congresswoman, who endorsed Sanders in the 2020 White House race, turned 31 earlier this month and would meet the constitutional presidential age requirement of 35 by November 2024.

Another possibility is Ocasio-Cortez joining a potential Biden administration in some capacity. She was tapped in May to serve as a co-chair of the Biden-Sanders joint task force on climate change — one of six working groups meant to advise the Biden campaign on policy.

But Ocasio-Cortez told Vanity Fair she did not “want to aspire to a quote-unquote higher position just for the sake of that title or just for the sake of having a different or higher position.”

“I truly make an assessment to see if I can be more effective,” she said. “And so, you know, I don’t know if I could necessarily be more effective in an administration, but, for me that’s always what the question comes down to.”



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