Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn in final Commons showdown before summer break
The Prime Minister warned infighting could result in Labour and Mr Corbyn winning power.
Theresa May will face Jeremy Corbyn in a final Commons summer showdown just 24 hours after warning her top team that Tory infighting could pave the way for the Labour leader to seize power.
After a days of open warfare following vicious briefings against Chancellor Philip Hammond, the Prime Minister will be hoping to claw back some control as MPs prepare to break for recess.
Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon called for military discipline from the Cabinet ranks to confront the “dangerous enemy” of Mr Corbyn and defend the Conservative case for sound public finances.
“In this summer of warm prosecco I think we in the Cabinet would also do well to reflect on those military virtues: loyalty, discipline, cohesion, that might better enable us first to concentrate our fire on a dangerous enemy in reach of Downing Street – somebody who would lower our defences, scrap our deterrent, weaken our response to terrorism,” he said at a reception hosted by the Policy Exchange think tank.
“And second, to better articulate again the moral case for lower taxation, for honest public financing, for wider opportunity, enterprise and ownership – the Conservative case.”
Mrs May was forced to tell senior ministers on Tuesday to show “unity” as she urged them to keep details of their discussions around the Cabinet table private after a series of briefings against Mr Hammond.
She warned that infighting could result in Labour and Mr Corbyn winning power.
Mrs May will go head to head with the Labour leader for the final Prime Minister’s Questions before Parliament breaks for summer.
In Brussels, meanwhile, Brexit talks will resume with the focus switching mainly to citizens’ rights.
The Government has called for a swift agreement on protections for European Union nationals who have set up home in Britain and vice versa.
It follows two days of negotiations on the divorce bill with little movement as both sides set out their stalls.
Watch David Davis as he arrived in Brussels today to reiterate that the UK and EU should work together to get the best outcome pic.twitter.com/7vHruZadK7— Exiting the EU Dept (@DExEUgov) July 17, 2017
It is understood the UK will not agree a final figure until the eleventh hour of the withdrawal process but negotiators want to pin down a method for working out liabilities by October.
Brussels is thought to be demanding tens of billions of pounds but has been unwilling to set out an exact figure.
There was frustration on both sides, with the EU irritated that the UK has not set out a clear position on what it believes are its financial obligations that will continue for a limited period of time after leaving the bloc.
Britain wants Brussels to explain in more detail what it believes it is legally entitled to.