Sunak scraps Manchester HS2 leg, plans to stop children today ever legally smoking and says A-levels to be replaced – UK politics live

Prime minister says HS2 move will release £36bn, that he will raise smoking age by one year, every year and announces five-subject qualification

Andy Burnham, the Labour mayor of Greater Manchester, has been giving interviews about HS2 this morning. He told BBC Breakfast that cancelling the link to Manchester would show that the north of England did not get the same priority as the south. He said:

It just proves there’s still so many people in politics, many of them in the Tory party, that think they can treat the north of England differently to the way they treat other parts of the country. It’s just so wrong.

I’ve been in politics 30 years, I’ve never seen a party come to a conference and leave an axe hanging over the place they’re in for the whole week. And then actually drop it on that place.

I’ve had so many contacts over the past few hours from people who are concerned as I am that we are using this culture war battleground to no good effect at all and we’re actually hurting people.

And we shouldn’t be doing that as Conservatives. That’s not the Conservative party I joined and I think we’re better than that.

Luckily that’s not going to happen … because I believe in the ultimate common sense of the party. Also, I very much hope that Suella Braverman learns about the power of her words and moderates her tone.

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The Guardian

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