Editor's Notes: It’s hard to see how Corbyn’s Labour party could sink any lower, Brexiteers attempt some cheer and Michael Gove takes to Twitter like a duck to water

Christian May
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Jeremy Corbyn Attends NHS Rally
Labour currently lags behind the Tory party in every demographic of voter (Source: Getty)

An American has taken out an advert in the Times to lay claim to the British throne.

Allan Evans, of Colorado, says he is a descendant of a royal Welsh line dating back to the third century, and that “in 30 days’ time” he “shall claim his royal estate”.

I was reading about Evans’ dubious claim to the crown just as Labour’s John McDonnell appeared on TV yesterday morning, spouting similarly delusional plans about what he would do as chancellor “when we take power”. It’s hard to know whose claim to take more seriously.

Labour currently lags behind the Tory party in every demographic of voter: young or old, male or female, north or south. And yet listening to McDonnell you’d think his party was on the cusp of Downing Street.

Read more: Corbyn's wrong: The system isn't rigged

Obviously it’s his job to display confidence, but the truth is that Labour are further away from power now than they have been for decades.

With each passing day, Corbyn & Co seem to retreat further into an ideological comfort zone that resonates loudly on Twitter but fails to connect with the vast majority of voters.

McDonnell’s latest wheeze is to propose that anyone who earns more than £1m be forced to publicly disclose their tax return.

Read more: Corbyn kicks off another reshuffle by promoting John McDonnell's deputy

This is hardly the work of a party comfortable with the notions of aspiration and wealth creation. Even Owen Jones, an early adopter of Corbynmania, now says a change of leader is required. But the problem lies not just with the messenger, but the message. There’s more chance of King Allan than there is of Prime Minister Corbyn.

Brexiteers attempt to spread some cheer

The Remain campaign’s ill-fated attempt to convince the electorate that a Leave vote would trigger immediate catastrophe was dubbed Project Fear.

Read more: Academics blast Treasury over “Project Fear” Brexit warnings

Eight months on from the vote and the Brexit camp are feeling bullish enough to promote Project Cheer. Booklets detailing evidence of post-vote confidence have proved a hit with Brexiteers.

Tory MP Steve Baker is even handing them out to MPs in the lobby of parliament.

Someone's spying on Trump's top EU aide

Ted Malloch, who may or may not end up as Trump’s ambassador to the EU, was in a bullish mood at a dinner for journalists and policy wonks last night. He’s had a rough ride in certain quarters of the media, but might bad press be the least of his worries?

Read more: America would gain nothing from cosying up to Putin’s declining Russia

He tells me that hackers are targeting his emails. Could it be the Russians? “It’s coming from somewhere in Europe,” he says – and he’s hired investigators to look into it.

Trading old views for bold new ones

This week I interviewed a top expert in international trade, Shanker Singham. Despite having voted Remain, he is now convinced of the opportunities presented by the UK’s departure from the EU.

He tells me “the biggest mistake we could make now would be a lack of ambition”. It’s a bold and refreshing perspective, and the interview will run next week.

Gove takes to Twitter like a duck to water

The singer James Blunt likes to reply to all the insults he attracts on Twitter. Now it seems as if Michael Gove is adopting the same approach to online trolls.

Read more: Michael Gove backs Theresa May decision: "I would have sacked me too"

“You’re a maggot” tweeted one critic. Gove’s reply? “Civility in discourse.” Another keyboard warrior who replied to Gove with “f**k off you t**t” was congratulated by the former education secretary for his “Socratic dialogue”. Keep it up, Michael.

City A.M.'s opinion pages are a place for thought-provoking views and debate. These views are not necessarily shared by City A.M.

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