A look ahead at the key events leading the news agenda next week, from the team at Foresight News. Delivered to your inbox on Fridays.
Leading the week
Debate season continues apace with a host of interesting matchups next week. On Monday (October 17) there are several debates of note, including: in Georgia’s gubernatorial race between Governor Brian Kemp and Democrat Stacey Abrams, who has been consistently trailing Kemp in polls despite early hopes of a serious challenge; in the key Ohio Senate contest between JD Vance (R) and Rep. Tim Ryan (D), which follows last week’s unedifying first debate between the pair; and in the unusual Utah Senate race between Senator Mike Lee (R)and Evan McMullin (I), who is looking to stitch together a coalition of independents, Democrats, and Republicans disaffected with Lee’s pro-Trump stance.
Tuesday (October 18) sees Minnesota Governor Tim Walz (D) debate Scott Jensen (R), whose campaign appears to be faltering, as well as the first debate between Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R) and Rep. Val Demings (D), with some arguing that Demings maintains a decent chance despite Rubio’s lead in the polls. Lastly, on Wednesday (October 19) there’s a debate in Oregon’s surprisingly interesting three-way gubernatorial contest.
The economic story in the UK will continue to make international waves next week as markets and lawmakers react to recent developments. Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng was fired this morning before Prime Minister Liz Truss used the briefest of press conferences to announce a U-turn on a corporation tax freeze that had been one of her flagship policies just three weeks ago.
The markets didn’t have long to respond to the announcement as well as the end of the Bank of England’s gilt-buying program today before they closed at 4:30pm BST, so keep an eye on reopening at 8am on Monday (October 17) for more clarity – there was evidence this morning that markets had already priced in the U-turn, so there’s likely to be yet more turmoil if Truss hasn’t done enough to encourage stabilization. Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday (October 19) in the House of Commons, meanwhile, is once again shaping up to be a must-watch session for political junkies.
EU leaders gather in Brussels on Thursday and Friday (October 20-21), with Ukraine, energy, and economic issues top of the agenda. The European Commission is expected to present yet more proposals on a bloc-wide agreement to lower skyrocketing energy prices ahead of the summit, after an informal gathering in Prague last week failed to yield a consensus. Leaders are looking to find a common approach to the problem, with most discussions focused on a potential cap on gas prices. Germany has raised hackles across the EU by opposing a cap while also borrowing €200 billion to fund a domestic support package, which critics say threatens the single market’s unified approach by taking measures poorer countries can’t follow.
A new proposal backed by Germany and the Netherlands, which doesn’t include a price cap but does feature a new benchmark price for liquefied natural gas and plans for joint gas buying, made its way to energy ministers this week. Members are considerably more united on Ukraine, having just agreed on a military training assistance mission on Wednesday, and are likely to discuss further support following calls from President Volodymyr Zelensky for more air defense systems and rebuilding funds ahead of an October 25 reconstruction conference in Berlin.