Whitney Houston’s death was reported at around 1am UK time – far too late for the newsprint presses in Britain, although the Sunday Times has managed to add an image of the troubled singer to its second edition. “Former golden girl of pop who lost her way,” is how the paper sums up the singer’s life and career.
The Mail on Sunday also has a Whitney Houston story in its second edition, and focuses on the reaction from other soul and R&B singers, including Mariah Carey and Aretha Franklin.
On the politics front the Mail, perhaps sensing that many of its readers don’t support the government’s NHS reforms, offers a critical editorial. “The Health Secretary’s plan is the fruit of years of thought, and probably does work in theory, nut there are severe doubts about how it will work in practice,” says the paper, although it accepts that the NHS does need reforming in some way. Like a lot of people lately, it seems to be saying that it’s Lansley’s failures to set out his stall properly rather than the reforms themselves that are the problem.
But Lansley will take comfort at least from David Cameron’s ringing endorsement in the Sunday Times, where he says the two men are “at one” on NHS reform. He says that without reform the health service will “collapse”. Once again Cameron draws on personal experience to re-affirm his commitment to the health service.
He writes: “As a parent, night after night, I’ve known what it is to have the National Health Service by your side. I’ve seen the dedication — the reassurance that if the worst happens the NHS will be there for your family. That’s why I so strongly support the founding principle of the NHS.”
It’s been a tough week for Lansley, and it wasn’t helped on Friday when the Tory grassroots website ConHome came out against the NHS reforms – joining Labour, perversely, in calling for the Heath and Social Care Bill to be dropped. The Observer profiles Tim Montgomerie, ConHome’s editor, describing him as “one of the most influential Tories outside the cabinet,” although the paper is at pains to point out he’s not admired by everyone in the party.
The Observer’s main story is the turmoil at The Sun newspaper after the arrests of some of its senior journalists on Saturday, saying the paper is now “in crisis” because of the latest arrests. The paper suggests that there could be another wave of resignations at Wapping, ahead of a possible return to London by Rupert Murdoch later in the week as another of his titles comes under pressure.
The rest of the Sunday newspaper front pages: