Newspaper headlines: NHS doctors and Tory MPs' festive threat

Michael Cohen outside court in New York on 29 November 2018 Image copyright Reuters

Photographs of Michael Cohen outside a court in New York feature on several front pages, after Donald Trump's former personal lawyer pleaded guilty to misleading an investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election.

The Financial Times says Mr Cohen admitted to working on a deal to build a Trump-branded tower in Moscow until June that year just before Mr Trump secured the Republican nomination.

The Guardian describes the testimony as "explosive" and says it has plunged the president into "further political jeopardy".

Advice for the PM

Back in the UK, the Daily Telegraph reports that 100 Conservative MPs have now said they will vote against Theresa May's Brexit deal next month.

The paper says cabinet ministers are increasingly questioning why the prime minister is touring the UK to sell her agreement to the public, when she needs to win over colleagues at Westminster.

According to the i, Tory whips have told the party's MPs that "Christmas will be cancelled" - or Parliament's festive break will be cut short - if the Commons vote is lost.

Brexit also continues to feature heavily in leader columns.

The Daily Mail urges MPs to "come to their senses" and back the agreement, as the alternatives are, in its words, "much, much worse".

Image copyright Reuters

For the Guardian, Mrs May's failure to adapt has created the problem she now faces.

"She just repeats her mantras", it says, "making her defeat more likely and the alternatives she refuses to countenance more probable".

The Sun claims the answer is "staring the prime minister in the face".

It says she must return to Brussels to demand a termination clause, which would allow the government to trigger an end to the backstop, without the EU holding the UK hostage indefinitely.

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The front page of the Daily Mirror highlights NHS figures which show a 40% rise over the past year in the number of children under the age of 10 who have had all their teeth removed.

The increase has been blamed on diets of sugary food and drinks.

The Mirror's leader column argues that full dental extractions are "deeply depressing" because tooth decay is easily preventable.

With the headline "An insult to every rail user", the Daily Mail reports that the former boss of Network Rail was honoured at Buckingham Palace on the day the company was criticised by the regulator for "systemic" failures, and the worst train punctuality figures for more than 15 years.

Mark Carne received a CBE from Prince William "under a self-imposed media blackout" as he refused to allow photographs of the investiture to be made public.

Cost of dying

The lead story in the Guardian says the government is to relax immigration rules, to allow more foreign doctors to fill gaps in the NHS.

Image copyright PA

According to the paper, ministers believe they need to lift the cap on numbers "even at the risk of provoking a row about immigration" because the shortage is so acute.

Sources have told the Guardian the maximum number of non-EU doctors coming to the UK under a training initiative each year could double, from 1,500 to 3,000 - and they could be allowed to stay longer, for three years rather than two. T

The Mail says official figures show there are currently 102,000 vacancies across the NHS.

Several papers are critical of rogue funeral firms, after a report by the Competition and Markets Authority found they are charging unjustifiable fees because bereaved families are too upset to shop around.

According to the Daily Telegraph, the regulator believes the problem is so bad it has launched a full scale investigation, which could force funeral parlours to lower their prices.

The Daily Mirror accuses some companies of "adding to people's misery" after the average bill for a funeral was found to have increased by 68% over the past decade.

The Daily Mail demands that those responsible "must face the most severe repercussions".

Following the yellow brick road

Finally, a computer program designed to establish the most influential film of all time is featured in a number of papers.

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The Sun says researchers in Italy applied algorithms to more than 47,000 and found the Wizard of Oz was referenced the most by subsequent films.

According to the Daily Telegraph, the 1939 classic has made almost 3,000 appearances elsewhere, such as when James Stewart sings Over The Rainbow in the Philadelphia Story.

The Guardian says the 20 most influential films were all made before 1980, with Star Wars and Psycho completing the top three.