Published:

7.45pm WATCH: Lord Ashdown: It would be "right and proper" to "retreat" on the giving tax to make it fairer to charities

4pm WATCH: Nigel Farage: "If UKIP continues to grow in the opinion polls", Tory MPs will join 

Shapps neil iv2pm WATCH: Grant Shapps: Ed Miliband's interview with Andrew Marr was "one of the most disingenuous interviews I've seen all year"

Noon LeftWatch: Ed Miliband's £5,000 party funding cap appears radical – but could the unions bypass it?

ToryDiary: Three Tory MPs lead campaign to give the Backbench 1922 Committee a focus on policy and campaigning

Nadine Dorries MP: UKIP have a set of right wing policies which look "astoundingly Conservative" and I think I know which Tory MPs are considering defecting…

Andrea Leadsom MP on Comment: We must defend our financial services like Merkel protects Germany's automotive industry and Sarkozy protects French farmers

Local government: Standards board abolished, By-election results and, apparently, London firefighters "behaved appropriately" over seagull rescue

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WATCH: The SNP's Nicola Sturgeon attacks The Economist's "unacceptable" Skintland cover

50% of us think David Cameron has made Britain worse and 18% better

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The Sun on Sunday / YouGov also finds that 48% of Britons want to emigrate.

John Rentoul in the Independent on Sunday says we've always been grumpy about politics: "Ipsos-MORI has opinion polls going back to March 1977, when 64 per cent were dissatisfied with the Callaghan government and only 27 per cent satisfied, yet 51 per cent were dissatisfied with Margaret Thatcher, the leader of the opposition, and only 36 per cent satisfied. For most of the next 35 years, voters were more dissatisfied than satisfied with all governments and all party leaders."

  • "Three out of four Brits think human rights laws are a charter for crooks and cheats. Most people now think the system is being abused and should be scrapped, a poll reveals. Terror suspects such as Abu Qatada using the European Court of Human Rights to avoid deportation have convinced many of the need for reform." – The Sun
  • Dominic Raab in The Sunday Telegraph: arbitrary diktats are based on the whims of European judges
  • Britain's immigration judges set for confrontation with Theresa May on deportations – Sunday Telegraph

Just when you think it couldn't get worse — Nick Clegg to take charge of family policy

Screen Shot 2012-04-15 at 08.29.59"Nick Clegg is to take charge of family policy, ordering a massive expansion in nursery places, vowing to tackle the "crippling" cost of childcare and overhauling parental leave.Nick Clegg is to take charge of family policy, ordering a massive expansion in nursery places, vowing to tackle the "crippling" cost of childcare and overhauling parental leave." – Independent on Sunday

Full Nick Clegg interview: "The coalition is now "shovelling in resources to younger children on a scale that has not happened, ever". He becomes almost emotional, banging the table and fixing me with a hard stare. He has been "very affected" by research on the "profound level of social segregation" in the UK. "Despite all the money and good intentions under Labour, when times were good, the needle of social mobility didn't twitch. It's because we didn't start early enough.""

Clegg wants to fine people if they fail to register to vote – James Forsyth in the Mail on Sunday

Conservative Party Treasurer Lord Fink attacks charity cap

"Lord Fink, the Conservative party treasurer, piled pressure on the chancellor to rethink his plans to cap tax relief for charitable donations as he warned that the decision would “put people off” giving large sums to good causes. The multi-millionaire former hedge fund manager, who is one of Britain’s most generous philanthropists, said if the plans went ahead, the amount he would personally give each year would fall “by definition” because he would lose tax relief." – The Sunday Times (£)

  • Zac Goldsmith MP: I am ashamed of my own Chancellor's tax on giving – Mail on Sunday
  • Chancellor’s tax cap ‘may turn people off charitable giving’, says SNP's John Swinney – Scotland on Sunday
  • "Potentially this is worse for Mr Cameron and Mr Osborne than the “Granny Tax”, because it weakens a key claim of the Tory modernisers that the Conservatives in the Coalition are very keen on charity and volunteering. And even if a partial U-turn is executed, the affair adds to the sense that the Government is accident-prone and poorly organised when it comes to transacting business." – Iain Martin in The Sunday Telegraph
  • By 65% to 25% voters oppose charity cap – YouGov
  • Clegg hastily sets up philanthropy event to calm fears that policy will end culture of giving – Observer

Any American politician who proposed our punitive tax system would be vaporised – Janet Daley in The Sunday Telegraph

Matthew d'Ancona wonders if Britain is prepared to make the bigger spending cuts that loom

D'ANCONA"The biggest political fact facing the Coalition, Parliament and nation is that a second spending review is to be held in the next 18 months – which is to say, before the next election. Those who are beginning to think about its contents concede that it will be much tougher than its predecessor. It will have to address the most fundamental questions about welfare, social care, defence, the ring-fenced departments – nothing will be off limits. All the most egregious Whitehall fat will have been cut away by then. The question will be: which flesh to cut first?" – Matthew d'Ancona in The Sunday Telegraph

Yesterday attacked by the Daily Mail for "vanity globetrotting", David Cameron responds, insisting he was right to "fly the flag" for Britain in Japan and Far EastSunday Telegraph

  • David Cameron in The Sunday Telegraph: "I loaded up a plane with the biggest and most high-powered British business delegation ever to visit the region and we set off to put things right. As a result of our efforts, we secured deals for Britain worth almost £750 million."
  • Cameron nearly cancelled Burma trip when petrol strike looked possible – Mail on Sunday

Green-imageClimate change minister Greg Barker has declared there will be no significant expansion in the number of turbines on land beyond those already in the pipelineThe Sunday Times (£)

George Osborne, Eric Pickles and Chris Grayling want Green Deal cancelled

"A senior Tory source told The Sunday Telegraph last night: “The Green Deal was Chris Huhne’s baby. He has gone now and this is the right time to kill it off. Forcing people to pay thousands of pounds extra for unwanted home insulation is the last thing hard-pressed families need at the moment. It’s madness.”" – The Sunday Telegraph

> Earlier this week ConHome columnist Jill Kirby warned that the Green Deal could be a huge new mis-selling scandal

Doctors turn on No 10 over failure to curb obesity surge

Fat Man

"The Academy of Medical Royal Colleges demands "bold and tough" measures to put an end to the role of "irresponsible marketing" by major food and drinks firms in fuelling the crisis. It calls on the health secretary, Andrew Lansley, to ditch the government's "inherently flawed" approach, which trusts the industry to voluntarily cut calories, reduce portion sizes and advise the public on healthy eating." – Observer

  • We must demonise junk food for the sake of our children – Dr Aseem Malhotra in The Observer

One of Cameron's intellectual gurus disowns him

"The economic guru who once hailed David Cameron as 'the best thing we have left on this planet' now claims he is a 'fragile' leader who has failed to live up to his promise. Nassim Taleb said the Prime Minister lacked Margaret Thatcher's bravery and was 'afraid' to take difficult decisions." – Mail on Sunday

Boris: I don't have a Plan B

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"‘But I don’t have any back up plans! I love this job. I feel I’ve got a lot better at this in the past two and a half years. I’ve worked harder than I’ve ever worked in my life and, by the way, I work all the hours God gives. I’ve done more visits in four years than my predecessor did in eight years. He didn’t even come in on Fridays, for God’s sake." – Mail on Sunday

  • Sonia Purnell in The Sunday Times (£): "It is far too early to say which other future Tory leadership contenders are also hatching plans on the backs of envelopes somewhere. But if Johnson does win next month and suffers no great mishap afterwards, he may prove an almost impossible force to beat."

Welsh Tories' council election vows too good to be true – Matt Withers for WalesOnline

Trevor Phillips' Equality quango pays whites and men more than black and female colleagues

"Figures from the EHRC show it pays its own male employees more than women and its white staff pocket more than its own black and ethnic minority workers. The average woman gets £28,846 per year, while men get on average an extra four per cent." – Sunday Express

WIDDECOMBE ANNAnd finally… "Ann Widdecombe has become the nation's favourite maiden aunt"

"She can't sing, she can't act, God knows she can't dance, and she struggles with basic O-level French. So what on earth is Ann Widdecombe, the hard-line Tory ex-minister of legend, doing appearing this week in a French language opera? At the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden?" – Independent on Sunday

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