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Speak English or lose your benefits

money‘In a radical bid to slash Britain’s benefits bill, the Prime Minister intends to stop printing welfare paperwork in foreign languages and prevent claimants using taxpayer-funded translators at benefits offices. The move – which would also hit British residents who cannot speak English – was due to be announced tomorrow, but has been delayed following a row with Nick Clegg.’ – Mail on Sunday

>Today: ToryDiary: Is Cameron really set to produce “a new policy to curb immigrants and benefits’ every week”?

Cameron discusses faith, family life and the loss of his son

CAMERON-PENSIVE‘Can death leave a positive legacy? ‘Well, with my father, who was becoming increasingly infirm, we knew the end was getting nearer. Whereas with a child, even though Ivan was very disabled and very ill, it was all just a total shock. We had no idea he was going to suddenly die in the way he did, so it’s very different. But the person who says to you, “There’s a silver lining to all this,” or “Some good will come of all this,” you actually want to thump. It’s the most annoying thing anybody can possibly say. But it’s actually true in a way.’ – Mail on Sunday

  • The Prime Minister’s children are banned from having mobile phones – Mail on Sunday

The Queen’s Speech could be delayed for lack of agreed policies

Libdem bird vs TORY‘David Cameron could be forced to postpone this year’s Queen’s Speech because the Government is short of ‘sexy’ policies that can be agreed with the Lib Dems, a Minister claimed last night…The Minister told The Mail on Sunday: ‘Frankly, Downing Street wasn’t happy with what was on offer.’ Another Tory source said: ‘It is not so much that we have run out of policies, but we have pretty much run out of policies that haven’t been ruined by Clegg’s lot. We might need more time.’’ – Mail on Sunday

Lord McAlpine has died

‘A former Conservative Party treasurer and deputy chairman, he was, by his own description, a tireless “servant” to Margaret Thatcher…The peer’s politics were traditionalist to the core, passionate enough to drive him to the Referendum Party in 1996 – although he later rejoined the Conservatives in the Lords. Charitable, tireless, convivial, he represented a generation of Tories who took obvious pleasure in helping their country – Sunday Telegraph Leader

>Yesterday: MPsETC: Lord McAlpine has died

Hammond and Miller lock horns over gay marriage in forces’ chapels

‘Last week, talks between Mr Hammond’s and Mrs Miller’s officials failed to agree the regulations concerning military chapels – due to be tabled in the Commons this month. Reliable sources say Mr Hammond maintains that  gay couples must demonstrate – subject to his personal approval – that this would not discriminate against others who use the multi-faith chapels and oppose such marriages.  ‘Philip is stonewalling because he doesn’t like gay weddings,’ said one official.’ – Mail on Sunday

  • Government refuses to reform ‘Dickensian’ widows’ pension system – Mail on Sunday

Dominic Lawson: Osborne appeals to the ‘squeezed bottom’

OSBORNE red and blue‘The chancellor performed a spectacular manoeuvre, backing the idea of increasing the minimum wage by 11%, from £6.31 to £7 an hour. So it’s Labour on the side of the capital-owning middle classes and the Conservatives who are going to make businesses pay their workers more. To put it another way, while Miliband professes concern for the “squeezed middle”, Osborne is more of a “squeezed bottom” man.’ – Dominic Lawson, Sunday Times (£)

Yeo’s opponents go on the offensive

‘The plot to sack veteran Tory MP Tim Yeo gathered pace last night after 12 members of his constituency party executive issued a public call for him to quit politics. They challenged Mr Yeo’s claim he was ‘exonerated’ in a Commons sleaze inquiry. They also accused him of neglecting his constituency.’ – Mail on Sunday

The Queen is urged to strip Rennard of his peerage

‘Two women who accused Lib Dem Lord Rennard of sexual harassment are to call on the Queen to have him stripped of his peerage. Bridget Harris, a former aide to Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg, and Alison Goldsworthy, a former Parliamentary candidate, say he should be censured for bringing the House of Lords into disrepute and refusing to apologise.’ – Mail on Sunday

Ed Balls is a ‘liability’, say his own colleagues

BALLS Ed Spend can‘Labour MPs have called for  Ed Balls to be demoted following claims that he has ‘lost his mojo’ after falsely forecasting the economy would get worse…It follows Tory taunts that  Mr Balls made a major blunder by predicting cuts would prolong the recession. One MP said: ‘Balls used to throw his weight around in Shadow Cabinet meetings and ignore Ed Miliband when he spoke. Now Balls is totally out of sorts. He doesn’t say much at Shadow Cabinet meetings and when he does, he is the one who is ignored. He has lost his mojo.’’ – Mail on Sunday

  • Miliband’s plans would hammer the middle classes further – Sunday Telegraph Leader
  • Crystal Methodist says he got the Co-Op job thanks to “friends in high places” – Mail on Sunday
  • Blunkett: Celebrity cynics deter the young from voting – Sunday Times (£)

Unite gears up to bully doctors

‘Doctors have reacted with anger after leaked documents revealed plans by union militants to intimidate GPs over health reforms. Unite’s ‘leverage team’ – the dirty tricks unit which bullied managers and their families during last year’s Grangemouth oil refinery dispute in Scotland – intends to deploy the same tactics against doctors involved in ‘privatising’ the NHS.’ – Mail on Sunday

Police Federation faces a drubbing from official inquiry

‘A devastating review of the the Police Federation — the “trade union” that lobbies the government on pay and conditions — has found it is divided by bitter faction fighting and “suspicion and distrust” at every level. A panel led by Sir David Normington, a former head of the Home Office, discovered the body was so poorly run that its leadership did not know how much money it controlled or how many members it had. It found the federation had lost the confidence of its members and that it had turned in on itself.’ – Sunday Times (£)

UKIP councillor blames gay marriage for recent floods

UKIP glass‘The Henley-on-Thames town councillor, 73, said the country had been ‘beset by storms’ since the passage of the new law on gay marriage because Mr Cameron had acted ‘arrogantly against the Gospel’. In a letter to the Henley Standard he wrote: ‘The scriptures make it abundantly clear that a Christian nation that abandons its faith and acts contrary to the Gospel (and in naked breach of a coronation oath) will be beset by natural disasters such as storms, disease, pestilence and war.’ – Mail on Sunday

News in brief

  • Savile inquiry is expected find BBC turned a blind eye – The Observer
  • Mikaeel Kular’s mother arrested in connection with his death – The Sun on Sunday (£)
  • Prince Charles takes the lead at Buckingham Palace – Mail on Sunday
  • £20,000 fees to go to state school? – Sunday Times (£)
  • Labour MEP candidate among those killed by bomb in Kabul – Mail on Sunday
  • 43 areas where the average property costs £1 million – Sunday Telegraph
  • Who used to live on Benefits Street? – Mail on Sunday

26 comments for: Newslinks for Sunday 19th January 2014

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