12.30pm Samuel Coates on CentreRight: The cosy bromide of "twas ever thus"
- Seats and candidates: Tory candidate for Nuneaton stands down
- Local government: Two Conservative gains in local by-elections
- PlayPolitical video: I haven’t heard any persuasive arguments for Heathrow expansion says David Cameron
Why a Conservative Government will be different: Greg Clark MP on Platform completes our ‘A Government Worth Having’ series by identifying the three policy alignments that characterise his own voluntary sector agenda and wider Conservative social policy reforms.
"The strain of Conservatism that Mr Cameron embodies has thus become unfamiliar. It is pragmatic, incremental, willing to adapt to win and keep office. This is the flexible Conservatism of Benjamin Disraeli, a 19th-century prime minister, combining his awareness of the needs and votes of the lower classes with the gradualism of Edmund Burke, who articulated Tory alarm at the French Revolution. It is a Conservatism that is sceptical of state power and favours market solutions, sound money and patriotism—but all in moderation." – The Economist‘s special essay on the revival of the Conservative Party under David Cameron
Up to nine million will be worse off by up to £245 because of Darling’s car tax hike – and the poorest will be worse hit
"About 400,000 of the lowest earners will pay an average of £80 a year more following changes to Vehicle Excise Duty (VED), according to calculations based on official Treasury data. Of those, 140,000 will pay at least £100 a year more in car tax and for some, bills will increase by up to £245… The analysis, carried out by Justine Greening, a Tory frontbencher, led MPs to warn of a rerun of the 10p tax row, when the decision to scrap the lowest income tax band alienated millions of Labour’s core voters." – Telegraph
"The PM was accused yesterday of misleading motorists over crippling car tax
hikes. Gordon Brown faced a backlash from drivers as it emerged nine million will be
up to £245 worse off. The AA said the figures “confirm our worst fears”. Shadow Chancellor George Osborne said: “Gordon Brown appears to have
misled Parliament. Will the Prime Minister be apologising to this House?”" – The Sun
Nick Clegg in The Guardian calls for motorway charging to replace VED.
Nick Clegg talks down prospect of Lib-Con pact
"In the event of a hung Parliament Clegg said he could not choose between "authoritarian, centralising" Labour and the Conservatives, who "talk the talk [on environmental issues and social fairness] but don’t walk the walk."" – ePolitix.com
"He’d never credit her, but Cameron is sounding more and more like Mrs Thatcher" – Dominic Lawson in The Independent
Fears for 100,000 jobs as house- building sector suffers ‘worst conditions for 50 years’ – Telegraph
Hazel Blears to help small shops
"One of Ms Blears’ aides said: "Our priority is to ensure we do not see
more and more stretches of the nation’s high streets turned into bland
‘every towns’ where every high street has the same shops, the same
look, and the same sterile feel. We plan to give councils more scope to
curb ‘clone town Britain’ and to block large out-of-town developments.
We know there are currently tougher times on the high street."" – Independent
Ex-spin doctor attacks ‘incompetent’ Brown team
"Colin Byrne, the UK head of the public relations agency Weber Shandwick, made his initial comments on his personal blog three days ago, furious that Brown was allowed to urge people to waste less food before sitting down to an eight-course meal at the G8 summit." – Guardian
Clare Short attacks Brown’s "extraordinarily bad" performance as PM – The Herald
£2.8m compensation for family of Iraqi beaten to death by British soldiers – Sky
Michael Ashcroft explains why he is giving the Imperial War Museum £5 million to display his collection of Victoria Cross medals – Telegraph
"Part-time MPs don’t deserve to be pampered"
"MPs claim that they are awfully busy on constituency work. That is why they spend so much time in their offices, not the chamber. That is also why they need a short working week, they say, allowing them time in their constituencies to hear voters’ worries, talk to the local party and cut a ribbon or two. But most of those voters’ problem are local and can be handed over to councillors. The numerous queries about benefits and all the rest are regularly passed on to the relevant ministry." – Andrew Alexander in the Daily Mail
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