3.45pm Lee Rotherham on CentreRight: One Conservative who won’t be making it to Birmingham…
Samantha Callan on Platform: Could the Conservatives be the ‘Great White Hope’ for Family Policy?
Tories to set up Office of Budget Responsibility
"The Tories would set up an independent organisation, the Office of Budget Responsibility, that would act as a watchdog on all public spending and borrowing. It would produce the country’s economic forecasts, instead of the Chancellor on Budget Day, and a full audit of all of the nation’s borrowing." – BBC
Writing for The Sunday Telegraph, George Osborne sets out his plan for ending Brown’s Age of Irresponsibility.
"While George Osborne must get a grip on public spending, Conservatives should also tackle ill-gotten gains in the City" – Michael Fallon in The Observer
Labour’s claim to fairness is flawed – Jesse Norman in The Independent on Sunday
Do the Tories have something planned on council tax?
"Last night there was speculation that the Tories could also unveil a surprise pledge to cut council tax. Boris Johnson, London’s mayor, will announce today that he will freeze the portion of Londoners’ council tax bills levied to fund City Hall, but David Cameron is under pressure from MPs to go further." – Observer
No complacency, no complacency, no complacency
“I worked for John Major in the 1992 election. No-one thought he was going to win, so I know its possible for an Opposition to lose.” – David Cameron within an interview for the News of the World
BUT: "Preparations for government are already well under way, with a “grid” being drawn up for the first 100 days in power. Privately, the party is so confident of winning that Francis Maude, shadow minister for the Cabinet Office, has written to Sir Gus O’Donnell, head of the civil service, asking for two civil servants to be seconded to Conservative Central Office to smooth the transition. In a new policy, the Tories plan to appoint 12 chief executives from the private sector to act as “superheads” for each Whitehall department." – The Sunday Times
Matthew d’Ancona must give us Phase II in Birmingham
"Mr Cameron accepts that what has got through to the punters so far is probably "green", "new", "pro-family" and (possibly) "pro-NHS". He also accepts that many voters, perhaps most, will be looking at him for the first time. For the Tory leader, this presents a dilemma. They must acknowledge the new economic context and amend the tone accordingly – recognising, as he revealed to Charles Moore in Saturday’s Daily Telegraph, that his first years as PM may be taken up with "disaster recovery"." – Matthew d’Ancona in The Sunday Telegraph
Cameron’s ‘I’m ready to be PM’ speech
"[He] will instead deliver his speech in the old-fashioned way: from a lectern with a pile of paper in front of him. One senior Tory tells me: ‘It will be the exact opposite of his speech in Blackpool.’ That is no less an attempt to make a statement about himself than last year’s walkie-talkie feat of memory. Then his priority was to appear cool under the threat of an early election which the polls said he would lose. Now he needs to look ready to move into Number 10." – Observer
Hedge funds, tax exiles and City financiers helped fund Tories
"The Tories were accused last night of being bankrolled by a City ‘wolf pack’ after it emerged that the party was receiving hundreds of thousands of pounds from hedge fund managers who have been making vast sums of money from plunging bank shares." – Observer | Sunday Times
Martin Ivens: The Tories have yet to replace David Davis
"But Cameron misses a larger-than-life figure who appeals to council-house Britain and northern voters. The loss of David Davis, who resigned as shadow home secretary to spend more time with his ego, is still felt. Davis promised to hug a hoodie very hard indeed: his replacement, the bright Dominic Grieve, looks as if he still hugs a teddy." – Martin Ivens in The Sunday Times
Gove invites key Blairites to join a future Tory cabinet – Observer
Douglas Carswell MP launches fresh bid to oust ‘touchy, stubborn’ Speaker – Mail on Sunday
‘Top Tories’ private lives’: The Mail on Sunday publishes articles on the private lives of Tooting PPC Mark Clarke and Michael Gove’s life at university. Neither is worth reading.
Role of Scottish Secretary will survive reshuffle – Scotsman
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