- Journalists quiz George Osborne about whether he sought donations from Russian billionaire
- John McCain: Sarah Palin is the best thing that happened to my campaign
Stephan Shakespeare on CentreRight: Cameron should relax; he’s still on course for victory
Cllr Colin Barrow on Local government: A plan to tackle anti social behaviour in Westminster
Tory fundraiser alleges that George Osborne sought £50K donation from Russia’s richest man
"In his letter to The Times, Mr [Nathaniel] Rothschild alleges that Mr Osborne and Mr Feldman went on board Mr Deripaska’s yacht “to solicit a donation”. The claim is all the more sensational because Mr Rothschild has been involved in fundraising for Mr Cameron’s Tories and has been a close friend of Mr Osborne since they were at Oxford together." – Times
The Today programme made this story their top 8.10am feature. Robert Peston, BBC Business Editor, said that there was another witness who backed Mr Rothschild’s allegation. Nick Robinson said that, behind-the-scenes, the Tories had been pushing Peter Mandelson’s links with Mr Deripaska and that the Rothschild letter was part of the ensuing storm.
“Criticism of George Osborne is fashionable and unfair” says John Redwood – FT
> Jim McConalogue on CentreRight: Playing John Redwood up front will bring rewards
MPs want crackdown on the 25% of Britain’s 700 largest businesses who avoid corporation tax – BBC
Mandelson under fire over plan to drop flexible working burdens on small businesses – Guardian
Writing in The Independent Dominic Lawson wants a bonfire of planning regulations: "The English planning system is possibly the most cumbersome and dilatory in the developed world."
Steve Richards: It’s not true that Brown spent too much
"Public services are still nowhere near good enough. This is partly because some of the cash has been wasted. It is also because higher levels of investment take time to feed through. The cash is allocated and then distributed. Front-line staff are trained and recruited. Demands change, usually intensifying, so some of the additional cash is spent on merely standing still. More importantly, it takes years of sustained spending to make a profound difference. Sweden did not invest for a couple of years and then give up." – Independent
Harriet Harman to block any vote on abortion during tomorrow’s Embryology debate – Guardian
John Prescott still hasn’t decided if he wants place in House of Lords – Telegraph
Rachel Sylvester: There is a creeping secularisation of British politics
Within her Times column, Rachel Sylvester comments on the Tory leader’s faith: "Although David Cameron sends his daughter to a church school, he describes his faith as being “like Magic FM in the Chilterns”, something that fades in and out, as if he is rather embarrassed by the whole idea."
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