6.15pm Ridley Grove on CentreRight: Blair = Barack

ToryDiary: Britain needs less caution from the Conservatives 

Roger Helmer MEP on Platform: Let’s bash the motorist – again

Local government: Top 20 policy ideas from this site during 2008

Seats and candidates: Our search for 100 new Conservative peers begins with the nomination of Howard Flight

Suli Shah on CentreRight: With Euro membership we would not have avoided the recession but would have had our arms tied behind our backs in dealing with it.

WATCH: Boris restores fireworks for London’s New Year celebrations

Hague: The Conservatives will NEVER take Britain into the euro

"A Tory government would never adopt the euro, William Hague has declared.  On the tenth anniversary of the single currency, he warned that senior Labour politicians were seeking to use the pound’s decline as an excuse to scrap it.  And the Shadow Foreign Secretary said he doubted the Government’s pledge of a referendum on the euro because it had failed to deliver one on the EU constitution." – Daily Mail

"Detractors of the new currency have been proved wrong. We would be much better off if we were part of the eurozone." – Oliver Kamm in The Times

Simon Heffer’s recipe for the Conservatives

"The Conservatives must understand, and enunciate, three things: that those in socially unproductive roles in the public sector may also lose their jobs; that spending and borrowing will, in these conditions unprecedented in most of our lifetimes, have to fall; and that increases in taxation, in whatever form they take, will serve only further to depress an economy rather than to give it the kick start for which it is crying out." – Simon Heffer in The Telegraph

Lottery charity cash being used to fund 2012 Olympics

"A quarter of the National Lottery money set aside for good causes is being used to fund the 2012 Olympics and meet lottery distributors’ administration costs, the Conservative Party said." – Birmingham Post

New year messages

Scottish Tories’ New Year plea to ‘mend broken UK economy’ – Scotsman

Listen to Gordon Brown’s New Year message.

Whitehall prepares for hung parliament by holding talks with Liberal Democrats

"Britain’s most senior civil servants are to hold formal talks with the Liberal Democrats on their plans for government as Whitehall prepares for a hung parliament in which Nick Clegg could hold the balance of power after the next election." – Guardian

"Sir Gus O’Donnell, the cabinet secretary… will meet Cameron in the new year to kick-start a lengthy process in which the Tories will brief the Whitehall machinery on their plans for government." – Guardian

Voters warm to Nick Clegg when they see him in action, according to private polling for the Liberal Democrats

Council tax bills may rise further because of a £600 million "black hole" in town hall financesTelegraph

Gordon Brown has called for an urgent ceasefire in GazaBBC

Thank you to our top five referrers during 2008: PoliticsHome, Coffee House, Iain Dale’s Diary, The Corner and Instapundit.


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