8.45pm Jonathan Isaby on CentreRight: Mandelson's gaffe has something of the Tom Harris about it

6pm WATCH: Peter Mandelson taken for a ride in an electric car

5.45pm AmericaInTheWorld: US Defence Secretary suggests military strike on Iran's nuclear capacity would be counter-productive

Picture 114pm ToryDiary: Damian Green wants his DNA back

3.30pm Jonathan Isaby on CentreRight: Gordon Brown would appear to have taken my advice

2.15pm WATCH: Gordon Brown says, on camera, "I am sorry about what happened" over Smeargate

1.30pm ToryDiary: Tory GLA member attacks G20 protestor for aiming to make money from her alleged mistreatment by police

12.45pm WATCH: Damian Green's statement in full, welcoming the decision not to charge him over the Home Office leaks

Picture 6 Noon ToryDiary: Gordon Brown says sorry for Smeargate (finally) 1.45pm Update Nadine Dorries still isn't satisfied, whilst George Osborne says it's a little late

Picture 7 11.15am ToryDiary: Damian Green will NOT face charges over Home Office leaks Updated with reaction from Damian Green and Jacqui Smith

10.45am ToryDiary: George Osborne announces ten new green policy initiatives

ToryDiary: Does the Government now have "a moral duty" to cut public expenditure"?

David Davies MP on Platform: Don't rush to condemn the police who prevented the G20 protests from becoming a full-scale riot

Local Government:

Parliament: When has Gordon Brown actually said "I am sorry"?

Greg Hands MP on CentreRight: Why Germany can take some pride in how it has dealt with its Nazi past

WATCH: The Times' Energy and Environment Editor Robin Pagnamenta explains why the newly-announced nuclear plants won't be ready for a decade

GREEN-DAMIAN-RED-TIE Home Affairs committee: Civil servants exaggerated national security threat in the Damian Green affair

"The damage to national security by a series of Home Office leaks was exaggerated by Government civil servants as they urged police to launch an investigation which led to the arrest of Tory MP Damian Green, an influential group of MPs conclude. Senior civil servants were accused of using "hyperbolic" language in a letter to Scotland Yard which claimed "considerable" damage had already occurred because of some of the leaks. The Conservatives last night called for an "urgent response" from the Government." – Daily Telegraph

"Bungling police who raided a Tory's Commons office were branded "Keystone Kops" in a report by MPs yesterday. Officers only managed to arrest shadow minister Damian Green by calling his leader David Cameron to find out where he was. The controversial raid was run by Bob Quick, who quit as anti-terror chief last week after accidentally revealing plans to arrest al-Qaeda suspects." – Daily Mirror

"Tory immigration spokesman Damian Green is waiting to learn if he faces prosecution over the controversial Home Office leaks inquiry. Crown Prosecution Service officials are expected to announce their decision on Mr Green who was arrested in November in connection with a series of embarrassing leaks from the Home Office." – ITN

> ToryDiary: CPS to rule on the Damian Green case at 11am this morning

Tory fury at 'whitewash' inquiry into "Smear-gate"…

"The head of the civil service faced accusations of a 'whitewash' last night as he rejected calls for an inquiry into the Downing Street dirty tricks scandal… But last night the Conservatives took the unusual step of lodging a formal protest with Sir Gus after he appeared to accept without investigating the facts for himself that McBride had acted alone." – Daily Mail

"The Conservatives on Wednesday dismissed moves to tighten up rules for government special advisers as insufficient, after the head of the civil service rebuffed their calls for an investigation into the Damian McBride scandal… Senior Tories are furious at Mr Brown’s response to the episode, which they depict as a failure of leadership." – FT

The stink of a cover-up hangs over Downing StreetThe Sun

Derek Draper "cut adrift" by LabourThe Times

A Blogger's Notebook – Guido Fawkes in The Spectator

> Yesterday on ConservativeHome:

BROWN RESOLVED …as Gordon Brown still refuses to say sorry

"George Osborne, the shadow chancellor, has called on Gordon Brown to apologise to him and his wife over the Downing Street email slurs. In his first comments about the scandal, in which a Downing Street adviser suggested that false rumours be spread about leading Conservatives, he said the couple had tried to ignore the affair for the sake of their young children." – Daily Telegraph

A lesson from Margaret Thatcher in saying sorry – Matthew Parris in The Times

The apology Gordon should have writtenDaily Mail editorial

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: George Osborne calls on Gordon Brown to say sorry

Fraser Nelson: The McBride affair is a portent of the coming struggle for Labour’s soul

"In theory, Damian McBride’s resignation was simply the departure of a
spin doctor, already relegated to a ‘back-room’ role. But nobody with
the slightest knowledge of the Brown court believes that for a second.
This is a moment of deadly, perhaps terminal, peril for the Labour
government." – Fraser Nelson in The Spectator

The Downing Street email scandal has left Gordon Brown hideously exposed to enemies within his own party – Mary Riddell in the Daily Telegraph

Iain Duncan Smith on the "death of the traditional family"

“One in 12 children will experience their parents breaking up by the age of five if those parents are married. But that figure is one in two if the parents are cohabiting. Marriage is not just a piece of paper.” Mr Duncan Smith called for the tax system to favour those who choose marriage over living together. “It is not our job, as politicians, to lecture, but the problem has been caused by successive UK governments centring on the child, and forgetting the parent,” he said."  – Iain Duncan Smith quoted in the Daily Telegraph

David Willetts discussed the issues raised in the ONS report on the Today Programme

Picture 1 Conservative MEP Richard Ashworth calls on French fishermen to end their blockade of Channel ports

"Thousands of truckers and tourists found themselves blocked on both sides of the Channel today after French trawlermen demanding higher cod quotas blocked key ports on France's northern coast for a second day. … Richard Ashworth, the Conservative MEP for southeast England, urged the fishermen to call off the protest. "People across southern England will be thinking, ’Here we go again’. Every time the French blockade a port it makes our lives across southeast England miserable — that’s why the French do it," he said. "It is not fair for French fishermen to take out their frustrations onus and turn the M20 into a lorry park." – The Times

Listen to Richard Ashworth talk about this on this morning's Today Programme

Boris boosts the campaign for an illegal immigrant amnesty

"A London rally demanding an amnesty for illegal immigrants living in the UK will be staged during May bank holiday after receiving backing from Boris Johnson. Strangers into Citizens, a three-year national campaign by an umbrella group of civic bodies, has seized on the Tory London mayor's support for an "earned amnesty" for illegal immigrants who have been living in the city for several years." – The Guardian

How taxes have gone up under Labour

"A Telegraph survey shows that for the typical taxpayer on average income the percentage of income paid in various forms of tax has increased from 32% to 35%." – Daily Telegraph

Planned UK nuclear sites revealedFT

Police officers can almost double their salary through overtimeDaily Mail

Government plans £5,000 sweetener to get consumers buying electric carsThe Guardian

BBC Middle East Editor Jeremy Bowen censured over Israel coverageThe Independent

Cabinet meets in Scotland today for the first time in 88 yearsThe Scotsman


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