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Picture 4 9.30pm Seats and Candidates: The Telegraph's Simon Heffer threatens to stand against Sir Alan Haselhurst

9.15pm ToryDiary: Daniel Hannan and Douglas Carswell wrote David Cameron's speech today on devolving power

8.15pm Jonathan Isaby on CentreRight: In BBC-land David Cameron is already Prime Minister

7.30pm CentreRight: Watch highlights of Douglas Carswell MP's address to today's Reform seminar discussing how to get better value from the defence budget and the failure of current procurement policy

5.45pm Seats and Candidates: Gloucester PPC Richard Graham records the events of a week which included being knocked off his motorbike by a dog and him publishing a four-letter typo on his blog

Picture 214.15pm WATCH: A key extract of David Cameron's speech this morning calling for a massive redistribution of power

3pm Latest on CentreRight:

  • How has expenses-gate changed your view of individual shadow cabinet ministers?
  • Should Julie Kirkbride remain a Conservative MP?
  • Should candidates be banned from saying they support leaving the European Union?

1.30pm Click here to have your say in ConservativeHome's May survey

12.30pm Local Government: Paul Bristow on Middlesbrough Labour Party use Town Hall for electioneering and Council spending on foreign travel investigated

Noon on CentreRight: Tim Montgomerie is disappearing for 48 hours

Noon: Lord Bates on CentreRight: North Korea’s latest nuclear test is a desperate act designed for domestic appeasement

10.45am ToryDiary update: Cameron makes big promises on devolving power to citizens Updated with link to live webcast and a link to the full text of David Cameron's speech

9.45am Seats and Candidates: A busy week for Harriett Baldwin sees two shadow cabinet members campaigning with her in West Worcestershire

ToryDiary:

82StephanShakespeare220Stephan Shakespeare on Platform has faith in David Cameron's vision of a post-bureaucratic age: "More people know the Conservative Party through [ConservativeHome's] pages than through the official party site. From David Cameron down, the party spends a little of every day right here. Yet this site is entirely independent. It criticises and annoys. It campaigns for some of their ideas, and against others. Occasionally it even insults them. And yet they cooperate, they write here, they answer our questions, they are willing for the party to make this their hang-out. I think that tells us something about how they will behave."

Seats and candidates: Who are the best candidates yet to be selected?

Local government:

Watch: Cameron wants transfer of power from 'the elite to the street'*

Caroline Jackson MEP's expenses exposed in The Sun

Picture 6 Constant critic of David Cameron, Caroline Jackson MEP paid her husband – defector to Labour Robert Jackson – £22,500 to help her write a 15-page leaflet on "Britain's Waste" – The Sun

Could the pamphlet be more appropriately titled?!

Expenses-gate (Day 19)

Julie Kirkbride's brother buys gadgets and they appear on her expenses – Telegraph

> Yesterday ConHome posted a video of Andrew MacKay's constituency meeting that proves he misrepresented its mood

Dennis Watts, husband of MP Meg Munn, paid for tax advice by ministers – Telegraph | Watch

Michael Ancram repays money for swimming pool maintenance – Telegraph

The Wintertons become the sixth Tory MPs to announce retirement in one extraordinary week

"A Tory husband and wife whose names became a byword for milking the Westminster expenses system announced yesterday that they will stand down at the next election. Sir Nicholas and Lady Ann Winterton, who claimed £80,000 in second-home allowances on a small London flat put in trust for their children, said they were quitting because they could no longer 'maintain the hectic pace' of political life. But Tory sources said the couple, who occupy adjacent safe seats in Cheshire, had finally 'seen the light' after years of public criticism of their expenses claims. " – Daily Mail

> Yesterday's ConservativeHome report: MPs Nicholas and Ann Winteron to stand down at next election

David Burrowes emerges as another expenses good guy

BURROWES PORTRAIT “There is no good reason for London MPs to have a second home paid for by the taxpayer,” he said. “Many of my constituents are commuters who work long hours and find it hard to accept that MPs should have a taxpayers’ perk of a London flat. I have not taken up the option of a second home allowance because it can’t be justified as a reasonable taxpayers’ expense and I prefer to go home to my family.” – Quoted in The Telegraph

You think British MPs are bad?The Telegraph looks at other countries

"Labour and the Conservatives have been accused of collusion over plans to raise the threshold above which parties must report donations from £5,000 to £7,500."Times

Alan Johnson’s proposals to reform voting system win Cabinet supportTimes

"A second cabinet minister has urged Gordon Brown to hold a referendum on electoral reform to regain the political initiative. John Denham said designing a system in which "every vote counts" would help rebuild the trust between MPs and their electors following the expenses scandal." – Independent

"A campaign has been launched to give voters the power to sack MPs by signing a petition to "recall" them."Daily Express | Campaign website

The Daily Mail: Darling is morally bankrupt

"Anyone else who tried to claim accountancy fees, stamp duty, or household bills as tax-free benefits in kind would be instantly fiscally roughed up by Mr Darling's own tax collectors. But politicians have developed a sense of entitlement which they think puts them above the rules that apply to the rest of us. For any MP this is highly damaging. For a Chancellor, it ought to be fatal. How can Mr Darling honestly ask us to tighten our belts and accept higher taxes – don't forget his vindictive 50p top tax rate – at this time of deepening recession, when we know that he is not prepared to make the same sacrifices himself? In terms of moral authority he is, quite simply, bankrupt." – Daily Mail leader

The unorthodox Frank Field and John Bercow

6a00d83451b31c69e2011570a27b33970b-200wi "The Conservatives' John Bercow and Labour's Frank Field are two of the front runners in the race to become the next Speaker. They are also the mirror image of each other. It is mainly Conservative MPs who support Field and their Labour counterparts who back Bercow. Quite a few Conservatives loathe Bercow, while some Labour MPs fume against Field. The fluidity of their support and the unorthodox nature of their careers make them the odd couple in British politics." – Steve Richards in The Independent

Are WE any better than MPs?

"A large number of parliamentarians were just as aware as their greedier colleagues were of the possibilities for unscrupulous financial gain provided by the way in which Westminster's fees office operated; but their consciences would not allow them to behave in this way. In very rough terms, it seems as though about a quarter of the MPs were able to resist all such temptations. I leave it to the individual readers to estimate what proportion of a cross section of the general public would show similar high-mindedness, particularly if they were sitting in safe seats for decades." – Dominic Lawson in The Independent

Are MPs like gipsies?

"So our MPs demand second homes? Fine. Stick them in a caravan on an illegal gipsy site. The gipsies and our crooked MPs should get along just fine together. Both think they are above the law. Both think rules are for other people. Both dodge paying their taxes. Both treat honest hard-working taxpayers with sneering contempt." – Fergus Shanahan in The Sun

Family of Winston Churchill slams BNP over far-right party's attempt to hijack wartime leader's legacyDaily Mail

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30 comments for: Tuesday 26th May 2009

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