6.45pm ToryDiary: Tories at 41%, Labour on 27% in ICM/Guardian poll

6.30pm Matt Sinclair on CentreRight: Why are we giving aid to Burma? They score higher than we do…

5.30pm WATCH: Iain Duncan Smith explains his proposal for a three month cooling off period for divorcing couples

2pm ToryDiary: Britain's 'Political Club' costs us £485m

Picture 71pm ToryDiary: 'One World Conservatism' video

1pm WATCH: David Cameron says lack of helicopters for UK troops in Afghanistan is a matter of "extreme emergency"

12.45pm Local Government: Councillors cost £241,5 million a year and SNP councillor pulls out of byelection race

10.30am Peter Whittle on CentreRight: Why the Arts Council should go


6a00d83451b31c69e2011570fabd7c970c Nirj Deva MEP on Platform presents two key facts about life in the European Union:

  1. "More than 75% of the laws that an ordinary British or German or French or Latvian person now lives under is indeed first made in the Europe, drafted by the Commission; voted in or modified by the Council (Lower House) and the European Parliament (the Senate) and automatically transposed without change  into British or German or French or Latvian law."
  2. "European Institutions in Brussels now have more legislative power over the lives of ordinary citizens in a Member State than the US Congress and White House over the lives of ordinary citizens in California or Texas or any US state."

Read his full article here.

Seats and candidates: Members of the potential new Tory intake who have had a parent in national politics

Ridley Grove on CentreRight: 'Labour is morally guilty of corporate manslaughter in Afghanistan'

LISTEN: Iain Duncan Smith talks to Radio 4 about new proposals to make divorce harder

Voters may have to wait years to gain from Tory pledges to slash inheritance tax and stamp duty and give married couples a cash boostDaily Mail

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: News of the World says Tories want to mothball tax cut promises

Liam Fox and Patrick Mercer attack Labour's underfunding of war in Afghanistan

FOX-LIAM-C&N "Amid a growing political row about the future of Britain’s role in Afghanistan, Liam Fox, the shadow defence secretary, said that the Prime Minister had “catastrophically” under-equipped the Armed Forces. Mr Fox said that Mr Brown was now “resorting to spin rather than confronting the life-threatening reality” that the troops faced. For this government to have sent our young people into battle without adequate equipment and protection is the ultimate dereliction of duty,” Mr Fox said." – Telegraph

The same Telegraph article also quotes Tory MP Patrick Mercer: "We have got to have extra manpower. I know for a fact that the Army has available another battle group but it is not being allowed to deploy them for political and economic reasons and that’s a disgrace. There is no point all these men dying if the ground they have captured can’t be held.”

"The steep rise in casualties in Afghanistan is being matched by increasingly bitter recriminations between the Government and the British Army.  Soldiers accuse ministers of failing to give the troops on the ground the support they need. Ministers charge the Army with dangerously politicising its role." – Max Hastings in the Daily Mail

"Opposition to the war, at 47%, is just ahead of support, at 46%. And backing for Britain's role in the conflict has grown since 2006, the last time an ICM poll was conducted on the subject – up 15 points from 31%. Opposition has fallen over the same period by six points, from 53%." – Guardian

'Why pay our farmers to produce opium while Afghan poppy crops are razed?' asks Boris Johnson in The Telegraph

Iain Duncan Smith recommends more investment in marriage counselling

DUNCAN SMITH DECEMBER 07 "The former Conservative leader will say that Australian-style "family relationship hubs", where struggling spouses can discuss their problems, should be founded across the country in order to cut the divorce rate." – Telegraph | The Sun

Millionaire Tory MP claimed £77,000 for second home whilst living rent free with parents

"Shadow solicitor general Jonathan Djanogly enjoyed the £4million London property on the cheap while he ran up a small fortune in second homes allowance on his constituency home." – Daily Mail

Tory backbenchers tell The Times that Cameron has acted unfairly over expenses

"MPs such as Sir George Young and James Arbuthnot are livid with [David Cameron] and feel aggrieved that he acted brutally towards older backbenchers to demonstrate to voters his hard line over expenses. There are also rumours of tensions between Mr Cameron and Michael Howard, the former leader." – Times

Tories on collision course with Tesco and Sainsbury'sTimes

Jackie Ashley: Will Andy Coulson survive?

Coulson Andy PC3 "The consensus is he will because Cameron wants and needs him badly. So he will only go if some new damning fact comes to light. I just want to add a thought: Coulson may go before the election. Why? Because Cameron might decide that he represents a style of politics that recent events – from the financial crash to the MPs' expenses scandal – have rendered out of date." – Jackie Ashley in The Guardian

> Tim Montgomerie on Comment is free yesterday: A defence of Andy Coulson and Rupert Murdoch

Tory insiders can double or treble their salaries if they move to private sectorFT

Tory peer Lord Kingsland has died aged 67 after a short illnessTelegraph

The best analysis yet of the global economic crisis has been written by the Pope – Lord Griffiths of Fforestfach in The Times

Labour women attack 'laddish' BrownBBC | Fraser Nelson's blog review

CBI: The UK must invest more in nuclear and clean coal energy and put less emphasis on wind powerBBC | FT

> Yesterday's Platform: The lights would indeed go out under Labour, says John Webley


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