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10.30pm ToryDiary: Michal Kaminski MEP elected leader of European Conservatives and Reformists

10.15pm ToryDiary: ‘Through the keyhole’

9.45pm Seats and candidates: Totnes Tories shortlist three candidates

9.15pm Alex Deane on CentreRight: Obama is right on Africa – and perhaps he is the only man who can advance this agenda

B is for Buildings. The annual cost of EU institutions renting their buildings comes to €449 million. The actual value of the property owned, or on long lease with an option to purchase, is €5.8 billion. That is nearly six Buckingham Palaces….

F is for Fitness. The European Parliament hosts a gym, studio classes, two squash courts, and a sauna, and caters for beauty therapy (vital for wooing the voters, and the stagiaires). There’s also a sunbed. Public money subsidises it….

W is for Wheels. The total annual car bill for these institutions is €7.4 million…

3.30pm On CentreRight, Matt Sinclair presents a Taxpayer’s A to Z guide to the European Union

Telegraph12.45pm ToryDiary: Whatever happened to The Telegraph’s coverage of the Conservatives?

11am ToryDiary: Not an auspicious start for the European Conservatives and Reformists

ToryDiary:

Grant Shapps MP on Platform: Labour’s Mortgage Rescue Scheme has hardly rescued anyone

Local government:

Picture 8 Seats and candidates:

David T Breaker on CentreRight: My day for Britain would be Churchill Day

LISTEN: Andrew Lansley and Health Secretary Andy Burnham discuss the challenge of long-term care for the elderly

WATCH: Anti-BNP video launched entitled ‘Not in my Name’

Army asked for 2,000 extra troops and Brown sent 700

“Liam Fox, the Shadow Defence Secretary, said that the Government had to explain “why our Armed Forces are having to do so much with so little”.” – Quoted in The Times

ICM: Tories are winning battle on public spending

“The Conservatives have won round one in the party battle over spending, the latest Guardian/ICM poll suggests. Voters are keener on the Tory message that spending must fall than the Labour one that increases will help to fight the recession. The figures suggest the prime minister’s efforts to define the political battle around the issue of Labour spending v Tory cuts has failed. Tomorrow’s Guardian/ICM poll shows that 64% of voters think the government should be reducing spending now, against only 28% who want to see it increase.” – Guardian

> Yesterday’s ToryDiary: Tories at 41%, Labour on 27% in ICM/Guardian poll

British Chambers of Commerce urges Tories to change course on Heathrow expansion

“A leading business lobby group appealed on Monday to the Conservative
party to reverse its opposition to the building of a third runway at
Heathrow airport, warning the policy would cost the economy billions of
pounds in lost productivity.  A study published on Monday by the
British Chambers of Commerce said the direct economic benefit of adding
capacity at Heathrow would be in the region of £300m ($488m)-£500m a
year.” – FT

Picture 9 Tory MP Ian Taylor issued this statement: “Opponents of the third runway have a problem: we need more airport capacity so where else should it be in the south-east?  The Heathrow expansion will be privately financed. Who now believes there will be public funds for sufficient alternative new fast rail links in this decade? And as long as we draw electricity for trains from our energy source of coal and gas, the environmental impact of rail travel is more adverse than the impact of modern aircraft per passenger mile. We need to inject some common sense and better environmental science into the debate.”

David Cameron pledges to protect foreign aid from recession

“David Cameron has renewed his pledge to spare foreign aid from future Conservative spending cuts, arguing that recession-hit voters would understand the UK’s “responsibility” to the world’s poorest.” – The Herald

“The Opposition leader said a Conservative government would impose tougher controls to ensure development money was not misspent and show taxpayers where every penny was going.  But the temptation to switch the money to meeting domestic needs would be a “serious long-term mistake” as it would help foster terrorism, climate change and war, posing security risks at home.” – Yorkshire Post

The West’s aid to Africa does nothing but ease its conscience – Dominic Lawson in The Independent

> Yesterday’s ToryDiary: We must not (and cannot) balance the budget on the backs of the world’s poorest people*

The Civil Service has turned its back on Labour and is getting into bed with the party it thinks will hold power in a year – Rachel Sylvester in The Times

The next generation of Tory MPs will pose a big management challenge for David Cameron – Tim Montgomerie in the FT

Michael White: IDS’s family report proves there are second acts in political lives

Picture 12 “Over-promoted politicians sometimes make a better fist of their second careers. Arthur Balfour and Alec Douglas-Home were better foreign secretaries than they were prime ministers. Jimmy Carter is a more impressive ex-president than he was a chief executive. At a less exalted level Iain Duncan Smith, Conservative leader 2001-03, fits that mould too. David Cameron, a better politician, looks favourably on his endeavours… Britain tops so many European leagues for social dysfunction that it is sometimes hard to remember – as the CSJ report does – that two-thirds of first marriages still survive until death, that most people (84%) value marriage and that married people are happier, richer and live longer than cohabitees and the separated. Such talk puts the Tories in conflict with New Labour politicians such as Harriet Harman, who champions equal rights for cohabiting couples, but a decade of progressive remedies has barely reversed the pattern of family breakdown. Time for the Tories to try again?” – Michael White in The Guardian

Guardian video of Polly Toynbee challenging IDS on his family proposals.

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

Lord Kingsland: Conservative MEP and Shadow Lord ChancellorTimes obituary

Ann Widdecombe secures a phone in show on LBCTelegraph

BBC axes bonuses as Culture Secretary attacks ‘wrong-headed’ attitude of bosses over licence fee sharing

“Culture Secretary Ben Bradshaw warned poor leadership at the BBC has led senior staff to lose confidence in the corporation.  He also criticised the broadcaster for showing ‘wrong-headed’ leadership over plans to share the licence fee with rival television channels.” – Daily Mail

And finally… Obama’s Teleprompter crashes to earth

Picture 10 “President Barack Obama had just started a spirited defense of his economic stimulus plan on Monday when one
of his teleprompter screens came loose, crashed to the floor and shattered into pieces.  The gadget’s fall surprised
Obama, who uses a teleprompter during most speeches and even brief remarks. The glass plate displaying his speech hit the
floor in the auditorium of the Eisenhower Executive Office Building, a massive building within the White House compound.  “Oh,
goodness,” Obama said. “Sorry about that, guys.”” – Fox News Politics

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