2pm The eighteenth StarChamber idea for cutting public spending: One year pay freeze across the public sector, excluding members of the armed forces serving in conflict zones
11.30am CentreRight updates:
- Jeremy Hunt MP: Why Conservatives will not force the BBC to share the licence fee with other broadcasters
- Graeme Archer: Empirical Conservatism
Graeme Brown on Platform: The FTSE at 5,000 is still a mark of Labour failure
Seats and candidates: Proportion of privately-educated Tory MPs is set to fall further
Populus: Conservatives are the best party to reform the NHS – Times
> Yesterday's ToryDiary: The Conservatives now have a strong lead over Labour on almost all key policy areas
Ken Clarke say post strike ‘like death wish’ – FT
Cameron: Britain is not overpopulated
Answering a question on population growth from an audience member at the Woodstock Literary Festival, [the Tory leader] said: "I don't believe Britain is over-populated. I don't have any plans to reduce it. I would quite like to add to it, personally, by quite possibly one, at some stage in the future." – Daily Mail
At the same event, reports The Independent, Mr Cameron said that he was very influenced by Tony Benn's book, 'Arguments for Democracy': "A very powerful book which makes the important point that we vest power in people who are elected, and that we can get rid of, rather than those we can't."
"Taking questions from the audience, Mr Cameron was asked whether he preferred facing Gordon Brown or Tony Blair at Prime Minister's Questions. He chose the latter on the basis that "the quality of jokes was better under Blair"." – Telegraph
Theresa Villiers backs Daily Mail campaign to 'drive rogue clampers out of town'
"Miss Villiers told the Mail: 'It is time to wake up to the real menace of rogue clampers. 'David Cameron has pledged that if we win the general election, we will take tough action to tackle this problem and crack down on the cowboy clampers that do so much to increase the hassle and irritation that drivers are subjected to… She described clamping as one of a 'long list of aggravations' endured by drivers, along with badly-run roadworks and the ' spiralling number of speed cameras that seem to be focused on raising revenue rather than making our roads safer."
Tory research says that violent crime costs every household £1,121 a year – Daily Mail
Profile of 'manifesto man', Oliver Letwin – By the BBC's Brian Wheeler
Zac Goldsmith says he will not change his opposition to nuclear power stations, GM crops or Heathrow expansion in return for frontbench job – Independent
"As a leader he was a disaster. But in a Tory Party that too often seems slick and shallow, Iain Duncan Smith is a heroic figure." Stephen Glover in the Daily Mail
The Economist decides that Iain Duncan Smith's latest welfare plan is too expensive to implement
Lord Strathclyde severs links with controversial oil traders, Trafigura
"Evidence was disclosed in the Guardian today that the London-based firm has carried out a huge cover-up of its role in an African waste-dumping scandal. Strathclyde said: "I've read today's stories about Trafigura with concern and I am making inquiries about the situation." He is to leave his post as a non-executive director on the board of Trafigura's hedge-fund arm, Galena Asset Management, which pays him an undisclosed fee." – Guardian
Gordon Brown rejects Tory charge of cover-up over spending cuts – Guardian
"Chancellor Alistair Darling has begun holding a series of meetings with cabinet colleagues to target potential savings in public spending." – BBC
'Bob Crow, the railwaymen’s leader, is wrong to say Labour hasn't done anything for the unions' – Paul Routledge in The Mirror
Liberal Democrats demand change of strategy in Afghanistan
"Clegg and Ashdown call on Brown to form a special war cabinet as created during other wars, create a minister for Afghanistan, and send more aid money to the country. They conclude: "British soldiers are fighting the war at full capacity; but their government is not." – The Guardian
President Barack Obama's decision to abandon the missile shield will weaken the US and embolden its enemies – Con Coughlin in The Telegraph
"The Obama administration had been hinting that it might abandon plans for missile defence bases in Poland and the Czech Republic. This decision was no surprise, and much can be said in its favour. But it is one that needs to be explained with care and supported with other adjustments in defence planning. Otherwise it risks undermining US relations with allies and letting Russia believe that, if pushed, the US will back down." – FT leader
> Yesterday's AmericaInTheWorld: Obama abandons Bush's plan to protect Europe with missile defence system
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