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10.30pm International: Right-wing pundits attempt to set agenda for Republican Party

8.15pm ToryDiary: David Cameron's first official portrait

6.45pm AmericaInTheWorld: The BBC's world affairs correspondent presents a one-sided account of the UK-US relationship

4pm Tim Montgomerie on CentreRight: How many billions are we about to give away to developing nations to spend on climate change?

6a00d83451b31c69e20120a6e85e80970b-500wi 1.15pm Tim Montgomerie on CentreRight: Exit polls say Swiss have voted to ban the building of minarets in Switzerland

6a00d83550306a69e200e5536c96878834-800wi12.15pm Matt Sinclair on CentreRight warns a Conservative government against pursuing a combined environmental and energy policy agenda "that would constitute perhaps the greatest financial assault on the interests of the poor in British history".

ToryDiary: Grassroots satisfaction with David Cameron dips to 80%

John Redwood MP on Platform: How to make the necessary cuts to public spending without cutting important services

Mark Wallace on Local government: The Government ignores the Local Government Association's savings plan

6a00d83451b31c69e201156f1fbaf6970c Seats and candidates: Are double-barrelled names a problem for Tory candidates?

WATCH: Jon Culshaw's latest impersonations of David Cameron and Boris Johnson

Stephen O'Brien leads Tory calls for overhaul of hospital inspections regime after twelve NHS hospital trusts in England are "significantly underperforming" despite nine recently having been rated as good or excellentBBC

Labour may freeze inheritance tax threshold in new bid to present Conservatives as party of the rich
 - Observer

"[The Tories] are glued to a policy which has little economic merit and makes them politically vulnerable, a promise to privilege those who are already privileged." – Andrew Rawnsley in The Observer

And has David Cameron's pro-marriage tax plan been shelved?

The Observer's Toby Helm reports: "David Cameron appears to have backtracked on a plan to use the tax system to reward those who get married – because such a move would be unaffordable and also benefit wealthier couples, according to senior party sources."

Zac Goldsmith is a 'nom-dom'

Goldsmith-Zac-on-Sunday-AM "Zac Goldsmith, the green adviser to David Cameron and prospective Tory MP, has admitted that he claims non-domicile tax status, enabling him to avoid huge sums of tax on his estimated £200m fortune. In a disclosure that risks embarrassing the Conservative party, he confirmed that he is a “non-dom” who can legitimately escape paying tax on his inheritance from his late father, Sir James Goldsmith. Much of it is held offshore." – The Sunday Times

Are party strategists blaming opinion poll wobbles on the Tories' austerity message?

In the Sunday Telegraph Liam Halligan says the party cannot afford to do so: "This country will run a budget deficit equal to 13.2pc of GDP next year – the biggest fiscal shortfall of any major economy in the world and the biggest in our peacetime history. The Government will borrow £200bn annually for at least the next three years, the UK's national debt ballooning from 44pc of GDP to more than 100pc by 2014. The Tories recently outlined plans to save £7bn a year by 2013 – a response this column described as "tackling a fiscal inferno with a half-empty water-pistol"."

Should the Scottish Conservatives form their own independent party?The Sunday Herald develops ConservativeHome's call for a radical solution to the Scottish Tories' limited progress

Labour has urged Alex Salmond to shelve his plans for Scottish independence referendum and concentrate on fighting the recession – BBC

> Yesterday on Platform: Murdo Fraser MSP on the Scottish Tories' support for deeper devolution

Cameron warned by Belize's PM not to give Lord Ashcroft a government postObserver

Cameron's interest in Philip Blond is all part of a concerted attempt to distance his conservative brand from Thatcher – Martin Ivens in The Sunday Times

Margaret Thatcher couldn't sleep during Falklands War

"Margaret Thatcher stayed up all night in her Downing Street flat throughout the three months of the Falklands War and never changed into her bedclothes, it has been revealed. She sat fully dressed, huddled round a two-bar electric fire, nervously listening to the radio for news of the conflict, nursing a glass of whisky while husband Denis slept in the spare room." – Mail on Sunday

> Yesterday Radio 4 broadcast Michael Dobbs' play about Margaret Thatcher's last days in office

Swiss campaign to ban minarets depicts them as missiles:


"Swiss voters go to the polls later to decide on a proposal to ban the building of minarets in their country." – BBC

Britain's "muscular liberalism" should not be optional for our own immigrant groups – Janet Daley in The Sunday Telegraph

Thirteen outgoing EU commissioners will receive golden goodbyes averaging nearly £350,000 eachThe Sunday Times

Chilcot should be looking at how the occupation gave rise to such bloodshed – John Rentoul in the Independent on Sunday

Tony Blair was told that Iraq war was illegal, eight months before invasion began – Mail on Sunday

Peter Hitchens: Al Gore and other climate change campaigners could bankrupt the West

"If not checked [the climate change "frenzy"] could end by bankrupting the West and leaving us sitting in the cold and the dark whistling for a wind to power our dead computers – while China and India surge on to growth and prosperity because they have had the sense to ignore the whole stupid thing." – Peter Hitchens in the Mail on Sunday

And finally… What do we think of David Cameron's first official portrait?

Picture 50 "The first official portrait of David Cameron shows him in gloomy colours rather than as a bright, bold figure to lead the country out of the Gordon Brown years. The portrait, commissioned for the Conservatives, is also remarkable for its depiction of a party leader, let alone a man banging on the door of No 10, standing in an open-necked shirt with both hands in his pockets…." – The Sunday Times

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47 comments for: Sunday 29th November 2009

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