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11pm AmericaInTheWorld: Obama says world is watching Iranian protestors "with deep admiration"

7.45pm LeftWatch: Labour's decade was worst for economic growth in whole post-war period

5.45pm ToryDiary: The best anti-Labour poster yet?

3pm CentreRight:

HAVEYOURSAY1.45pm ToryDiary: ConservativeHome's end-of-2009 survey is live

1pm WATCH: Labour announces review into hospital parking fees with a view to making them 'fairer'

12.45pm Local government: Council taxpayers will pay £78m for Christmas rubbish

ToryDiary:

LeftWatch: The Director of Public Prosecution's socialist past

6a00d83451b31c69e20120a77ad215970b-150wi Adeela Shafi on Platform: Supporting the family is essential if we are to rid this country of the burgeoning knife and gun culture

Local government:

WATCH: Mohammad Asghar AM explains why he defected to the Welsh Conservatives

WATCH: 'Barack Obama has a been a left-wing interventionist'

Tories re-commit to inheritance tax policy

Last night's ToryDiary: George Osborne is not for turning on inheritance tax

"The Tories will today seek to win over the middle classes by arguing that more than 4m people are liable to pay inheritance tax, contradicting Labour claims that the levy falls largely on the rich." – FT | Sun

"David Cameron’s Tories should hold their nerve and stick to their pledge to raise the threshold to £1million if they win power. Britain is crying out for a tax-cutting government. if Cameron retreats at the first whiff of political grapeshot it will know that he is not the man to deliver it." – Express leader

David Cameron condemns China's execution of Akmal Shaikh

Cameron@Davos2 Statement issued from CCHQ: "I deplore and deeply regret the fact that the Chinese authorities have executed Akmal Shaikh, and did not heed the pleas for clemency made in his case by the British Government, by the opposition parties, by his family and by others. There were serious concerns about Mr Shaikh's mental health. It is appalling that these concerns were not independently assessed during the more than two years Mr Shaikh was in custody, and taken properly into account in the judicial process. We supported the Government in the efforts they have made, and I join with them in sending my sympathy to Mr Shaikh's family and friends."

Leo McKinstry in the Daily Mail says China did the right thing: "In contrast to New Labour's policy of appeasement and surrender, the Chinese Government acts vigorously to defend its people from the misery caused by the drugs trade. My regret is not over tough action by Beijing, but the fact that we in this country do not possess the moral clarity or strength of purpose to deal ruthlessly with drug peddlers and other enemies of our society."

Former Tory MP Michael Brown attacks Cameron's lovebombing of the Liberal Democrats

LoveBombing "All the Tory talk is of a "new politics" and recognising "the good intentions of our opponents". But I'm not sure that too many voters will understand the clarity of the Tory message when told that "between the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats there is a lot less disagreement than there used to be". Try telling that to the Conservative candidate in Cheltenham, for whom I spoke a few weeks ago, trying to unseat the Liberal Democrat incumbent in what should be an easy Tory gain. Mark Coote has been working furiously, locally, to point out how hopeless his Liberal Democrat opponents are and how much difference there is between his policies and theirs." – Michael Brown in The Independent

BTW: Michael Brown also notes that Mr Cameron's email message to Tory supporters included the disclaimer, "Any opinion expressed in this email is not necessarily that of the Party"!

> Watch / read David Cameron's new year message

Tory hopeful Norsheen Bhatti revealed as £260-an-hour belly dancerMirror | Seats and candidates | Iain Dale's Diary

Labour MEPs accused of secret tax agenda

HAGUE WILLIAM NW "A document drawn up by a European Parliament group that includes Britain’s 13 Labour MEPs calls for a bigger EU budget, common EU taxes and VAT harmonisation… Shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague said: “These plans show how Labour are lurching to the Left and want to give the EU even more control over our lives." – Express

Labour's core vote strategy sees them recover some support in the northFT

The death of David Taylor, the Labour back bencher who suffered a heart attack on Boxing Day, could leave constituents without an MP for six months if the party ducks a tricky by-electionTelegraph

Harman retreats on scrapping MPs' £10,040-a-year communications allowanceTimes

David Cameron is committed to abolish the allowance.

The wife of Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson, Iris Robinson MP, is quitting politics after admitting she is battling severe depressionBBC

"A Northern Ireland MP, who made headlines last year for her anti-gay remarks, yesterday said she was suffering from serious depression and cited ill health as a reason for leaving public life." – Guardian

Alex Salmond hopes for 20 SNP MPs and for them to hold the balance of power Herald

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83 comments for: Tuesday 29th December 2009

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