9.45pm LeftWatch: Jon Cruddas will not stand for Labour leader

Chloe Smith MP9.15pm ToryDiary update: Chloe Smith reportedly joining the Whips' Office

6.00pm WATCH: Sky New wonders what the coalition at Westminster can learn from the Lib Dem/Conservative coalition at Birmingham City Council

4.30pm Parliament: Will Conservative and Lib Dem MPs refer to each other as "honourable friends"?

3.45pm Robin Simcox on CentreRight: Why can't the US Attorney General bring himself to refer to "Radical Islam"?

3.15pm WATCH: David Miliband declares that "the Blair/Brown era is over" as he officially launches his Labour leadership bid

2.45pm Alex Deane on CentreRight: Big Brother Watch is against the 55% change – where does your organisation stand?

2.15pm Graeme Archer on CentreRight: Help an independent paper to fight a Labour Council 

Davis David blueb2.15pm ToryDiary: David Davis attacks 55% rule as a "very serious mistake"

1.45pm Local Government: Fraser Nelson has got it wrong on the battle for Hammersmith

1.15pm Lee Rotherham on CentreRight: Blogging the Lisbon changes

12.45pm Alex Deane on CentreRight: Google admits Street View cars recorded wi-fi activity without consent

Noon LeftWatch: Labour's outgoing Chief Secretary's writes "joke" letter to his successor about the financial mess he has bequeathed

Screen shot 2010-05-17 at 14.20.02 11.45am WATCH: George Osborne announces the creation of the Office for Budget Responsibility

11.30am ToryDiary: Nicholas Soames withdraws from race for the 1922 chairmanship

11.15am ToryDiary: George Osborne announces Emergency Budget for June 22 as he creates the Office of Budget Responsibility

ToryDiary: The new Conservative intake faces blood, sweat, toil and tears – but the coalition will lighten their burden

Charles Crawford Charles Crawford on Platform: How Labour dumbed down the Foreign Office

Local Government:

Martin Parsons on CentreRight: Time to deregulate sea defence

Picture 6
Recommendation 2 of ConservativeHome's General Election Review: The appointment of a full-time professional pollster who will report unfiltered to the party leadership, ensuring all big initiatives are properly market tested so they are communicated in the best possible way

David Cameron declares war on public sector pay

David Cameron speaking passionate "David Cameron has vowed to crack down on "crazy" bonuses paid to civil servants as the new Government seeks to reduce the costs of the bloated public sector. Out of control hand-outs, which this year will be paid to three-quarters of senior civil servants, are to be restricted to high performers… And a taskforce, to be launched on Monday, will begin examining all Government expenditure to seek ways to cut back on “irrational” spending." – Daily Telegraph

"The chancellor George Osborne will set out plans for an audit of the country's finances and begin the process of cutting public spending amid claims from ministers that the Labour government hid "crazy" spending commitments to play down the scale of the nation's deficit." – The Guardian

George Osborne gives up the power to make economic forecasts

"George Osborne is aware that he will rapidly become unpopular as the frontman for the Con-Lib coalition’s efforts to bring down Britain’s £163bn budget deficit. But in his first significant announcement as chancellor, he is on Monday seeking an altogether grander place in history. He sees the creation of an Office for Budget Responsibility as marking a revolution in British economic policymaking. Brutal cuts in public spending will come later. “The first thing I have done as chancellor is to give up the power, something chancellors have had for hundreds of years, to make forecasts,” he told the Financial Times." – FT

Lord Forsyth warns against hammering the middle classes with tax

FORSYTH MICHAEL "The middle classes are wrongly being ‘hammered’ with an excessive burden of tax, David Cameron’s own taxation guru said last night. Former Cabinet minister Lord Forsyth, who led the Tory Tax Reform Commission, spoke after the Prime Minister warned those on middle incomes to expect further cuts in child tax credits and rises in capital gains tax… He told the Daily Mail: ‘The way out of the problem of the deficit is to create wealth and stimulate growth. You don’t do that by hammering the hard-working classes, and those in the middle who generate the wealth, by putting an excessive burden of tax upon them’." – Daily Mail

Coalition to create 100 peers

"David Cameron and Nick Clegg will create more than 100 peers to ensure that controversial legislation gets through Parliament. The coalition government has agreed to reshape the House of Lords, which is currently dominated by Labour, to be “reflective of the vote” at the general election. That saw the Tories and the Liberal Democrats together get 59 per cent. None of Labour’s 211 existing peers can be removed, so the coalition must appoint dozens of its own to rebalance the upper chamber. Lib Dem estimates suggest that the number of Tory peers would need to rise from 186 to 263 and Lib Dem peers from 72 to 167." – The Times

John Prescott among those expected to be ennobled in Brown's resignation honours listDaily Mail

> Read your nominations for the Lords in ConHome's Search for 100 Peers

Liam Fox warns Lib Dems there will be no compromise on Trident

FOX-Liam-speaking "Liam Fox, the Defence Secretary, has warned his Liberal Democrat coalition partners that there will be no compromise over the renewal of the Trident nuclear programme. Under the terms of the coalition agreement thrashed out between the two parties last week, the Conservatives agreed that the Liberal Democrats could “make the case for alternatives to Trident”. – Daily Telegraph

Eurosceptics in plot to force vote on Lisbon Treaty

"Tory MPs are plotting to force a referendum on the EU's Lisbon Treaty within months, setting up the first test of the coalition Government's uneasy truce on Europe. Backbencher Douglas Carswell revealed that he and other Eurosceptic Conservatives hope to take advantage of a technical change to the treaty to force a public vote." – Daily Mail

EU flexibility is the goal of Conservative-led coalition – William Hague writing in the Irish Times

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Lisbon is set to be first big test of Coalition

> Melanchthon on CentreRight: We must not re-ratify Lisbon

Osborne set to give in on hedge fund law

"George Osborne is preparing to concede defeat over a European regulatory crackdown on hedge funds and private equity. In its first brush with the European Commission, the Lib-Con Government will find itself isolated in opposing the Alternative Investment Fund Management Directive." – The Times

> Lee Rotherham on CentreRight: Will George Osborne fold over the new EU hedge fund regulations?

David Cameron declares himself a "Liberal Conservative"Daily Mail

David Cameron to visit Cardiff today for talks with Welsh First MinisterBBC

Bruce Anderson: Cameron had to risk Tory dismay

"By agreeing to negotiate with the Liberals in good faith, Mr Cameron was able to occupy the moral high ground. If the talks had broken down, he would have been in a strong position, either in forming a minority government or in opposing one. As it is, he is in a stronger position, and so is the country. Britain needs a government with a secure Commons majority. David Cameron was right to use his forceful charm to create political momentum." – Bruce Anderson in The Independent

Speaker Bercow likely to face re-election challenge tomorrowDaily Express

Grassroots Liberal Democrats approve coalition deal

"The Liberal Democrats swallowed their doubts about about joining a coalition with the Conservatives last night as David Cameron hinted that their "progressive alliance" could last beyond the next general election. A special conference of about 2,000 Liberal Democrat activists in Birmingham overwhelmingly backed Nick Clegg's decision to enter the "Liberal Conservative" coalition. Liberal Democrat sources claimed that no more than a dozen delegates opposed the deal in a show of hands." – The Independent

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Three cheers for the Liberal Democrats

The Miliband brothers fight it out to become Labour leader

"It is an extraordinary situation. The Milibands are the first brothers to serve together in the Cabinet since Oliver and Edward Stanley in 1938. Like Cain and Abel, they appear intent on a fight to the finish in an act of political fratricide." – Daily Mail

> Video from yesterday: 'I can unite Labour' says Ed Miliband

Ed Balls: We cannot just regroup and assume that this coalition will fall apart quickly

Ed Balls 2010 "We cannot just regroup and assume that this coalition will fall apart quickly. And we cannot assume that we would necessarily benefit if the Tories and Lib Dems split. The fact is that we lost almost 100 seats. And a leadership election in which we talk to ourselves in party meetings and seminars and then tell the country what we have decided is the route to stagnation and further defeat." – Ed Balls in The Independent

Former minister David Lammy reflects on Labour's defeat

"We lost nearly 100 seats. We dropped to third place in a further 81. We lost vast swathes of the south. Nationally it was our worst result since Michael Foot… The election itself proved that we stopped listening not just to our own members but also to the country. Going into the election 80 per cent of the public said that they wanted change. Our message: more of the same." – David Lammy in The Independent

Boris Johnson: If Nick Clegg and David Cameron can cosy up, what's stopping the rest of us?

"It's just as well I never said anything rude about the Lib Dems, eh? What? Did I say that? You mean I once accused them of being a bunch of euro-loving road-hump-fetishists who changed their opinions in mid-stream like so many hermaphroditic parrotfish? And are you telling me that senior Lib Dem sources are accusing me of being a Eurosceptic classics crank? Dear oh dear. Well, I am sure we can put it all behind us, because there was something about the amazing events of last week that has filled the nation – me included – with a giddy helium-lunged feeling of hope." – Boris Johnson in the Daily Telegraph

And finally… Nick and Miriam's invitation to dinner

"David Cameron made a key coalition pledge yesterday – promising to invite Nick Clegg and his wife Miriam over for dinner. The Prime Minister, who has just moved into Downing Street, said he and his wife Samantha were already planning to have their new best friends over for the evening." – The Sun


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