6pm Latest on CentreRight:
- Max Wind-Cowie: Tories shouldn’t fear Turkey's accession to the EU
- Alex Deane: Of course the BBC tax should be reduced – if it's to continue at all
- Claims that Conservatives have invited Martin McGuinness to speak at this autumn's Party Conference are wrong
- Why Phillip Hollobone should reconsider his surgery veil view
Hague labels Lockerbie bomber’s release a "mistake"…
"Foreign Secretary William Hague has called the decision to free the Lockerbie bomber ‘a mistake’, it was reported last night. His views were revealed amid growing pressure in the U.S. over Abdelbaset Al-Megrahi’s release, with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton demanding to know whether oil company BP had any behind-the-scenes role." – Daily Mail
…As Obama concerns over the incident overshadows Cameron's U.S visit
"The growing controversy over BP's role in the decision to release the Lockerbie bomber is threatening to overshadow David Cameron's first visit to Washington as Prime Minister. It comes just days after a powerful senate committee announced it wants to question BP executives at a hearing into the affair in 10 days' time. Mr Cameron is set to reiterate that BP's Libyan oil contracts were not behind the release of Abdulbaset al-Megrahi by the Scottish government on compassionate grounds." – Daily Telegraph
Blair "held secret talks with Gaddafi"
"Tony Blair was flown to Libya for secret talks with Colonel Gaddafi just days after denying he was an adviser to the dictator. Mr Blair was 'entertained as a brother', a senior Libyan government source has revealed. He told the Daily Mail that the former prime minister had offered Gaddafi, with whom he is on first-name terms, 'a great deal of invaluable advice'." – Daily Mail
Clinton asks Government to explain bomber's release – The Times
Clegg: We'll make Britain a liberal nation
"The Deputy Prime Minister claimed that his power-sharing deal with the Conservatives will entrench his Liberal Democrats' values by the time of the next election. The Coalition’s policies are “liberalism in action,” Mr Clegg told a London think thank. The speech was intended to reassure wavering Lib Dem voters, but risked angering Conservatives who believe the Lib Dems are exerting too much influence over the government's agenda. Mr Clegg said: "Now that the Liberal Democrats are in government, liberal ideas are being deployed directly. What you are seeing is liberalism in action." – Daily Telegraph
Willetts to graduates: if you can't get a job, start a business
Students leaving university this summer should cast off "old-fashioned" ideas about what constitutes a graduate job and instead consider starting a business, a government minister has said. David Willetts, the universities minister, told the Guardian that thousands of young people leaving higher education this summer to compete for jobs should rethink what they consider to be a graduate career. He said: "I think one of the interesting pieces of evidence is that, although graduates don't always start in a so-called graduate job, they then have a good chance of moving on to one." – Guardian
Conservatives break up Parliament early "to stop Clegg strutting his stuff two weeks in a row"
"Next week, David Cameron is making his first trip to Washington, so Nick Clegg was to stand in for him at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday…But the following week, Cameron is off to India, which would have meant Clegg strutting his stuff for two weeks in a row. Suddenly, the Tory high command was nervous. What if Clegg turned out to be good at it? What impression would it give if Cameron is seen travelling the globe leaving a Liberal Democrat in charge for two weeks running? Rather than risk it, they are closing Parliament down on a Tuesday" – Andy McSmith in the Independent
Legal Aid faces "brutal" cuts
Officials working for Kenneth Clarke, the Justice Secretary, have drawn up plans to cut “hundreds of millions” of pounds from the £2.2 billion budget for Legal Aid. The plan is among blueprints for cuts in public spending worth more than £40 billion handed to the Treasury. Whitehall departments yesterday submitted plans for deep spending cuts that will lead to many public services being scaled back or even scrapped. The Whitehall cuts could amount to £32 billion over four years. Spending in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland could be cut by another £12." – Daily Telegraph
Maude confirms two-week cancer guarantee on "Question Time" – BBC
Vanessa Feltz quizzes Boris over his private life…
"Boris Johnson dodged a relentless barrage of questions about his private life during a radio interview yesterday. Vanessa Feltz quizzed the Mayor of London over reports that he was at the centre of a row over the paternity of a wealthy socialite’s baby. He refused to discuss reports that Helen Macintyre, 36, split from her long-term partner Pierre Rolin after a bitter bust-up involving Mr Johnson." – Daily Express
…As Daily Mail keeps up its pressure on the Mayor
"I realise that we live in a world where an extra-marital affair does not prevent a man or woman from reaching high office (just as well or we’d have precious few politicians left).
But Boris’s sexual antics display the sort of reckless selfishness and contempt for women we’d expect from some ‘babyfather’ thug on the worst inner London sink estates — not from the Mayor of our capital city." – Daily Mail
Boris clashed with Hammond over free bus pass cut proposal – Channel 4 News.
Government can learn from EasyJet, says Cameron (to EasyJet workers) – Politics Home
Parliament Square protestors lose legal challenge against eviction – Guardian
I'll bar my constituency surgery to veil-wearing women, says Hollobone – Independent
Peter Oborne: How Vince Cable has positioned himself as the Coalition's rebel leader – Daily Mail
Charles Moore: Lord Mandelson is flawed, but he does have a salutary tale to tell – Daily Telegraph
Anthony Seldon: Our education system is collapsing into a form of mass indoctrination – Independent
Please use this thread
to highlight other interesting news and commentary and visit PoliticsHome.com
for breaking political news and views throughout the day.