7.45pm WATCH: Archive from this day in 1992 – John Major wins historic fourth general election victory for the Conservatives

Picture 145pm WATCH: Royston Smith, Conservative leader of Southampton Council, recounts his fight to disarm the gunman on HMS Astute

2.45pm Martin Cakebread on Comment: Is it time for the functions of the RAF to be transferred to the Army and Navy?

12.30pm LeftWatch: Green London Assembly Member and Mayoral candidate says squatting is "an excellent thing to do"

11.30am WATCH: Barack Obama and congressional leaders forge a last-minute deal on cuts to prevent a Government shutdown

ToryDiary: Budget boosts Osborne and Libya boosts Hague in latest Cabinet Satisfaction league table

Margaret Thatcher John Phelan on Comment: Why I'm proud to call myself one of Thatcher's children

Seats and Candidates: Final list of nominated Conservative candidates for the Welsh Assembly election

Local Government: Community Right to Buy could help save pubs

Gazette: The UK Liberty League – a new network of young libertarians – was launched at last weekend's Freedom Forum

WATCH: George Osborne insists that the UK is "very, very unlikely" to suffer any financial loss from a move to bail out Portugal

Ken Clarke reportedly accuses Cameron of treating Andrew Lansley badly…

Picture 6 "Kenneth Clarke has complained in private about the treatment of the health secretary, Andrew Lansley, amid mounting concerns across Whitehall that Downing Street abandons ministers when opposition grows to agreed policies. The justice secretary, who made his name as a radical health secretary under Margaret Thatcher, has told colleagues that the treatment of Lansley is unfair… One source said: "Cabinet ministers are, one by one, drawing up the dots and realising there is no collegiality. They are being left on their own and isolated." – The Guardian

…as the Telegraph reflects on a "week of compromises"…

"There is a fine line between short-term tactical disarray and long-term strategic confusion. The question is whether Mr Cameron has crossed it. No one would dispute that he was forced into some messy and embarrassing compromises this week… This is not actually a full-blown crisis. The Government is still on course to achieve its central objectives of cutting spending and reforming welfare and education… This was not the week in which Mr Cameron crossed the line from tactical mess to strategic failure." – Daily Telegraph editorial

…and others identify Cameron's style of government as a problem

"Some of David Cameron's natural allies believe the Government's health problem stems as much from the Prime Minister's style of government as the complacency of the Health Secretary. Like the U-turn over the mad attempt to sell off England's public forests, the NHS controversy has shed light on the Coalition Government's main weakness so far – the absence of a strong enough centre at Downing Street." – Andrew Grice in The Independent

  • David Cameron's well-oiled winning machine is now a car crash – Polly Toynbee in The Guardian

George Osborne says the UK won't bail out Portugal…

George Osborne 2011 headshot "Britain has no plans to offer the Portuguese government a direct loan as it seeks an international bail-out, George Osborne insisted on Friday. The Chancellor said he remained focused on reducing the UK's budget deficit, which stands at about £122bn this year, as he spoke at a meeting of European finance ministers and central bank governors in Hungary. "I made it clear that unlike the Irish case the UK will not be making a bilateral loan to Portugal. British taxpayers' money will not be lent directly to Portugal," he said." – Daily Telegraph

  • Eurosceptic Tories demand Comons recall to discuss bailout – The Sun
  • UK should limit Portugal payout says Ed Balls (whose party signed the treaty that means we HAVE to pay) – Daily Mail
  • The failure of the euro will signify the failure of the European ideal – Simon Heffer in the Daily Telegraph

…as he plans to welcome bank reforms…

"George Osborne is to welcome controversial proposals to make Britain’s biggest banks safer, including the idea of ring-fencing “essential” banking services that could cost the banks up to £4bn to £5bn in extra funding and capital costs. The chancellor is braced for a backlash from some banks, but is said by allies to be ready to face them down. “To be honest, being criticised by banks is not necessarily a negative thing at the moment,” said one ally of the chancellor." – FT (£)

…and the Treasury select committee condemns the leaking of the Budget

Andrew Tyrie"The Treasury has been condemned by an influential group of MPs for leaking important tax and benefit changes before the budget, which they described as "corrosive of good government"… Committee chairman Andrew Tyrie warned that the culture of "spinning and leaking" rendered budget day "otiose" and made "more important the following few days, when you found out how much it had unravelled". He added that the culture of spin should be firmly rejected by George Osborne's Treasury." – The Guardian

  • Chancellor George Osborne has prepared secret plan to ease cuts, say MPs – Daily Telegraph
  • Business chiefs who backed coalition cuts raise fears for UK economy – The Guardian

Growing numbers of universities set to charge £9,000 fees

"The Coalition’s policy on tuition fees risked descending into chaos after it emerged that two thirds of universities would charge the maximum £9,000 a year for degree courses… The Government had said fees of more than £6,000 would be levied only in “exceptional circumstances”. Last night David Willetts, the universities minister, said he now estimated the average fee would be pitched between £7,500 and £8,000." – Daily Telegraph

William Hague says Moussa Koussa "could leave Britain"…

William Hague 2011 "Moussa Koussa, the Libyan defector, could be allowed to leave the country, William Hague has said. The foreign secretary said Mr Koussa, who faces inquiries from the International Criminal Court and families of the victims of Libyan terrorists, would not be forced to return to Libya, adding: "There are quite a range of places that he could go to live." Mr Hague's comments, in an interview with Sky News, came as relatives of the Lockerbie bombing victims accepted he may never face trial in Britain." – Daily Telegraph

…as he promises to lift the lid on "Britain's secret past"

"William Hague pledged complete transparency on Britain’s imperial past yesterday, saying that he would appoint an independent figure to oversee the release of all potentially incriminating evidence removed from former colonies. “This process of transparency is overdue, essential to upholding our moral authority as a nation, and in the long-term interests of our country,” he said. The Foreign Secretary said that the secret files revealing evidence of abuse during the Mau Mau insurgency, revealed by The Times this week, should have been “properly recorded and made available to the public”. – The Times (£)

News of the World admits liability to eight individuals over phone hacking

NEWS OF THE WORLD "News International's admission that it was responsible for the hacking of the phones of public figures ranging from a former member of the Cabinet to a Hollywood actress represents a seismic moment for the management of Britain's biggest newspaper publisher, reverberating all the way back to Rupert Murdoch." – The Independent

"Yesterday's admission of liability first became possible when Andy Coulson stepped down as David Cameron's director of communications – because to do so when he was in post would have triggered an immediate resignation." – The Guardian

"John Whittingdale MP, Conservative chairman of the DCMS committee, said on Friday: “It has become abundantly clear for some time that the assurances [over the original inquiry] given by the News of the World were untrue.” He added that the internal inquiry “was probably rather less thorough than they would have liked us to believe. Clearly they did not trawl through every e-mail, which was perhaps the impression that they gave,” Mr Whittingdale said." – FT (£)

John Redwood: Libraries are too middle class and we're right to be shutting them

"Libraries pander too much to the middle classes, John Redwood claimed yesterday. The former Tory leadership contender said it was right to consider shutting many of them because they did not serve their communities properly. He suggested that universities and secondary schools could open up their libraries to the public instead." – Daily Mail

> Read John Redwood's blog post on the issue for yourself

Tory council leader explains how he wrestled to the ground the gunman on HMS Astute

Smith Royston "A council leader has spoken of how he wrestled a gunman to the ground after he shot at two Royal Navy officers on board a nuclear-powered submarine, killing one… Southampton City Council leader Royston Smith was visiting the submarine with other local dignitaries while it was berthed at the Eastern Docks on a five-day official visit to the city. He described how he "wrestled" the gunman to the ground in the submarine's control room as he attempted to stop him, telling the BBC: "Two shots were fired, straight after he entered the control room again and began shooting again. I ran towards him, I pushed him against the wall, we wrestled to take the gun from him." – Press Association

Nick Clegg says introducing AV would be "very British"

"Switching to the Alternative Vote for Westminster elections would be "a very British reform", Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg will say. Mr Clegg – who has previously described AV as "a miserable little compromise" and campaigned for other more proportional voting systems – will say that the British way has always been "reform by instalments" rather than sudden revolutionary change." – Daily Express

Clegg took "the art of political gaffes to a new high" this week

"Clegg showed once again that neither he nor his advisers have learnt about the need to carry out due diligence on a politician's own track record before making a policy announcement. So a substantive idea – to try to open up internships to students from all backgrounds – was overshadowed this week when Labour pointed out the deputy prime minister once benefited from work experience at a Finnish bank organised by his father." – The Guardian

No blank cheques, Miliband is warned by union leader

Len McCluskey "Britain’s biggest union is withholding vital financial support from Ed Miliband until the Labour leader demonstrates that he is listening to the demands of its members. Len McCluskey, the general secretary of the Unite union, Labour’s biggest single donor, said that he had not authorised any lump-sum donations to Mr Miliband since he succeeded Gordon Brown as leader last year. It is the first major sign that unions are expecting to be rewarded after their members delivered Mr Miliband victory over his brother David in Labour’s leadership election." – The Times (£)

News in brief

  • New guidelines will allow you to drive at 86mph on a motorway and escape a fine – Daily Mail
  • Taxpayers paying millions in benefits to jobless Poles, back in Poland – Daily Express
  • Labour's school building scheme 'wasted £2.5bn' – The Independent
  • By attacking excellent schools, the Coalition is making a dysfunctional system even worse -  Charles Moore in the Daily Telegraph
  • Labour-run Enfield bids to ban spitting in the street – Daily Mail
  • Cash-strapped Lambeth funds a celebration of the Brixton riots – Daily Mail
  • US Congress agrees last-minute budget deal – BBC
  • Defections to new Radical party hit Sarkozy's hopes of re-election – The Independent

And finally… David and Sam Cam relax in a decidedly shabby bar on budget break in Spain

Samantha and David Cameron "With budget flights and a 'mid-market' hotel, Samantha Cameron's 40th birthday treat was possibly not the most lavish celebration she could have envisaged. Mindful of how a luxury holiday would appear amid massive public spending cuts, she and husband David were decidedly restrained in how they marked her landmark age. The trip even included a pit stop for a drink in a bar which, while surely welcome in the heat of the south of Spain, was certainly not upmarket Claridge's, complete as it was with green plastic chairs and peeling paint." – Daily Mail


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