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- Policing isn't a numbers games, insists James Brokenshire, as officer numbers fall to 2001 levels
- Labour MPs seize on Jeremy Hunt's suggestion that PM did talk about BSkyB with News Intl executives
3pm Updated ToryDiary: The Government may recognise polygamous shariah marriages
2.30pm ToryDiary: Government to establish "working group on Anti-Muslim Hatred"
Noon ToryDiary: Muslim groups to face funding "public interest test"
Noon ConHomeUSA: Today's US political headlines
Dr Richard Wellings on Comment: High Speed 2 is a flawed project: "While certain areas will undoubtedly benefit from a large injection of taxpayers’ money, there will be wider economic losses from the additional taxes needed to fund the scheme. It is well known that higher taxes destroy wealth – by reducing work incentives and hampering investment, for example – yet this has not been factored into the government’s assessment of the wider economic impact of HS2."
Dominic Raab MP on Comment: Making it easier to deport serious criminals
Local government: How the Prince's Foundation can help with city regeneration
- Piers Morgan accuses Louise Mensch MP of "blatant lies" after she had acccused him of admitting phone hacking
- Philip Hammond defends Cameron from claims he had inappropriate discussions with News Intl about BSkyB bid
Osborne tells eurozone leaders ‘get a grip’
"George Osborne has urged eurozone leaders to “get a grip” on the sovereign debt crisis at their summit today, warning that failure to do so could unleash an economic crisis as serious as the recession that followed the banking crash of 2008. The chancellor told the Financial Times he was “very worried” about the possibility of the eurozone crisis spiralling out of control, warning that it posed an additional threat to Britain’s already “tough” economic situation." – FT (£)
- Ed Balls attacks Tories for lack of leadership over European debt crisis – Guardian
- A new eurozone bond looks the most likely solution to stop the euro blowing apart – Dan Hannan in The Telegraph
- Fixing the €uro – John Redwood
Also from the Chancellor's FT (£) interview: "With Britain’s economy barely growing, George Osborne has promised to publish plans for supply side reforms to boost growth this autumn, including possible tax tweaks to boost enterprise."
> Andrew Lilico on Comment yesterday: Five ways forward for the €uro
Britain's BIG state
"This is the third year in a row that state spending will be worth more than half of national income: it was 51 per cent last year and 51.2 per cent in 2009. Britain is one of just eight OECD countries out of 32 to be saddled with public spending worth over half the output of their economy. Spending is set to drop to 48.8 per cent of GDP in 2012 but even that relatively small reduction could be derailed if the economy continues to slow." – Allister Heath in City AM
Meanwhile, Sun attacks other European governments for inadequate response to African famine
"Shame on Europe for abandoning millions of Africans to die of starvation.
Shame on strutting European leaders who build fancy palaces in Brussels while turning their backs on children dying in the dust for want of a handful of grain.
Africa is in the grip of its worst famine since the disaster that led to the Live Aid concerts of 1985.
Aid agencies need £650million immediately to avert catastrophe in Somalia, Ethiopia and Kenya.
Britain has rightly taken the lead, putting up £90million…
But what of rich France and Italy, who love to lecture Britain on moral responsibility?
So far, barely a penny extra. And what of Germany, the economic titan of Europe? A pitiful £5million."
Cameron and the 11 chances to deny talks over BSkyB – Daily Mail
VIDEO: Answering question from Dennis Skinner, Cameron denies any "inappropriate conversations" with News Intl about BSkyB bid
Andy Coulson was granted only mid-level government clearance, so avoiding the most rigorous security checks into his background – Guardian
- David Cameron finally says he regrets hiring Andy Coulson – Telegraph
- Francis Maude, then Tory Chairman, never given opportunity to approve Andy Coulson's appointment – Independent
- Why Tories don't want the hacking inquiry to drag on – Andrew Grice in The Independent
- "The prime minister’s continued refusal to apologise for appointing Mr Coulson looks bizarre in light of recent revelations. There were plenty of warnings about Mr Coulson’s propinquity to the scandal that should have raised doubts about his claim to have known nothing about it. Mr Cameron ignored all of them." – FT leader (£)
> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Cameron toughens position on Andy Coulson: I wouldn't have hired him if I knew what I know now
"David Cameron began his reign as Conservative Party leader with a clear strategy of creating distance between himself and Rupert Murdoch, according to his former press chief…"
"Writing exclusively for PRWeek, George Eustice reveals that Cameron was initially determined to 'send a signal' to editors and proprietors – and to Murdoch, in particular."
Norman Tebbit and Steve Richards reflect on Cameron's qualities
Cameron seems to lack the ability or will to get decisions right – Lord Tebbit in The Guardian
"Cameron and George Osborne are not yet fully formed political leaders. They acquired power at a relatively young age and with no previous ministerial experience. Their political strategy is still derivative rather than fresh and authentic." – Steve Richards in The Independent
John McTernan reflects on the Downing Street operation
"What should Downing Street have done? Well, the first rule of crisis management is that you need to understand the full dimensions of the problem. That means assembling all the facts: getting everyone together, collecting all the data, making sure that you know exactly what happened and when. Above all, it requires you to ask all the questions that you know will be put to you, especially the ones that you fear the most. This has clearly not been done." – John McTernan in The Telegraph
David Cameron gets warm reception at end-of-term meeting of 1922 Committee
The Prime Minister was given a very warm reception and stayed for 28 minutes. In response to a question from Sajid Javid MP who urged the PM to renegotiate Britain's relationship with the EU if Treaty changes followed a €urozone crisis, Mr Cameron said he was already sharpening his pencils for the negotiations. He warned, however, that the Liberal Democrats would have to support any changes.
At The Spectator James Forsyth notes the PM's reflections on Hackgate: "He recalled how Peter Tapsell, the veteran Tory MP, had said of him that ‘he had never known a Prime Minister more adept at getting out of scrapes. But he had also never known a Prime Minister who got into so many scrapes.’ Cameron finished by saying that he’d try to get into fewer scrapes in the future and get out of them quicker than he had this one."
Piers Morgan demands Louise Mensch MP apology over hacking 'lies' – BBC
The BBC's biased coverage of Murdoch's problems has been one of the most shaming aspects of this saga – Stephen Glover in the Daily Mail
Simon Hughes calls for university scholarships in every school – BBC
"Youngsters will be urged to start thinking about their careers from the age of ten under plans unveiled today by the Coalition's education access czar, Simon Hughes." – Daily Mail
Independent Commission on Banking's recommendations riddled with holes say MPs – Independent
And finally… Unqualified Barclays CEO lands PM's plane
"Bob Diamond, the controversial chief executive of Barclays Bank, is at the centre of a security storm after it was claimed he had been allowed to land the prime minister's plane despite not having a pilot's licence… The millionaire was said to have taken control of the chartered Virgin Atlantic flight as it returned to London from David Cameron's tour of Africa." – Telegraph
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