Cameron@Davos2 8.30pm ToryDiary: Cameron enjoys 20% lead over "weird" Ed Miliband as best choice for PM

2pm ConHomeUSA: Today's top Republican and American political news

1.30pm WATCH: David Cameron talks about the "desperately, desperately sad" Welsh mining tragedy

11.30am: Roger Helmer MEP on Comment: Why the government is wrong on same-sex marriage

10am: ConservativeAccountability: Our Making Britain Better series continues with Alan Duncan, Minister for International Development

ToryDiary: Cameron gives go ahead for civil marriage for same-sex couples

Alice Barnard on Comment: Alice Barnard: How to prevent the planning debate from dividing into two rival camps

Local Government: Redwood says localism is not yet proving reality

Clegg says he's only ditch 50p tax rate in return for mansion and land taxes

Screen shot 2011-09-17 at 08.39.48
"Mr Clegg made clear that the Liberal Democrats would back abolition of the 50p rate in the long run only if it is not raising much revenue and if it is replaced by new taxes on "unearned income". These could include a 1 per cent annual "mansion tax" on homes worth more than £2m, a land tax, and restricting tax relief on pensions to the basic 20p rate." - Independent 

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: David Laws should be put in charge of a Government drive for growth

…while Huhne brands Conservative Eurosceptics as "wrong again and again"

HUHNE BBC INTERVIEW "Turning his fire on Eurosceptic Tory MPs, he said: “The traditional British sport ever since the 1950s of predicting that whatever the Europeans are up to will come to nothing because they are a bunch of incompetents … will once again be proved completely wrong. “The political will in the eurozone is such that it means there will be success, it will work, the euro will be around for a long time to come” - Times

  • Daily Mail Comment: 'Seize the moment to reform our EU deal' - Daily Mail
  • Simon Heffer on Europe: the EU is not dead, but it is terminal  - Daily Mail

> Yesterday's Comment: Simon Jenkins, Matthew Parris, Camilla Cavendish and Max Hastings lead Fleet Street's rush towards Euroscepticism

> Yesterday's WATCH: 

As Nick Clegg prepares for the Lib Dem conference, he says the Coalition should be making headlines for more than just cuts

"Mr Clegg accepts that the Coalition has entered a different phase since his party was routed in the May local elections and voting-system referendum. "We always fought our corner. The only difference is that some of that is more transparent now," he says. "You have got a strike a balance. You cannot run a government where you spend all your time hanging out your dirty linen" - Independent

  • "Clegg could soothe Lib Dems, but what about the voters?' - Independent
  • Time for the Liberal Democrats to establish their own identity? - Independent
  • Evan Harris: "Liberal Democrats must reject the Toryisation of our conference" - Guardian

Vince Cable calls for tax cuts and a major capital investment programme to stimulate the economy

Cable Vince August 2011 "It was perfectly sensible economics, he said, to allow spending to rise in the wake of higher unemployment and lower revenues. He added: "The danger of not acting is that you get a vicious downward spiral." Cable also tried to change the terms of the public debate on the economy, saying absolute distinctions between plan A and a plan B were "proving very unhelpful". He suggested plan A plus, but said it was better to move on to new language" - Guardian

  • Danny Alexander predicts a "long, slow road" to economic recovery  - FT

A book being serialised in the Daily Mail claims a secret election pact between the Tories and the Lib Dems  

"An explosive biography of Nick Clegg reveals the party had a  similar arrangement with Labour at the three general elections between 1997 and 2005 to try to keep the Tories out of power. A highly-placed Lib Dem is quoted as saying: ‘We could do the same  with the Conservatives if we are still  in Coalition" - Daily Mail

  • James Forsyth on the claims that the Lib Dems are keen for a new coalition agreement - Spectator
  • Polly Toynbee argues that there is still a future for Labour and the Lib Dems - Guardian

> Yesterday's WATCH: Chris Skidmore MP on a Lib Dem free government

63% of British people do not see the point of the Liberal Democrats according to new YouGov poll

Screen shot 2011-09-17 at 06.59.53

"It shows the party's popularity has nosedived even further since last year when 56 per cent said they had no clue what they stood for.  The humiliating indictment in a YouGov poll for The Sun comes as Nick Clegg's battered party kicks off its annual conference today in Birmingham" - Sun

Chris Huhne says that some consumers are not pro-active enough to shop around for the best energy bills

"Mr Huhne told The Times that families could treat themselves to a £300 mini-break if they showed as much interest in hunting for gas and electricity bargains as they did with smaller items. “They do not bother,” he said. “They frankly spend less time shopping around for a bill that’s on average more than £1,000 a year than they would shop around for a £25 toaster" - Times

After Cameron's successes in Libya, Patrick O'Flynn urges Cameron not to forget the home front - Daily Express

Government is to introduce plans to make same-sex marriage legal by 2015

"Vowing to be a personal ‘champion for gay rights’, Miss Featherstone will risk controversy by arguing that the Coalition should go even further in future. At present, gays and lesbians are allowed to enter civil partnerships, which offer most of the legal protections of marriage. But the term ‘marriage’ is not used" - Daily Mail

  • David Cameron 'emphatically in favour' of same-sex marriage - Pink News

Elizabeth Truss MP writes of the importance of core subjects in education reforms  

Truss "A rigorous core including maths, English, single sciences, a language and history until 16 should be combined with an A-level Baccalaureate of high quality A-levels that gives students a clear signal about what universities want. A strong technical or arts Bacc with employer or institutional sponsorship should also be available for 16- to 18-year-olds. This will provide students with a clear path to success" - Guardian

A group of Tory MPs in the book, 'After the Coalition' set out plans for schools to fast-track best students 

"On education, the MPs advocate that Britain should adopt Canada's "escalator principle" under which the most able can move faster through the system but students who fail to reach a minimum standard will be held back" - Guardian

Cameron's poverty czar, Frank Field would force school leavers to work, rather than welfare under new proposals

"Mr Field told The Times that under his plan, school and university leavers would go straight into low-paid subsidised jobs, rather than being able to claim jobseeker’s allowance. Pay would be at benefit levels. “I think the next stage will be workfare, where we abolish welfare as we have known it so that no young person just goes on benefit,” he said" - Times

The cost of Britain's social problems is put at £100bn – FT

Graeme Archer on the "perversity" of Britain's diversity regulations – how this is bad for men, women and minorities  

"The idea that the interpersonal decency required for a common good life can be legislated into existence would be laughable were we not living with the consequences of trying to make it happen. The entirely predictable endpoint of all this – a mass of court cases, with more and more groups demanding the right to be “protected” (Christians are the latest) – will not make a single human being more good, or more happy" - Telegraph

Janice Turner on the "a desperate recompense" which characterises Tory policy towards women - Times (£)

Jonathan Djangoly could personally profit from legal aid cuts bill he is pushing 

Djangoly "Jonathan Djanogly, the legal services minister, is pushing a bill through parliament which will attempt to slash the budget for legal aid by £350m as well as forcing claimants to pay out of any awarded damages their lawyers' success fees and insurance policies that cover court costs. Experts say this will benefit the insurance industry by at least "hundreds of millions of pounds"- Guardian

A former adviser to the Government's Planning reforms attacks the proposal

"Simon Marsh, the acting head of sustainable development at the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, today disowns the policy he helped devise, saying it is now balanced too much in favour of development. He complains that his original proposals were warped and changed by those in the Government “who don’t place a high value on the environment” - Telegraph

Matthew Parris recommends an end to "Punch and Judy" politics

"The voters have always claimed to detest (while avidly watching) the parliamentary brawl; for about three centuries, and wherever two or three Englishmen are gathered together, it’s been easy to raise a cheer by lamenting the childishness and sheer bad manners of our politicians’ debate; and another cheer by insisting that our nation’s problems might better be solved if only (and how my heart sinks at the repetition) “men and women of goodwill would just sit down together and decide what’s best for the country” - Times (£)

Damian Thompson asks whether the EDL is the new voice of the white working class 

Edl "The EDL isn’t the National Front or even the British National Party. It’s not a fascist party, more of an angry white rentamob. And the racism is different, too: not so much about colour, more about culture.  But here’s the worrying thing. The EDL and its sympathisers appear, at first glance, to be more representative of a section of the English working class – especially in London – than the old “far Right” ever was" - Telegraph

In what is seen as an audacious move, Martin McGuinness announces his intention to stand for the Irish Presidency

"The announcement is already being billed as the republican movement's most audacious act since IRA prisoner Bobby Sands stood as an MP.  Sinn Fein president Gerry Adams said: "The officer board will recommend that the candidate will be Martin McGuinness. "Sinn Fein believes that the office of Uachtaran na hEireann has been made more relevant by Mary Robinson and by President Mary McAleese" - Sky News

Matthew Norman on a Kinnock finally winning an election, after his daughter-in-law becomes Danish Prime Minister – Telegraph


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