8.15pm ToryDiary: David Cameron speaks to the United Nations General Assembly, attacks the United Nations

Nick Clegg6.45pm WATCH: A Nick Clegg double-bill…

5.15pm LeftWatch: Clegg’s passable speech tries to distinguish his party from the Tories while also toeing the Coalition line

2.15pm Binita Mehta on Comment: The Olympic summer of 2012 has reignited our pride in being British

12.30pm LeftWatch update: The Lib Dems take aim at Eric Pickles and his planning proposals

Shield10.30am WATCH: David Cameron reaffirms his commitment to the United Nations' aid target

ToryDiary: The aims of David Cameron's New York trip

Lord Flight on Comment: The Treasury needs to be more imaginative when it comes to tax

Local Government: Increase in number of children in care

The Deep End: Noam Chomsky: Not even right about linguistics

WATCH: David Cameron answers questions about Andrew Mitchell from New York

Cameron in New York 1): Speaking to the UN, he reaffirmed our international aid commitment…

Cameron"On Tuesday, the prime minister reaffirmed his commitment to increase Britain's aid spending and challenged world leaders to honour their promises on aid for developing countries. … Mr Cameron – who is co-chairing the UN meeting to plan for an international aid framework after 2015 – argued that aid should be more transparent and accountable." – BBC

> Today on ToryDiary: The aims of David Cameron's New York trip

Cameron in New York 2): …and will express optimism about developments in the Middle East

"David Cameron will today declare that the movement that ousted rulers in Egypt, Libya and Tunisia remains a force for good, rejecting warnings that new Arab governments are allowing Islamic militancy to flourish. … The Prime Minister is attending the United Nations General Assembly in New York, where he will meet the new rulers of Egypt and Libya." – Daily Telegraph

  • UK to advise Egypt on quelling Sinai militants – Guardian

Cameron in New York 3): He makes surprise appearance at a technolocy conference

"The young founders at the New York headquarters of General Assembly, a global network of technology entrepreneurs, were blown away when Cameron arrived and peppered them with questions about their startups." - VentureBeat

Cameron in New York 4): Preparing for his appearance on the Letterman show

Letterman"Mr Cameron is finally scheduled to appear on the Late Show with David Letterman – a fixture on US screens for 30 years which attracts a daily audience of around three million. … It will make him the first serving British prime minister to be interviewed on the programme and he is expected to use the appearance to 'bang the drum' for investment and tourism in Britain – according to his aides." – BBC

  • "Mr Letterman rarely offers anything approaching the threat that Mr Cameron might face in a Jeremy Paxman interview or if he ventured on to a studio sofa with a prurient UK host like Jonathan Ross or Russell Brand." – Guardian editorial
  • Will David Cameron or David Letterman have the last word? – Clive Anderson, Daily Telegraph

The Prime Minister's Twitter feed will be launched at party conferenceDaily Telegraph

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: David Cameron is joining Twitter

From the Lib Dem conference 1): In his Big Speech, Nick Clegg will urge the Lib Dems to fight on

Clegg"The Deputy Prime Minister will use his keynote speech to the party’s annual conference to admit that walking out of the Government is ‘an alluring prospect in some ways’. … But he will insist there can be no return for the Lib Dems to a ‘stop the world I want to get off party’ – a swipe at critics who want to install a left-wing leader such as Business Secretary Vince Cable or party president Tim Farron in his place. … He will seek to paint the Lib Dems as an emerging ‘party of government’, with sources saying he believes the most likely outcome of the next election is another hung Parliament." – Daily Mail

  • Mr Clegg will announce £500 million in funding for "catch-up" tuition – Daily Telegraph


  • Nick Clegg must make a Left turn to save the Lib Dems from disaster – Mary Riddell, Daily Telegraph
  • The decent rich do exist. Clegg should say so – Alice Thomson, The Times (£)

From the Lib Dem conference 2): The Lib Dem leader also calls for universal benefits to be curtailed

"The Deputy Prime Minister said giving free television licences, winter fuel payments and free bus passes to everyone was increasingly 'difficult to explain'. … The Liberal Democrat leader pledged to continue to support universal benefits for the elderly, worth hundreds of pounds per person every year, until 2015 but suggested that the handouts are then reconsidered." – Daily Telegraph

From the Lib Dem conference 3): Miriam Clegg talks children, fathers and motherhood

Miriam Clegg"In a rare interview, Mrs Clegg said: ‘Of course every man who has children should be involved in their lives, that’s why they have them. … ‘If they don’t want to be involved, they shouldn’t have them, no?’ … She dismissed suggestions that she was a role model for women, saying it was the low-paid working mothers who deserved praise. … ‘The role model is the woman who is the shop attendant who is there from nine to five and the money she is receiving doesn’t allow her to pay for childcare and somehow she manages to give her children all the opportunities. Life is full of these kinds of exceptional women.’" – Daily Mail

From the Lib Dem conference 4): Lib Dem party members reject the Government's "secret courts" policy

"Nick Clegg suffered a humiliating setback yesterday when his party conference voted to scrap controversial plans for a major extension of ‘secret  justice’ courts. … Delegates in Brighton voted overwhelmingly for the widely criticised Justice and Security Bill to be abandoned. … The move means Lib Dem peers are almost certain to refuse to back the legislation in the House of Lords." – Daily Mail

From the Lib Dem conference 5): Norman Lamb proposes an independent arbiter to help the Government to reach a solution on social case

"An independent arbiter would be called in to overcome Treasury resistance to writing a big new cheque for social care, under a plan devised by one of Nick Clegg’s closest ministerial allies. … The move by Norman Lamb, new care services minister, is intended to give fresh impetus to Andrew Dilnot’s plan to cap individual costs of care for elderly and disabled people at about £35,000." – Financial Times (£)

  • Crisis in social care costs Britain over £5bn a year – Independent

From the Lib Dem conference 6): Lib Dems may block proposals to allow people to build 25ft extensions without planning permissionDaily Telegraph

> Yesterday:

Andrew Mitchell may have to make a third apology…

Andrew Mitchell"Two senior Government sources last night said Mr Mitchell would have to make a third apology for his behaviour – following a statement and a ‘car crash’ on-camera interview on Monday. … ‘He won’t be made to do it, but he’s going to have to say something more,’ one official said. ,,, Colleagues expressed dismay that Mr Mitchell was not showing the level of regret that the affair merited. … One said: ‘The trouble is that Andrew doesn’t appear very contrite.’" – Daily Mail

…as various other Mitchell-related details emerge

  • "The Prime Minister will support Mr Mitchell after reading an official police log showing the chief whip abused officers as 'f—— plebs'. … Sources confirmed that The Prime Minister read the police record of the incident for the first time yesterday when it was published by The Daily Telegraph." – Daily Telegraph
  • "A senior backbench MP last night said Mr Mitchell’s behaviour made him unsuitable to be a whip in charge of disciplining the party. … 'The chief whip needs to be good at intelligence gathering and gentle persuading, not shouting at people,' he said. 'People are already saying if he tries to impose discipline we’ll tell him to f—off in his own language.'" – Daily Telegraph
  • Mr Mitchell has asked for a ministerial Jaguar for the Chief Whip's office – Sun
  • "Mr Mitchell’s great-gran, also called Ellen, was an East End charwoman, according to the 1901 Census." – Daily Mirror

> Yesterday:

Chris Grayling takes on the judges over their gold-plated pensions

Chris Grayling"Chris Grayling is set to trigger a constitutional clash with judges over cuts to their 'gold-plated' pensions. … The new Justice Secretary will meet Lord Judge, the Lord Chief Justice, and other senior judges over what they believe is a breach in their contracts of employment. Mr Grayling is thought to see the dispute as a chance to draw first blood in his dealings with the judiciary. A Whitehall source said that he was unlikely to make many concessions." – The Times (£)

The Independent focuses on Michael Gove's (and David Laws's)
new adviser

"Dr Tim Leunig, who will now assist Mr Gove
in his reforms of the education system, was co-author of a controversial 2008
report which appeared to suggest giving up on regeneration attempts in
Liverpool, Bradford, Sunderland and Hull and abandoning the cities to permanent
economic decline … The then Leader of the
Opposition David Cameron criticised the ideas at the time. He said of the
London School of Economics lecturer: "I gather he's off to Australia. The
sooner he gets on the ship the better.'" – Independent

> Yesterday, by John Bald on Local Government: Shifting from coursework to a final exam will not increase stress

David Davis takes on the Cabinet Secretary over the proposed BAE merger

DD"David Davis said the Defence Select Committee – which is probing the proposed link up between BAE and civil aviation firm EADS – should question Britain’s top mandarin, saying it was ‘highly unusual’ for such a senior official to be involved in the detail of an industrial deal. … Sir Jeremy’s role has raised eyebrows since he worked for four years at Morgan Stanley, the investment bank advising BAE Systems on the £28billion merger with the Franco-German firm." – Daily Mail

  • Let's break up BAE, or sell it to the US – Bernard Jenkin, Daily Telegraph

Tory councillor sacked after sick joke about the murdered Manchester PcsSun

Phillip Blond attacks modern conservatives

"Conservatives on both sides of the Atlantic are narrowing opportunity, concentrating wealth and protecting monopoly interests. The centre right has almost ceased to do majority politics. It defines national interest in terms of the already powerful and increasingly abandons the middle and lower classes to their fate. They are persuaded by past fictions that what is in the interest of the winners percolates to those below them. In short, conservatives are unknowingly creating an oligarchy, one which will make us all plebs." – Phillip Blond, Financial Times (£)

Daniel Finkelstein argues that party conferences should be ended

"I am not assailing party members. … But their politics are hardly representative. Not even of the core vote, let alone of swing voters. The biggest move in politics is from the committed to the uncommitted, from those with tribal attachments to those simply keeping score, choosing governments as if they were company managers. And the annual party conference season denies this trend, instead gathering together these unrepresentative people, encouraging them to confirm each other in their own beliefs and exerting pressure on governments and political leaderships to respond." – Daniel Finkelstein, The Times (£)

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Forget the party conferences. Think instead about will what happen here if Israel bombs Iran

Labour have recruited former tax Andrew Rosenfeld to help broaden the party's base of supportersFinancial Times (£)

The Scottish Labour leader faces up to austerity

"Scotland must face up to the hard choice of continuing with free benefits — such as university tuition and prescriptions — or pay for them through higher taxes and slashed services that would hit the poor and vulnerable, according to the Scottish Labour leader [Johann Lamont]." – The Times (£)

> Yesterday, by our columnist Peter Hoskin: The lesson of recent years is that there are few fiscal certainties

A director of the Bank of England says that small businesses are still struggling in the face of a lending droughtDaily Mail

BBC apologises to the Queen for Abu Hamza disclosureGuardian

The population of England and Wales has increased by around 4 million over the last decadeDaily Mail

And finally… Another Romney video emerges

"In the closing remarks while at the St. Patrick’s Day breakfast, the GOP hopeful said, ‘When I was a boy, I used to think that becoming rich and becoming famous would make me happy. Boy, was I right.’ … While this clip is innocuous enough when viewed on its own, it adds to the pressure Mr Romney’s already facing over his newly-released 2011 tax returns, as well as the now-infamous leaked tape in which he said that 47 per cent was ‘dependent’ on the government and didn’t pay federal taxes." – Daily Mail


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