8pm ToryDiary: Tory MPs give warm welcome to breaking news that Sir George Young will be new Chief Whip

8pm ToryDiary: You know the Osborne story that got Westminster wetting itself earlier? It wasn't true.


6.30pm ToryDiary: Resignation letter of Andrew Mitchell and Prime Minister's reply

4pm Majority: Tim Montgomerie looks forward to the next eighteen months of the agenda and the publication of three reports – on Machine, Message and Manifesto

3.30pm Ben Howlett on Comment: Two years of progress for ConservativeFuture

Hayes John October 20123pm MPsETC: John Hayes MP, Energy Minister, a new Boris with the eloquence of Demosthenes and the common good written on his heart

3pm Local government: Council by-elections from yesterday

1.30pm WATCH: Obama and Romney at charity dinner make jokes at each other's expense

12.30pm Local government: Boris to offer sites for more free schools in London

11am LeftWatch: Tory HQ launches website targeting Ed Miliband's (a) union links and (b) his spend, spend, spend agenda

Tim Montgomerie on ToryDiary: Three big things I've got wrong since I've starting blogging and commenting

Columnist Bruce Anderson: Prince Charles undoubtedly writes good letters to ministers and they should not be published

David Campbell Bannerman MEP suggests this text of question for an EU referendum: “Do you think that the UK should be a sovereign nation, outside of the EU, able to negotiate it's own trade agreements and treaties?”


MajorityConservatism: Prepare, prepare and prepare for the butterfly moment when the Tories emerge from the Coalition

Screen Shot 2012-10-19 at 08.19.58MPsETC: EU poster places hammer and sickle emblem above Christian Cross and symbols of other religions

The Deep End wonders why the Left isn't winning the battle of ideas at a time of crisis for capitalism: "Ultimately, the reason why the left is failing to win the battle of ideas is that the crisis of capitalism goes hand-in-hand with the crisis of statism"

Local government: Labour councils back rent subsidies for rich social tenants


Screen Shot 2012-10-19 at 06.32.2027 MPs are claiming taxpayer-funded expenses to rent homes in London while simultaneously letting property in the capital

"Research by this newspaper using official parliamentary records shows that the 27 MPs who are renting London homes while claiming rental income for other flats include Liam Fox, the former defence secretary, Chris Bryant, the shadow immigration minister, and former defence ministers Peter Luff and Nick Harvey, as well as David Amess, a Tory MP." – Telegraph

EU summit stories

  • Cameron not keen on all 27 EU leaders going to accept Nobel Peace Prize – Guardian
  • Fury at Merkel call for 'budget tsar' to control all tax and spending across Europe – Daily Mail
  • David Cameron risked infuriating his own party last night as he called on European leaders to take swift action towards creating banking union in the eurozone – Scotsman
  • EU banking union should provide the UK with a way out – John Redwood
  • "Francois Hollande warned Mr Cameron and the leaders of other countries outside the single currency they should keep out of decisions affecting the future of the eurozone. The French president said non-eurozone leaders were being incoherent if they believed they should be able to interfere in talks about the banking union." – Daily Mail
  • Cameron last night urged the EU to cut costs, regulations and bureaucracy to allow Europe to compete on the world stage – Express

In the FT (£) Philip Stephens says other EU leaders have lost all patience with Britain: "Mr Cameron is said to be drawing a road map for Britain’s future in Europe. He has failed to notice that, as they strike out in the other direction of closer union, his partners are content to say goodbye."

Willetts on AMDavid Willetts: EU red tape is now getting in the way of scientific progress

"If a few member states obstruct a new technology, such as the hydraulic fracturing – or “fracking” – used for the extraction of shale gas, they can have a disproportionate effect at the EU level. Whatever the reason, economic advance is threatened" – David Willetts in The Telegraph

Forcing energy companies to offer lowest tariff is only one option in PM's planGuardian

"David Cameron was accused yesterday of making up policy on the hoof as his bold attempt to reform the energy market spectacularly backfired. After a day of confusion, the Prime Minister insisted he would press ahead with forcing power companies to move customers to the lowest available tariff." – Daily Mail | George Eaton for the New Statesman

  • Energy Secretary Ed Davey warns that ministers cannot reverse rising global fuel prices and prices may rise for years to come – The Sun
  • The Wall Street Journal examines how German consumers are paying a high price for renewable policies.
  • Four of Britain's largest green groups challenged George Osborne last
    night over his slighting reference to climate change campaigners as the
    "environmental Taliban" – Independent

Express-1-329x437Daily Mail, Express and Sun warn Cameron over 'energy shambles'

Express leader: "Nothing is more lethal to the prospects of a government than the impression that it is incompetent. And of all the things to lack competence on, the cost of living is the most lethal of all… For the Prime Minister to make a commitment to secure for every customer the cheapest tariff available and for it then to emerge that he did not have a plan to deliver on that commitment is unimpressive to put it mildly."

Mail leader: "Wouldn’t it have been so much better to have waited until there was a fully-formed policy to announce before raising the hopes of a public sick of being taken for fools by energy firms whose cynicism knows no bounds?"

The Sun Says: "What possessed [Cameron] to suddenly announce, off the top of his head, a new law on energy bills which the Coalition spent yesterday furiously fudging and back-pedalling from? We know he likes the Smiths song Bigmouth Strikes Again. It’s not meant as a motto, PM."

Simon Jenkins in The Guardian: "David Cameron's way of running the country becomes ever more eccentric. This week he was like a dyspeptic columnist. On Wednesday he raged about soaring energy prices, leapt up in the House of Commons and said he would "pass a law" against them. That is the joy of being a Blairite prime minister. Margaret Thatcher would have spent hours fussing over how to do what she said. Cameron just blurts it out and leaves others to cope with the mess."

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: The confusion over Cameron's energy promise comes at a particularly inconvenient time

PM 'appalled' by football scenes in Serbia and alleged racist tauntsLondon Evening Standard

Cameron accused of dodging PMQs after recess repeatedly begins on TuesdaysBBC

The NHS reforms will cost £300m more than expectedIndependent

William Hague announces £480,000 donation for Bletchley ParkMilton Keynes Citizen

Boris Johnson announces a dedicated City Hall unit to help Free SchoolsGuardian

"Boris Johnson is backing a plan that would give him a strategic role in London’s school system as part of efforts to raise education levels among the city’s poorest children. Under the proposals, to be announced on Friday, the London mayor would co-ordinate a voluntary network of successful schools that would be encouraged to work with weaker ones across the city." – FT (£)

Gay Tory MP Conor Burns says there is "no clamour" for right to marry among LGBT communityPinkNews

Liz Truss's plans for childcare on the cheap will undo all the progress Labour achieved on early-years education – Polly Toynbee in The Guardian

PoliceDirectly elected police commissioners was a good idea that is being screwed up by bad implementation
– Fraser Nelson in The Telegraph

  • Gary McKinnon should have been extradited – but Theresa May put popularity before justice – Alan Johnson in The Telegraph
  • Improved security in cars and houses along with better policing has cut crime by more than half since the mid-1990s – The Times (£)

Labour has tabled a Commons motion on police numbers and cuts for next Wednesday, which several MPs are likely to use as an excuse to further embarrass Andrew MitchellIndependent

MPs have backed a motion calling for the government to reconsider its decision to axe the Second Battalion, the Royal Regiment of FusiliersBBC

> Yesterday's MPsETC: John Baron MP secures Commons backing in his campaign to save the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

The Economist launches front page attack on Tories' immigration policies

Screen Shot 2012-10-19 at 06.37.01

20121020_cuk400"The country has, in effect, installed a “keep out” sign over the white cliffs of Dover. Even as Mr Cameron defends the City of London as a global financial centre, and takes planeloads of business folk on foreign trips, his government ratchets up measures that would turn an entrepôt into a fortress. In the past two years the Tories have made it much harder for students and foreign workers and family members to enter and settle in the country. Britain is not only losing the war for global talent, it is scarcely competing. More people now leave to take up job offers in other countries than come the other way." – Economist

MPs criticise Financial Services Authority over RBS takeover of ABN Amro in 2007BBC

Labour and the Conservatives "have come to startlingly similar conclusions on how to help the poorest and most dysfunctional families"The Economist's Bagehot

"The proportion of 18 to 24-year-olds who vote (44 per cent) is lower than any other age group and there is no reason to suppose that adding 16 and 17-year-olds to the electoral roll (if, indeed, they register) would increase turnout." – Philip Collins in The Times (£)

"The very idea of a Minister for Women is patronising, anachronistic nonsense" – Ruth Porter in The Times (£)

ConservativeHome's Tim Montgomerie wins Political Columnist of the Year AwardTimes (£)

Mike Gerson: American liberalism has become a shadow of its former self

"Liberals often defend unreformed, unsustainable health entitlements — even though these commitments place increasing burdens on the young to benefit those who are older and better off. They often defend the unrestricted right to abortion — even though it represents a contraction of the circle of social inclusion and protection. They often defend the educational status quo — even though it is one of the nation’s main sources of racial and economic injustice." – Michael Gerson in The Washington Post

And finally (1)… ‘I am guilty. I am a pleb.’

"Tory MP Michael Fabricant today revealed his ‘shock’ at being caught speeding in a 30mph zone and joked in future he will make more use of the railways." – Daily Mail

Michael Fabricant's Tweets are certainly not formulaic. Have a look…

And finally (2)… David Cameron's Tory broadcast gets more viewers than Jonathan Ross' new ITV showTelegraph


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