4.30pm LeftWatch update: Tory whip Greg Hands MP has called on Ed Miliband to call on Denis MacShane to resign as an MP
3pm Cameron's speech at the recent Tory Conference was one of his best ever. Agree or disagree? No child benefits for families with more than two children. Agree or disagree? Lynton Crosby should be put in charge of the Tory General Election campaign. Agree or disagree? The latest ConHome survey…
2pm Kwasi Kwarteng MP on Comment: The middle class will drag us out of recession if we don't drag them into high tax bands
12.30pm LeftWatch: Labour's Denis MacShane found guilty of submitting 19 false invoices
11.45am Launching Thinkers' Corner…
ToryDiary: John Hayes: Tilting at wind farms, pushing for Cabinet promotion
Columnist Nadine Dorries MP: Anna Soubry MP has failed vulnerable women by dropping consultation on independent abortion counselling
Columnist Bruce Anderson: Heseltine – still a force of nature, energetic, in a hurry, and wrong
Lord Ashcroft on Comment: Much aid spending is counter-productive and only serves to fuel corruption
On Local government, Harry Phibbs raises an intriguing possibility…
- Andrew Griffiths MP calls for an end to the 'beer tax'
- George Osborne sets out Coalition's aims on EU budget negotiations
- Nick Clegg backs Cameron on EU budget but not on renegotiation
"At first inspection the 2010 Tory newcomers are a disparate bunch, markedly so in an era of ‘professional’ politicians. They include a former UN commander in Bosnia, an opera singer, a jockey, a couple of former TV autocuties, a former adviser to the Queen, an Iraqi immigrant, an MI6 man, a history teacher and a former diplomat who at the age of 30 pretty much governed a province of Iraq. Throw in some lawyers, soldiers, several self-made business men and women, a Welsh-farming grandfather, City types and even an international male pin-up and plutocrat, and you have nothing short of political minestrone. What a contrast they make to the trade unionists and ‘third sector’ professionals of the Labour benches. Received wisdom has it that the Cameron Tories are nothing but a gang of toffee-nosed Etonians with trust funds. In reality, the modern parliamentary party is unpredictable, clever, independent-minded — as it showed on Wednesday." – Quentin Letts in the Daily Mail
- The Economist urges David Cameron to listen more carefully to Sir George Young as he seeks to better manage his party.
"Mr Osborne said Britain had to be prepared to settle for a freeze, as it was better than not reaching any deal on the seven-year budget. He refused to be drawn on whether he thought a real terms cut was possible, but said the government would only accept an offer from the EU that it thought parliament would approve." – FT (£)
The Daily Mail warns that Labour might soon outflank the PM: "the real message of Wednesday’s momentous vote is that Mr Cameron will almost certainly have to call a referendum on the kind of relationship Britain wants with the EU. He needs to beware however: Labour, which outflanked him over the EU budget by announcing it would not support any increase, could steal the initiative again by promising its own referendum."
John Redwood notes that Parliament's view is now clear: "I am intrigued by the new doctrine of the non binding vote. As far as I am concerned, a vote in Parliament is a vote in Parliament… The government can scarcely argue now that just seeking a real terms freeze is sufficient response to the motion as passed. Parliament’s will was clear. It wishes the government to seek a real terms cut."
- David Cameron needs to detail EU referendum plans soon to avoid future rebellions – James Forsyth in The Spectator
- "At a time of unprecedented pressure on public spending when demands on taxpayers are growing all the time, Mr Cameron and the Foreign Secretary William Hague have chosen to side not with their own taxpayers but with the Brussels elite." – Stephen Pollard in The Express
- "This week, the tide has turned decisively against any more dictatorial arrogance from Europe — and [Cameron] must either swim with it, and be a hero, or go under" – Tom Utley in the Daily Mail
Fallout for the Liberal Democrats from Wednesday night's EU debate
"Clegg stoked coalition civil war over Europe yesterday by describing David Cameron’s pledge to reclaim powers from Brussels as a “false promise wrapped up in a Union Jack” – Express
> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Nick Clegg and David Lidington make the economic argument for staying inside the EU
In The Telegraph, Jeremy Warner urges patience: "Sooner or later, Britain’s relationship with Europe is going to have to change fundamentally if further progress is to be made. The question is whether it makes sense to pull the plug now, or whether there is more to be gained from a wait-and-see approach."
Fallout for Labour from Wednesday night's EU debate
The former Foreign Secretary David Miliband said Labour had not become "anti-Europe" but was no longer "soft-headed" in equating extra spending with effectiveness – BBC
"By acting tactically on the EU budget without explaining where they are heading strategically on Britain’s overall relationship with the EU at this time of profound change, Mr Miliband and Mr Balls looked like two men playing politics, not planning for the future. Rather than highlighting the Tory party’s problem with Europe, Labour has instead exposed its own." – Times leader (£)
"The symbolism of Labour running with the Europhobic pack was excruciating" – Polly Toynbee in The Guardian wants Labour to reassert its pro-EU credentials after Wednesday's vote.
Not every Tory MP backs John Hayes on windfarms
"[Charles] Hendry told MPs that even countries able to rely on large quantities of fossil fuels are now investing in wind turbines for the future. “Oil and gas-rich countries such as Norway, Saudi Arabia and Kazakhstan recognise that an integral part of their energy security is the development of their own renewable resources, including onshore wind,” he said… Around 20 backbench Tories put their signatures to a letter of protest to the Prime Minister in the wake of Mr Hayes’s comments that Britain has “enough” wind turbines." – Yorkshire Post
> Today's ToryDiary: Tilting at wind farms, John Hayes is pushing for Cabinet promotion
Britain will grow faster than Eurozone but six years of pain lie ahead – The Sun
- Henry G Manson for PoliticalBetting: Did Cameron and Osborne over-celebrate the end of double-dip?
Treasury Minister David Gauke accuses opponents of child benefit changes of "fiscal nimbyism" – Daily Mail
"We have the unique opportunity to be the generation that will eradicate extreme poverty" – David Cameron leads summit meeting to discuss post-2015 international development agenda, The Guardian
David Cameron urges FA to take tougher measures in anti-racism fight – Telegraph
Women find it hard to break into “Old Etonian cliques” such as David Cameron’s network of old chums, one of Whitehall’s most senior female bosses has suggested – Telegraph
Ken Clarke cut annual growth in prison population from 4% to 1% – Times (£)
Exam regulator blames bad marking by teachers for latest grade inflation
"Teenagers have been let down by an exams system that is abused by teachers who are under intense pressure to achieve good grades, Ofqual has warned. Teachers in some of England's secondary schools were guilty of "significantly" over-marking pupils' GCSE English work this summer in order to boost results, according to chief regulator Glenys Stacey." – Sky
Sir Howard Davies will discuss scope of his new airport inquiry today – BBC
Technology and human ingenuity can best fight climate change – Fraser Nelson in The Telegraph
"Britain is creating jobs of a lower status, with lower skills, at lower rates of pay, than any of its competitor nations" – Philip Collins in The Times (£)
And finally… William Hague's antique anaconda cost £10,000 to re-stuff
"The Foreign Office has spent £10,000 on the "essential maintenance" of a stuffed anaconda called Albert. The 20ft snake has been hanging in the library of what is now William Hague's department since the 19th Century." – BBC | Express
The story originally appeared on Guido Fawkes.
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