10.15pm WATCH: There may be more bad news on false food labelling, warns Owen Paterson
6.30pm Alex Deane and Jason Groves on Comment: It's time to eliminate the penny coin
12.30pm ToryDiary: Osborne under intense pressure to deliver radical Budget
10.30am ToryDiary: Over next few months Owen Paterson must become the food consumers' champion.
Andrew Lilico on Comment: The Conservative Party needs a change of political strategy, not simply political tactics
Britain can be proud of EU budget cut, says Cameron – Telegraph
Cameron was celebrating a spectacular and historic diplomatic triumph last night after forcing the European Union’s first ever budget cut – Express
"The prime minister emerged triumphant from European budget talks on Friday as he delivered the first cut to Brussel’s spending in its 56-year history, to the particular delight of eurosceptic members of his party. The prime minister said Britain could be “proud we’ve cut the seven-year credit card limit for the first time ever”. He also praised his European allies in Germany, Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands for helping push through deep cuts." – FT (£)
Cameron, claims The Guardian, is pursuing a policy of pragmatic engagement in Europe and ultimately Eurosceptic Tory MPs won't like that.
The Sun claims the Labour leader wouldn't have achieved this deal: "Would Ed Miliband have worked through the night, fuelled by espressos and Haribos, to secure a better deal for Britain and stick two fingers up to Francois Hollande? Or would he have rolled over and stitched up a deal with his French Socialist pal to keep the status quo?"
The Times (£) remains hungry for more, however: "The EU deal obtained by David Cameron nonetheless leaves a wasteful budget costing the UK too much".
> Christopher Howarth on Comment yesterday: We can welcome this deal as a genuine success for David Cameron.
Euro MPs want a secret vote to block budget deal and defy the 27 leaders – Daily Mail
"Andrew Mitchell and Peter Lilley have emerged as candidates to be Britain’s next European Commissioner, as ministers press David Cameron to send a sceptic to fight for new government priorities in Brussels." – Times (£)
Owen Paterson promises horse meat traders will "feel full force of the law"
The DEFRA Secretary quoted by the BBC: "Clearly there are some people who believe they can get away with selling cheap meat and passing it off as something else. Our investigations will find them and they will feel the full force of the law."
Cameron has said it is "completely unacceptable" that "people have been found to be eating horse when they thought they were eating beef" – BBC video
- Mary Creagh, Shadow Environment Secretary, is The Sun's hero of the week for leading public concerns about the horsemeat scandal.
- Senior Conservative Anne McIntosh and Mary Creagh said they would not eat processed beef meals – Express
Jeremy Hunt urges police to investigate Mid Staffordshire hospital deaths – Guardian
"In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Jeremy Hunt says it is “absolutely disgraceful” that no doctors, nurses or managers have been held to account for the substandard care which led to the deaths of up to 1,200 patients. He says the Francis report into the scandal has put “evidence in the public domain” which should form the basis of a police investigation and questions the failure of professional bodies to uncover “abuse on such a wide scale”."
- Sir David Nicholson should fall on his sword – Independent leader
- Let’s face the truth about our uncaring, selfish and cruel NHS – Charles Moore in The Telegraph
In his next Budget, the Chancellor George Osborne needs to be far bolder and introduce self-financing tax cuts – The Telegraph warns the Coalition that next month's statement "represents [a] last chance to deliver changes that will have any impact before the general election."
- A pint will cost nearly a FIVER by the end of the decade unless ministers axe the beer duty escalator – The Sun
- Social care cap to be set at £75,000 – Times (£) | Telegraph
Maria Hutchings vows not to mention the Huhne word but her campaign poster is hardly subtle: 'Vote for a local MP you can trust' – Huffington Post
"The Tory candidate for Eastleigh pitted herself against David Cameron on Europe, same-sex marriage and abortion yesterday as she launched her bid to win the crucial by-election. Maria Hutchings, who was selected to contest the seat for the Conservatives after Chris Huhne’s resignation, said that she “was not a rich Tory toff” and would fight a clean campaign on behalf of “ordinary people”. She admitted that she does not share her party leader’s views on a number of key issues and would vote to leave the European Union." – Times (£) | Guardian
- Why Eastleigh could soon turn beastly – Telegraph
- The Eastleigh byelection will highlight the fact that there is no way of knowing if the public support the coalition – Vernon Bogdanor in The Guardian
- Who could replace Nick Clegg as Lib Dem leader? – PoliticalBetting
Tories to outline new press regulation
"Oliver Letwin, the cabinet office minister, is to unveil his proposal
for a Royal Charter, which will set out how the British press might be
regulated without having to resort to legislation. The three main
political parties will then meet on Thursday to try to reach a deal." –
Lord Puttnam has led a sneak attack to sabotage the Defamation Bill and
get statutory regulation by the back door – Matthew Parris in The Times (£)
- Maria Miller is a Culture Secretary who has actual opinions on culture – David Lister in The Independent
The Right-Wing Press continue to cause trouble for David Cameron…
(1) Guess which newspaper has this headline… "The Tories hang the police
and Press out to dry while letting the real crooks – their banker chums
– off scot free…"?
The Daily Mirror? The Guardian? Morning Star? No, the Daily Mail. It writes:
"The Mail unequivocally condemns the conduct of News International. But
these sins are mild compared with rigging interest rates, selling bogus
insurance and laundering terrorist money, which could have contributed
to the murders of undercover anti-drug agents. The bankers destroyed
lives, bankrupted businesses and caused a recession which threatens our
(2) Simon Heffer: Cameron should replace the "uninspiring" Grant Shapps with a Party Chairman in the mould of Norman Tebbit – Daily Mail
- Cameron's controversial campaign strategist, Lynton Crosby, grants a rare interview – Independent
(3) Patrick O'Flynn: The immediate coterie around David Cameron holds the wider Conservative family in contempt – Express
The FT urges Cameron to give a speech to explain why his Right-wing critics are wrong – FT leader (£)
Conservatives shoulds use institutions rather than Quotas to promote harmony – Graeme Archer in The Telegraph
Tory MP Sir John Stanley claims homosexuality was a “normal phase” for youngsters before they became straight in later life – Daily Star
The Public Accounts Committee, led by Margaret Hodge, has criticised the test being used to see whether people claiming disability benefits are fit to work – BBC
Don’t be stupid on Euro referendum, Balls warns Labour
"Speaking to the Yorkshire Post just hours before the Prime Minister’s successful EU budget negotiations in Brussels, Mr Balls said Labour must take care not to become “caricatured” as the “pro-status quo, anti-referendum” party in voters’ minds."
Ed Balls claims more and more volunteers are coming to his spaghetti bolognese thank you parties for local Labour volunteers – Yorkshire Post
Labour to focus on stagnant incomes, as much as growth
"Labour is set to draw on what is described as "the most important chart in American politics" to claim that long-term stagnation of living standards in the UK, as opposed to low growth, may be the dominant issue facing the country at the next election." – Guardian
Will Ed Miliband be an Obama or an Hollande? – Jonathan Freedland in The Guardian wonders if the Labour leader will choose modest or grand change.
Royal aides to be grilled by MPs on how much money the Queen spends and whether taxpayer's money is being wasted – Daily Mail
And finally… Lord Ashcroft splashes the cash for first Political Book Awards
"The bash was largely funded by Lord Ashcroft, the former deputy chairman of the Tory party. It was held at the vast Imax cinema in central London, and it was packed. There was limitless sparkling wine for the hour before the ceremony, along with some very fancy canapés… Clearly Ashcroft has decided that the Conservatives stand little chance of winning the next election, so he might as well spend his money on parties instead." – Simon Hoggart in The Guardian
> Lord Ashcroft on Comment: My memorable night at the inaugural Paddy Power and Total Politics book awards
> Please use the
thread below to provide links to news topics likely to be of interest to
ConservativeHome readers and to comment on political topics that haven't been
given their own blog. Read our comments policy here.