5pm Cameron Penny on Comment: There's been too much tribal rhetoric about welfare this week. As I know from my own experience

3pm WATCH: ‪Balls attacks Government over top rate cut‬

1pm ToryDiary: Cutting the 50p rate was the right thing to do. But the Conservatives paid a high price for it.

ToryDiary: When IDS and his girlfriend were living in a single room with a one-ring gas oven

Nick de Bois MP on Comment: Don't let Labour stifle debate on welfare reform

Cameron backs Osborne on Philpott…

Cameron Thoughtful"Speaking to reporters in his Witney constituency, the Prime Minister backed Mr Osborne’s call for a debate on on whether it was “right to be subsidising lifestyles” like Philpott’s. “I think what George Osborne said was absolutely right,” Mr Cameron said. “He said that Mr Philpott was the one to blame for his crimes and he should be held responsible. “But what the Chancellor went on to say is that we should ask some wider questions about our welfare system, how much it costs and the signals it sends. And we do want to make clear that welfare is there to help people who work hard and should not be there as a sort of life choice." – The Times (£)

  • "It is good to see the Prime Minister backing his Chancellor over the case for welfare reform and ignoring the shrill objections of the Left." – Daily Express Editorial

…But the LibDems don't

"With Labour expected to promise in its next election manifesto to bring back the 50p top rate, the Conservatives could find themselves isolated as they defend what Labour has dubbed a “tax cut for millionaires”. Today the Lib Dems joined Labour in criticising George Osborne after the Chancellor suggested that the case of Mick Philpott, the unemployed man who killed six of his 17 children in a fire, reinforced the need for welfare reform." – The Independent

As the 45p top rate kicks in, Danny Alexander enters the fairness debate to argue that the rich are paying more tax

Alexander Danny Sep 11"And of course the top rate of income tax that Labour raised to 50p in the dying days of their administration is being cut to 45p. But even that means the top rate of tax will be higher in each and every year of this coalition government than under any full year of the last Labour government. This government’s plans mean that the richest will pay more every year of this government than in any year of the last government. Those with the broadest shoulders will pay the most towards cleaning up Labour’s mess." – Daily Telegraph (£)

IDS recalls his own hard times without work

"During those days of hardship, he would leave the house each morning and go looking for work, only returning in the evening after his future wife, Betsy Fremantle, had arrived home from her secretarial job. He wasn’t even meant to be living there — because he couldn’t afford to pay any rent. ‘The honest truth is that I lived illegally with Betsy in the bedsit, trying to pretend I was not there. I didn’t have any money, which is why I tried to avoid the landlady,’ recalls Duncan Smith." – Andrew Pierce, Daily Mail

Balls renews attack on Government tax plans

"Families with children where one parent works will be hardest hit by new tax changes that come into force on Saturday, according to shadow chancellor Ed Balls, who says gains from a higher personal allowance of nearly £10,000 are "swamped" by higher VAT and cuts to tax credits. Balls said prime minister David Cameron had prioritised tax cuts for millionaires over "squeezed" workers after new figures commissioned by the Labour party from the Institute for Fiscal Studies show that a one-earner family with children will lose an average of just under £4,000." – The Guardian

Janan Ganesh: History is leaving the welfare state behind

Ganesh Janan"If the British people are on the verge of a left turn on welfare that will leave the government foxed, it really doesn’t feel that way. Something close to the opposite is much more plausible: that bearing down on welfare has by itself given the Tories their best political week for more than a year, that they have not come close to exhausting the public’s appetite for toughness on the issue, and that Labour, egged on by the civil society of the left, is making a truly strategic mistake that will hang over it for years." – Financial Times (£)

> Today:

> Yesterday: Donna Edmunds on Comment: Osborne was right to link Philpott and welfare

Conservative support among lower paid women hits lowest point for 16 years

"An opinion poll shows that support from this key voter group has fallen to its lowest level in 16 years, when Labour rode into power on a landslide.  Numbers of blue-collar wom­en – the C2 socio-economic group – who said they would vote Tory at the next election slumped to a low of 29 per cent in the year to March, according to Ipsos Mori re­search for the Financial Times. High quality global journalism requires investment. This is a 12-point drop in support from this group since the 2010 election – more than for any other male or female social segment – and double the overall six-point fall in the polls the Tories have suffered." – Financial Times (£)

Heseltine: Let History judge Thatcher

Heseltine and potted plant
"With supreme
confidence, Lord Heseltine takes credit for successful ideas such as
localism, which the Coalition has embraced, while distancing himself
from the unhappy consequences of his one-time pet projects — the euro
and the dearth of social housing. His confidence is ruffled only once:
at my mention of the woman who thwarted his ambition to reach No 10:
Margaret Thatcher…Lord Heseltine is far too canny an operative to betray
himself but when I mention Baroness Thatcher, his expression turns
stony and he pauses, obviously choosing his words with care." – Interview, Daily Telegraph (£)

Britons told to quit North Korea

"North Korea declared it could not now “guarantee the safety of foreigners” and invited countries to submit plans to withdraw their nationals from the capital Pyongyang. About two dozen countries, including Britain, have embassies there. Last night the British Foreign Office confirmed it had been told its staff were at risk while Russia said it was in “close contact with the US, China and South Korea” about airlifting workers out. A spokesman for the Foreign Office said however: “We believe they have taken this step as part of their continuing rhetoric that the US poses a threat to them.” – Daily Express

Salmond open to U.S military bases – as long as they're non-nuclear

Salmond March 2012"The First Minister said the SNP had held talks with US representatives about entry to Nato for an independent Scotland. On a visit to New York for the Tartan Day celebrations, he defended his party’s switch in policy to back an independent Scotland remaining in Nato. “The choice in policy terms is to be a non-nuclear member of that organisation,” he said, before indicating that an independent Scotland could host US Nato bases. “So then, if we are talking about a non-nuclear base, then of course that would be something that would be possible in terms of the [Nato] treaty agreement.” – Scotsman

News and Comment In Brief

  • The flaw in the NHS is that it is too independent – Charles Moore, Daily Telegraph (£)
  • Blair says he could have given Cameron a run for his money in 2010 – Daily Express
  • Archbishop of Canterbury demands higher spending of taxpayers' money on foreign aid – Daily Mail
  • IPCC reject calls for plebgate leak probe – Daily Telegraph (£)
  • Postmen in line for windfall when Post Office is privatised – The Sun
  • Big fees for credit card bookings now banned – The Independent
  • Shale gas 'could heat all homes for 100 years' – Daily Telegraph (£)
  • Catalonia is a bigger timebomb than Cyprus – Matthew Parris, The Times (£)

And finally…Osborne didn't drive his Government car into a disabled parking space…but Ed Balls HAS been nicked for speeding

"The Shadow Chancellor — crusading for 20mph limits in his constituency — was clocked doing 56mph through 50mph roadworks on the M62. Yesterday Mr Balls, 46 — MP for Morley and Outwood — confessed to the offence in a blog after being spotted attending a speed awareness course. He admitted he was caught “bang to rights” and was fined £75 and agreed to go on the course to avoid three points on his licence. Mr Balls — fined for driving while talking on his mobile in 2010 — said: “Like many local people, I was caught out by the never-ending roadworks.” – The Sun


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