5pm ToryDiary: Duncan Smith, Gove, Hague, Hammond and Grayling top the latest Cabinet league table

12.30pm LeftWatch: Lord Adonis surfs the latest wave of LibLabLove

ToryDiary: The Government is wary about the Abu Qatada situation – it’s right to be

Mark Field MP on Comment: The mispricing of risk. The danger to savers. And the spectre of inflation – big themes in my first book.

WATCH: David Cameron with Vladimir Putin – "Britain and Russia share many interests"

David Cameron: I'll be delighted if Abu Qatada leaves the country voluntarily 

Cameron"Abu Qatada yesterday made a shock offer to leave Britain  – as long as his human rights are protected. … David Cameron welcomed the news, saying: ‘We have a fully worked-out plan to get this man out of our country, and if he goes of his own accord, frankly, I’ll be one of the happiest people in Britain.’ … It means the Muslim cleric, once described as Osama Bin Laden’s right-hand man in Europe, could leave within months." – Daily Mail

But the Home Office is sceptical… "Home Office sources fear the offer is a trick. They claim the terror cleric could leave Belmarsh jail on bail — only to refuse to board the plane." – The Sun

  • "Since when was it up to convicted terrorists to lay down their own conditions for extradition?" - Sun editorial

> Today on ToryDiary: The Government is wary about the Abu Qatada situation – it’s right to be

From Russia, the Prime Minister warns that "the history of Syria is being written in the blood of her people"


"David Cameron today urged Russian President Vladimir Putin to do more to stop the bloodshed in Syria … Speaking at a press conference in Sochi, the Prime Minister said: 'The history of Syria is being written in the blood of her people. … But Mr Cameron’s visit to the Russian president's summer residence in the Black Sea resort ended with an admission that they still have 'differing views' about how to deal with the situation." – Daily Mail

  • "British and Russian security services have agreed to work together for the first time since the death of former KGB agent Alexander Litvinenko seven years ago, David Cameron announced yesterday." – further down the same page in the Daily Mail

> Today's video to WATCH: David Cameron with Vladimir Putin – "Britain and Russia share many interests"

And he'll be in America when that EU Referendum vote happens

US flag"The Prime Minister will be on a visit to the US but he has given colleagues a free vote on the issue. … Eurosceptic ministers including Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith, Environment Secretary Owen Paterson, and even Foreign Secretary William Hague, are among at least 100 Conservatives who may support the move, sources said." – Daily Mail

"Cameron running scared on EU, says Miliband" – Guardian

  • "…by allowing his MPs a free vote on an amendment condemning the Queen’s Speech because it didn’t include legislative proposals for an EU referendum, the Prime Minister risks making the party’s policy on the subject seem more confused than ever." – Daily Mail editorial
  • "Think the Tories can't axe Cameron? Don't bet on it." – Simon Heffer, Daily Mail
  • "Raised voices do not convince me on Europe" – Matthew Parris, The Times (£)
  • "We simply cannot wait" for an EU referendum after 2015 – Bill Cash MP, Daily Telegraph
  • "The PM should set our date with destiny" – Daily Telegraph editorial

> Yesterday:

Disgruntlement in the ranks 1): claims that ten Tory MPs have been in talks with Ukip

Farage"UKIP has engaged in 'serious' talks with ten Tory MPs about the possibility of defecting, the party said yesterday. … The Eurosceptic party won 147 seats in this month’s local elections, prompting a Conservative backbencher to make contact in the past few days, UKIP’s new chief executive said." – The Times (£)

  • Des Lynam endorses Ukip … in song – Guardian
  • "The UK Independence Party (Ukip) continued its winning streak after last week's county polls, taking a seat from the Tories in the latest council by-elections and coming second in two Labour ones." – Independent

> Yesterday on ThinkTankCentral: Nick Faith crunches the numbers to explore the UKIP effect in marginal seats

Disgruntlement in the ranks 2): claims that a former No.10 adviser was "frozen out by David Cameron's clique"

SB"Shaun Bailey lost his job as a special adviser earlier this year before several former public school pupils were drafted in to senior roles at No  10. … Mr Bailey, who was moved to a part-time role in the Cabinet Office, has told friends that he was excluded from Mr Cameron’s inner circle because he was 'different' and repeatedly asked difficult questions about the Government’s priorities." – Daily Telegraph

  • "Don’t get cross about the old man’s network – get even" – Graeme Archer, Daily Telegraph

From the pink 'un: "Questions raised over Lynton Crosby’s UK role and business interests"

"However, this week a row blew up when it emerged that Crosby Textor, his consultancy, had in Australia advised the tobacco and alcohol industry on how to fight off similar regulations [to those omitted from the Queen's Speech]. … As a result, David Cameron, prime minister, faced questions from MPs from all main political parties over whether this was merely a coincidence." – Financial Times

Forget triple-dip. Can George Osborne say that we never even entered double-dip?

Upturn"Britain almost certainly avoided a double-dip recession last year, according to revised economic data. … In a boost for George Osborne, the Office for National Statistics has revised its growth figures for 2012 after new estimates showed the construction industry performed much better than thought." – Daily Mail

  • "The Chancellor will surely be hoping that his critics will be confounded as comprehensively as theyr predecessors were a generation ago. There is tentative evidence that he may be right." – Times editorial (£)
  • "Better UK economic data – but risks remain" – Financial Times

The Force is with the Chancellor in other ways, too

Skywalker"The new Star Wars film is to be made in Britain in a huge coup for the country’s film industry, the Daily Mail can reveal. … The film is due to start production in 2014 after representatives from Lucasfilm struck a deal with Chancellor George Osborne in a top secret meeting. … Mr Osborne said: ‘I am delighted that Star Wars is coming back to Britain.’" – Daily Mail

  • "George Osborne today rolled up his sleeves to prepare afternoon tea for the finance ministers from some of the world's leading economies." - Daily Mail

But will he have to use his Jedi powers to save the Co-op Bank?

"The Co-op Bank was last night battling to reassure millions of customers it does not need a bailout from taxpayers – after its credit rating was downgraded to ‘junk’ status. … Ratings agency Moody’s warned that the bank might need ‘external support’ amid spiralling losses on bad loans." – Daily Mail

Theresa May urges the police to be more transparent

TM"Police were last night ordered to halt their march towards arresting and charging suspects in secret. … Theresa May intervened to ‘protect transparency in the criminal justice system’. … It follows revelations by the Mail that one force in three is refusing to name suspects even after they have been charged." – Daily Mail

  • "Corruption within Scotland Yard has enabled a vast criminal network to operate in London for two decades with virtual impunity, a court was told." – The Times (£)

"A much-vaunted cap on the costs people face in old age risks leaving those in private care homes out of pocket"Financial Times

Lord Young, aged 81, says we must be prepared to work longer

"Medicine is putting up the retirement age. You can't ask somebody to retire at 50 who is actually going to be active until they're 90 – apart from anything else, we can't pay for it. It's got to move up in stages." – Lord Young, interviewed in the Times (£)

Gay marriage will haunt David Cameron, writes Charles Moore

CM"With gay marriage, the Coalition proposes to alter fundamentally the most important social structure ever known to mankind. If it hopes to slip this quietly past the country over the summer, without any serious consequences, it is being not only dishonest, but stupid." – Charles Moore, Daily Telegraph

Vince Cable takes on the Conservatives' policy to have falling net migration

"He said: 'One of the reasons why net immigration declines is that if more people want to emigrate, which one would have thought was rather a bad thing. We are often operating with a concept that often gives us very misleading and unhelpful conclusions.' … There was also a 'prejudice' beneath the debate about immigration numbers, he said." – Daily Telegraph

Ed Davey is planning financial incentives for those who accept windfarms

"Homeowners who live within a mile of proposed wind turbines could be offered a 20 per cent discount on their electricity bills in an attempt to reduce opposition to the green technology. … They are part of a package of measures planned by Energy Secretary Ed Davey after he was impressed by a ‘local tariff’ scheme pioneered in Cornwall." - Daily Mail

  • "The Government is facing an exodus of senior energy and climate change advisers amid growing concerns that decisive action to tackle global warming is falling victim to Treasury intransigence." –Independent
  • "Chris Huhne cashing in on green energy industry he funded as a minister when he is released from prison" - Daily Mail

Quentin Letts wonders what's going on with Nick Clegg

Curse"Conservatives and Lib Dems have been frustrated by his behaviour in recent days. ‘It would be too strong to say he has flipped, but he is certainly behaving in an erratic way,’ says one MP. … ‘We think he may be starting to extract himself from the Coalition marriage. But he may just be weaving all over the motorway like a tired driver because he is knackered and confused.’" – Quentin Letts, Daily Mail

  • "The past week was supposed to be what their aides call a 'proalition moment', as the two parties promoted their joint Queen’s Speech. It was anything but." – Andrew Grice, Independent

Lord Adonis advises Labour to prepare for coalition talks with the Lib Dems 

Lord Adonis"Labour must start to make contingency plans for coalition talks with the Liberal Democrats after the next election, including being prepared to offer major cabinet posts to Nick Clegg's party, Lord Adonis, one of Ed Miliband's closest policy advisers, has said. … He also says a full-blown coalition is 'massively preferable' to running a minority government." – Guardian

  • "Lord Adonis is right in his Guardian interview today to say that Labour needs to start thinking about this." – Guardian editorial

News in brief

  • GPs warn that the new NHS helpline is "seriously flawed" – Daily Mail
  • Jimmy Savile victims slam latest police report – Daily Mail

And finally 1)… Keith Vaz floors it

KV"Children were hardly given the best lesson in political spin by MP Keith Vaz when he fell face first off a roundabout during a photocall. … But rather than being embarrassed by the slip, he simply got back on – before falling off for a second time." – Daily Mail

And finally 2)… Balls the bruiser

"Ed Balls is the MP most likely to win a fight in the House of Commons, a poll reveals. … Labour bruiser Mr Balls got 23 per cent of the vote … PM David Cameron was second with six per cent backing. Third was Foreign Secretary William Hague on five per cent and fourth spindly Labour leader Ed Miliband on four per cent." – The Sun


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