6pm WATCH: Julian Lewis MP predicts the Government would lose a vote on arming Syrian rebels

2.15pm Local Government: Ed Miliband is right: Housing Benefit should be localised

Cameron fence1.45pm Dr Lee Rotherham on Comment: So Ministers want to review how the 

EU works? Right, then – let's give them a helping hand…

12.15pm Local Government: Council byelection results from yesterday

Noon ToryDiary: The PM sets out his stall for the Scottish referendum – and the run-up to the General Election

ToryDiary: "It could be that Miller already has a sense of how the endgame for her department will play out, and that the Treasury intends to turn from it to others that offer bigger savings.  But on the face of it, her defiance is a throw of the dice."Will Maria Miller's case for the arts win over George Osborne? 

In the fifth and final article in our series on the Spending Review, Peter Hoskin explains: Why the Spending Review probably won’t mean a Whitehall Big Bang, but a Tory majority might

DaleColumnists: Iain Dale's Friday Diary: The climate change industry must stop trying to silence its critics

On Comment, Lord Ashcroft presents new polling: Why we can't afford to waste another six months 

Councillor Martin Curtis on Local Govt: UKIP locally need to work out what they believe for Conservatives to be able to work with them

The Deep End: Heresy of the week: The best place for old people is a trailer park

Cameron insists: The Big Society still lives

'The Prime Minister launched a staunch defence of the Big Society, which formed the centrepiece of his leadership in opposition but appeared to have been quietly shelved after the financial crash. Tory strategists have said the focus must be on the economy, immigration and welfare. But Mr Cameron defied his critics – including many in the Conservative party – to signal that the Big Society will remain a key feature of his premiership. ‘Some people occasionally ask me whether I still believe with the same passion in the vision of building a bigger and stronger society. I'm absolutely prepared to fight for this.' – Daily Mail  

  • Tory modernisation is dead – Robin Harris, Daily Mail 
  • Tom Utley's true blue sister has joined UKIP – will Cameron win her back? – Daily Mail 
  • Why the PM ended his love affair with wind farms – Daily Express 
  • The u-turn won't stop the march of wind farms over the countryside – Simon Jenkins, The Guardian 

May on the immigration warpath at EU meeting 

Theresa May'The Home Secretary will demand action to end abuse of the EU’s free movement directive by people who have no intention of finding work. At a meeting of European home affairs ministers in Luxembourg on Friday, she will highlight how gangs of beggars are setting up camps in London to launch raids on the unsuspecting public. She will also outline a case in which Romanian fraudsters fleeced the British taxpayer of almost £3million.' – Daily Mail 

  • Home Secretary must take on the EU and human rights law – Daily Express Leader 
  • Scotland Yard launches unit to deport dangerous foreign criminals – Daily Mail 
  • 'Serial rapist' first to be thrown out – The Times (£) 
  • 100 foreign crooks deported each week – Daily Express 
  • British law must take primacy, for migrants and officials – The Times Leader (£) 
  • Grayling fights back against EU data red tape – FT (£) 
  • The EU should butt out of LIBOR regulation – FT (£) 
  • How Britain can leave the ECHR – Gavin Barwell MP, Daily Telegraph 

Labour splits over Miliband's welfare speech 

Miliband Labour Left'Several leading members of the Labour left have spoken out against the plan to back measures such as child benefit cuts and a welfare cap – arguing that it plays into the hands of the government by accepting the need for spending reductions. Neal Lawson, head of the leftwing Compass group, said the overriding message from this week would be that Labour was now in favour of “cuts, cuts and ditching universalism”.' – FT (£) 

>Yesterday: LeftWatch - Six questions which show Ed Miliband's benefits cap is a mess – already


Boris polls ahead of the party leaders – with Farage close on his heels

'Voters declared Lib Dem chief Nick Clegg as the least interesting, closely followed by Labour’s Ed Miliband. PM David Cameron fared better, but our exclusive YouGov survey put all three well behind Boris Johnson in the popularity stakes. Even UKIP boss Nigel Farage is regarded as more interesting than the embattled trio. London Mayor Boris easily topped the poll of all five men, with Mr Farage second.' – The Sun

Maria Miller refuses to agree any arts cuts 

'She is understood to have told Danny Alexander, the economic secretary to the Treasury, that a 10 per cent spending reduction would have a disproportionate effect on Britain’s arts and culture. “The Treasury thinks that we are all just luvvies and the arts can just be cut but we are repositioning the department in terms of the arts having real economic value,” an aide said. “That is the only thing that computes with the Treasury.”' – FT (£) 

>Today: ToryDiary - Will Maria Miller's case for the arts win over George Osborne? 

OsborneOsborne urges Labour to pay £1.5m tax in donor row

'Mr Osborne said that Mr Miliband had “gone around recently lecturing people about paying their taxes” and deserved the scrutiny because Labour had helped Mr Mills to devise a way that avoided tax. He added: “The truth is that if people don’t pay their taxes then it is difficult to fund our NHS and our schools and I think what he is doing is completely wrong.”' – The Times (£) 

New Lord Ashcroft poll shows Conservatives slipping after "six wasted months"

'Lord Ashcroft said the findings showed that the first half of the year had been a “missed opportunity” for the Tories. It had begun “promisingly enough”, with the coalition setting out its priorities for the second half of the parliament and the Prime Minister’s promise of an in-out referendum on Europe. Instead, the party descended into record splits over gay marriage, unprecedented revolts against the Queen’s Speech over Europe and questions about Mr Cameron’s leadership.' – The Times (£) 

>Today: Lord Ashcroft on Comment - Why we can't afford to waste another six months 

ChinaFears over Chinese telecoms contracts

'In a report that raises new questions about Huawei's links to the Chinese government and the People’s Liberation Army, parliament’s intelligence and security committee said it was “shocked” that Whitehall officials failed to inform ministers about  BT's use of Huawei equipment in a £10bn upgrade of the telecommunications network eight years ago.' – FT (£) 

NHS chief embroiled in Stafford scandal complains about political scrutiny

'Addressing NHS managers, Sir David said that until he left in March next year he would go on defending the NHS against the interference of politicians who were servants to “the tyranny of the electoral cycle”. He said he had been “particularly incensed” by recent criticism of family doctors by the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt.' – The Times (£) 

  • NHS reforms were a "waste of two years" – FT (£) 

News in brief

  • Andy Coulson pleads not guilty – Daily Express 
  • Fraser Nelson reports on Scots turning back to the Union – Daily Telegraph 
  • Stop paying ransoms to kidnappers, Cameron asks G8 colleagues – The Times (£) 
  • Housing market starts to lift, as bubble fears grow – The Times (£) 
  • Help to buy is short-termist and foolish – Martin Wolf, FT (£) 
  • Huge entrepreneur boom in the North - Daily Mail
  • Gaby Hinsliff is deterred by statistical politics – The Times (£) 
  • Bailed-out Lloyds' Head of Comms paid £1.3 million – Daily Mail 
  • Hunt announces fundamental review of A&E care – The Guardian 
  • Independence referendum cuts off cheap credit for Scottish councils – The Times (£) 
  • Gove acts to prevent any other teachers prosecuted or cautioned for child porn offences from teaching again – Daily Mail 
  • Councils may go bust – The Independent 
  • ECB pegs interest rates in an optimistic mood – The Times (£) 
  • Shale gas must not be squandered like North Sea Oil  – Andrew Wilson, Daily Telegraph 
  • It's right to arm the Syrian rebels – The Times Leader (£) 
  • MPs to get free vote on Syria – FT (£) 

And finally…

What might David Cameron's children's names tell us about his politics?

'Conservatives tend to choose more masculine-sounding names for their children with lots of K’s and B’s…The study showed that people with more left wing views do the opposite and tend to include a lot of feminine words. The findings may give a clue into how the likes of David Cameron really think – he chose Nancy, Florence, Arthur and Ivan for his kids suggesting that he is really more liberal than conservative.' – Daily Mail  


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