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3.30pm International: What does Abbott's win mean for Cameron?

Noon ToryDiary: "Before the G20, we were already the second largest supplier of aid to
Syrians, committing a package of assistance worth almost £350 million. 
Cameron announced at the summit that total UK funding for assistance in
Syria and neighbouring states will rise to £400 million."
The Prime Minister's good decision on Syria and aid

ToryDiary: The Treasury dislikes HS2. Labour is equivocal. Tory backbench opposition could kill it off.

Michael Gove MP on Comment: Be angry on behalf of those failed by the education system – if we aren't, who will be?

LeftWatch: In July, Miliband said Falkirk was the dying "old politics". Now, he gives it mouth-to-mouth resuscitation

G20 1) Cameron's Love Actually moment

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“But let me be clear — Britain may be a small island, but I would challenge anyone to find a country with a prouder history, a bigger heart or greater resilience. Britain is an island that has helped to clear the European continent of fascism and was resolute in doing that throughout the Second World War. Britain is an island that helped to abolish slavery, that has invented most of the things worth inventing — including every sport currently played around the world — that still today is responsible for art, literature and music that delights the entire world.” – The Times (£)

  • Henry Smith MP says that Putin is a "t****r" – Daily Express
  • Well done, Cameron AND Smith – The Sun
  • Far from being 'just a small island', Britain is showing leadership by challenging America's approach to foreign policy – Simon Heffer, Daily Mail
  • UK embassies "blew over £6 million on wining and dining" – The Sun
  • Cameron: Children should be taught about the dangers of online porn in classroom – Daily Telegraph

> Yesterday: ToryDiary – "Just a small island … no one pays any attention to them…" (See above)

G20 2) £52 million extra aid for Syria

Screen shot 2013-09-07 at 08.07.24"Speaking at the G20 summit in St Petersburg, the Prime Minister said much of the new money will go towards medical training and equipment to help civilians targeted by chemical attacks. Mr Cameron also called for international action to secure humanitarian access to war zones…Mr Cameron announced Britain's new aid contribution – bringing the total UK funding for assistance in Syria and neighbouring states to £400million – at a meeting he called to urge fellow leaders to dig deep to fund a $3billion (£1.9billion) shortfall in the United Nations appeal for Syria." – Daily Express

  • Obama assembles fragile alliance against Assad – The Guardian
  • If we are judged on whether we bomb people I’m delighted our standing has fallen, says Nigel Farage – Daily Telegraph

> Yesterday: Justine Greening MP on Comment: The key question on international aid is this – do you want to shape the world, or be shaped by it?

Charles Moore: Blair is right about Syria

BLAIR head looking left"Tony Blair is right – again – when he says that the fall of Assad would be “long, bloody, difficult and expensive”, but that the alternative would be “long, bloody, difficult, expensive – and worse”. It would be better if the Western allies, led by America, had a strategy about this. The cliché rolls out (sometimes from Americans) that “America cannot be the world’s policeman”. Perhaps it can’t, but no one else can, without American help, and an unpoliced globe is not a happy place." – Daily Telegraph

  • If we must fight in Syria, we must have a plan – Philip Lee MP, Daily Telegraph

Cameron may appoint a "Minister for HS2"

"Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin is expected to respond to a critical report from MPs on the spiralling costs of HS2 next week with a major speech making a fresh case for the potential economic benefits. There is also speculation that Mr Cameron may appoint a dedicated ‘minister for HS2’ in a Government reshuffle expected after next month’s Conservative party conference." – Daily Mail

> Today: ToryDiary – The Treasury dislikes HS2. Labour is equivocal. Tory backbench opposition could kill it off.

GCSE and A-level reforms timetable delayed

GOVE MICHAEL NW"Michael Gove's ambitious timetable to overhaul GCSE and A-level examinations has been put back after exam regulator Ofqual said reforms to a series of subjects should be delayed. Glenys Stacey, Ofqual's chief regulator, told the education secretary that new A-level exams in mathematics would not be ready until 2016, while many new GCSEs would not be prepared in time to meet Gove's target for them to be taught in 2015." – The Guardian

  • Department of Education paper says that secondary schools face 'timebomb' shortage of places – Daily Mail

> Today: Michael Gove MP on Comment: Be angry on behalf of those failed by the education system – if we aren't, who will be?

GPs must be proactive with older patients, says Hunt

"Family doctors must do more to prevent the health of older patients deteriorating in order to reduce the time they spend in hospital and relieve pressure on hard-pressed A&E units, the health secretary has said. Jeremy Hunt wants GPs to spend more time undertaking preventive work with the growing number of elderly people, whose health needs are driving unprecedented demand on all NHS services. "The role of GPs in caring for older people needs to be proactive – checking up on people, finding out how they are, heading off problems before they happen – rather than reactive," Hunt told Sky News." – The Guardian

May orders review of police domestic violence cases in wake of murders

May Theresa Home Office6"Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) will carry out a wide-ranging inquiry into the way police forces respond to allegations of domestic violence. It will focus on whether the police do enough to protect victims who say they are in danger from partners or ex-partners. Mrs May said she had commissioned the review after the cases of Maria Stubbings, who was strangled with a dog lead by a jealous ex-boyfriend, and Clare Wood, who was strangled and set on fire by a man she met on the internet." – Daily Telegraph

Sajid Javid: We shouldn't be afraid of leaving the EU

"He told The House magazine: "The best outcome is we do have a renegotiated relationship. I've done thousands of negotiations in my job in business and you never go into a negotiation without some sort of weapons in your arsenal, so we are right to have a referendum as it increases our ability to negotiate. "I think the European Union should be much more focused for us on free trade in goods and services. If the British people decide that they want to leave the European Union, that's not something I'd be afraid of." – Daily Express

> Yesterday: MPsETC – Sajid Javid says he’d “embrace the opportunities” that leaving the European Union would bring

Gove and May are pulled out of Windsor Conservative Renewal Conference "at 11th hour"

Screen shot 2013-09-07 at 08.19.44"The Cabinet minsters, along with junior Culture minster Ed Vaizey had been lined up to speak at next weekend’s Conservative Renewal conference. However with days to go, the organisers said that they had pulled out, amid claims that they had come under pressure from an unhappy 10 Downing Street. A Conservative Renewal spokesman said that it had only been told on Thursday about the withdrawals, in what appeared to be a coordinated move." – Daily Telegraph

> Yesterday: Adrian Hilton on Comment – Why Number 10 is wrong to pull Ministers from the Windsor Tory Renewal Conference

Miliband's deal with McLuskey over Falkirk. Murphy reinstated as member of Party, withdraws from contest for seat…

"Ms Murphy, 49, and Steve Deans, the constituency chairman, were suspended amid allegations that the Unite union were trying to fix the selection process. Labour has so far refused to publish an internal report into the goings-on at Falkirk. However, the pair were reinstated after “key evidence” relating to the alleged vote rigging was withdrawn and Labour said there was no proof of wrongdoing by them or Unite." – Daily Telegraph

…Activists who filed complaints now withdraw them (funny, that)…

Miliband ball and chain"But local activists said to have filed complaints are now understood to have withdrawn them, leaving Labour with little choice but to back down/ A Labour spokesman said ‘key evidence’ had been withdrawn. The decision, which was slipped out last night, is deeply embarrassing for Mr Miliband, who infuriated Unite by calling in the police to investigate its conduct." – Daily Mail

…and insiders say Miliband "made the wrong call"

"While party officials are keen to draw a line under the affair, behind the scenes there remain deep divisions within the Labour movement over how the row was handled. Some party insiders have questioned Ed Miliband's judgment in calling in the police and allowing Murphy's suspension before party officials had fully examined the allegations. One said: "Ed Miliband was not in full possession of the facts but still rushed to judgment in the middle of a media frenzy. He made the wrong call." – The Guardian

  • Blair rounds on Miliband over Syria – The Times (£)
  • Euan Blair gets married this weekend, has Westminster in his sights – The Independent
  • Miliband's tormentors ignore the constraints of leadership – Steve Richards, The Guardian

> Today: LeftWatch – In July, Miliband said Falkirk was the dying "old politics". Now, he gives it mouth-to-mouth resuscitation

BBC Trust hits back at Mark Thompson

Screen shot 2013-09-07 at 08.26.49"The BBC Trust has attacked as “bizarre” leaked evidence from Mark Thompson, its former director-general, claiming the corporation’s governing body misled parliament over pay-offs to senior executives. Mr Thompson, who left the BBC last September to become chief executive of the New York Times, alleges that Lord Patten, chair of the trust, and trustee Anthony Fry, told “specific untruths and inaccuracies” to MPs at the Commons public accounts committee on July 10 this year." – Financial Times (£)

  • "Cleaning house at the top of the BBC still has a long way to go" – Times Editorial

It's a LeftWatch column from Matthew Parris in the Times, as he mocks Blanchflower, Portes and Mason for wrong economic predictions (plus Kaletsky and Wolf)

"We can all make vague, undated, long-term predictions, but the expertise we look for in professional analysts is to name the dates. Where’s the evidence that economists are any good at this? Our impression that they keep getting it wrong is technically false: they get it right 95 per cent of the time. They achieve this by assuming that tomorrow will be like today, which, 95 per cent of the time, it is. But the 5 per cent of the time when tomorrow is unlike today is the only time we actually need economists to warn us. And they rarely do. In their timings they’re hardly better than astrologers." – The Times (£)

Australia goes to the polls today. Abbott expected to be Prime Minister

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"Tony Abbott is being ferociously heckled as he visits the seat of Barton in Sydney. Lots of shouting and placard waving from protesters, as well as from Coalition supporters trying to drown them out. Sky News says this is what democracy's all about. Well, that and the voting…Abbott also said he would keep up his exercise routine if he became prime minister, but probably wouldn't adopt the John Howard tracksuit. "I'm not sure that his fashion style will be my fashion style. He never seemed to fancy the budgie smugglers, for instance." So there's some imagery for you this morning." – The Guardian

> Yesterday: International – Tim Montgomerie lists ten things you should know about Australia’s next prime minister, Tony Abbott

News in Brief

  • Falklands protest group threaten to disrupt Princess Anne's trip to Argentina – Daily Mail
  • Soldiers step in to rescue army recruiting – The Times (£)
  • New Press watchdog set up by papers in wake of Leveson Inquiry prepares for launch within months – Daily Mail
  • East London mosque awaits EDL march – The Guardian
  • Four arrested as Brian May heads to front line of badger cull protests – The Independent
  • Criminal who burned woman's face can stay in Britain because of his human rights – Daily Telegraph
  • Charities win reprieve on new lobbying bill – Financial Times (£)
  • Simon Cowell on secret list of rogue private eye clients. Keith Vaz tells SOCA it must be published – The Times (£)
  • Security scare at Buckingham Palace as two men break into it – The Sun

And finally…the Daily Mail introduces its new columnist, Sarah Vine, a.k.a Mrs Michael Gove, who is "warm, funny, naughty and wonderfully indiscreet — particularly when it comes to sharing delicious titbits about her eccentric husband. Who just so happens to be Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Education"…who –

  • Screen shot 2013-09-07 at 08.30.33"Owns a ukulele".
  • Has a "penchant for posh moisturisers, facials (‘I send him off for one when he’s a bit ruddy around the gills’) and scented bath oils?"
  • "Is never without a book (even at the cinema, just in case the film’s boring)"
  • "Changes into his special ‘home trousers’ — a pair of bright orange corduroys — the minute he gets home from Westminster."
  •  "Is utterly incompetent when it comes to driving airport trolleys, bicycles and cars, gorges himself on almond croissants and has a burgeoning interest in golf".
  •  "Once found himself in hot water with Mick Jagger after making derogatory comments about the size of his manhood."

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