“Mandela still has lessons to teach the Tory party”

Mandela“Victory eludes the Conservative Party because it has not learnt to think as the other guy thinks. Too many Tories still find it hard to think beyond the tribal stockade; or – much worse – assume that everyone beyond its boundaries thinks as they do. Just as Mandela learnt Afrikaans, they, too, must learn to speak to those who still despise them” – Matthew d’Ancona, Sunday Telegraph

  • South Africa prepares for week-long Mandela commemoration – Observer
  • Queen to miss Mandela’s funeral – Sunday Times (£)

> Today: ToryDiary – Tony Abbott and Stephen Harper are more reliable models for Cameron than Mandela

Crosby frustrated by Tory indiscipline

“Rather than sticking to the economy, which is growing at a good clip, the Tories have chased Miliband like headless chickens. Lynton Crosby, the straight-talking Australian hired by Cameron to run the Election campaign, has been immensely irritated by this…‘Lynton is making his frustration at their indiscipline very clear. He’s furious they keep wandering off on to Labour’s turf,’ says one figure involved in Tory strategy discussions” – James Forsyth, Mail on Sunday

Clegg to distance himself from Cameron

Nick Clegg portrait“Nick Clegg is gearing up for the first steps towards the break-up of the Coalition. The Deputy PM will soon unleash a wave of hard-hitting speeches to distance himself from David Cameron. And the message he sends out will be clear: ‘We’re heading for divorce.’ The high-octane pronouncements will start in the New Year — and mark the beginning of the end of the Coalition” Sun on Sunday (£)

> Yesterday: Laura Perrins – Is Nick Clegg a misogynist?

UKIP councillor launches racist rant

“A high-profile UKIP politician is facing a racism storm after being caught on camera saying all immigrants to Britain should be sent back home. Victoria Ayling, who made headlines when she defected from the Tories in March, made the inflammatory comments in a 20-minute video seen by The Mail on Sunday. On the subject of immigration she talks about restricting the numbers of foreigners entering the UK, but then adds: ‘I just want to send the lot back, but I can’t say that’” – Mail on Sunday

MPs face fury as they get 11 per cent pay rise

Snip20131208_3“An obligatory £7,600 pay rise is expected to be given to MPs this week – despite the furious objections of all three party leaders. The Commons pay watchdog is expected to cause public outrage by pressing ahead with an 11 per cent hike, which David Cameron previously described as ‘unthinkable’. The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority will sign off on an increase in MPs’ salaries from £66,396 to £74,000 – and try to defuse criticism by toughening its crackdown on perks such as taxis and hotels” – Mail on Sunday

  • Cash-strapped families braced for cut-price Christmas – Sun on Sunday (£)
  • Autumn Statement: what about us, ask the striving classes – Janet Daley, Sunday Telegraph

>Yesterday: Tory Diary – Will you be better off in 2015 than you were in 2010?

British troops face 11 more “trials” over Iraq deaths

“British troops are facing 11 separate inquiries into their conduct in Iraq after a ‘human rights’ ruling by the High Court, it can be disclosed. The inquest-style hearings were ordered by the Ministry of Defence into the deaths of 11 Iraqi civilians during the British presence in the country after the 2003 invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein” – Sunday Telegraph

The EU is taking over defence policy by stealth

EU Exit“The UK government likes to pretend that EU’s Common Security and Defence Policy (CSDP) is harmless inter-government cooperation…These draft European Council Conclusions give the lie to that. Any Conservative prime minister should be wholly opposed to what these Conclusions so clearly intend. To sign the UK up to this programme is not just another step towards a Euro-Army…but another blow to the UK’s already beleaguered defence industries, and another nail in the coffin of Nato” – Bernard Jenkin MP, Sunday Telegraph

>Today: David Lidington MP – It’s time for national Parliaments to give the EU Commission the red card

Labour councils build more social housing

“Labour councils are building twice as many homes in their areas as Conservatives local authorities, new research reveals today. Since the last election, an average of 403 social and affordable homes have been built in each Labour council area, compared with 201 in each Tory-held authority. There are an average of 618 social and affordable homes in the pipeline, with planning permission and financing in place, in each Labour area compared with 365 homes in each Conservative council” – Independent on Sunday

Miliband brings back Blairites to fight the election

Snip20131208_1“New Labour big-hitters Alastair Campbell and Alan Milburn, as well as a batch of other advisers from the Tony Blair and Gordon Brown eras, are to make a dramatic return to Ed Miliband’s general election team, according to a top-secret memo obtained by the Observer. The document – Proposed General Election 2015 Meeting Structure – drawn up in the office of Douglas Alexander, chair of campaign strategy, will infuriate many on the party’s left” – Observer

News in brief

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