Osborne and IDS square off over Universal Credit…

idspic“George Osborne is at loggerheads with Iain Duncan Smith over how to pay for concessions on tax credit cuts, it emerged last night. The Chancellor is considering raiding the Work and Pensions Secretary’s flagship Universal Credit programme to help soften the blow from the changes.” – Daily Mail

  • Showdown between Work and Pensions and the Treasury – The Sun (£)
  • Osborne threatens to turn screws on Cabinet colleagues resisting cuts – Financial Times
  • IDS threatens to quit over welfare cuts – The Times (£)
  • Cameron’s heir ponders how to avoid tax credit u-turn – Financial Times


  • Chancellor claims free markets cannot be left to themselves – Daily Telegraph
  • Chancellor to close loophole where BBC pay staff ‘off the books’ – Daily Mail

Housing and Infrastructure:

  • Osborne’s stamp duty reforms fail to boost housing market – The Times (£)
  • British Chambers of Commerce tells Chancellor to remove infrastructure from cuts plan – The Independent


>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Reforming child benefit, and other alternatives to tax credit cuts

…as he looks to end military pay rises

“Members of the Armed Forces will be denied automatic pay rises under controversial proposals put forward by George Osborne, The Telegraph has learnt. The Chancellor wants to end the long-standing system of incremental pay rises that are given to military personnel after each year of service.” – Daily Telegraph

Cameron 1) Knives out for Prime Minister’s Eurovision

CAMERON EU fence“David Cameron faces a Tory revolt when he finally reveals Britain’s EU renegotiation plan next week. The PM will flesh out his vision for looser ties with Brussels in a letter to European leaders to be made public at the same time. But Downing Street sources say it will not be a “line-by-line” shopping list and will merely build on what Mr Cameron has been saying behind closed doors in recent months.” – The Sun (£)

  • The Prime Minister and Chancellor refine their referendum lines – The Independent
  • Exports show a path out of the EU – Daily Mail


>Today: Brian Monteith in Comment: If Britain votes to leave the EU, Osborne must resign

Cameron 2) Plans to make high-speed broadband ‘a right, not a luxury’

“Families will have the legal right to demand fast broadband into their homes no matter where they live in Britain, David Cameron announces today. The Prime Minister will put internet services on the same legal footing as water and electricity – saying that broadband should be a right, not a luxury, in the 21st Century.” – Daily Mail

  • A good internet connection to become a legal right for every Briton – Daily Telegraph
  • Petition of no confidence in the Prime Minister may be debated in Parliament – The Independent

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: Cameron was right to revise the Ministerial Code

Hunt calls on senior medical leaders as risk of strike mounts

NHS_Logo“Jeremy Hunt has called in Britain’s most senior medical leaders for talks on looming industrial action by junior doctors. The heads of the respected medical royal colleges have begun being called for meetings with the Department of Health. With junior doctors currently being balloted for strike action, pressure is mounting on Mr Hunt to avert what is likely to be the biggest doctors’ strike since the 1970s.” – The Independent

  • Minister blocks law to give NHS cheap, off-patent drugs – The Independent
  • UK Government kills of Welsh MP’s bid for cheaper medicine – Wales Online

>Yesterday: Dr Rachel Joyce in Comment: Time for a revolution in how we train NHS staff

Matthew Parris: Public sector whingers are heading for a fall

“Be it by lawyers, doctors or hospital porters, the insinuation that to serve the public somehow elevates you above the argument about what can be afforded, warps our attitudes. It sentimentalises. It turns employees into glorified charity workers who just happen to be drawing a salary. Implicitly it insults those who work in the private sector.” – The Times (£)

May suffers second setback over teen stowaway

MAY Warhol“Home Secretary Theresa May has suffered a second defeat in a damages fight with an immigrant detained after arriving in England on a lorry. A judge last year ruled the Iranian — 16 when he turned up in 2012 — had twice been unlawfully detained as an adult.” – The Sun (£)

  • Farron accuses Labour of being Home Secretary’s ‘nodding dogs’ over investigation powers – The Independent

>Yesterday: ToryDiary: No surveillance on the scale proposed, but politicians should lead on terror warrants

Interview with Ruth Davidson

“As a Scot, Ms Davidson is less concerned about the EU referendum than most Tories… There wouldn’t even be a problem, she believes, if England voted to leave while the Scots voted to remain in. “That was a question that came up at every point of the Scottish referendum… there may well be regional variations, even national variations, but I don’t take that as a trigger [for another independence vote].”” – The Times (£)

Mahyar Tousi: I’m working class, the son of a refugee… and a Conservative

Britain shield“I recall my first experience of a political meeting at university in Manchester. A friend who was an activist in the Labour group there took me to one of their meetings. I spent the whole night listening to the students talk about my own heritage and how the Tories are worse than the Iranian regime and that the Labour party will protect me. It was precisely because they were so patronising towards me – and knew so little about what they were talking about – that a few days later I proudly joined the Conservative society.” – The Guardian

Labour suspend Corbyn’s policy chief

“Jeremy Corbyn’s policy adviser has been suspended by Labour in a devastating blow for the party leader… Tonight Mr Corbyn insisted he has ‘full confidence’ in Mr Fisher, despite an outcry after it emerged he told voters in his constituency not to vote Labour at the General Election – and to back the anarchist Class War party instead.” – Daily Mail

  • Advisor suspended for aiding rival party – The Times (£)
  • Enquiry to examine claim police spied on Corbyn and Livingstone – The Guardian
  • Leader to lay wreath at Cenotaph ceremony he denounced as ‘mawkish’ – Daily Mail
  • Corbyn won’t need to kneel for the Queen – Daily Telegraph


Pro-comprehensive group eye up legal challenge to new grammars

School“Plans for the first ‘new’ grammar school in 50 years could be delayed by months or years if a legal challenge by Labour politicians goes ahead. Even if the court move fails, it could still cost the Department for Education millions to defend.” – Daily Mail

UKIP ask Queen for Remembrance role

“Ukip has written to the Queen to complain about being excluded from the Remembrance Sunday events at the Cenotaph. Mike Hookem, an MEP and former soldier, has urged her to intervene on behalf of the 3.8 million people who voted for the party in May’s election.” – The Times (£)

>Yesterday: Ashley Fox MEP’s column: Merkel’s migrant mistake will harm Germany – and not help the refugees in most need

News in Brief:

  • Thousands remain stranded in Egypt as UK planes barred from helping – Daily Mail
  • Obama abandons hope of a two-state peace deal in Israel… – The Times (£)
  • …and rejects Keystone XL pipeline plan – Financial Times
  • Exxon probed on climate cover up – Daily Telegraph
  • Met chief blasts ‘despicable’ rioters who attached police horses – The Guardian
  • Abolish the Assembly Party launched in Wales – Wales Online
  • Four hour police quiz for Kids Company chief – Daily Mail