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St George's Day 2008

Gaukeonbrown 4pm Platform: David Gauke MP asks us what the 10p climbdown tells us about Gordon Brown

2pm CentreRight: Harry Phibbs posts key extracts from Livingstone's biography

11.45am ToryDiary: Brown U-turns on 10p just minutes before PMQs

11am ToryDiary: Headcases

10.45am PlayPolitical video: Watch Hillary Clinton promise to "obliterate" Iran if it strikes Israel

9.45am Local Government: Another day, another LibDem defection or two

ToryDiary: The taxpayer gives £1.75bn extra to politics and the politicians still want more

Norrisbox LondonMayor: Steve Norris may become Boris Johnson's head of London Development Agency

Mark Harper MP on Platform marks St George's Day by examining the incoherent devolution settlement: "People living in English border constituencies like mine have only seen the costs of devolution.  They have yet to see any benefits, either for them or for the Union."

PlayPolitical: Highlights of Hillary Clinton's victory speech and Bob Spink talks to Sky about joining UKIP

Relentless Tim Montgomerie on CentreRight: Even conservative critics are praising Hillary's stamina

From the launch of the Quilliam Foundation, Ben Rogers advocates engagement with ex-Islamists

Gordon Brown says rising food prices are as big a threat as credit crunch - Sky

£1.2bn in unclaimed tax credits could fun £1bn compensation for 10p victims says Frank Field - Guardian

St George's Day

On St George's Day, EU wipes England off map - Telegraph

"We have 529 MPs who sit in the parliament at Westminster.  On certain days, so long as the Union lasts, the Union Flag should be lowered on the Victoria Tower of the Palace of Westminster and replaced by the Cross of St George; and the 529 MPs should meet as an English parliament.  They could elect their own English speaker and hold to account ministers from the majority party in England." - Simon Heffer in The Telegraph

And for some light relief: Happy St George's Day from MEPs Roger Helmer and Chris Heaton-Harris

> 10 Downing Street flies St George's flag today

Graham Brady MP exposes how Labour's new airplane tax will hurt British industry - Telegraph

Livingstone may win, based on a focus group of just ten - headlines The Times

Pearson For the first time in her life... Allison Pearson is thinking of voting Conservative

"David Cameron, toff or no toff, shows remarkable signs of coming up with policies that voters actually want. Abolishing Stamp Duty for first-time buyers on purchases of up to £250,000.  A commitment to support streaming and discipline in schools, including giving head teachers the freedom to exclude disruptive pupils.  A British Bill of Rights and Responsibilities that will protect victims, not offenders.  Scrapping the insane ID cards plan, thus freeing up billions to be spent on something that matters - paying mums to stay at home and look after their own children if they feel like it, for instance.  Above all, the new Tories have shown they understand a fundamental truth: a happy, stable family is the basis of a good society." - Daily Mail

David Cameron is back in his tortoise shell

"In keeping with Cameron's emphasis on the "tortoise" approach, the party is playing a measured game, focusing on campaigning in the marginals, and approaching the tax rebellion with delicacy. On the latter front, to overplay their hand would be to scare Frank Field's ragtag rebels back towards Brown, so the Tories are stepping back from any hardened proposals of their own, and hoping that a Labour revolt feeds into the narrative of the government's irreversible decline. The script remains the same: to weather blips, keep calm and maintain the run of success that began last autumn." - John Harris, The Guardian

The woman likely to become Wales' first female Tory MEP explains her opposition to the system that selected her

“Within the Conservative Party we are probably under-represented by women. I understand that our only female MEP is retiring. However I can hand on heart tell you that I campaigned with senior members of our party to not have the system we have just gone through with our members’ ballot. I didn’t approve of any automatic first ranking being given to a female candidate, and would have preferred an open and fair ballot where we would have been able to go round and speak at hustings to convince members of our merits." - Western Mail

> How most women in top MEP slots received fewer votes than their male rivals

MEPs vote not to employ relatives - BBC

"Members of the European Parliament voted yesterday to cover up a report showing widespread abuse of allowances worth £125 million every year." - Telegraph

The Commons remembers Gwyneth Dunwoody - Times sketch

Stress ball scores direct hit on George Galloway - The Independent


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