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Newslinks for Sunday 27th November 2011

Widdecombe_ann_new7pm MPsETC: "Neither Mrs Thatcher or I, would have any time for the sisterhood approach" says Ann Widdecombe

6pm WATCH:

2.30pm ToryDiary: It is likely that the army could secure Britain's borders if planned strikes go ahead, says Francis Maude

2pm MPsETC: Welsh Conservative Leader Andrew RT Davies pays tribute to Wales football manager Gary Speed

2pm ConHomeUSA: Today's top Republican and American political news

Noon WATCH:

11am LeftWatch: We've had Blue Labour, Purple Labour and soon there'll be "In The Black" Labour

10.30am ToryDiary: Osborne promises to "whatever it takes" to hit his deficit targets

Columnist Ruth Lea: Trim the aid budget and cut taxes

Robert Leitch on Comment: If you don't need your Winter Fuel Payment please give it away

George Hollingbery MP on Local government: The Government is taking the right steps to turn empty houses into much-needed homes

Also on Local government: Cllr David Burbage: Local people know what they like

UK taxpayers are set to pour up to £1 billion into helping African countries fight climate change - The Sunday Telegraph

Inflation is voters' top economic concern - The Sunday Telegraph

> Yesterday evening's ToryDiary on Lord Ashcroft's latest mega poll: 57% don't expect Government to make much difference to economy

Autumn Statement Leak 1: George Osborne will underwrite £20 billion of loans to business

Osborne on AM

"A Treasury source described the scheme, which is thought to be similar to the Labour government's credit guarantee scheme of 2008, as a "game changer". It would mean that a firm currently taking out a £5m loan at a typical interest rate of 5% would instead be able to borrow at 4%, saving £50,000 a year in interest payments." - BBC

Autumn Statement Leak 2: Mr Osborne is also expected to confirm there will either be a freeze or delay in a 3p rise in fuel duty - The Sunday Telegraph

Autumn Statement Leak 3: £300 million of help for rail commuters

Greening Justine BBC"Transport secretary Justine Greening has won an agreement from the Treasury to cap the increase in regulated rail fares, due to be implemented in 2012, at 1% above inflation, instead of the 3% planned rise — though that will still mean prices go up by more than 6%. This temporary measure will cost £300m, and covers season tickets and peak travel on key commuter routes." - Observer

  • A group of 10 backbenchers led by Andrea Leadsom says the government should develop a new "comprehensive" transport strategy instead of HS2 which concentrates on better connections between road, rail and air - Sunday Telegraph

Autumn Statement Leak 4: Faster capital spending

"The chancellor will announce 40 infrastructure projects on Tuesday which the government will intervene in to speed up, though without spending new money. He will bring forward some capital spending and shift cash from day-to-day spending to similar projects." - Observer

"Osborne is to sign a deal with global pension funds to pour tens of billions of pounds into major infrastructure projects across the UK in an attempt to boost the economy." - Scotland on Sunday

Osborne will warn this week that the country will suffer six more years of cuts in public spending to eliminate the bulk of the deficit - The Sunday Times (£)

Too much micro-management from Osborne - Janet Daley in The Sunday Telegraph

Clegg claims credit for Friday's Youth Employment Scheme

Clegg Nick July 2011"Whether it's on youth unemployment, whether it's on youngsters, whether it's on getting behind advanced manufacturing and not putting all our eggs into the City of London basket, I don't think that would have happened without the coalition." - Observer

"A planned 5.2 per cent increase in benefits will go ahead, one of several decisions that Lib Dems are expected to claim as victories for the less well-off. Nick Clegg has secured £1bn over three years to stop the million unemployed young people in Britain from becoming a lost generation. Lib Dems will also be cheered by news that the levy on banks' balance sheets is to be increased to ensure it raises the planned £2.5bn." - Independent on Sunday

100,000 Britons rely on food parcels because they can’t afford to eat - Sunday Express

A post-eurozone Britain could end up less fixated on Europe, and more engaged with the increasingly prosperous outside world - Iain Martin in The Sunday Telegraph

Steve Hilton reveals his doubts about climate change 

Hilton&Cameron

The PM's guru has become a big fan of former Chancellor Nigel Lawson, a vocal critic of the global warming lobby - Mail on Sunday

  • Also in the Mail on Sunday, James Forsyth says Hilton has become increasingly disillusioned with the government, "Steve and all those guys who came in hoping to be seriously radical are very frustrated."

Investors need to get a grip on their companies to curtail the exorbitant executive pay that is at the root of the anti-capitalist protests - Tory MPs Dominic Raab and Matthew Hancock in The Sunday Times (£)

Heseltine backs Boris’s Thames Estuary airport - The Sunday Times (£)

Union leader Len McCluskey targets Francis Maude

"It defies belief that Francis Maude can expect a pension of £43,000 a year while a nurse, caring for the sick and dying, will be expected to stump up £65 extra a month to help George Osborne pay for the mess caused by his friends. So much for David Cameron’s claim: “We are all in this together.”" - Unite's leader in The Sunday Mirror

Balls Ed July 2011Ed Balls expresses "huge sympathy" for public sector unions planning mass strike action - Independent on Sunday

  • Danny Alexander, the Chief Secretary of the Treasury, warned the unions that an improved offer on public sector pensions could be swept off the table if an agreement is not reached - Scotland on Sunday
  • The unions are helping to ensure the economic pain will last even longer - Sunday Times leader (£)
  • The one-day strike is a coward’s weapon. It hurts many innocent bystanders and costs the country a great deal of money - Mail on Sunday leader

Osborne is "the best politician in the Conservative Party at the moment"... says Ed Balls to Jane Merrick in the Independent on Sunday

Labour opens up 9% lead in latest YouGov/ Sunday Times poll - YouGov

UKIP at 11% and LibDems at 12% in Survation/ Star on Sunday poll in which respondents are given specific option of backing Nigel Farage's party.

  • UK Polling Report's Anthony Wells explains the difference between Survation's 11% tally for UKIP and YouGov's overnight 5%. 

The Liberal Democrats are to "rebrand" their party in an effort to be perceived in the same way as Oxfam, the Third World Charity - Mail on Sunday | The Sunday Telegraph

Martin Ivens: Britain's very moderate government

"The economic right urges exciting supply-side reform. If employment protections were scrapped and taxes were lowered, businesses would prosper. That’s too exciting for No 10. In the autumn statement on Tuesday, Osborne will try to stimulate growth over the long term through credit easing, infrastruture and housing investment. But the coalition is run — in the words of Robin Harris, author of a waspish new history, The Conservatives, and a former boss of Cameron at its research department — by “mild and muddled paternalists"... The country has the moderate government it half-heartedly wants and probably deserves." - Martin Ivens in The Sunday Times (£)

If people knew how much the equalities industry costs the country, they would question whether we can afford it and whether it does any good - Minette Marrin in The Sunday Times (£)

Clegg has installed rowing machine in his office to battle the bulge - The Sunday Times (£)

Sally Bercow eyes Brighton area in her bid to become a Labour MP - Independent on Sunday

Is Cameron's West London vicar the inspiration for BBCtv's "Rev" - Mail on Sunday

THATCHERAnd finally... The Lady's not for watching... Margaret Thatcher has said she will not see her movie debut - Conor Burns MP talks to the Mail on Sunday

Heseltine "is disgusted by the thought of The Iron Lady, in which Meryl Streep portrays her as a confused old woman. “Picking on that aspect of a significant historic figure towards the end of their life is distasteful,” he says." - The Sunday Times (£)

The Sunday Express says "the story is set over two days in the present, with extensive flashbacks, as Thatcher battles senility."

  • No one should want to go back to the 80s – not even the Tories, because it did lasting damage to them, too - Andrew Rawnsley in The Observer

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