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Newslinks for Sunday 13th May 2012

6.30pm WATCH: Philip Hammond sends condolences to the families of the servicemen killed in Afghan police incident

2pm WATCH: Eric Pickles: "Government can't create growth, it can create the conditions for growth" 

12.15pm ToryDiary: William Hague sounds unenthusiastic about an in/out European referendum

Miliband PAC11am WATCH: Ed Miliband on Labour's time in office: "We lost touch, we were too close to the powerful interests"

ToryDiary: Philip Hammond says gay marriage and Lords reform aren't deliverable, as he prepares for a balanced MoD budget - updated 10.15am with expanded gay marriage comments from the Andrew Marr show

Columnist Nadine Dorries MP: For the sake of social justice, we need more grammar schools

Stewart Jackson MP on Comment: We need to stop fighting each other - corrosively and arrogantly - and start fighting Labour

Local Government: Labour propose more Cabinet Members for Southampton Council

The Deep End: The next financial crisis is already in the making

William Hague: David Cameron is the sanest person to lead the Conservative Party in a long time

HAGUE WILLIAM CLOSE-UP"The Foreign Secretary describes himself as “one of the strongest supporters” of David Cameron and wants him to lead the Tories for “as long as possible.” However, he goes further when questioned about how the Prime Minister is facing up to the current political storm raging about him. “He is not the sort of person who gets ruffled or paranoid or panicked...we’ve all seen those things happen in political leaders, including party leaders, including prime ministers...and that doesn’t happen to him.” Mr Hague pauses, then adds: “He is the sanest person to lead the Conservative Party in a long time, me included!"" - Sunday Telegraph interview

  • Work harder, William Hague tells Britons - Sunday Telegraph
  • William Hague is right to point to the importance of honest graft - Sunday Telegraph editorial

> From yesterday - Paul Maynard MP on Comment: Tory MPs should be more loyal, less panicky and Cameron should more clearly set out where he is leading us

Philip Hammond: I've balanced the MoD's books

Hammond Philip Iran speech"He will announce this week that he has eliminated a £38 billion hole in the defence budget, making it possible to... claim that for the first time in modern history his department will have an underspend as well as a substantial contingency fund. “In the next few days we will be in a position to make the grand announcement that I’ve balanced the books,” Hammond said.”" - Sunday Times (£)

  • Hammond comes out against spending time on gay marriage and Lords reform - full Sunday Times (£) interview
  • Lord Owen attacks coalition over Lords reform 'farce' - Sunday Telegraph

> From yesterday -  Luke Coffey, former Special Adviser to Liam Fox, on Comment: The Government made the right decision on the Joint Strike Fighter this week

Members of the Armed Forces are suffering abuse and discrimination on Britain’s streets just for wearing their uniforms in public

Returning_soldiers_2"A survey of more than 9,100 servicemen discloses that almost one in five military personnel has been refused service in pubs, hotels and shops because they were in uniform. Six per cent have been attacked in the street, while 21 per cent have reported strangers coming up to them and shouting abuse." - Sunday Telegraph

  • "And 18 per cent had been refused service in places such as pubs or hotels in the past five years. Others had been spat at and more than one in 20 had faced violence. A female RAF officer said: “I have people running up and screaming ‘baby killer’ at me.”" - The Sun on Sunday
  • Simple ways we can all recognise their bravery - Lord Ashcroft for the Sunday Telegraph

Over-50s to get help to launch own businesses

"Chris Grayling, the employment minister, wants to "unleash a wave of new entrepreneurs" with enterprise allowances, which mirrors a scheme in the 1980s that helped the artist Tracey Emin, Creation Records boss Alan McGee and Julian Dunkerton, founder of the Superdry fashion label." - Independent on Sunday

Seven "Iron lady" Tory MPs to propose 21st century Thatcherite policies

ThatcherNoTurningBack"Their ideas, to be published tomorrow in a series of essays by the think tank Demos, present a 21st-century twist on Thatcherism. Echoing her traditional values, they want Cameron to revive the idea of tax breaks for married couples, but they also back less true-blue ideas such as flexible maternity and paternity leave and free nursery education." - Sunday Telegraph (£)

> Yesterday on ToryDiary: Time to revive the idea of a tax break for married couples

Janet Daley: David Cameron should pursue a "more for less" philosophy

Daley-Janet-black-backgroun"As I recall, Mr Cameron did make brief allusions to such a notion – of spending cuts being an opportunity to get greater value for money – in a couple of early set-piece speeches. But then, characteristically, he left the idea undeveloped and undefended... Which is a shame: if ever there was an example of “common sense” combined with logical consistency, this is it. All it would take to carry the day is a willingness to make the argument." - Janet Daley for the Sunday Telegraph

Justine Greening has a solution for campaigners fighting to save ancient woodland threatened by the controversial HS2 rail-link – move it - Sunday Telegraph

Cameron's £100 parenting class Boots vouchers to help tackle child yobbery - Mail on Sunday

  • Schools 'face talent drain' as morale of teachers dives - Observer

Tory Minister is slapped down by Lib Dems after criticising gay marriage in letter to constituent

"Tim Loughton, Tory Minister for Children and Families, came under fire from Liberal Democrat partners after he said he was totally opposed to same-sex marriage and that the Prime Minister would do better to focus on getting Britain out of recession." - Mail on Sunday

Iain Martin: The Coalition is running out of steam, just two years in

LibDemDead"At the top of government there are those who tell MPs that the arrangement remains strong and that relations between the principal players in both party’s are still healthy. Further down the ministerial food-chain, there is plenty of Tory grumbling about the Lib Dems. There are also suggestions that the Chancellor is unhappy. Says a Tory MP: “After the problems with the budget, caused by Lib Dem briefing and the complexity of negotiations, George is much less a fan of coalition.”" - Iain Martin for the Sunday Telegraph

Matthew d'Ancona: Making cuts last until after 2015 will cause an anti-incumbency feeling

D'ANCONA"The revision of the original fiscal timetable... means that, on polling day, the voters will still be feeling tired, impatient and financially overstretched, rather than better-off, optimistic and disinclined to kick out the main governing party. The 2015 election was always meant to be about the voters and their improved standard of living. Now, it will be about the politicians themselves and their fitness to continue with an incomplete austerity strategy. The next election, in other words, will be a contest of character." - Matthew d'Ancona for the Sunday Telegraph

  • "Conservatives are likely to try blame the knock-on effects of the crisis in the euro area for sluggish growth at home" - Observer
  • George Osborne may well push Cameron into a referendum pledge in 2015 - John Rentoul for the Independent on Sunday

Yesterday on ToryDiary: Where Tory members most agree with all voters (and where they most disagree)

James Forsyth: Civil service reform plans are seen as "a joke"

"At the heart of the row is the Civil Service reform White Paper. This is meant to pave the way for a far smaller Whitehall machine and to make it easier to bring people in from the private sector. Kerslake... and fellow Permanent Secretaries produced their own plan... Those who have seen it describe it as a joke, the kind of thing you would expect from a second-rate human resources department, with ‘lots of verbiage about valuing our staff more’." - James Forsyth for the Mail on Sunday

Leveson roundup

Ed Miliband is just as much a part of the Westminster establishment as Cameron or Clegg

Miliband Ed QT"He read PPE at Oxford, just like the prime minister. His first job was in television working on a programme – with me, as it happens – devoted to Westminster politics. His subsequent career has been almost entirely spent inside the club: first as an aide to Harriet Harman and Gordon Brown, then a quick route to a safe seat under their patronage, and swift elevation to the cabinet." - Andrew Rawnsley for the Observer

Peter Hain to quit shadow cabinet as Ed Miliband plans Labour reshuffle - Sunday Telegraph

Alex Salmond accused over second question in referendum

Salmond Alex iv"Labour leader Johann Lamont yesterday accused Alex Salmond of floating a possible second question on further devolution as part of the independence referendum because he “fears” he won’t win the vote to leave the UK. Lamont, speaking at a Fabian Society conference, said the First Minister was striving to get a “consolation prize” and now appeared to be “fumbling for a reverse gear”." - Scotsman

  • Alex Salmond trip in bid to forge Norway energy link - BBC

Female influence on legislation could be lost by Lords reform

"The female peers of the House of Lords have come to the fore in their influence on major coalition bills on health, welfare and legal aid. But is there a danger that the experience and wisdom they bring to the upper chamber could be lost in the rush to reform?" - Observer

High earners say au revoir to France - Sunday Telegraph

Ministers set to order inquiry into care homes - Independent on Sunday

Patients are being left for 24 hours on A&E trolleys, say nurses - Observer

Consultation on how to label food - BBC

  • MPs call for wider food strateg - BBC

And finally... 'I'm overweight': Health Secretary Andrew Lansley on his diet

Lansley.ashx"Mr Lansley says that although his diet is ‘not perfect’, his business consultant wife Sally... stops him from slipping into bad habits. ‘She’s pretty good. Last night it was rice and a lean lamb kebab, with mushrooms and one bottle of Budweiser. I’m pretty restrained with alcohol, as my advisers will tell you. The night before it was a steak pie, new potatoes and peas,’ he smiles, virtually licking his lips at the memory." - Mail on Sunday

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