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Newslinks for Tuesday 18th September 2012

6pm WATCH: Labour MP Paul Flynn is thrown out of the Commons after calling Philip Hammond a liar

Screen shot 2012-09-18 at 15.28.063.30pm WATCH: Andrea Leadsom, Lord Myners and Jonathan Portes: are there green economic shoots?

1.15pm Joe Armitage on Comment: On entrepreneurship and tax cuts, David Cameron is another Margaret Thatcher

12.45pm Local Government: Council tenants banned from displaying anti-Labour election poster

10am ToryDiary: That Times Populus poll in a single sentence

ToryDiary: The powerful position of Iain Duncan Smith

Columnist Peter Hoskin asks whether we will have cause to celebrate the Coalition during its landmark year of 2017

Paul Goodman on Comment: Will Israel stay Zionist?

Local Government: Ten questions for the Labour candidate in the Corby by-election

The Deep End: The Eurozone disaster: You can run, but you can’t hide

WATCH: ‪Romney - My 'victims' comment about almost half America's voters was not elegantly stated‬

Poll news 1) Populus gives Labour a record 15 point lead - but Cameron has a "clear and rising" personal majority over Miliband

Cameron V Miliband PMQs"This is its highest share in a Populus poll in this Parliament and an increase of 5 points since the last Times poll in July. The Tories drop to 30 per cent, down 4 points on July and a new low in this Parliament. The Liberal Democrats drop 2 points to 10 per cent. Labour would be heading for a landslide victory if translated into seats at a general election…But the poll also has discouraging results for Mr Miliband, finding a clear and rising majority that would prefer David Cameron in Downing Street over the Labour leader." - The Times (£)

Poll analysis: "The proportion who believe that the Government is handling the economy “well” has dropped from 48 per cent last September to 39 per cent now, suggesting that the unhappy Budget has played a role in forming public opinion". - The Times (£)

  • The Tories keep swiping, but Ed Miliband is an elusive target - Mary Riddell, Daily Telegraph
  • Parties must stop playing unhappy families - Rachel Sylvester, The Times (£)

> Today: Columnist Peter Hoskin asks whether we will have cause to celebrate the Coalition during its landmark year of 2017

> Yesterday:

Poll News 2) How over 75% want to see immigration slashed - Daily Express

Poll News 3) Majority of Germans think they would have been better off if they never made the switch to the Euro - Daily Mail 

Cameron puts brakes on pension reform...

"David Cameron has demanded a rethink of flagship state pension reforms amid fears they could alienate core Conservative supporters, including the electorally crucial “grey” vote. The Financial Times has learnt the prime minister personally put the brakes on the plan for a flat-rate benefit worth around £140 a week after realising that millions of people would either lose out – or fail to benefit from – the new system. The policy, confirmed in George Osborne’s controversial March Budget, is the latest to be re-examined after ministers underestimated its potential political fallout." - Financial Times (£)

...As IDS defends his universal credit

DUNCAN SMITH DP
"Giving evidence to the Commons Work and Pension Committee yesterday, he brushed aside warnings that moving to a system of monthly payments will cause hardship for those on the lowest incomes, who fear that the money will run out before the month is up…Mr Duncan Smith insisted that paying benefits weekly or fortnightly made it harder for people who find jobs to adjust to the world at work now that the majority of employers pay monthly. The "weekly pay packet" at the factory gate is a thing of the past, he said." - The Independent

  • Work and Pensions Secretary warns of cyber attacks on universal credit - Daily Telegraph
  • Prime Minister throws weight behind scheme - The Sun
  • MPs to get universal credit hotline - The Times (£)
  • Government eyes end to benefits and inflation link - Allegra Stratton, Newsnight, BBC
  • The welfare state is broken, so what's next? Philip Johnston, Daily Telegraph
  • Cameron: more right-wing than Thatcher, dismantler of "the state itself", destroyer of the NHS, grinder of the faces of the poor into the dust (etc, etc: turn to page 94) - Polly Toynbee, The Guardian

> Today: ToryDiary - The powerful position of Iain Duncan Smith

Downing Street thinks and hopes Obama will win - The Guardian

Timpson wants greater freedom for foster parents

Edward Timpson"Foster carers will be trusted to make many more everyday decisions on behalf of the children they look after, such as when they need a haircut, under plans to make the role more like normal parenting…Edward Timpson, the new Minister for Children and Families, said he fears prospective foster carers are being put off, and existing ones giving up, because of all the bureaucracy. His own parents fostered more than 90 children while he was growing up. “I want the process to be as hassle-free as possible. Vital safeguards will remain, but no one benefits from pointless paperwork,” he said."- The Times (£)

Evan "Dr Death" Harris takes ecstasy on Channel 4 show - Belfast Telegraph

Maude hires IPPR to produce options on boosting effectiveness and political accountability of civil service

"The study is the first example of Whitehall commissioning outsiders to undertake policy work for government. The IPPR beat 20 other bidders for the £50,000 contract and will by late autumn produce a menu of options for ministers based on experiences in New Zealand, Singapore, France, the US and Sweden. The IPPR undertook an international comparative study back in 2006 that has impressed Maude. He wants to look at radical options including formally contracting departmental permanent secretaries to complete certain ministerial objectives." - The Guardian

  • Political appointees could be hired to run the civil service every five years - Daily Telegraph

> Yesterday: WATCH - Tory MP Karen Lumley dismissive of role of think tanks in Daily Politics film

Gove-levels Day Two: Education Secretary announces EBaccs plan to Commons

“It is time for the race to the bottom to end,” said the Education Secretary. “It is time to tackle grade inflation and dumbing down. It is time to raise aspirations, restore rigour to our examinations and equip children for the 21st century.” According to a consultation document published yesterday, GCSEs, which were introduced by the Tories in 1988, will be scrapped in favour of EBaccs in core subjects. New courses in English, maths and science will be introduced in 2015, with exams taken in 2017, before syllabuses in foreign languages, history and geography are adopted 12 months later." - Daily Telegraph

  • Mr Gove is a difficult bird for Labour to tackle. They want to see him as a Dickensian figure, insisting on "facts, facts, facts," a Michael Gradgrind or Wackford Gove. But he isn't a bit like that….Instead he is a slightly camp figure, who loves nothing better than scoring short, sarcastic points off the other side." - Simon Hoggart, The Guardian
  • "Shadow Education Secretary Stephen Twigg did not seem to know what to propose. Instead he complained that Mr Gove’s policy had been leaked to the newspapers. Then he complained that the policy had been drafted in secret. Er, you can’t have both." - Quentin Letts, Daily Mail
  • Rigorous exams are vital for our future - Daily Mail Editorial
  • The EBC should boost the rigour of public examinations, but the same is now needed for technical qualifications - The Times Editorial (£)
  • Gove for It - Sun Editorial

> Yesterday: John Bald on Local Government - Despite short term rough justice the goal of a more rigorous exam system must be pursued

Andy Murray and Alex Salmond discuss plans for Scottish tennis academy - Scotsman 
Badgers badgers badgers Day Two: Hundreds of thousands to be shot after Paterson issues first culling licence

Screen shot 2012-09-18 at 08.07.36
"The first licence for a large-scale cull of badgers in England was issued on Monday, allowing the animals to be killed over a 300 square-kilometre area in west Gloucestershire. The government hopes it is the first of many licences and that the death of an estimated 100,000 badgers will help curb the scourge of TB in cattle, which led to 26,000 cows being slaughtered in 2011.
Asked if the granting of the license was a positive first step in a nationwide roll out of the cull, the environment secretary, Owen Paterson, said: "Yes, I very much hope so." - The Guardian

  • New Environment Secretary told civil servants he might give them personal demonstration of how to drown badgers - Daily Mail
  • Paterson urges shoppers to stop buying foreign puddings to reverse the 'dessert deficit'- Daily Mail

Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood attacked over Welsh republican meeting - Wales Online 

Fleet Street follows up Lord Ashcroft's ConHome plea to end aid

"Lord Ashcroft, one of Mr Cameron’s key advisers, warned that Ministers should “turn off the golden taps and stop flooding the developing world with our money”. And writing on this page, Tory backbencher Peter Bone today calls for Britain’s overseas aid budget to be slashed by a third.  The handouts to India have provoked the most controversy because the nation is so rich it now runs its own space and foreign aid programmes." - Daily Express

  • As Britain's foreign aid budget soars, we are entitled to know precisely where our money is going - Daily Telegraph Editorial
  • The armies of money-grabbing consultants growing rich off Britain's ballooning foreign aid budget - Iain Birrell, Daily Mail

> Yesterday: Lord Ashcroft on Comment writes an open letter to Justine Greening: Overseas aid doesn't work and we can't afford it

Prison spending threatens savings budget - Financial Times (£)

One of Cameron's fiercest critics says that this is no time to replace him (Simon, could it be that you're not very keen on Boris?)

HEFFER SIMON"Mr Cameron cannot be removed from his job at this stage without causing serious damage…No party in its right mind removes a leader — let alone a prime minister — unless it has other credible people ready, willing and able to take over. The Tories have no such luxury. Also, they conspicuously lack a candidate who could unite the party any better than Mr Cameron can. The party is so sectarian that even the anti-Cameron Right is split into several factions."- Simon Heffer, Daily Mail

  • Osborne's biographer returns to the Chancellor's strategy of weaning key voters off tax credits - Janan Ganesh, Financial Times (£)
  • Shapps slaps down Boris - Daily Mail
  • Family incomes may start to rise from next year - The Independent

> Yesterday: Lord Bates on Comment - Ministers must talk up signs of recovery because the recovery is real and confidence will sustain it

Men who isolate their partners from friends and family to be guilty of domestic violence under new Government laws after Centre for Social Justice recommendations - Daily Mail 

The Mail continues its scrutiny of new Planning Minister Nick Boles

"The comment by Nick Boles, on his first Commons outing as planning minister, will increase fears that the Government is looking at relaxing rules on building on the green belt. Mr Boles was told by Stuart Andrew MP, a former councillor, about threats to the green belt around Leeds. He replied: ‘I can reassure him, for now, that there is nothing to stop Leeds City Council from maintaining the protection of green belt land in their local plan.’ " - Daily Mail

Blair: The Coalition is appointing advisers faster than he did - The Independent

Blair: Fight back against Islamist extremism - Daily Mail

Hammond stands firm over Afghan partnership after "green on blue" murder of British soldiers

"Philip Hammond, the defence secretary, said on Monday that Britain “will not be deterred” from its military partnership with Afghan forces after two British soldiers were killed at the weekend by a man dressed as an Afghan policemen. Mr Hammond told the House of Commons it was essential that Britain continued to help train Afghan national security services to “deny the territory of Afghanistan to international terrorists”." - Financial Times (£)

  • Pressure group urges Cameron to halt 'dangerous' defence cuts - Daily Mail

Anti-abortion campaigners hail 'free speech victory' as trial collapses - Daily Telegraph 

Senior LibDem warns that his party should beware a pact with Labour

Screen shot 2012-09-18 at 08.13.57"To assume that we should now be aiming to lay the groundwork for a future Labour-Lib Dem coalition is naive, misguided and dangerous for the future identity of the party. It is naive because we cannot predict the outcome of the next election – that will be decided by voters making individual decisions according to a range of local and national considerations. It is misguided because it assumes that Lib Dem supporters and potential Lib Dem voters have a homogeneous view of the party." - Malcolm Bruce MP, The Guardian

Top authors denounce new bounty on Rushdie - The Independent

"Top Tory" quits to join UKIP (He is a former Chairman of Express newspapers) - Daily Express

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