6.15pm Parliament: Crossbencher Baroness D'Souza elected new Lord Speaker
4.45pm ToryDiary Nick Clegg gives Boris a lesson in loyalty Update: Theresa May responds? - "the advice the Mayor takes is a matter for the Mayor."
3.45pm ToryDiary: Nick Clegg gives Boris a lesson in loyalty
3.30pm Parliament: Speaker Bercow vs. Public Opinion
Noon ConHomeUSA: Today's American political highlights
10.30am Tim Montgomerie on Comment: BBC1's Question Time? Radio 4's Today programme? A frontpage splash in a newspaper? What are the biggest media slots?
John Glen MP on Comment: Liam Fox in for the long haul at the MoD
Local government: Pickles to councils: keep business rates cash you raise
Also on Local government: Heseltine pushes for elected mayors
Army to be cut by 19,000 soldiers as reservists increase - BBC
In a leader the Daily Mail urges cuts in foreign aid and the number of overseas operations involving UK troops.
Liam Fox has allegedly taken control of the Forces chiefs' diary engagements in an attempt to stem leaks criticising Government policy - Telegraph
How badly will Cameron be damaged by Hackgate?
"Some Labour figures hope that Mr Cameron's membership of this rich club will damage him. For most of the public the class war is over, but the connection won't help Mr Cameron's attempts to win over the voters who didn't quite trust him enough in last year's election. More dangerous is that the Prime Minister may appear in voters' eyes to have some dodgy friends and look just as bad as the Labour lot, part of the old rather than the new politics." - Andrew Grice in The Independent
The resignation of Met Chief, Sir Paul Stephenson
"Miliband's personal ratings have leapt up since he took on Murdoch. His Shadow Cabinet, which had been rather ignoring him, is full of admiration. He now has a chance to capitalise on his new-found authority. Today, he is giving another speech on responsibility, in which he will link bankers, politicians and journalists as powerful vested interests that have acted irresponsibly." - Mary Ann Sieghart in The Independent
...but in The Times (£) Tim Montgomerie is suspicious that he can: "The next election will be decided on the economy, and three times as many of the Conservatives’ target voters trust [Cameron] to deliver prosperity than trust Mr Miliband. Until Ed Miliband detoxifies Labour’s economic reputation I will still regard him as a failing leader."
Millions of jobs 'at risk': Clegg warns of serious threat to UK from global debt crisis - Daily Mail
Business rates shake-up ‘will widen the North-South divide’
"The poorest industrial areas in the North will lose out most under the most radical shake-up of local government finance for 30 years, council chiefs warned yesterday. Eric Pickles, the Communities Secretary, is expected to announce plans today for councils to keep £19 billion of business taxes a year to spend on local services." - Times (£)
"Some ministers bravely make the case that there is no link between spending and results: the roll of honour, however, is short and includes Nick Herbert, Theresa May, Andrew Mitchell, Eric Pickles and Grant Shapps. But the default position across government, from the Prime Minister downwards, is to answer a particular concern by pointing out the level of government spending." - Andrew Haldenby in The Telegraph
Wales has an advantage by having a Secretary of State versus regions such as Yorkshire - Tom Richmond in the Yorkshire Post
Calls to look at power of BBC after Ed Miliband raises prospect of breaking up News international
"Douglas McCabe, a a media analyst at Enders Analysis, argued that any review into media ownership would need to look at the reach of organisations via the internet and television. He said it would be perfectly legitimate to include the BBC in that... Tim Montgomerie, the editor of the website ConservativeHome, added: “We have been hearing so much about the dominance of Murdoch, but I think it is essential that we look at the dominance of the BBC,” he said. “Seventy three per cent of people get their news from the television and 70 per cent of TV news is provided by the BBC.”" - Times (£)
"Private firms need to fight for readers and advertisers – the BBC forces TV owners to pay a licence fee or face prison. So much for moral high horses. The vast majority of people never read the Sun, the Daily Mail or the Telegraph, but nearly everybody consumes BBC news and other content, and hence is exposed to its worldview and unavoidable cultural biases." - Allister Heath in City AM
"With some honourable exceptions, whether in its drama, comedy, news reporting or current affairs, the BBC’s output rests upon certain articles of faith. For example, traditional Christians are all fundamentalist bigots; the science of man-made global warming is settled; opponents of mass immigration are racist; Eurosceptics are swivel-eyed fanatics; and all who oppose these opinions and more are Right-wing extremists." - Melanie Phillips in the Daily Mail
> Last week's Platform examining the dominance of the BBC.
> Yesterday's LeftWatch: News International should sell some newspapers says Ed Miliband
Immigration should be frozen, says Miliband adviser - Telegraph
Rising prices have left millions struggling to heat their homes while the government cuts schemes to support them - Luciana Berger MP for The Guardian
Speaker 'ticks off twice as many Tories as Labour MPs' - Daily Mail
> Yesterday's Parliament: Tory MPs twice as likely to be "Bollocked By Bercow" than Labour MPs
> PLEASE USE THE THREAD BELOW TO SUGGEST ADDITIONAL NEWSLINKS OR BLOGS THAT MIGHT BE OF INTEREST TO OTHER READERS. THIS THREAD IS NOW MODERATED AND COMMENTS WILL NOT BE PUBLISHED UNLESS THEY RELATE TO NEW LINKS.
11.30am: 'Burma on the move - join the protests in solidarity' urges Ben Rogers on YourPlatform
Columnist Andrew Lilico: What should we say about taxes?
"The right approach, in my view, is to begin by asking what it is that we want the state to be involved in, and what is best left to the market and the voluntary sector... This then tell us how much we need to spend. Then, knowing how much we need to spend, we know how much we need to raise in taxes, and we have our answer for the level of taxation — the level of taxation is the result, not the startpoint."
John O’Sullivan concludes ConservativeHome's 'What David Cameron Should Do Next' series: The next election is probably already lost but a programme of long-term renewal may also help the Conservative Party maximise its vote against Brown
The Tory leader returned from holiday yesterday and was interviewed by Radio 4's Jim Naughtie. The newspapers all choose to headline slightly different aspects of what he said:
Dominic Lawson questions Cameron on tax
In a must-read article for The Independent, Dominic Lawson writes: "There are two things that worry me about David Cameron's strategy on the issue of tax. First, it seems based on the notion that the overall balance between taxation and spending imposed by Gordon Brown is unchallengeable. Second - and much more worrying - it contributes to the widespread and appallingly ignorant delusion that the economy is like a cake: that if one person gets a bigger slice then everybody else must get a smaller slice."
"The policy commissions, which Mr Cameron established within weeks of becoming leader, were a good concept – a way to draw every wing of the party into Mr Cameron’s project – but the main product of their reams of analysis is confusion... The commissions pull in different directions: one week the Conservatives are talking about tax cuts and competitiveness; the next about public service reforms that imply new spending." - FT leader
Goldsmith-Gummer Quality of life policy group
"Three new bank holidays and three years of paid paternity leave are among radical ideas submitted to a Conservative "quality of life" policy review group." - Telegraph
"Fresh from his summer vacation in France, David Cameron stepped back into the political ring today to challenge Gordon Brown to a "bare-knuckle fight" over possible hospital closures. His decision to take on the government over the health service - once seen as a preserve of the Labour party - underlines Mr Cameron's determination to win the argument on the NHS." - Guardian
"The closure of local accident and emergency units under controversial Government reforms will cost lives, independent researchers warn today. They say the further seriously-ill patients have to travel by ambulance, the more likely they are to die." - Daily Mail
Cancer survival rates among lowest in Europe - Telegraph
Tory parliamentary candidate and blogger says that Wales could flourish as independent nation - Western Mail
Glyn Davies has blogged an explanation for his remarks here.
"The MP sacked from the Conservative front bench after telling Times Online that it was normal for an ethnic minority serviceman to be called a “black bastard” has been recruited by Britain’s racial equality chief." - Times
50,000 have signed Telegraph petition on EU referendum - HAVE YOU?
Kate Hoey MP calls for African nations allied to Zimbabwe to lose aid - Telegraph
LibDems to launch campaign against Gordon Brown's 'surveillance society' - The Independent
Please use this thread to highlight other interesting news and commentary...
BORIS JOHNSON PROVIDES THE WARM UP FOR DAVID CAMERON'S PRE-ELECTION RALLY >>>
The April ConservativeHome survey closes at midnight tonight. Please click here to have your say.
"John Reid, the Home Secretary, cleared the way for Gordon Brown's coronation as Labour leader yesterday by signalling he will not "fracture" party harmony by standing against the Chancellor...The Home Secretary's comments came amid clear signs that Tony Blair is now ready to endorse the Chancellor as his successor after he marks his 10th anniversary in No 10 tomorrow." - Telegraph
"Tony Blair will mark his decade in office this week with "big regrets" at his inability to move more quickly to reform Britain's public services, one of his closest cabinet allies has claimed." - Guardian
"Gordon Brown is the most unpopular politician in Britain. That is the Labour Party’s problem. The party is facing a landslide defeat in the local government and Scottish Parliament elections. That is Mr Brown’s problem." - Willam Rees- Mogg in the Times
DAVID CAMERON: WHERE I WOULD BE TOUGH AND SENSITIVE
"We cannot address social problems merely with state solutions. Government has a role to play in setting the framework of law and incentives that encourage the right behaviour. But the best thing that the state can do is to help build the independent institutions of a responsible society - strong families and strong communities." - Telegraph
LOCAL ELECTION FRAUD
"Some councils are refusing independent observers full access to e-voting and e-counting centres for Thursday's elections, raising the fear that the experiments will not be monitored for potential fraud and breaches of voter privacy." - Guardian
CAMERON'S TEAM APPROVE COUNCIL TAX CUTS
"Conservative councils are promising upfront tax cuts, squeezing spending and cutting back on funding for voluntary groups with the approval of David Cameron’s inner circle" - The Times
"Frustration with Labour is one thing, but to swallow whole what the SNP leader calls the "golden thread" of his campaign - namely the promise of a referendum on Scotland leaving the United Kingdom in 2010 - is naive in the extreme." - Telegraph leader
MEPS VOTE TO STOP PENSIONS SCRUTINY
"Euro-MPs are on a collision course with open information watchdogs after voting to prevent scrutiny of pension perks worth £8 million every year. The European Parliament's bureau, the body that oversees the assembly's administration, has voted to prevent publication of a list naming the 475 MEPs who benefit from a pension scheme worth more than £1,400 a month to Euro-MPs with the taxpayer matching every euro personally contributed with two from the public purse." - Telegraph
"To those waiting with bated breath for that favourite media catchphrase, the "U" turn, I have only one thing to say. You turn if you want to. The lady's not for turning." - Guardian
Read Simon Jenkins' commentary on the speech - Guardian
Please use this thread to highlight other interesting news and commentary...
Iain Dale has two interesting posts this afternoon: One on a generous apology from Peter Hitchens to David Cameron and another on the possibility of controversial policeman Brian Paddick being the latest possible candidate for the Tory nomination for London Mayor.
SCOTS DIVIDED ON INDEPENDENCE
"A total of 38% of more than 1,000 people surveyed said they backed independence, while 37% opposed it. However, a remarkable 35% of Labour supporters said they backed independence and one out of five Tories followed suit - almost half of them 'strongly supporting' a divorce from the rest of the UK." - Scotland on Sunday
"The YouGov survey, the largest conducted during the campaign, gives the Scottish National Party its most convincing lead yet, with an eight-point gap in the first-past-the-post constituency vote and a five-point margin in the 'top-up' section." - Observer
TORIES SHOULD VOTE TACTICALLY TO KEEP ALEX SALMOND OUT
"The principal tactical battleground is Gordon, where Alex Salmond is standing and where the SNP is in third place. The Liberal Democrats have held it since 1983 and they do not seem to be sharing in their Labour coalition partners' meltdown. Their majority is 4,000 over the Tories, with the SNP less than 400 votes behind. If a sizeable slice of the nearly 7,000 Tory and 3,000 Labour voters last time bite the bullet and vote Lib Dem to preserve the Union, Salmond sleeps with the fishes." - Gerald Warner in Scotland on Sunday
"If political diversity is as a good a measure of a country's well being as its bio-diversity, then the whole of Scotland should be an SSSI - a site of special scientific interest - because political parties have blossomed under proportional representation and the general breakdown of political discipline." - BBC
TORIES HOPE TO WIN CONTROL OF NOTTINGHAM - BBC
THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH STAGES A MODERN DAY BULLINGDON PHOTOGRAPH OF A-LIST CANDIDATES - See it here.
DAVID CAMERON USES CONNECTIONS TO GET HIS SKY TV FIXED - Mail on Sunday
CAMERON SHOULD PROPOSE A STREET WIDE WEB
"Thus the World Wide Web should be complemented by the establishment of a Street Wide Web. A plan should be put into place to enable every street in every town to have its own website. The sites could even be set up by local government in the first place, thus performing the municipal functions that Cameron would most like to see - not nannying, but enablement and encouragement." - Tim Lott in the Independent on Sunday
VICTORIA COREN POKES FUN AT DAVID CAMERON'S PHOTO OPPORTUNITY ON THE TUBE - Observer
TORY COUNCILLOR 'OUTED' ON EXPLICIT GAY DATING SITE - Edgware and Mill Hill Times
"England no longer owns cricket. Like radar, penicillin, electricity, the steam engine, railways, the jet engine, computers and the worldwide web, cricket is an English invention; an export as potent as the English language itself. At one level it is a game and no more; at another it helped cement an Empire and bind a Commonwealth. Its legacy is a fellowship of cricket-lovers across continents and through generations." - Mail on Sunday
BLAIR WILL BACK BROWN WHEN HE ANNOUNCES HIS RESIGNATION - Sunday Times
EUROPE NEEDS TO LOOSEN UP
"Membership of the EU's political and economic union now holds Britain back. The EU's regulations damage business competitiveness, its protectionist policies restrict trade and Britain's increasing net budget contributions could be far better employed domestically by cutting taxes or improving public services. Britain can have a wonderful future, but it must be freed from the EU's political and regulatory shackles." - Ruth Lea in The Sunday Telegraph
ABORTION OF THE BRITISH AEROSPACE CORRUPTION PROBE
"The Government's controversial decision to drop a fraud investigation into BAE Systems' £40bn arms deal with Saudi Arabia has caused "severe damage" to Britain's reputation for fighting corruption, MPs warned yesterday." - Independent on Sunday
Please use this thread to highlight other interesting news and commentary...