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Sunday 10th December 2006

10pm Seats and candidates update: Mike Freer selected for Finchley & Golders Green

ConservativeHome sends its best wishes to Andrew Turner MP and a swift recovery from a stroke on Friday (BBC).

7.45pm ToryDiary update: General Pinochet is dead

6.30pm Seats and candidates update: Mary MacLeod selected for Brentford and Isleworth

Early evening updates:

Mos_daviesMail on Sunday anecdote >>>

David Davies MP asks David Cameron if he is deliberately trying to annoy the Right. Cameron cites an amiable recent breakfast with Norman Tebbit as evidence to the contrary - a breakfast Tebbit is apparently denying happened.

A poll running on BBC1's Politics Show is trying to identify viewers' favourite, living political hero.  You have a choice of five lefties and two centre-righties; Norman Tebbit and Mrs T.  I've just voted for Britain's greatest peacetime PM.


ToryDiary: IDS, gay rights and family breakdown

Seats and candidates blog: Yesterday's candidates conference


UKIP leader Nigel Farage has told The Sunday Express that his party is in talks with 24 Tory activists about joining his party.  UKIP has sent out 17,000 letters of invitation to councillors from other parties.  Click on the image to enlarge the Sunday Express story. 


"The Conservatives are to launch a crusade for personal morality to try to halt what they say is a breakdown in traditional family values... Dominic Grieve, the shadow attorney-general, said last night that people who tackle teenage yobs should not be prosecuted for assault. He added that strict Victorian values on family life had in some ways been successful." - The Sunday Times

"Breakdown Britain, the interim report of the Conservative party’s social justice policy group to be published tomorrow, lays bare the extent of the failure to tackle the causes of deprivation. It also shines a light on those remarkable small community groups from whom a sensible government could learn about the way to tackle this breakdown While the level of poverty may be measured by money, the causes are so often structural. This report seeks to create a better understanding of these causes. After all, poverty and deprivation are too important to be left to a stumbling Labour government which forgot to be “tough on the causes of crime”. - Iain Duncan Smith in The Sunday Times


Cameronpledge"Tory leader David Cameron is at the centre of a damaging "cash-for-access" row over £50,000 invitations to businessmen to meet him in his House of Commons offices." - Mail on Sunday


"Through no fault of his own, show-business made Cameron leader of the opposition. David Davis had the strongest base among activists and MPs. The opinion polls declared Kenneth Clarke the frontrunner among the wider public. Neither man was a clear election winner, however. Cameron came from nowhere because Newsnight commissioned a focus group run by American pollster Frank Luntz that appeared to prove that the young politician could become extraordinarily popular and the Conservatives believed him. The desperation of the Tories in 2005 produced an election without precedent. The findings of a focus group drove a hitherto obscure politician to the leadership of a major political party. Not a focus group hired by party managers anxious to uphold the best interests of their cause, but by a broadcaster as interested in entertainment as reputable market research." - Nick Cohen in The Observer


The Sunday Times reports that the LibDems may get an extra £1.5m from taxpayer after  persuading funding guru that they are equivalent to Tory Opposition.


"Cabinet ministers have been told by the Foreign Office to drop the phrase 'war on terror' and other terms seen as liable to anger British Muslims and increase tensions more broadly in the Islamic world.  The shift marks a turning point in British political thinking about the strategy against extremism and underlines the growing gulf between the British and American approaches to the continuing problem of radical Islamic militancy. It comes amid increasingly evident disagreements between President George Bush and Tony Blair over policy in the Middle East." - The Observer


"The Labour Party has been accused of depriving taxpayers of hundreds of thousands of pounds in stamp duty in the sale of its London headquarters, despite the Chancellor's clampdown on stamp duty avoidance schemes in his mini-budget last week.  The Independent on Sunday has learnt that Labour sold its Westminster headquarters this year using a specially created company. The device, which Labour insists is a normal commercial transaction, cost the Treasury about £210,000 in lost stamp duty."

The rape of Darfur: a crime that is shaming the world - The Independent on Sunday

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