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Thursday 4th January 2007

James_gray_2_111pm CF Diary update: James Dinsdale joins CF Executive

Evening Seats and Candidates updates:

4pm update:

"David Cameron today demanded an early election when Tony Blair retires, saying Gordon Brown had no right to run Britain without the blessing of voters. With the Chancellor looking almost certain to take over in spring or summer, Mr Cameron questioned his right to govern without a general election." - Daily Mail | Politics.co.uk

12:30pm CF Diary update: The costs of CF HQ

11.30am ToryDiary update: Increase in US troops in Iraq "might be right approach" says Cameron 

BLOGS

ToryDiary: Fox - 'Contract' with armed services is broken

CONSERVATIVEHOME'S LIST OF FORTHCOMING EVENTS
Including ConservativeHome's talk to the Grantham & Stamford Conservative Association

CF Diary: Communication on campus by Andrew Young

Baker_kenneth_1KEN BAKER WANTS HIS DANGEROUS DOGS ACT STRENGTHENED

"Legislation on dogs is never easy because the relationship between a dog and its owner is very close and affectionate. In over 95% of cases there is no evidence of a dog being anything other than gentle. But one cannot escape the fact that over 4,000 people were admitted to hospital last year with dog bites, so there must be a much greater responsibility shown by dog owners to ensure the safety of the public." - The Former Tory Home Secretary on Comment is Free

PETER RIDDELL POINTS TO POSSIBLE SPRING 2008 GENERAL ELECTION

"The general view is that there will be a Brown honeymoon, and boost in the polls, for a time. Mr Brown is likely to have favourable coverage, at least on television, amid talk of a break with the Blair era, a fresh start, cleaning up government etc. He will be making the news from mid-summer well into the autumn. That will provide a big challenge for Mr Cameron about how to respond. It is quite possible that Labour will return to the lead in the polls: hence the talk about a general election in, say, spring 2008 (much more likely than this autumn)." - Times

>>> ToryDiary has predicted a General Election for this autumn

Campbell_ming_5 THE INDEPENDENT'S POLL OF POLLS INCREASES PRESSURE ON MING CAMPBELL

"The Independent's latest "poll of polls" shows the Liberal Democrats ended 2006 on 18 per cent, two points lower than a year ago and four points down on their performance at the 2005 general election.  The weighted average of last month's polls by ICM, Ipsos MORI, Populus and YouGov puts the Conservative Party on 37 per cent, four points ahead of Labour on 33 per cent. A year earlier, the Tories were on 37 per cent, Labour on 35 per cent and the Liberal Democrats on 20 per cent."

SUPERMARKETS HIT BACK AT DAVID CAMERON

"Supermarkets are mistreating their suppliers and should face a crackdownby the competition authorities, David Cameron said yesterday.  In his latest salvo against big business, the Conservative leader said "super-markets have been in the habit of using their market power to squeeze the margins of those they buy from". They were guilty of certain "completely unacceptable" practices, he claimed... Mr Cameron's intervention met an angry response from the British Retail Consortium, which represents the four big supermarket groups.  "We can all understand politicians like to play to the gallery," said Kevin Hawkins, the BRC's director-general. "He is either doing that deliberately or he is taking a populist line on the basis of ignorance."  Mr Hawkins pointed out that Tesco, J Sainsbury, Asda and Wm Morrison were all subject to an Office of Fair Trading code of practice. The OFT has surveyed the code each year since 2003 and found that supermarkets are abiding by it." - FT

Clive Aslet attacks supermarkets in an article for The Daily Telegraph

HUMAN TRAFFICKING

"Tony Blair was accused yesterday of failing to do enough to tackle the present day "slave trade" that continues to afflict Britain 200 years after William Wilberforce led the campaign for its abolition.  The Conservatives called on the Prime Minister to mark this year's bicentenary of the Slave Trade Act by signing the European Convention on the Trafficking in Human Beings." - Telegraph

>>> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Davis urges Government to ratify human trafficking convention

Brown_gordon_2 BROWN'S FOREIGN POLICY

"Insiders in the chancellor's camp stressed that Mr Brown had no plans for a "cut and run" strategy in Iraq and Afghanistan, where Britain retains a sizeable military presence, and that peace and stability in the Middle East would remain a foreign policy objective. They added, however, that a global deal to tackle climate change and a £10bn campaign for free schooling in the world's poorest countries would be given equal billing." - The Guardian

BUSH'S TROOP SURGE FOR IRAQ

"I’m all in favour of the troops “surge” strategy that US neocons are now touting for Iraq. If we really are to bury Bushism and finally discredit its prophets, no possible excuse must be left for their failure in the Middle East. 40,000 extra troops? Go on, make it 100,000.  Why spoil the good ship Neocon for a ha’pence-worth of tar?" - Matthew Parris in The Times

Johnson_boris_2_9BORIS JOHNSON ON SADDAM'S EXECUTION

"Come on Tony, give us one of your sound bites. What is your reaction to the Saddam snuff movie? It was Tony Blair who persuaded so many of us that Iraq would be better off without Saddam. Can he give a single piece of evidence in support of that claim?" - Boris Johnson in The Daily Telegraph

JOHN PRESCOTT'S RESPONSE TO SADDAM'S EXECUTION

The Sun Says: "Saddam Hussein was a monster who tortured and murdered for pleasure.  By contrast, his own death was mercifully swift.  The jeering that accompanied it, from those he tormented most, was understandable though unseemly.  It might even have been appropriate for a British minister to say something sensible about it. That rules out John Prescott. On both counts.  Yet this spluttering oaf — a disgrace even to his meaningless office as Deputy PM — was set loose on the BBC to denounce the incident as “totally deplorable”.  This, remember, is the undignified twerp who humiliated his wife and himself by cavorting drunkenly with the hired help who pleasured him under his Whitehall desk.  This is the man who never misses a chance to sneer, jeer or raise two fingers at opponents — if he can’t actually punch them in the face."

OTHER NEWSLINKS

Cameron's 'baby face' may be bad for his political prospects - The Guardian

Letter on political funding to The Guardian

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