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Monday 13th August 2007

3.30pm BritainAndAmerica: Is America turning left? and Join BritainAndAmerica's new Facebook group

11.30am ToryDiary: Scottish Tories join Labour and LibDems to oppose referendum on independence

ToryDiary: Marland criticises the critics

Platform: Daniel Kawczynski MP rebuffs Denis MacShane's Observer article

Ifweknew Columnists: Stephan Shakespeare analyses the growing trend of floating non-voters

Tax-cutting opportunity

"The Tories have pledged to save business £14billion by kicking out barmy EU regulations that stifle them." - The Sun

"The party leadership can this week recover its equilibrium by embracing the recommendations of John Redwood's economic competitiveness policy review. This has red meat aplenty for those Tories who feel Mr Cameron has lurched too far to the Left, while offering the wider electorate a clearer idea of what a Conservative government would stand for. The speed and ferocity of the Government's trashing of the proposals shows that Mr Redwood has rattled ministers." - Telegraph leader

Redwood_john A 21st century infrastructure?

"Passengers standing on trains, drivers sitting in traffic jams, homeowners bailing out flood water, travellers delayed trying to board a plane, and people queuing to get drinking water out of a bowser have something in common. They have all fallen prey to the chronic lack of capacity in the UK's basic service networks supplied or controlled by government. It is putting investors off the UK. This is one of the reasons we are slipping down the world competitiveness league tables, leaving too many people with no job or a poorly paid job." - John Redwood in the Telegraph

John Redwood

"John Redwood would make an excellent head of the NAO. In the short run, however, he is playing a more controversial role. Although tax rates were not central to his remit, he has brought the tax question back on to the Tory agenda. This took a lot of Tories by surprise, and, in most cases, it was a delighted surprise." - Bruce Anderson in the Independent

"No one has been more active than John Redwood in keeping the Thatcherite flame burning within Tory ranks. Successive leaders of the opposition have been unsure how best to use his intellectual rigour." - Independent

Scrapping regulators

"The specialist regulators for gas, electricity, water, telecoms and post should be scrapped, and any regulatory issues in those sectors handled by the competition watchdogs, the Conservatives' economic competitiveness group will say." - Financial Times

Kirkhopetimothy Kirkhope to propose a simplifying treaty

"Timothy Kirkhope, the leader of the Conservative group in the European Parliament, will try today to provoke his party into discussing how it would streamline the running of the European Union by putting forward ideas for a “simplifying treaty” in place of the plan agreed by European leaders at Brussels in June." - Times

Can Labour afford a snap election?

"This is the challenge faced by former lobbyist Jon Mendelsohn. He has to build up a war chest to fight the election when he takes over as Labour's new chief tin-rattler next month. In contrast, the Conservatives are in better shape after the £30.5m sale of Conservative Central Office in February. No wonder David Cameron keeps saying "bring it on" whenever talk of an early election is mentioned." - Christopher Hope in the Telegraph

"The thesis that Labour does not have the money to fight an election is feeble. If a party looks like it will win, then cheques always turn up pronto. In any case, the amount required to fund an election is vastly overestimated, as is the impact that the campaign itself makes on voters." - Tim Hames in The Times

Boris' "buffoonery makes him a liability"

"What a joy it is to endorse the judgment of Max Hastings and share with him the hope that Boris Johnson will become the Conservative party's candidate for mayor of London. Of course, I do not want him to win the actual election." - Roy Hattersley in the Guardian

A letter from several black and Muslim leaders says Boris' record on race makes him unsuitable - Guardian

The Wall Street Journal breaks the news that Karl Rove will leave the White House at the end of August

Please use this thread to highlight other interesting news and commentary...

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