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Saturday 3rd November 2007

Coulson 11am ToryDiary: Can a Basildon man save the Tories again?  The Guardian profiles Andy Coulson.

ToryDiary: Andrew Lansley proposes an independent NHS for England

Janicesmall_2_2 Platform: Janice Small finds that only 8000 marginal voters were needed to be persuaded to vote Conservative for Brown to lose the election that wasn't

BritainAndAmerica: Boris and Hillary - A match made in crazytown

Columnist Cameron Watt calls for the Tories to use the railways to bridge the north-south divides:

"The Conservative Party is the only party that can deliver the high-speed north-south rail links that are so urgently needed.. Championing these links would not only be right on economic and environmental grounds; the political dividends for our party could be great. What could better demonstrate the Conservative Party’s commitment to increase prosperity across the whole country? England and Scotland would be brought closer together, strengthening the Union."

Air Ashcroft: The Tories' favourite airline

Airashcroft "Altogether shadow cabinet ministers and aides have flown 184,000 miles on the Ashcroft jet over the last five years with Andrew Mitchell, the shadow international development secretary, flying 65,453 miles and shadow foreign secretary William Hague flying 49,670 miles.  Analysis conducted for the Guardian reveals that Tory globetrotting has racked up 1,289 tonnes of carbon emissions. The biggest footprint was made by Michael Ancram when he was shadow foreign secretary and shadow defence secretary, according to environmental consultants Carbon Footprint. Mr Ancram's flights emitted 372 tonnes, including trips to Cuba, Afghanistan, Egypt and Poland." - The Guardian

Forget Arsenal V Man Utd... the biggest clash of the day is The National Trust V Gordon Brown over housebuilding

"The National Trust is to put itself on a collision course with the Government over Gordon Brown’s plans to start the biggest house-building programme in 30 years.  The trust, one of Britain’s largest landowners with 700 miles of coastline and 250,000 hectares of countryside, has threatened to buy up greenfield land earmarked for development to stop new housing. It is also preparing to intervene in planning inquiries and challenge new developments, even if it has no direct involvement with the land under threat." - Times

"Just 88 homes have been bought using a multi-million pound government scheme aimed at helping people onto the property ladder, say the Conservatives." - BBC

Davis_david_2 Tories on collision course with Home Secretary over Sir Ian Blair

"The Conservatives have written to the home secretary, Jacqui Smith, demanding that she sack the Metropolitan police commissioner, Sir Ian Blair, after yesterday's damning verdict on the shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes... "I put it to you in the strongest terms that the most important and immediate action that the home secretary can and should take, in these circumstances, is to replace Sir Ian Blair with a commissioner who can command the force's confidence, restore the public's trust and protect the nation's security," he wrote." - Guardian

Nick Clegg: No, Blair does not deserve to keep his position - Independent

The Queen's speech to focus on security issues and doubling of detention without trial period - Telegraph

Shahid_malik The Labour minister said he was detained at US immigration for forty minutes - video footage say it was only eight minutes

"Mr Malik, 39, the MP for Dewsbury, who was revealed last week to be Britain’s most expensive MP with £185,000 of expenses, has had claims of victimisation challenged before.  In June 2001, he complained that he was attacked with a baton by a police officer during riots in Burnley that left him with a cut above his eye.  His complaint was rejected by the Police Complaints Authority, which concluded that he appeared to have been struck with a shield and that it was not clear whether he was hit or whether an officer was pulling the shield from Mr Malik’s hands." - Times

Peter Oborne pens a strong attack on the Chancellorship of Alistair Darling - Daily Mail

Scotland says it pays its way and does not need English taxes - Guardian

The ousting of John Howard could spell the end of Australia's middle class paradise - Simon Heffer in The Telegraph

Michael White finds odd gaps in Peter Oborne's The Triumph of the Political Class - Guardian

Line of the day

"Theresa May attacks Harriet Harman for having no new ideas on tackling the difference between men's and women's salaries. Frankly, the hapless Harriet is the best argument I've seen for a gender pay gap." - Amanda Platell in The Daily Mail

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


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