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Saturday 14th March 2009

9.45pm ToryDiary: Cameron's personal rating up sharply in new YouGov poll

9pm Nile Gardiner on CentreRight: Obama less popular than Bush

4.45pm WATCH: Nick Herbert MP and Bill Bryson launch a campaign against littering

3.45pm ToryDiary: 80% of party members explain Tory lead in terms of Labour failure

ToryDiary: The Conservative Party is streets ahead of the opposition when it comes to online campaigning, claims Eric Pickles

Julie Moody on Platform: How the miners' strike politicised a 15-year-old schoolgirl in County Durham

Local Government: £7,000 spent investigating councillor who left planning meeting for 25 seconds


Picture_13 "David Cameron has apologised for his failure to spot that Britain was lurching into an economic crisis." - Independent

"David Cameron last night said sorry for the Conservative party's failure to anticipate the recession. The Tory leader's move was calculated to highlight Gordon Brown's unwillingness to issue an apology of his own." - Guardian

Will voters like DC's apology?

"The strategy of apologising may help to win over voters to the Tory cause, polling experts said. “They’re right that voters would much rather hear politicians admit their failures,” Andrew Cooper, strategic director at Populus, the polling group, said. But it is also thought that the admission of past errors could damage Tory attempts to pin the blame for the recession on Mr Brown." - FT

The Telegraph's leader writers welcome the apology.

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: David Cameron admits the Conservatives were slow to acknowledge the problem of unsustainable debt

Matthew Parris: What is Tory foreign policy?

Parrismatthew "As Opposition leader, Margaret Thatcher defined herself in brutal and angry outline as a cold warrior. Today there is no need for such clarity from Mr Cameron and something to be said for wait and see. But in Europe Britain's natural allies in the “new” EU would be glad of an outstretched hand from our likely next government. And in Asia we are snagged in the barbed wire of a bloody conflict. I'm told Mr Cameron is not disposed to review our entanglement. Is that really true? I - and perhaps the electorate - would like to know." - Matthew Parris in The Times

Alistair Darling plays down talk of G20 summit rifts between the US and Europe - BBC

SNP set to end 35 years of Labour rule in Dundee - Telegraph

Gordon Brown wants looser party structure that makes more use of web to raise funds - Times

MPs under fire for international fact-finding trips

"Commons committees will spend more than £1m this year on overseas visits as they seek inspiration in countries including South Africa, Peru, Brazil and New Zealand... The most popular destination is the US, which will be visited by nine different committees. Examples include a transport committee excursion to Portland, Oregon, for inquiries into the “major road network” and the culture media and sport committee’s trip to New York to investigate “press standards”."- FT

Alan Duncan: Did Mandelson get a £450,000 goodbye from the EU? - Daily Mail

World will agree new climate deal, says Al Gore - Guardian

"There is probably no alternative to an internationally co-ordinated effort to reduce carbon emissions. But that does not mean that the engine of change will be driven by civil servants. Capitalism accelerated the rise in global temperatures; capitalism should slow it down, by developing the energy-efficient technology that we are going to need in any case in order to reduce dependence on fossil fuels." - Telegraph leader

And finally...

Britain needs a Minister of Common Sense says Jeremy Clarkson

  • "Should a journalist be allowed to say Kate McCann murdered her child, when there isn’t a shred of evidence? No.
  • Should a journalist be allowed to go through Robert Mugabe’s hard drive? Yes.
  • It goes on. Should Channel 4 be allowed to merge with the BBC? No.
  • Should RBS shareholders be encouraged to help themselves to shrubs from Fred Goodwin’s flower beds? Yes.
  • Should Peter Mandelspoon be allowed to spend £2,000 a year — of our money — on flowers? No.
  • Should school children be allowed to play conkers? Yes."

Full article in The Sun.


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