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Tuesday 7th April 2009

5.30pm Local Government: Plastic plant pot "health and safety hazard for dustmen."

3.45pm WATCH:

3pm Local Government: Northamptonshire children denied the chance to attend grammar school. Cllr Joan Kirkbride replies.

Picture 73pm ToryDiary: The candidates to be chairman of the National Conservative Convention differ on whether they would communicate with the grassroots through ConservativeHome

2pm ToryDiary: David Cameron should clear his diary and propose a new system for MPs' pay and expenses

Noon Local Government:

11am AmericaInTheWorld: Bush has gone, Obama is here, but Europe still says no

O'BRIEN-NEIL10.45am Neil O'Brien on CentreRight: "The right to move is a freedom that the middle class take for granted, but which has been denied to those unable to afford their own housing for generations. It will create a society that is both richer and more equal."

9.45am Graeme Archer on CentreRight is disgusted by Ed Balls


Glyn Chambers on Platform: The Conservative narrative on the economic crisis can embrace a "quinfecta" of competition, monetarism, privatisation, capitalism and law and order

Local government:

Conhomegallery The ConservativeHome gallery

No G20 bounce for Brown in Populus poll - Times | Yesterday evening's ToryDiary

...and it won't be any better for Labour by next summer

"Unemployment will eventually peak at 3.2 million over the summer of 2010, the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) says, a scenario which would dash any hopes that Labour could mount an election campaign on a record of having brought Britain out of the global slump." - Guardian

FT and Times differ on significance of George Osborne's remarks on public sector pay

Picture 5 "The Conservative party pledged to crack down on public sector pay and pensions on Monday, in a politically risky bid to make state “excess” a battle line at the next general election. The attempt to draw a sharp distinction between the two main parties on public spending coincided with a fresh warning on the drastically widening hole in the public finances. The Institute for Fiscal Studies estimated that extra spending cuts or tax rises of £40bn a year would be required by 2015-16 to bring borrowing under control." - FT

"Chris Keates, general secretary of the NASUWT teachers' union, said Mr Osborne had shown a lack of integrity and economic credibility. She added: "Three-year pay deals were designed to bring predictability and stability to planning at school, local authority and government level. This is particularly important in the volatile economic circumstances to which he refers. It is disturbing that the Shadow Chancellor does not appear to recognise this." - Independent

Picture 8 But The Times suggests that George Osborne is "backtrack"-ing over his pay remarks: "Several hours later, Mr Osborne’s advisers clarified the position. They said that while the three-year deals were inflexible the Conservatives were not “gunning for them” because they would be into their third year by the expected time of an election. “What we are saying is that we will look at them to see whether we can make them more flexible.”"

The issue of public sector pay generates anger rather than the silent emotion of envy - Dominic Lawson in The Independent

The Daily Mail praises Vince Cable at expense of "muttering" George Osborne

CableVince "Shadow Chancellor George Osborne mutters about the need to review the public sector pay deals agreed by Labour - but with no firm commitment. Otherwise, he makes only the vaguest pledges to 'reconsider' spending programmes (unspecified, of course) and 'change the culture of Whitehall'. Contrast that with Mr Cable's clear demand that we must slash spending on public-sector pensions, cut back sharply on our global defence commitments and overhaul the ruinous tax credits system. He even has the courage to question Labour's aim to put 50 per cent of young people in higher education, saying it's 'almost certainly not affordable'." - Daily Mail leader

The Sun, meanwhile, uses one of George Osborne's lines...

"Isn’t it a shame Gordon didn’t put a bit more aside in the good times instead of borrowing even more?" - The Sun Says

Tories launch 'right to move' proposal in bid to break up council estate 'ghettoes' - Daily Mail

"The Tories plan to break up sink council estates by giving tenants the “right to move”. Four million people who rent their homes will be able to DEMAND a switch — even getting a deposit to buy their own." - The Sun

> Yesterday's ToryDiary: Thatcher offered a Right-to-Buy; Cameron will add a Right-to-Move

William Hague responds to Barack Obama's aspiration for a nuclear free world

HAGUE 2005 The Shadow Foreign Secretary issued this statement to ConservativeHome: "All states signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty have always been committed to a world free of nuclear weapons. It could only come about if all fissile material was controlled or destroyed so that no rogue state or terrorist could get hold of it. Although it is a very distant ideal it is the processes of verified disarmament and proliferation control consistent with that ideal that really matter."

Tim Loughton MP talks to the Today programme about the drugging of children in care in the 1970s - BBC

Edward Garnier MP talks to the Today programme about repealing the Hunting Ban - BBC

Dan Hannan under scrutiny for remarks on NHS - Independent | Tom Harris MP | Video of remarks

Gordon Brown now under fire for his expenses

"Gordon Brown was dragged into the Westminster expenses row last night after questions were raised about his claims for more than £100,000 in second-home allowances despite having two grace-and-favour properties." - Express

Michael Martin took £150,000 of luxury trips to exotic overseas locations - Telegraph

Lord Mandelson is in Iraq with 23 UK companies in first post-war trade delegation - Sky

"Six car bombs tore through Baghdad yesterday, killing more than 30 people and wounding at least 90, as Peter Mandelson passed through with a delegation of British businessmen to spread the message that it is safe to invest in Iraq." - Times

One private school closing every fortnight as recession-struck families choose state schools - Daily Mail

Charities should be charities

"With confidence in politicians sinking by the hour, surely it is time for the voluntary sector to stand aside from campaigning and focus on helping the needy?" - Jill Kirby in The Times


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