Chris Gilson,  Paul Rainford and Amy Mollett take a look at the week in political blogging.                      

The coalition and the parties

Mike Smithson at wonders if Boris Johnson is eyeing up David Cameron’s job, while thetorydiary reckons that Johnson’s Labour-leaning voters are key to his success in the London mayoral election.

Tim Montgomerie writing for thetorydiary profiles David Cameron’s role as a ‘global salesman’, as George Eaton at The Staggers explores the contradiction between Cameron’s support for humanitarian invention, and the UK’s role as a major arms exporter.

Liberal Democrat Voice unveils new polling figures that show 83% of Liberal Democrat members to be in support of the Lib Dem/Tory coalition while UK Polling Report provides an update on how the parties are being viewed by the electorate.

Thetorydiary comments on research that shows David Cameron to enjoy a 20 point poll lead over ‘weird’ Ed Miliband, and ponders the extent to which the Labour leader is benefiting from some favourable YouGov polling. Anthony Barnett wonders if Miliband will actually survive until 2015.

Left Foot Forward’s Will Straw looks at Labour’s new policy proposals, all contained in their new ‘Purple Book’, while Peter Watt at Labour Uncut pushes Labour to move on from its 1995 mindset.

Liberal Democrat Conference

 The Economist’s Bagehot comments on the cheery gloom of the Liberal Democrats but Stephen Tall at Liberal Democrat Voice disagrees, arguing that the conference was cheerful, because it mattered.

Political Scrapbook finds hypocrisy in Nick Clegg’s speech, comparing it with some of his pre-election statements while Labour Uncut writes that Nick Clegg’s lack of authenticity will cause him further suffering. The deputy PM also comes under criticism from Left Foot Forward, who are unsure whether he can deliver his social mobility pledges.

The Coffee House notes that Cable’s speech was “noticeably pessimistic” on the economy while his swipes at Steve Hilton, the Murdoch empire and Gordon Brown are all noticed by the New Statesman Conference blog. But Cable doesn’t impress the FT’s Westminster blog who believes that his pay transparency drive is easier said than done.

There’s no rest for the wicked however, as Political Scrapbook find no poll bounce for the Liberal Democrats post-conference; they are stuck at 10 per cent.

The economy and the cuts

Richard Murphy at Tax Research UK points out some disconcerting errors in HMRC’s data on the tax gap while the OpenEconomy blog argues that increasing tax on the rich will cost us more than it raises

Faisal Islam unpicks the IMF’s decision to slash UK growth forecasts while

Left Foot Forward argues that the UK’s economic growth last year was just as important as the cuts in reducing the deficit. Liberal Conspiracy writes that John Major’s government spent more on debt interest than the current government does and John Redwood thinks that Vince Cable’s support for another round of quantitative easing is from the ‘Robert Mugabe school of economics’.

Liberal Conspiracy shows why Europe may be on the verge of financial collapse and the FT’s Westminster Blog writes that Danny Alexander’s newly announced 2,500 ‘tax inspectors’ will in fact be reshuffled HMRC staff

And finally…

Liberal Democrat Voice notes that the government is taking steps towards equal civil marriage, a move that is welcomed by Iain Dale. Political Scrapbook reports that Northern Ireland Health Minister, Edwin Poots, is refusing to overturn the ban on gay men donating blood.

Sally Hunt at Left Foot Forward argues that the growing anti-foreign student rhetoric poses a risk to the UK’s global reputation.

The Staggers notes that the Tory right have ‘declared war on Whitehall’ with the publication of a new report which accuses civil servants of obstructing public service reform.

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