The FT’s Westminster blog predicts a Tory rebellion over executive pay by the summer while Conservative Home warns that a rebellion over gay marriage could hugely embarrass Cameron. Conservative Home argues that the go-ahead given to HS2 gives no political advantages to the Tories. The Spectator reveals months of correspondence about the proposed replacement for royal yacht while Left Foot Forward criticises the £60 million distraction.
Nick Clegg’s speech to Mansion House on responsible capitalism pitted the deputy Prime Minister not only against vested interests but the Tories themselves, writes Coffeehouse. Guido Fawkes is first of the mark to report that the Sunday Times have dropped the Huhne High Court Challenge. Emails will now be handed over to the police as evidence which could see Huhne walk. The Staggers asks who will rise if Huhne falls, pointing to Ed Davey, David Laws, or Jeremy Browne all as possible replacements as Energy Secretary. The Coffee House also backs David Laws, noting that this decision could “aggravate those Lib Dem left-wingers who think that, politically speaking, their leader is too blue-blooded already”.
PoliticalBetting predicts how the parties will fair at the next election with new boundary changes in place.
London Mayoral race
After commenting that young people today “lack energy”, and downplaying unemployment figures by stating that “the jobs are there”, Mayor of London Boris Johnson has been criticised by Ken Livingston for being out of touch with the reality of life in the capital, reports LabourList.
Left Foot Forward were also quick to attack Johnson, noting the those in government “are closing the doors of opportunity and blaming the young people they’re shutting out.” No surprises though as thetorydiary jumps to his defence, believing that creative and effective campaigning will see Boris through to a second term.
Scotland and independence
LibDem Voice questions the democratic legitimacy of who is eligible to vote in a referendum on Scotland’s independence, as Liberal Conspiracy slams the idea of the English having a say in Scotland’s future. The Staggers weighs the risks of leaving or staying in the UK while Left Foot Forward contemplates the financial status of an independent Scotland.
Labour’s economic policy
The Staggers report on Ed Balls’ adoption of a policy of spending cuts but The Spectator argues that the party still falls short of credibility (so does Sunny Hundal), as the Shadow Chancellor places the blame firmly at Osborne’s feet. But don’t mistake this for an endorsement of Tory cuts, writes Richard Murphy at Liberal Conspiracy, though Labourlist likens the party to an undesirable house guest. At PMQ’s this week Ed Ball’s silence on the economy was deafening, according to The Staggers.
Labour Uncut argues that Ed Miliband is too ‘nice’ to win an election and The Spectator warns the Labour leader that his brother is still preferred by the public. However, LabourList defends Ed Miliband for ‘calling the major issues right’ and forcing Cameron to act on executive pay while the FT’s Westminster Blog criticises Ed’s not-so-new economic policy.
The economy – the recession returns?
Not the Treasury View notes that the current recession has lasted longer than the Great Depression of the 1930s, while The Staggers suggests that the consensus is turning away from austerity as the solution to the problem. Duncan Weldon outlines why reforming capitalism matters.
Paul Sellers at the Touchstone blog argues that localising public sector pay could end up biting the Chancellor, and the LSE’s Henry Overman looks at whether this plan could distort local labour markets. As council cuts deepen in 2012 False Economy outlines how services and jobs will be affected around the country.
Vera Baird QC highlights on Left Foot Forward how the crisis and cuts are affecting women, while charity guest bloggers on Left Foot Forward call for a delay in welfare reform and argue the government’s replacement for Disability Living Allowance is not adequate.
Guido Fawkes covers the downfall of Labour MP Tom Harris after posting a spoof Nazi video online.
Whitehall Watch names implementation the Whitehall word for 2012. ‘Delivery’ is out, far too New Labour, apparently.
Left Foot Forward carries a critique of the proposed airport at ‘Boris Island’