PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers
- Sign up to see last 24 hours
Dont have an account?Sign up here
Words: Tony Grew Oscar Wilde once said that the only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about. That isn’t a problem for Lord Stern. To the journalists at the Independent, he’s “the world’s most authoritativ... Continue to article
As an editor I used to work for liked to put it: “They always go mad in July.” By “they”, he meant MPs and political journalists, and by “mad”, he meant that by now every year some of the inhabitants of the Palace of Westminster have b... Continue to article
Last week, we reported that the Tory election fund is likely to be three times as big as Labour’s – and that was before we learned about them auctioning off a tennis match with David Cameron and Boris Johnson for £160,000. Continue to article
So all three party leaders agree that it’s worth rushing through emergency surveillance legislation. While David Cameron and Nick Clegg were holding their rare joint press conference, Ed Miliband rele... Continue to article
The Prime Minister and his Deputy have used a rare joint press conference to try to allay concerns over proposed new emergency powers for the police and intelligence services. The appearance came shortly after the three main parties stru... Continue to article
Downing Street press release Emergency legislation to ensure that UK law enforcement and intelligence agencies can maintain their ability to access the telecommunications data they need to investigate criminal activity and protect the pu... Continue to article
David Cameron has indicated that the Government is receptive to calls for mandatory reporting of child abuse. The Prime Minister told MPs today that it could be time to draw up such legislation and revealed that ministers were looking a... Continue to article
David Cameron is accused of tarnishing Wales' reputation at home and abroad by making "constant public attacks" on it. Continue to article
David Cameron latest clip on child abuse allegations: “We're going to leave no stone unturned to find out the truth about what happened."
David Cameron said no stone would be left unturned int he search for the truth behind the historic allegations of child sex abuse. “I am absolutely determined that we are going to get to the bottom of these allegations and we're going to... Continue to article
Full text of the Chancellor's speech during his visit to India. Mumbai is the financial capital of this great country - and so there’s no better place to talk about the deep economic partnership between my nation and yours, and what we c... Continue to article
Maria Eagle said "very little" money had so far been allocated to those affected by the floods in February, and accused David Cameron of failing to live up to the pledge he made at the time. "He’s gone from ‘money no object’ in February ... Continue to article
Andy Burnham accused David Cameron of making up figures about the NHS after the Prime Minister's claims about A&E waiting times were questioned this week. "I think the Prime Minsiter was exposed at the despatch box this week, because he ... Continue to article
Ed Miliband said the jailing of Andy Coulson called into question David Cameron's judgement in hiring him to work for Number 10. "My thoughts today are with the victims of phone-hackning, the victims of Andy Coulson's behaviour. And I t... Continue to article
David Cameron reacted to the sentencing of former communications chief Andy Coulson for phone-hacking. "It's right that justice should be done and that no one is above the law, as I've always said." Aircraft Carriers The Prime Minist... Continue to article
David Cameron said additional airport security checks were being put in place to ensure the safety of passengers. “We take these decisions looking at the evidence in front of us and working with our partners. This is something we’ve disc... Continue to article
Downing Street has dismissed Vince Cable’s suggestion that the Tory net migration target has been “damaging” for the UK. A new study by the Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford suggested that curbs on skilled migrants had s... Continue to article
Prime minister refuses request for names at PMQs amid claims he buys power and points finger at Labour 'trade union cheques' David Cameron is facing calls to publish the guest list of Wednesday's Cons... Continue to article
David Cameron and Ed Miliband have clashed on NHS targets, in a Prime Minister's Questions dominated by the Government's health service record. The Labour leader accused the Prime Minister of failing to meet a two-month cancer treatment ... Continue to article
Things that are now for hardworking families: - Budgets - Any policy announcement, regardless of whether they are related to families or hard work - Reshuffles - Beer and bingo tax cuts - ...
Nigel Farage has said the outcome of last week’s meeting of EU nation leaders proves that Britain was “always going to lose” in EU negotiations. David Cameron failed to block the nomination of Jean-Claude Juncker as the new president of... Continue to article
There is a flurry of projects springing up to commemorate the centenary of the start of the First World War. One such idea is the ‘Letter to an Unknown Soldier’, which invites people to write to one of the soldiers fighting for Britain in t...
The Liberal Democrat vote has halved in key marginal seats where the party is challenged by Labour, new polling by Lord Ashcroft has found. The research, involving 4,000 telephone interviews in the four constituencies most closely contes... Continue to article
The prime minister doesn't have a European strategy beyond deferring the moment he must displease his party Continue to article
David Cameron today insisted that he has secured a "step forward" in Britain's relationship with the EU, despite his failure to block the appointment of Jean-Claude Juncker. The Prime Minister made the claim as he delivered a statement o... Continue to article
Douglas Alexander said David Cameron had suffered an “unprecedented defeat” over the nomination of Jean-Claude Juncker, despite the German foreign minister making clear this morning that the UK leaving the European Union was “unimaginable”.... Continue to article
Downing Street did not deny that some of EU reforms sought by the Prime Minister would require treaty change and the unanimous support of other countries. The Prime Minister's Official Spokesman: "He thinks there is going to be treaty ch... Continue to article
So David Cameron has indeed got away with it. The Teflon Toff has returned from Ypres if not exactly in triumph, at least in one piece. There is one final hurdle for him to overcome this afternoon, wh... Continue to article
Well, David Cameron's colleagues and most of the media, the Guardianistas excepted of course, seem to regard the appointment of Jean-Claude Juncker to head the Commission as something of a triumph for... Continue to article
ComRes press release In the second in the ComRes series of ‘Battlebus’ polls of the 40 most marginal Labour-Conservative constituencies, Labour holds a five point lead over the Conservatives. At the 2010 General Election the two parties... Continue to article
Alistair Burt said David Cameron’s unsuccessful opposition to Jean-Claude Juncker’s appointment as the next European Commission president could be beneficial for future negotiations on reforming the EU. “The vast majority, well all my co... Continue to article
Pat McFadden said David Cameron had shown “poor leadership” in his failed opposition to Jean-Claude Juncker’s appointment as the new European Commission president. “I think it’s a predictable place for an opposition politician to start ... Continue to article
Sir Nigel Sheinwald said David Cameron was right to raise concerns about Jean-Claude Juncker but said it was wrong to make it a red line for the UK's membership to the EU. "He was certainly right, I think, to express his disquiet about J... Continue to article
Nigel Evans said David Cameron could expect “amazing support” from the Conservative benches over his handling of the row on the candidacy of Jean-Claude Juncker as next European Commission president. “It will go down well with the Tory p... Continue to article
David Lidington said the Prime Minister was right to publically oppose the appointment of Jean-Claude Juncker as the new European Commission president. “It’s not about, the narrative, constructing a narrative. This is about an issue of p... Continue to article
Grant Shapps defended David Cameron's attempt to block Jean-Claude Juncker's bid for president of the European Commission. "I think if you have a principle about the way that the European Commission president should be chosen you stick t... Continue to article
William Hague defended David Cameron's fervent opposition to Jean-Claude Juncker's candidacy for the presidency of the European Commission. “Actually, our argument was always about the principle - the Prime Minister made this very clear ... Continue to article
David Cameron addressed reporters after the European Council voted to back Jean-Claude Juncker as the next President of the European Commission. "From the outset, I have been clear where I stand on this issue. I firmly believe in the pr... Continue to article
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has welcomed the European Council's decision to nominate Jean-Claude Juncker as president of the European Commission. Mr Juncker, former prime minister of Luxembourg, was backed by EU leaders in a vote at ... Continue to article
Prime minister David Cameron hosts a private reception to celebrate the best of British creative industries at Downing Street Employment relations and consumer affairs minister, and women and equalities minister, Jo Swinson returns to he... Continue to article
David Cameron will force European leaders to vote on the nomination of Jean Claude Juncker if they fail to reach a consensus, Downing Street has confirmed. The Prime Minister’s spokesman also said that they expect Hungary to stick by th... Continue to article
Ed Miliband accused David Cameron of "total failure" in his bid to block Jean Claude Juncker from becoming European Commision president. “No, we’ve said all along that we support the Prime Minister in opposing Mr Juncker. If Mr Juncker ... Continue to article
David Cameron admitted the "odds were stacked against" his bid to block Jean-Claude Juncker's nomination as the next European Commission president. “There are times when it’s very important to stick to your principles and stick to your c... Continue to article
"What I say is what I do." That is what David Cameron says you can learn from his decision to force a vote at this EU Summit - a vote which he looks certain to lose and lose big. Continue to article
Many leaders are angry at what they see as posturing and threats by David Cameron over Jean-Claude Juncker, writes Sophy Ridge. Continue to article
David Cameron reiterated that Jean-Claude Juncker was the wrong person for the job of European Commission President and that "you get what I say I'm going to do in Europe". "There is an important issue of principle here, which is that I ... Continue to article
Nick Clegg said the United Kingdom needs to rethink its drug policy after several high profile figures, including Dame Judi Dench, signed an open letter urging the Prime Minister to decriminalise drugs. “I think we’re losing the war on d... Continue to article
Ken Clarke said David Cameron’s decision to respond to the guilty verdict handed out to Andy Coulson was “unwise”. “It was unwise and they should have taken some legal advice first, but I doubt whether it ever crossed David’s mind. It wo... Continue to article
David Cameron has told the Commons he is sorry for hiring Andy Coulson as his communications chief. The Prime Minister's former director of communications was yesterday found guilty of conspiring to hack phones while editor of the News o... Continue to article
Lisa Nandy accused the Prime Minister of failing to justify his hiring of Andy Coulson as Downing Street’s communications chief, at Prime Minister's Questions today. “There are serious questions again, which David Cameron didn’t answer a... Continue to article
John Bercow has set out the rules for MPs on mentioning the guilty verdict of Andy Coulson at Prime Minister’s Questions. Labour is expected to try to heap more pressure with questions to David Cameron over his former director of commun... Continue to article
Nick Clegg said David Cameron was right to apologise for appointing Andy Coulson. “The Prime Minister has explained the circumstances in which he took the decision to employ Andy Coulson and has explained why he has now apologised – I’m ... Continue to article
Lord Owen statement No British Government is entitled to increase the powers of the European Parliament under Section 6 of the European Assembly Elections Act 1978 until there has been prior approval by an Act of Parliament. Agreeing i... Continue to article
Vince Cable explained the Government’s decision to ban “offensive” exclusivity clauses in zero-hours contracts. “The evidence we gathered and the massive consultation we undertook – we got 36,000 replies – suggested that, of all the prac... Continue to article
Labour press release Chuka Umunna MP, Labour’s Shadow Business Secretary, commenting on the government’s zero-hours contracts consultation response, said: “Under David Cameron’s government we’ve seen a rising tide of insecurity. Zero-... Continue to article
David Cameron and Nick Clegg have hailed the “bold steps” set out in the Government’s legislative agenda for the final session of the Parliament, but Ed Miliband has said the Queen's Speech should have been more wide-ranging.
Eleven bills were announced in the Queen’s Speech, which introduced a charge for plastic bags and a new Modern Slavery Bill.
However Labour sources said it was "staggering" that the NHS and immigration were not mentioned today and Mr Miliband outlined seven further bills that he would have included.
The speech began with a nod to both the Conservative slogan of a “long-term economic plan”, and the Lib Dems’ promise to build a “stronger economy and fairer society”.
“My government’s legislative programme will continue to deliver on its long-term plan to build a stronger economy and a fairer society,” Her Majesty said.
Speaking in the House this afternoon, Mr Cameron said: "Our long-term economic plan is working but there is much much more to do....
"This Queen's Speech sets out the next steps in seeing through this vital plan to secure our future but it will take the rest of this parliament and the next to finish the task of turning our country around. That is the enormity of the challenge we face but, Mr Speaker, it is matched by the strength of our commitment to sorting it out."
Mr Miliband said there were measures his party supported in the Queen's Speech "including tackling modern slavery, an Ombudsman for our Armed Forces and recall".
But he maintained that the speech failed to live up to the scale of the challenges facing Britain and that Mr Cameron should have gone further.
"There is a chasm between the needs and the wishes of the people of this country and whether or not this House and politics is capable of responding," he told MPs.
"We need to rise to this challenge, but this Queen's Speech doesn't do it. But it can be done...
"This is what the Queen’s Speech should have done: A Make Work Pay bill to reward hard work, a Banking Bill to support small business; a Community Bill to devolve power; an Immigration Bill to stop workers being undercut; a Consumers Bill to freeze energy bills; a Housing Bill to tackle the housing crisis; and an NHS Bill to make it easier to see your GP and stop his privatisation."
David Cameron is facing a backlash from his own Cabinet over plans to introduce a minimum price for alcohol. Michael Gove and Andrew Lansley claim the move is unfair on low-income drinkers who consume responsibly. Meanwhile a study from the Adam Smith Institute has cast doubt on whether a minimum price would be successful in cutting crime and preventing health problems.
Conservative campaign organisation Bright Blue has warned the party that another coalition with the Liberal Democrats may be the only way for the party to keep power. The group said the party should continue with its modernising agenda and not lurch to the right, as many core-conservative groups are suggesting.
Over £1m of the fines taken from banks in the wake of the Libor scandal will be donated to a military charity, the Sun reports. David Cameron announced the measure in advance of the paper's annual military awards.
George Osborne has thrown his weight behind the introduction of gay marriage, despite a survey of Tory constituency chairmen finding nearly half of local Conservative parties have lost members as a result of the policy.
The poll, conducted for the Sunday Telegraph, found that 71% believe the proposals should be abandoned, with just 3% saying they have gained membership from Mr Cameron's gay marriage policy.
Mr Osborne today emphasised that there would be a free vote in the House of Commons on introducing gay marriage, adding that he would be voting "with his conscience" in favour of the motion.
David Cameron has issued a strongly worded criticism of the United Nations' ongoing inaction over Syria.
Reading from the recent Save the Children report documenting the fate of children in the country, Mr Cameron told world leaders at the UN headquarters in New York: "The blood of these young children is a terrible stain on the reputation of this United Nations.
In an apparent attack on Russia and China, he reserved particular criticism for countries who “have failed to stand up to these atrocities and in some cases aided and abetted Assad's reign of terror”.
"If the United Nations Charter is to have any value in the 21st century, we must now join together to support a rapid political transition."
The Prime Minister announced £8m in aid for the war torn country, and continued to speak more widely on the aftermath of the Arab Spring.
He argued Western countries should respect the outcome of post-Spring elections that returned Islamist parties, but warned those parties they would be judged by their actions.
“Will you entrust the rights of citizenship to your countrymen and women who do now share your specific political and religious view? Do you accept that unlike the dictators you replaced, you should never pervert the democratic process to hold on to power if you lost the consent of the people you serve?
“Will you live up to your commitment to protect the rule of law for all citizens, to defend the rights of Christians and minorities, to allow women a full role in society, in the economy and in politics?”
07/07/2014 on Pooled clip
06/07/2014 on Murnaghan, Sky News
06/07/2014 on Pienaar's Politics
04/07/2014 on Sky News
04/07/2014 on Pooled clip
Summaries and transcripts from TV and radio
5 hours ago on Newsnight, BBC Two
6 hours ago on The World Tonight, BBC Radio 4
10/07/2014 on Channel 4 News