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The Road Back to Full Employment – Speech by Liam Byrne Liam Byrne MP, Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, in a speech to IPPR North, said: There are few better places than here, to speak about the task of rebuilding Britain as... Continue to article
Words: Jess Bowie Mariane Pearl came to the world’s attention under the worst possible circumstances. In 2002, when Pearl was five months pregnant, her husband, the Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel, was abducted and beheaded by Islamic... Continue to article
Lord Hunt of King’s Heath is on Twitter. The Labour peer is an avid user of the social media website, where more than 3,200 people follow his 140-character musings. He says that “young people” in the Labour Lords office “pressurised” h... Continue to article
And then there were three. With the death of Margaret Thatcher, the most exclusive club in Britain has seen its membership shrink to a trio of middle-aged men. For the time being, only Sir John Major, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown make ... Continue to article
No. 10 press release Please find below further guests who have confirmed they will attend Lady Thatcher's funeral service. A list of those guests we had already confirmed is included below. Military General Sir David Richards GCB, CBE D... Continue to article
Gordon Brown statement "Sarah and I have sent messages to Lady Thatcher's son Mark and daughter Carol, offering our condolences to them and to the Thatcher family and commemorating Lady Thatcher's many decades of service to our country. ... Continue to article
Former prime minister Gordon Brown pays tribute to Baroness Thatcher. "Sarah and I have sent messages to Lady Thatcher's son Mark and daughter Carol, offering our condolences to them and to the Thatcher family and commemorating Lady Thatche... Continue to article
Brooks Newmark said the Conservatives had been calling for “better regulation”, not further deregulation of the financial sector before the 2008 crash, and said today’s HBOS report showed the failure of the current Labour leadership. “We... Continue to article
claims in his latest interview that he would have given the Tory leader a run for his money and got a better result for his party than Gordon Brown did. Of course he's correct. Continue to article
Biteback press release Leading political publisher Biteback today announces the publication in September of Power Trip: A Decade of Policy, Plots and Spin, by former government special adviser Damian McBride. It is a book which will send... Continue to article
I well recall the text sent to me by a Downing Street source the night James Purnell resigned from Gordon Brown's cabinet in June 2009. "If others follow, it's goodnight Vienna," the message ran. "How David Miliband reacts is absolutely crucial." Continue to article
Could David Cameron sack George Osborne? It may seem a strange question, as I have commented only recently on how close they are, and how misleading the analogy is with the psychologically flawed relationship between Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. Continue to article
WORDS: PAUL WAUGH All sides seemed to agree this week that George Osborne’s third Budget did more to change the political weather than the economic realities facing the UK. The Daily Mail’s mock-up of the Chancellor as Mrs Thatcher caused... Continue to article
John Thurso said the priority for the Budget should be increasing the income tax threshold to £10,000. “The first thing I’d say is that we’ve had Plan B – it was conceived by Gordon Brown, executed by Ed Balls and left the country broke.... Continue to article
Chancellors of the exchequer have never been entirely straight about their tinkering with the tax system. With his penchant for "stealth taxes", Gordon Brown certainly didn't always come clean with the British public. But when it comes to the vexed subject of tax avoidance, his successor George Osborne has taken the deception to a new level and, after three years, pulled off a stunning confidence trick. Continue to article
Speech from Danny Alexander MP, Chief Secretary to the Treasury, at Scottish Liberal Democrat conference in Dundee: Willie knows how to win elections. He did it as an election agent in Cornwall. As a by-election candidate in Dunfer... Continue to article
WORDS: MARK GETTLESON As the fog of Eastleigh begins to clear, the battle lines of the next election have begun to form. So too has speculation around an inevitable Conservative defeat, with senior figures jockeying for position in a post-... Continue to article
WORDS: PAUL WAUGH AND SAM MACRORY Tim Farron’s Commons office has a huge diary planner on the wall with the words ‘Presidential Visit’ highlighted at key moments. The entries refer not to Barack Obama’s latest state banquet, but instead to... Continue to article
Who in their right mind would want to be Chancellor of the Exchequer? OK, Ed Balls, Philip Hammond, Vince Cable, Michael Gove, David Miliband, Danny Alexander... I hear the denials all round (except from Labour figures – now that would be ... Continue to article
Complaint on behalf of Gordon Brown abt Sunday Times report over ex-PMs trips, speeches & fees has been kicked out by PCC. Continue to article
The Coalition needs to learn it cannot alter negative media coverage through half-baked policy announcements, Gordon Brown’s former special adviser has said. Damian McBride, who worked as both a civil servant and political appointee in t... Continue to article
GordonBrown has been appointed as the United Nations Special Envoy for Education, the UN has announced.
The former Prime Minister will launch a new UN initiative for universal education in September which will campaign for a fund to finance schools and train 2 million teachers worldwide.
In a statement, Mr Brown said: "Ensuring that every child in the world has the opportunity to go to school and to learn is a longstanding passion of mine... Education breaks the cycle of poverty and unlocks better health and better job prospects."
Former PM Sir John Major has revealed that Rupert Murdoch threatened to withdraw support from him if he did not change his policy on the European Union.
The new evidence, given to the Leveson Inquiry, appears to contradict the claim by Mr Murdoch that he had never asked a prime minister for a favour.
Sir John described a dinner with Mr Murdoch in the run-up to the 1997 election, in which the proprietor said his papers could not support the Conservative Government unless the changes were made. He said that Mr Murdoch "didn't make the usual nod towards editorial independence", but that he ignored his entreaties anyway.
He also criticised the claim by newspaper proprietors that they could not be expected to know what their reporters were doing in order to obtain stories. Sir John told the hearing: “It defies credibility that they actually don't know what is happening and I think the 'I had no idea what was going on below me' argument is one that I find extremely difficult to accept."
Later, Gordon Brown’s claim that he was unaware of briefing by his special advisers against Tony Blair came under fire from Ed Miliband today.
The Labour leader told the Leveson Inquiry Charlie Whelan, one of Mr Brown's advisers, had left his position due to briefing.
He told the Inquiry: “Ed Balls, no. Charlie Whelan left, I believe in 1999 – left the Government in 1999. One of the reasons he left was because of his style of operation. I can’t point you to direct evidence but I would say one of the things he did was he briefed, including potentially against people in the government.
“On Damian McBride, when I was a Cabinet minister, I did raise a specific concern that I had with Mr Brown, I believe in 2008, about some of Mr McBride’s activities.”
Mr Miliband also urged Lord Leveson to look into the issue of how power in the newspaper market is concentrated, suggesting a limit of between 20 and 30% of the market. This led Lord Leveson to lament the way his terms of reference “grew like a mushroom cloud”.
You can catch up on all the action from today's Inquiry with our liveblog here.
The Leveson Inquiry is set to investigate evidence that private detectives bought access to data, including criminal record checks on a number of senior Labour politicians. Among those claimed to have been targeted are ex-Prime Minister Gordon Brown, former Agriculture Minister Nick Brown and backbencher Martin Salter.
Rupert Murdoch has stood behind his comments to the Leveson Inquiry that Gordon Brown called him to “declare war” on News International after the Sun’s endorsement of the Conservatives.
Despite the Cabinet Office today releasing information supporting Mr Brown’s denial, the News Corporation chairman tweeted today: “I stand by every word is aid [sic] at Leveson.”
The Cabinet Office earlier confirmed only one phone call took place between Gordon Brown and Rupert Murdoch in 2010, when the two men apparently spoke about Afghanistan.
Mr Brown and Mr Murdoch gave contradictory evidence to the Leveson Inquiry, Mr Murdoch saying that Mr Brown warned him in 2010: "Your company has declared war on my Government and we have no alternative but to make war on your company."
The Cabinet Office statement read: "That call took place on the 10th of November 2009. This was followed up by an email from Gordon Brown to Rupert Murdoch on the same day referring to the earlier conversation on Afghanistan.
"Four witness statements have been submitted to the Inquiry on the content of the call by staff who worked in No.10 Downing Street and who were the four and sole personnel on the phone call."
David Cameron, George Osborne, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband will appear before the Leveson Inquiry into media standards next week, it was announced today.
The Chancellor and former prime minister Gordon Brown will appear on Monday, before Mr Miliband, Harriet Harman and former prime minister John Major give evidence on Tuesday.
The Deputy Prime Minister and SNP leader Alex Salmond will be appearing on Wednesday, before Mr Cameron gives evidence on Thursday.
The full schedule can be found on the Inquiry's website here.
Rupert Murdoch has admitted there was a "cover up" at News of the World over the phone hacking scandal.
But Tom Crone, the newspaper's former legal manager, hit back at Mr Murdoch's evidence, releasing a statement claiming insinuations that he was involved in a cover up are a "shameful lie".
Giving evidence to the Leveson Inquiry for the second day, Mr Murdoch said there was "no question" in his mind that "someone took charge of a cover up".
The News Corp chairman insisted he and other senior executives were "misinformed" about the extent of phone-hacking at the tabloid, which he was forced to close last summer.
Mr Murdoch said he "panicked" when he made the decision to close the paper, and added he wishes he had done it sooner.
“I panicked. I'm glad I did," he said.
"I’m sorry I didn’t close it years before and put a Sunday Sun in but I’ll tell you what held us back – the News of the World readers.”
He put much of the blame for the lack of transparency at the News of the World on senior executives at the time such as Len Hinton and Colin Myler, as well as the lawyers used by News Corp to investigate. However he still apologised for the scandal, which he described as a “serious blot on my reputation”.
Elsewhere in the testimony, Mr Murdoch defended his comments yesterday that Gordon Brown had “declared war” on the Murdoch newspapers, after the former Prime Minister today dismissed them as “wholly wrong”.
16/05/2013 on Labour
05/04/2013 on Channel 4 News
20/03/2013 on BBC News
Summaries and transcripts from TV and radio
23 minutes ago on BBC News
2 hours ago on Week in Westminster, BBC Radio 4
2 hours ago on Week In Westminster, BBC Radio 4
33 minutes ago