Monitor: Reaction in the Sunday papers to the exclusion of Steven Norris from the Conservative Party's shortlist for Mayor of London

ALL THE NEWS OF THE WORLD

The Observer

Steven Norris has been treated disgustingly. In him the Tories had an intelligent, liberal, populist candidate-in-waiting for Mayor of London. Already the idea that he could come through and actually win was gaining ground. A paid-up member of the human race, Norris had been dubious about standing for a second, post-Archer contest, but had been persuaded by Tory bigwigs that, this time, they really wanted him. Instead, he has been kicked where it hurts. The Conservatives ought to be rising well in the polls. There are enough big questions over Europe, transport, schooling and health to give a half-decent Opposition the ammunition it needs to frightened this Government. Tony Blair leads a respectable Cabinet but they are hardly a team of political giants. Yet the Tories are making almost no impact. William Hague can no longer blame the 1997 landslide. Today, it is his fault. He is failing to lead an open and competent national party, and this latest spiteful act merely confirms it. On the evening of the next general election Mr Norris, we suspect, will have his revenge.

Sunday Express

The decision by the Conservative Party to block Steven Norris from standing in the contest to be London mayor is an affront to democracy and an insult to Londoners. Norris was by far the most outstanding candidate that the Tories had to offer and possessed the skill and the charisma to give Labour a run for its money. Instead, the Tories have whittled down the shortlist to an unappetising selection of worthy but drab individuals. Party spokesman were insisting last night that the decision was taken by a small group of Tory worthies. We take that claim with a pinch of salt. If William Hague had wanted Norris to stand, Norris would have stood. Hague must bear responsibility for the decision. It is fresh evidence that, for all his undoubted political talents, a question mark still surrounds the quality of his judgement.

The Sunday Telegraph

Mr Norris's more excitable friends allege that there was a campaign against him by a member of his former constituency party: a woman whose husband left her as Mr Norris abandoned his own wife. This, in the curious logic of the Norris camp, makes him the victim of vendetta by an obsessive woman. But might they not reflect that members are perfectly entitled to judge the character of those standing for election? Voters surely will.

The Independent on Sunday

At first it was funny, watching the Conservative Party tear itself apart over the nomination for Mayor of London. When Lord Archer withdrew, even supportive commentators admitted the selection process was degenerating into farce. Scenting disaster, senior Tory figures declined to step into the spotlight. Enter Teresa Gorman, ever the pantomime dame, stage right - only to be cast back into the wings two minutes later because of her Europhobia. With all the gravitas of a soap star playing Buttons, William Hague made a backstage plea for the former baddie Steven Norris to rescue the plot. It was a solution of sorts, although only Norris himself really believed he was the Prince Charming. Now it seems the Conservatives do not want a romantic lead after all. So the Tories are left with a cast of unknowns in comparison with whom the otherwise anonymous Liberal Democrat candidate Susan Kramer now has the celebrity of a Spice Girl. It has gone beyond farce now. At a time when Labour politicians are so desperate to stick to their leader's script, the crumbling of Her Majesty's Opposition is not a joke but a tragedy.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
'Eminem's recovery from substance abuse has made him a more potent performer, with physical charisma and energy he never had before'
musicReview: Wembley Stadium ***
Arts and Entertainment
‘Dawn of Planet of the Apes’ also looks set for success in the Chinese market

film
Arts and Entertainment
The successful ITV drama Broadchurch starring David Tenant and Olivia Coleman came to an end tonight

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Characters in the new series are based on real people, say its creators, unlike Arya and Clegane the Dog in ‘Game of Thrones’

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Balaban is indirectly responsible for the existence of Downton Abbey, having first discovered Julian Fellowes' talents as a screenwriter

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Comedian, actor and broadcaster Sanjeev Bhaskar

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Chocolat author Joanne Harris has spoken about the financial struggles most authors face

books
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from How To Train Your Dragon 2

Review: Imaginative storytelling returns with vigour

film
Arts and Entertainment
Josh Hutcherson, Donald Sutherland and Jena Malone in Mockinjay: Part 1

film
Arts and Entertainment

film
Arts and Entertainment
Characters in the new series are based on real people, say its creators, unlike Arya and Clegane the Dog in ‘Game of Thrones’
tv
Arts and Entertainment
A waxwork of Jane Austen has been unveiled at The Jane Austen Centre in Bath

books
Arts and Entertainment
Britney Spears has been caught singing without Auto-Tune

music
Arts and Entertainment
Unless films such as Guardians of the Galaxy, pictured, can buck the trend, this summer could be the first in 13 years that not a single Hollywood blockbuster takes $300m

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Miley Cyrus has her magic LSD brain stolen in this crazy video produced with The Flaming Lips

music
Arts and Entertainment
Gay icons: Sesame Street's Bert (right) and Ernie

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Singer Robin Thicke and actress Paula Patton

music
Arts and Entertainment
The new film will be shot in the same studios as the Harry Potter films

books
Arts and Entertainment
Duncan Bannatyne left school at 15 and was still penniless at 29

Bannatyne leaves Dragon's Den

TV
Arts and Entertainment
The French economist Thomas Piketty wrote that global inequality has worsened

books
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Super Mario crushes the Messi dream as Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

    Super Mario crushes the Messi dream

    Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
    Saharan remains may be evidence of the first race war, 13,000 years ago

    The first race war, 13,000 years ago?

    Saharan remains may be evidence of oldest large-scale armed conflict
    Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

    Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

    Researchers hope eye tests can spot ‘biomarkers’ of the disease
    Sex, controversy and schoolgirl schtick

    Meet Japan's AKB48

    Pop, sex and schoolgirl schtick make for controversial success
    In pictures: Breathtaking results of this weekend's 'supermoon'

    Weekend's 'supermoon' in pictures

    The moon appeared bigger and brighter at the weekend
    Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

    How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

    A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
    The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

    The evolution of Andy Serkis

    First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
    You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

    You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

    Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
    Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

    Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

    Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
    Children's books are too white, says Laureate

    Children's books are too white, says Laureate

    Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
    Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

    Blackest is the new black

    Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
    Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

    Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

    The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
    Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

    Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

    From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
    Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

    Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

    Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
    Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

    Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

    When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor