Jane Merrick

Jane Merrick is Political Editor of The Independent on Sunday.

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Why has Miliband not developed more of an international presence?

Labour's Love Lost US-style: Ed Miliband needs a global touch

Given the situation in Ukraine, there must have been some doubt over whether Ed Miliband's carefully planned, high stakes meeting with Barack Obama in Washington tomorrow would still go ahead. In international diplomacy, choreography is everything, and the "brush-by" has taken weeks to organise. But the very nature of diplomacy means foreign crises routinely throw the choreography off course. With the US president preoccupied with the West's response to Russia over the MH17 atrocity, it may seem odd that he would still find time to see a Labour leader who struggles to convince the nation he is the Prime Minister in waiting, as our poll today underlines. Yet despite what many voters (and MPs) feel in their guts – that Miliband won't be in Downing Street next May – there is still a high probability that he will. So it would be odd for Obama not to see him, regardless of the urge to diary-clear to deal with Ukraine.

Danielle Calvert, MBDA mechanical engineering apprentice, from Royston, Hertfordshire

Putting more women in 'male' apprenticeships could bridge the gender pay gap

Some 83 per cent of apprentices in health and social care are female, 91 per cent in childcare, and 93 per cent in hairdressing

David Cameron at a recent event

Questions arise over hospitality enjoyed by two top ministers ahead of Cabinet reshuffle

Michael Gove and Theresa May were entertained separately in the Royal Box at Covent Garden
Maggie Gyllenhaal stars in The Honourable Woman

Women wait for the call: This week's reshuffle is David Cameron's chance to act on his one-third pledge

The PM is expected to promote many women MPs, but is likely to fall short of the target because, it is claimed, not all of the female backbenchers are 'good enough'
Nick Clegg

Lib Dems distance themselves from Coalition partners with separate minister reshuffle

The moves are part of a concerted effort for a 'conscious uncoupling' from the Tories

‘Being polite’ has its place. But shouldn’t the Editor of Tatler really be telling girls to prioritise hard work?

Rules for the privately educated are different from those that apply to those of us who went to comprehensives

Andy Coulson outside the Old Bailey

Tony Blair's denial of moderation in the Middle East

This is not a great time for journalism or to be a journalist. As Andy Coulson spends his first weekend in jail for phone hacking – or, as I see it, cheating at journalism – those of us reporters who act legally still have our liberty curtailed. Google was once a reservoir of everything on the internet – an apparently bottomless lagoon of facts, some of it important, some utterly irrelevant. But complete, nonetheless. Now it has been dredged by the EU ruling on the right to be forgotten, we are left with a censored version of history. It stinks.

Tory donor Adrian Beecroft

Millions of taxpayers' cash spent on venture capital fund run by Tory donor

Adrian Beecroft is the latest member of the Conservatives' Leader's Group to face questions
Fears over antibiotic usage leading to lethal infections will be discussed at G8 meeting

Not patients’ fault if antibiotics have lost power

Doctors have been dishing them out far too much, and now we're paying for it

Prince Harry’s freebies undermine the sort of charitable work he undertook in Chile last week

Values for our money: Riled by the Royals on tour

On Friday, Clarence House's Instagram account posted a picture of Prince Harry with an adorable-looking eight-month-old boy, Matias Gonzales Torres, in a kindergarten in Santiago, Chile. The fourth in line to the throne also attended a wreath-laying ceremony in the South American country. Earlier in the week, he had spent time at a football project for disadvantaged youngsters and a children's hospital in Brazil.

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Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn
Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Alistair Carmichael: 'The UK as a whole is greater than the sum of its parts'

Meet the man who doesn't want to go down in history as the country's last Scottish Secretary