Andy McSmith's Diary: The Tories' missing reports on 'weaponising' mass distraction

David Cameron is right on one point: no one seriously doubts that Ed Miliband dropped a comment in the hearing of BBC executives about “weaponising” the NHS. The PM says it was a “disgusting” thing to say.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Is that George Osborne I hear? Or Barry White?

Something seems to have happened to George Osborne’s voice. He did not sound like the Chancellor we have come to know and love during a live appearance on the Today programme. The squeak was not there. Perhaps it was a trick of the acoustics, maybe he has a cold, or maybe, just maybe, he has been practising to lower his pitch and sound more authoritative. Today, answering questions in the Commons, he sounded more like his usual self, but that could be only a temporary reversion.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Who said politics was all about the money? White Dee

White Dee, heroine of the Channel 4 documentary series Benefits Street, has been advised by her agent to shun politics. If the bookies are correct, she has a better chance than any other challenger of unseating the incumbent Labour MP Shabana Mahmood in Birmingham Ladywood where she lives, but her manager, Barry Tomes, thinks she should forget it. He has advised his client, whose real name is Deirdre Kelly, that she can make more money by being a media personality. She is thought to have been paid £100,000 for appearing on Celebrity Big Brother.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Ramsay or Nando's? The PM can't have both

Gordon Ramsay has had a bad week. In addition to losing a court battle over a rent agreement, which will set him back more than £2m, he has suffered the insult of having David Cameron say he would rather eat at Nando’s than in an establishment run by the celebrity chef.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Tipsters always fall short of running naked down Whitehall

The pundit and publisher Iain Dale has finally come up with a lame excuse for not keeping the most famous promise he ever made. On election night in 2010, Dale poured scorn on a BBC exit poll that predicted the Liberal Democrats would win as few as 59 seats. If that proved true, Dale promised, he would “run naked down Whitehall”. Actually, the poll overestimated rather than underestimated Nick Clegg’s appeal. They won 57 seats.

Andy McSmith's Diary: An anonymous Tory candidate may have discovered where the Nasty Party went

It is no fun being a Conservative in a seat held safely by another party, to judge from a diary posted on the ConservativeHome website by an unnamed writer who gave up a good job to be an unpaid parliamentary candidate.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Some parties do have 'em... the travails of Ukip hopefuls

After all the trouble Ukip has had selecting a candidate in Basildon South it has good reason to be pleased with its eventual choice of Ian Luder, a former Lord Mayor of London.

Andy McSmith's Diary: The price of justice? £277,600, to the tax payer

One of the most shocking murders to take place on British soil in recent years was the shooting of PC Ian Broadhurst on a street in Leeds on Boxing Day 2003 – not least because of a heart-rending recording in which the badly wounded officer was heard pleading: “No don’t, don’t, please, please no,” before receiving the final bullet in his head.

Andy McSmith's Diary: House not in order

One of the country’s longest serving council leaders, Keith House, a Lib Dem who has led Eastleigh council since 1994, has been through some upheaval in his private life.

Andy McSmith's Diary: As Paris panics, MPs have a bad hair day

While the world’s eyes were focused on the horror in Paris on Wednesday evening, MPs were engaged in a widely unreported debate on whether it is the Government’s job to protect you from a bad hair-do.

Andy McSmith's Diary: With MPs threatening to get heavy, Tony Blair comes quietly

It has been a long time since Parliament has heard from Tony Blair but he has now, reluctantly, agreed to revisit the building.

Andy McSmith's Diary: MP named and shamed because of Coalition U-turn

It was no surprise today that Mark Pritchard should call for men accused of rape to be protected by anonymity. His fellow Tory MP Nigel Evans made the same call – that the law protects the anonymity of the accuser but not the accused – after his highly publicised trial for rape which ended in the Deputy Speaker’s acquittal.

Andy McSmith's Diary: The enemy within Chequers at Sam Cam's delayed 40th

There were many strange things about the party that David and Samantha Cameron threw at Chequers last week.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Leaked – the site of Ed Balls' tête-à-tête with Nick Clegg

Ed Balls ruffled a few feathers in the Labour Party 11 months ago, when he disclosed that he had had a talk with Nick Clegg, seemingly about the possibility of Labour going into coalition with the Liberal Democrats.

Andy McSmith's Diary: End of a Hungarian era? It's enough to Magyar weep

If you walk along Greek Street in London on Monday night, you will hear a hubbub coming from the Gay Hussar, a Hungarian restaurant. Every table will be filled with people apparently celebrating, though frankly they have not much reason to celebrate. The Gay Hussar in Soho has been famous for years as the watering hole where left-wing politicians gathered to plot, and journalists came to earwig.

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