News According to research published by the Ministry of Justice, over a fifth of out of work benefits claimants have a criminal record

More than a fifth of out of work benefits claimants have a criminal record according to research published by the Ministry of Justice today.

The coalition seating plan: Forget who likes who – who sits where is all about status

If a hostess had worked out a seating plan like the one for yesterday's inaugural meeting of the coalition Cabinet, she would have been instantly drummed out of the Notting Hill dinner circuit. Quite apart from the acute shortage of women, and the decision to seat the host halfway down the table rather than at its head, the principle that you put people next to others they are likely to feel comfortable with has been grossly overlooked.

The Sketch: Same suits, hair, wives and ties. What could possibly go wrong?

The Camilition? Does that work? The Clegmeron – with a silent G – do we like the ancient tribal quality of that? Or does grown-up politics not need silly names? It's like a new world. Or maybe the arrangement won't last long enough to justify naming it. Nick Clegg said with fate-tempting emphasis: "This is a government that. Will. Last."

Simon Carr: Stuck in the middle of a frenzied vacuum

Sketch: News just in. Nick Clegg has left his house. He is wearing a tie

Cameron faces struggle to keep backbench rebels in line

The Tory leader will have his hands full trying to control his more eccentric MPs

Nevin's notes: 04/05/2010

An alternative take on the election

Cameron set to challenge convention over hung parliament

David Cameron is set to claim victory if Labour comes third in Thursday's election even if he fails to win an overall majority.

David Cameron's view of a hung parliament:'It's all Cleggified Balls!'

David Cameron at last has some momentum as the campaign reaches its climax. But can he win a working majority?

Do you want to be leader? The question Miliband can't escape

Donald Macintyre joins the Foreign Secretary on the campaign trail and finds him refusing to look beyond 6 May, whatever the future may bring

Nevin's Notes (28/04/10)

An alternative take on the election

Conservative candidate says homosexuality is 'not normal'

The Conservatives' efforts to reach out to gay voters suffered a fresh set-back after a Conservative election candidate described homosexuality as "not normal".

Tory candidate Philip Lardner suspended over 'offensive' gay comments

A would-be Tory MP has been suspended for describing gay people as "not normal", it was disclosed today.

Actress Brook Kinsella backs Tory campaign to mend 'broken society'

Former EastEnders star Brook Kinsella today backed David Cameron's campaign to mend the "broken society" - insisting the Labour government had not "done enough".

Boost for Labour as Home Office figures reveal falling crime rate

The final set of crime statistics to be released before the election showed that crime in Britain continued to fall.

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