News A defiant George Osborne during Treasury Questions in the House of Commons

George Osborne refused to rule out a cut in the top rate of tax from 45p to 40p today as the Conservatives and Labour clashed over the economy.

PM claims immigration is wrecking communities

David Cameron will today make the provocative claim that communities across Britain are being damaged by the record levels of immigration of the last decade.

Nick Clegg sets out social mobility plan

Nick Clegg claimed today that "birth has become destiny" for many youngsters as he set out the Government's strategy to improve social mobility.

US jobless rate hits two-year low

The US economy added 216,000 jobs last month, with the gains driving the country's unemployment rate to a two-year low of 8.8 per cent, according to official figures released yesterday.

Aviva drops ex-Lloyds boss from shortlist

Eric Daniels will be removed tomorrow from the shortlist of candidates being considered to become the next chairman of Aviva, the insurance group, following an outcry from investors.

Main points of the public sector pensions review

Former Labour minister Lord Hutton has set out proposals for wide-ranging reforms to public sector pension schemes. These are his main recommendations:

Lords finally back down on voting reform referendum

Britain will get to decide on 5 May whether the "first past the post" system for electing MPs should be reformed after Peers gave in to the House of Commons in a late-night battle of wills.

Peers stand firm on voting reform

The Lords tonight refused to back down over measures which would make the proposed referendum on changing the voting system for Westminster elections binding only if turnout was higher than 40%.

Labour peers accused of sabotaging voting reform

Labour was accused last night of attempting to sabotage plans for electoral reform by stealth, after Peers voted to make this May's referendum binding only if the voter turnout was above 40 per cent.

John Rentoul: The new gold standard: Don't blame us, guv, we weren't even there

Sketch: Cameron appeared to purr smoothly, with the moral conviction of someone who has been in power for five minutes

US economy adds just 36,000 jobs

The world's largest economy added a mere 36,000 jobs last month, far lower than forecast, as the severe winter weather weighed on the rate of job creation, official figures showed last night

Peace process under threat as Barak goes to war with his party

Israel's defence minister, Ehud Barak, abruptly quit as leader of the Labour Party yesterday, plunging the party into disarray and casting a shadow over prospects for peace.

Power to the pupils: A Bristol school is giving students a say in key decisions

Pupils have a say in key decisions, from interviewing new teachers to deciding how much homework should be set. Could the idea catch on?

Fears of Tory rebellion over high-speed rail

Ministers announced a series of changes yesterday to plans for a £12bn high-speed rail link from London to Birmingham in an effort to avert a Conservative rebellion against the scheme.

One black applicant in 100 gets 'fast-track' Whitehall job

Black applicants have less than a one in a 100 chance of being recruited to Britain's Civil Service fast track, figures published for the first time reveal.

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Scottish singer Susan Boyle will perform at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony in Glasgow
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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
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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
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
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

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Paranoid parenting is on the rise

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Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
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The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

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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
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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