Late in PM’s Questions the (very) right-wing Tory backbencher Peter Bone rose to deliver his magisterial verdict on Nick Clegg’s substitution for the absent David Cameron. “Hasn’t the acting Prime Minister been outstanding today?” he asked, adding that “anyone listening on the radio” would have thought it was Cameron himself. (This wasn’t a huge compliment since Bone is hardly the PM’s greatest fan). But then the only half-sarcastic pay-off: “I think that the Right Hon Gentleman is turning into a Tory.”
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Friday 30 September 2011
At the party conferences...
Sunday 04 September 2011
Monday 29 August 2011
A top-performing state school can add up to £77,000 to the value of a house within its catchment area, according to new research, with the cost of properties near the 50 best-performing state schools 35 per cent higher than in the rest of the UK.
Thursday 11 August 2011
One naturally imagines that the Scandinavians are a civilised bunch, and that Denmark's population would not be prone to prurience. Yet, according to the FT, it has been obliquely suggested by a number of Danish newspapers that the front-runner in the country's forthcoming elections would have an even better chance of becoming Prime Minister if she took her clothes off. Social Democrat leader Helle Thorning-Schmidt, 44, is best known in the UK as Neil Kinnock's daughter-in-law (she's married to his son, Stephen). A Danish news agency has now produced a widely reported study claiming that the word most Googled next to Ms Thorning-Schmidt's name is "naked" – which means, presumably, that many Danish web users are keen to see her in her birthday suit. This column has conducted its own thoroughly unscientific survey to discover the terms Googled alongside our own leading women politicians, and I'm happy to report no such unseemliness. "Theresa May" yields nothing dirtier than "shoes"; "Baroness Warsi" the more abstract "egged"; and Labour deputy leader "Harriet Harman" is sought alongside the stiflingly dull "surgery" (presumably as in "constituency", not "cosmetic").
Friday 05 August 2011
According to former New York Times executive editor Bill Keller, Julian Assange always used to smell like "he hadn't bathed for days". But even the ripe scent of week-old sweat won't deter the ladies. Assange has been living under "mansion arrest" at Ellingham Hall in Norfolk for some eight months now, and the enigmatic Australian has attracted not only journalists, says his host, Vaughan Smith, but groupies, too. "We definitely had a problem with groupies," Smith tells The Times. "They rented a house in the village, a groupie commune, mostly Germans or Austrians, who just felt they could turn up at this house and Julian would take them in. Julian is hunted by a certain type of woman... who can be quite pushy. They are mainly from Eastern Europe. It's extraordinary." That it is.
Thursday 04 August 2011
Deputy Leader of the Labour Party Harriet Harman says allegations made by Heather Mills over phone hacking at MGN need to be looked into.
Sunday 05 June 2011
Labour's shadow ministers have been forced to defend the party's direction amid claims of arrogance and fears over its finances.
Sunday 01 May 2011
Saturday 30 April 2011
Sometimes it is a good idea to leave things to the spin doctors.
Thursday 28 April 2011
David Cameron was accused of being patronising to women after telling a senior Labour MP to "calm down, dear" during Prime Minister's Questions. Mr Cameron rejected Labour's demands for an apology for deploying the catchphrase used by the film director Michael Winner in a television commercial for car insurance.
Thursday 28 April 2011
That may be the end of the PM's lordly ease at the dispatch box. It was a lovely act while it lasted. Week by week we had an exhibition from another era as Cameron showed us the upper-class skill of manners being the art of making other people feel uncomfortable.
Wednesday 27 April 2011
Labour has accused David Cameron of sexism after he told a female shadow cabinet minister to "calm down, dear" in noisy exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions.
Friday 08 April 2011
The Liberal democrats face a double blow at next month's council elections, when they will field fewer candidates than usual and could be the main victims of a Labour recovery.
Wednesday 06 April 2011
The niece of a countess sitting next to the son of a hereditary peer faced a baronet and an international banker's Oxbridge son educated at the third of Britain's four major public schools (and who defeated for the party leadership another old boy from his school, who himself had a double-barrelled name when I knew him at Oxford).
Thursday 24 March 2011
The Labour Party last night threatened to pull the plug on three-way televised debates at the next General Election after Nick Clegg was inadvertently recorded telling David Cameron that the pair “won’t find anything to bloody disagree on”.
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash: 'Nine Britons, 23 Americans and 80 children' feared dead after Boeing passenger jet is 'shot down' near Ukraine-Russia border
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
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