Briscoe was asked about Chris Huhne's 'liaisons with men' by reporters

Barrister Constance Briscoe says she was asked about Chris Huhne's ‘liaisons with men’ by reporter

The high-profile barrister accused of lying to police about her contacts with the media over a plot to bring down the politician Chris Huhne claimed to have been approached by a reporter investigating the former minister’s alleged “liaisons with men”, a court was told.

Lynton Crosby has told ministers to stop announcing minor policies which distract from the party's core messages

Tories’ election guru Lynton Crosby tells ministers: Stop announcing minor policies

Government departments have effectively been banned from promoting initiatives that are not central to the party’s key election themes of crime, the economy, immigration and welfare

Liberal Democrat peer Lord Rennard will not face any further action over allegations of sexual harassment against female activists

A close friend of mine was involved in an encounter with Lord Rennard. Now I feel I ought to speak out

The House of Lords is now pulling rank to protect this man

DWP to offer new support for separating couples

This month is the worst for struggling couples but a new initiative aims to ease the pain, reports Simon Read

Former minister Sarah Teather announced she is quitting Parliament

Nick Clegg has a woman problem

Having only seven female MPs is not liberal or democratic

Conservatives condemn Ed Miliband's plan to break up high street banks

As much as £1bn knocked off the taxpayers' stakes in RBS and Lloyds

Labour wins key Manchester council seat at Trafford Borough

The win indicates there will be a tense battle in the May polls

London Mayor Boris Johnson said the UK should not

London Mayor Boris Johnson warns UK should not 'slam the door' on super-rich foreigners

The London Mayor's remarks came after the Chancellor announced an "oligarch tax" in the Autumn Statement last year

The man behind the all-important shift of David Cameron’s parting from the left to the right was awarded an MBE the New Year's Honours.

David Cameron's number one priority for 2014: 'Keeping the bald spot under control'

Mr Cameron was speaking at the first Westminster Correspondents' Dinner for 40 years when he made the tongue-in-cheek comment

Nick Clegg speaks with inmates during a visit to the Cookham Wood Young Offenders Institution in Rochester

Government to trial 'fortified school' concept in an attempt to reduce rate of teenage reoffenders

Secure college will house up to 320 young troublemakers

Donald Macintyre's Sketch: Profumo evidence - now you see it, now you don’t

It’s a British first! While it may have been commonplace in the days of Glavlit, the dreaded Soviet censorship organ of the Stalin era, the UK Government may be the only one in modern times to make secret what had previously been public. Labour’s Lord Dubs discovered this when he asked for the release of the transcripts of the 1963 trial of Stephen Ward – the osteopath who introduced Christine Keeler and her lover, the married War Minister John Profumo, and was convicted on what a historian of the period has called the “tainted evidence” of police and others.

George Osborne says he wants the national minimum wage to increase to £7 an hour

Chancellor surprises Vince Cable with call for above-inflation increase to minimum wage

George Osborne pre-empts Ed Miliband speech on economy, but  Lib Dems say Treasury ignored repeated calls for increase

Andy McSmith's Diary: Conservative candidate’s racial sensitivity falls flat as a pancake

“One thing I have become very sensitive about is this accusation that Conservatives are somehow racist,” Edward de Mesquita, who is standing as a Conservative candidate in West Hampstead, in London, told the Camden New Journal. “Conservatives are not racist. So many of the Conservatives have foreign wives, after all.

Nick Clegg was warned he would face a rebellion by Liberal Democrat peers in the House of Lords if he tried to remove the whip from Lord Rennard

Nick Clegg faces revolt by Lib Dem peers if he removes whip from Lord Rennard

Nick Clegg was warned he would face a rebellion by Liberal Democrat peers in the House of Lords if he tried to remove the whip from the party’s former chief executive Lord Rennard over allegations of sexual harassment against the peer.

A YouGov poll predicts that the Lib Dems will lose all of their MEPs in the May election

YouGov poll: Tories to come behind Labour, while Lib Dems may lose all their MEPs

The poll showed that Labour could gain seats in May's EU elections

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NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders
Heston Blumenthal to cook up a spice odyssey for British astronaut manning the International Space Station

UK's Major Tum to blast off on a spice odyssey

Nothing but the best for British astronaut as chef Heston Blumenthal cooks up his rations
John Harrison's 'longitude' clock sets new record - 300 years on

‘Longitude’ clock sets new record - 300 years on

Greenwich horologists celebrate as it keeps to within a second of real time over a 100-day test
Fears in the US of being outgunned in the vital propaganda wars by Russia, China - and even Isis - have prompted a rethink on overseas broadcasters

Let the propaganda wars begin - again

'Accurate, objective, comprehensive': that was Voice of America's creed, but now its masters want it to promote US policy, reports Rupert Cornwell
Why Japan's incredible long-distance runners will never win the London Marathon

Japan's incredible long-distance runners

Every year, Japanese long-distance runners post some of the world's fastest times – yet, come next weekend, not a single elite competitor from the country will be at the London Marathon
Why does Tom Drury remain the greatest writer you've never heard of?

Tom Drury: The quiet American

His debut was considered one of the finest novels of the past 50 years, and he is every bit the equal of his contemporaries, Jonathan Franzen, Dave Eggers and David Foster Wallace
You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

You should judge a person by how they peel a potato

Dave Hax's domestic tips are reminiscent of George Orwell's tea routine. The world might need revolution, but we like to sweat the small stuff, says DJ Taylor
Beige is back: The drab car colours of the 1970s are proving popular again

Beige to the future

Flares and flounce are back on catwalks but a revival in ’70s car paintjobs was a stack-heeled step too far – until now
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef's dishes highlight the delicate essence of fresh cheeses

Bill Granger cooks with fresh cheeses

More delicate on the palate, milder, fresh cheeses can also be kinder to the waistline
Aston Villa vs Liverpool: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful,' says veteran Shay Given

Shay Given: 'This FA Cup run has been wonderful'

The Villa keeper has been overlooked for a long time and has unhappy memories of the national stadium – but he is savouring his chance to play at Wembley
Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own - Michael Calvin

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Timeless drama of Championship race in league of its own