Matthew Norman: Has Barack Obama just been handed victory on a plate?

Romney may wish to frame the election as a choice about the budget. But the true battle is ideological

Paul Ryan went solo for the first time yesterday as vice presidential candidate to-be

Paul Ryan flies solo for the first time as he takes on Barack Obama in a key swing state

Having fulfilled his initial task of providing a sorely needed jolt of excitement to the Republican faithful, Paul Ryan today went solo for the first time as vice presidential candidate-to-be, taking on Barack Obama directly in one of the key swing states in November’s election.

US political pundits begin scouring Wikipedia pages for hints over the identity of Mitt Romney's pick for potential Vice President

Breathe easy, Donald Trump is not going to be the Republican running mate in the presidential election and has no chance of ever being one heartbeat away from controlling America’s nuclear codes. We know this because his profile on Wikipedia, the encyclopaedia site, hasn’t been touched in weeks.

Suicidal thoughts make Springsteen a better role model than happier folk

Tim Lott: You've got to fight for your right to frown

Our writer is sceptical about those who find it easy to be happy

BBC drama Sherlock wins Critics' Choice Television Award

BBC sleuth drama Sherlock, its star Benedict Cumberbatch and TV presenter Cat Deeley have won top gongs at a US awards ceremony.

Simon Cowell admits he 'had a crush' on his fellow X Factor judge, Dannii Minogue

Trending: Cowell's crush joins tales with added X Factor

The news that Simon Cowell supposedly had a fling with his fellow X Factor judge Dannii Minogue filled the weekend's tabloids. The story comes from Tom Bower's new biography of the publicity-friendly music mogul, in which Cowell admitted that he "had a crush" on Minogue, adding, "it was genuine love".

David Usborne: The vice-presidential warning: don't do a John McCain

Among the first to raise the Palin spectre has been the man credited with bringing her on in 2008
Nazi piece of work: Julia Dietze and Götz Otto star in 'Iron Sky'

The sci-fi movie Hollywood would not dare to make

A spoof film about Nazis living on the Moon has become an unlikely hit, says Kaleem Aftab

Matthew Norman: Obama has nothing to fear from this freakshow

The GOP is putting on a Tea Party-backed, smash hit revival of 'One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest'

Knox has hired a top agent to secure a book deal

Knox tells Obama's agent: now I'll sell my story

Amanda Knox is planning to sell her story of her murder trial after hiring a literary agent to negotiate what she hopes will be a lucrative book deal.

Last Republicans standing race to grab a slice of Cain's support base

Conservative members of Grand Old Party remain unwilling to settle for Mitt Romney

Leading article: Palin loses her pulling power

A week may be a long time in politics in Britain but in America it might just as well be a lifetime. Remember when Sarah Palin was the darling of the Republican Party and being talked of as a serious contender to Barack Obama in 2012?

Palin’s tour continues, but can she join race to the White House?

She looks like a candiate. She sounds like a candidate. She's still touring key primary states in a vast, personalised camper van. But as the race for the Republican presidential nomination stutters into something like full gear, Sarah Palin still hasn't announced whether she intends to join the fray.

Margaret Cho: Cho Dependent, Assembly George Square, Edinburgh

US comedian Margaret Cho has never minced her words. She once called Sarah Palin "the worst thing to happen to America since 9/11" and her stance on gay rights has drawn fire from conservatives at home.

Buttering up starts in earnest as Palin busses into Iowa

The dreams of all the declared candidates for the Republican presidential nomination – and of a couple not yet formally announced – are about to be burnished, dented or even dashed in a 48-hour blitz of campaign activity among the fried-butter stands and cow pens of the Iowa State Fair.

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
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Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas