Week of May 19 – 25

Read Time:6 Minute, 55 Second

By Steve Parkhurst, Senior Editor, USDR.

Looking at the news and opinion out of London each day.


Winning over tomorrow’s Tories

A Conservative campaign to woo the ethnic minorities from Labour is bearing fruit – but these voters will soon be even more crucial

Remember the Tories’ “lunatic fringe” European party? It just provided the new President of Poland

Thanks to a promise kept and a great deal of hard work, the ECR group means we have more and better allies than before.


David Cameron announces pay freeze for ministers to ensure Cabinet ‘plays its part’

Government ministers will face a further five years of frozen pay, David Cameron has announced, insisting that the Cabinet “will all play [their] part” in balancing the books.

Social mobility has come to a halt

Inequality and a lack of movement at the top and bottom of our society are issues that David Cameron could make his crusade over the next five years – and deliver real progress on

Twelve policies to make the Conservatives a One Nation Party

A families programme. Inter-Generational Justice. New Garden Cities. Major airport expansion in the Midlands. A £50,000 cap on donations to the Party. And more…

Downing Street’s plan for the EU referendum franchise – right, consistent and a gentle rebuke to Farage

Non-Commonwealth EU citizens living here won’t get to vote. That’s sensible, but it is also a test for the UKIP leader.


Flushed by victory, the Tories can give power to the people

The voters have made their views clear – and there is now a golden opportunity for the public-sector reforms that Tony Blair promised but could never deliver

EU reform could be the making of George Osborne

A Chancellor who secured a historic redesign of the EU would find himself in a strong position to run for Tory leader

Can David Cameron make Tories the new party of social justice?

The PM’s former policy guru, Steve Hilton, has spelt out why the Tories should rekindle their ‘big society’ ideals, but reconciling manifesto pledges with reform is likely to prove a headache

Britain needs a Bill of Rights for the individual and the country

Telegraph View: We understand the concern for civil liberties expressed by those who favour retaining the Human Rights Act. But it is far too open to abuse, and it is time to repatriate legal authority

The flip-flopping highlights the depths of the party’s predicament

A sugar tax is simply a tax on the poor

Why is it that whenever anyone proposes a tax on the wealthy all hell breaks lose, but when someone proposes a tax on the poor there is no more than a faint whimper of protest? Yesterday, life sciences minister George Freeman, speaking at the Hay Festival, floated the idea of a sugar tax.


Nigel Farage cannot lead the Out campaign

If he does, he will alienate Tory Eurosceptics

‘We need 10,000 mayors’ – an interview with Steve Hilton

An interview with Steve Hilton, Cameron’s former chief strategist

Javid’s letter shows the huge difficulties of navigating the waters of counter-extremism

We’ve come a long way since the clumsy endorsements and clampdowns of the Blair years. But we aren’t there yet.

A sugar tax isn’t fair. But it is right.

Britain is struggling to cope with the rise of obesity, if the taxman has an answer, we should listen to it – says Judith Woods


Tax relief on pensions is a scandal: this is how George Osborne could fix it

Comment: Public servants with final salary pensions are unfairly advantaged, while many workers are prevented from saving for the pension they need

A visit to Planet Toynbee shows why the Right won – and why the Left seems set to keep on losing

Hold the faith, repeat the mantras and blame the people seem to be the Opposition’s three rules.

As Nepal recovers from the earthquakes, governments, returning Gurkhas and the public have united to help


Steve Hilton – policy guru, thinker, would-be revolutionary…MP?

As ever with Hilton, the flurry of ideas, ideology and eclectic examples that make up the meat of his argument can sometimes baffle those who are used to long battles (and indulgent celebrations) over changes that he would dismiss as cosmetic or temporary compared to the scale of reforms he believes are required.

Finally, Labour and the Conservatives are agreeing on… everything!

By doing this, Labour can blame their defeat on anything they proposed that might have been different from the Tories

Be bold, Prime Minister, and you can change the course of history

David Cameron should ignore the naysayers, and embrace a radical renegotiation of the UK’s membership of the EU

Barnett cannot be the whole answer for Scotland’s money

I have sought before to explain how the Barnett formula works. It is the way of determining increases in Scotland’s bloc grant money each year, based on the increases in England for similar programmes. Those who think the debate is simply whether you are pro or anti Barnett are misjudging the issue.


Labour has to wake up fast, or go the way of the hedgehog

The candidates for the party leadership must challenge Mr Cameron at every opportunity

Tristram Hunt bows out of Labour leadership race and backs Liz Kendall

Tristram Hunt is not standing as Labour leader and will instead back Liz Kendall, he finally confirmed at the end of a long speech this morning. The party’s Shadow Education Secretary had some fun forcing hacks to listen to his assessment of Labour’s failure, which took a while

Iain Dale: Hilton’s new book. Just a talking point for the elites? I hope not – it’s better than that

You can divide political people into two categories – dreamers and doers. The dreamers write idealistic papers for worthy think tanks and comment pieces for newspapers – but give them a sniff of power or office and they suddenly become like anyone else, part of the machine. Inevitably, the machine eats them up and spits them out.

Cameron confirms that Britain will vote as one nation on the EU

Also: General election could take fourth scalp as SDLP leader faces calls to quit; Scottish Greens plan surge; and Welsh call for EU poll to avoid Assembly election.

Plus further election-result pedantry and another outstanding genuine shop name


The Tories can set the agenda for the next 10 years. They should start with the NHS

With privatisation, Margaret Thatcher created a new political reality which Labour had to accept. David Cameron can do the same

Don’t Labour tax advisers pop up in the funniest places?

Remember Jolyon Maugham, the QC who had fifteen minutes of fame during the General Election campaign when he ‘advised Labour on its non-dom tax crackdown’?

Halfon is out to build a new Party – and he stands every chance of doing so

The new Deputy Chairman has a track record of taking up radical goals, and battling until he succeeds.

The referendum

In the run up to the General Election Conservatives and UKIP candidates and supporters were fighting each other for the seats available in Parliament. That process required both sides to stress their differences as part of the cut and thrust of democratic debate. That’s democracy.

Does David Cameron have the patience to achieve substantive EU reform?

David Cameron is wisely using his first 100 days to tackle the biggest challenge of this parliament head on: the EU referendum. This morning’s papers report that a new referendum bill will be a core part of next week’s Queen’s Speech and Cameron is keen to accelerate the vote to 2016.

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Across The Pond is edited daily by Steve Parkhurst. Steve is a political consultant, a writer at his blog as well as a Senior Editor here at US Daily Review. Follow Steve on Twitter  @SteveParkhurst

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