- The speech will emphasise that there is to be no new direction, no lurching to the right or the left.
- Cameron is sticking to his change agenda.
- He will say that Brown claims to have similar aspirations to the Conservatives, but the evidence is that he has failed to deliver after 10 long years.
- The country has a choice between optimism versus pessimism.
There will be no gimmicky claims on sunshine this time, it will it was emphasised to Guido, be a serious speech.
Dear Permanent Secretary,
On 30th April 2007, the then Economic Secretary, Ed Balls MP told the House of Commons, “Information is not held on overseas income and gains that do not give rise to a tax liability in the UK.”
As the then Paymaster General, Dawn Primarolo MP told the House on 8th March 2007, this is because non-doms are not required to disclose this information: “In general, individuals do not have to inform HMRC of their foreign income or gains unless this is relevant to their UK tax liability.”
Last night, the Labour Party distributed a press release which stated: “The Treasury’s initial estimate, on best information available, is that just 15,000 current non-domicile residents have foreign income in excess of £62,000.”
I am writing to ask you to explain why it is the case that information which the Treasury refused to give to Parliament appears to have been given to the Labour Party. Or, will you confirm that the statement made to Parliament this Spring remains the case.
As I am sure you agree, it is essential that the principle of civil service impartiality is not jeopardised, particularly during this period of speculation about a forthcoming general election.
I would be grateful if you could reply to me with an explanation, by this evening.
Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer
At the start of the Northern Rock crisis he at first claimed all was well, then dithered, waffled and eventually promised the government would guarantee everything. A promise he has now gone back on – as Northern Rock shares fell even more today.
Unsettled by the finesse of Osborne’s tax policy announcements he seems to have completely lost the plot yesterday, claiming the Tory figures don’t add up whilst simultaneously acknowledging they don’t know how many non-doms there are or what income they have. But the Labour party press release is even more extraordinary:
“Today George Osborne made a £3.5 billion tax commitment. Treasury analysis shows it is impossible for him to raise the money he needs to pay for this commitment from his proposals on residence and domicile. Initial costings by the Treasury show that George Osborne’s proposal would raise a maximum of £650m, leaving George Osborne at least £2.9 billion short.”
It is a sacking offence for civil servants to engage in party political work. Darling has just press released a confession to a fundamental breach of the Civil Service Code. In reality politicians often pressure civil servants to cross the partisan line, discretely behind closed doors where they would be unlikely to be caught, certainly not with the work press released during the opposition’s party conference. Gus O’Donnell, who heads the Civil Service, will not be impressed with this at all.
In more honourable times, a Minister would have been expected to resign if he was found to have pushed Civil Servants to break the rules. New Labour are increasingly unable to separate their private party interest from the interests of the state…
Hat-tip : Benedict Brogan
I am writing you this email from our newly created “election war-room” in Cowley Street. We have just had back-to-back meetings of our Shadow Cabinet and Federal Policy Committee to put the finishing touches to our general election manifesto.
Of course, I can’t tell you the details just yet. [TOP SECRET DOUBLE HUSH HUSH] But it will be a very strong document setting our distinctive values with a strong emphasis on the environment.
Throughout this week the General Election Management Team has been planning things like our press conferences and Ming’s extensive tour across the country. [CALL HELP THE AGED]
The reports from constituencies this weekend are very good. We have had thousands of party members knocking on doors and making telephone calls as part of “community canvass week” Ming himself was out canvassing earlier this week in Scotland.
Whether Gordon Brown calls the election next week, the following week, or at any time in future – we will be ready ! [LIKE THE BOY SCOUTS]
With best wishes
Chief Executive, Liberal Democrats