Having covered cancer and rape to get the PM on the back-foot, Guido is wondering what Ed will scrape from the bottom of the moral barrel this week. As Athens burns thanks to their unions, and the Labour leader suddenly wakes up to the fact that he is on the wrong side of public opinion regarding the strikes here, he’s going to have to pull something pretty special at noon. Famine? Floods? Sick puppies? If he has any sense he will go on the crime revelations in today’s Times. Burglary is up 18%.
Ed may have lost out on the sentencing debacle, failing to land a single blow and remarkably ending up as muddled as Ken Clarke, but all is not lost on the planned outflanking of the Tories on crime. As police budgets are slashed, crime is on the up. Look out for the third-party hitting the airwaves as soon as the PM sits down. If a plan works, stick to it…
UPDATE: Talking of Ed and strikes, Total Politics’ Amber Elliot reports that Grahame Morris, PPS to shadow climage change secretary Meg Hillier is “very close” to quitting over Ed’s stance on the strikes an “pandering to the right of the party.” Apparently they are trying to talk him out of going before midday. Is this what the brothers were expecting when they anointed Ed?
Welsh Labour MP Wayne David asked what seemed like vicious question at PMQs about the Welsh Secretary Cheryl Gillan:
WD: The Secretary of State for Wales has said that she is prepared to be sacked because of her opposition to Government policy on high-speed rail. Will the Prime Minister take her up on that very kind offer?
PM: I prefer to focus on the fact that in one year as Welsh Secretary, she has secured something that 13 years of Labour Welsh Secretaries never achieved, which is the electrification of the line between Paddington and Cardiff.
On first impression it looks like handbags at Welsh dawn, but when you consider that Guido saw Wayne and Cheryl enjoying a very public drink on the terrace last night, the plot thickens. As the HS2 debate warms up, did Gillan put her Welsh comrade up to remind the Prime Minister of her threat?
Ruffley Loses Confidence of Constituency | Guardian
Ruffley Under Pressure to Quit | Telegraph
Gove Launches Ruffley Probe | Staggers
Clegg Must Fire David Ward | Sun
David Ruffley’s Campaign Against Domestic Violence | Buzzfeed
LibDem Criticises Clegg Over Farage Debates | Express
Ruffley Must Go | Guardian
Political Correctness Breeds Extremism in Schools | Chris McGovern
Ruffley Faces Crisis Meeting | ITV
I Sang “Maggie Out” (When I Was 7) | Liz Truss
UKIP Have Learnt How to Street Fight | Dr Rob Ford
New Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has big ambitions in his first meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu today:
“I came to bring this conflict to an end.”