Daily Archives: February 15, 2011

Nicholas Timmins

Ken Clarke may be in the dog house for telling the Daily Telegraph the brutal truth – that the worst of the cuts have yet to be felt, that the government is going to find that difficult and that middle England still hasn’t properly grasped the scale of what is to come.

But that assessment pales into insignificance compared to a chilling warning that Chris Grayling, the work minister, has allowed his department to issue. Read more

Jim Pickard

Andrew Feldman, co-chairman of the Tory party, today called for a new tax break on donations to political parties. Feldman told the Committee on Standards in Public Life* that he was opposed to increased state funding for parties, because it would cause public outrage.

Instead it would make sense to use the “Gift Aid” system to fix the system, he said. Political parties deserved to have similar treatment to good causes, he argued, saying: Read more

Jim Pickard

I’ve put the question to the Electoral Commission, who should – you’d have thought – be aware of this requirement, if it existed. (We wrote this morning that the No Campaign are claiming that £100m or more would be required to introduce machines to deal with the alternative vote).

The commission’s replyRead more

Jim Pickard

And so to County Hall, up a staircase, down several hallways – past screens showing “Clash of the Titans” – to the launch of the NO2AV campaign.

The Yes campaign had yesterday rolled out backers such as Oscar hopefuls Colin Firth, Helena Bonham Carter and other celebs including Eddie Izzard and Joanna Lumley. Read more