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News digest 3 May 2013

News digest 3 May 2013

03 May 2013

So the local election (and South Shields by-election) poll results are coming in and there’s a big grin for Ukip, a sense of relief for Labour, a who are they for the Lib Dems and a massive headache for prime minister David Cameron who is under renewed pressure after the Tory party’s poor showing.

Labour managed to win the South Shields by-election with Emma Lewell-Buck gaining just over 50 per cent of the vote. The shock was that Ukip came second with 24 per cent while the Tories were roundly beaten into third with just 11.6 per cent. Even worse the Lib Dems were effectively obliterated dropping to seventh – behind the BNP – with a pathetic 352 votes or 1.4 per cent. Commentators are talking of the demise of the Lib Dems, I would say expect Clegg to cross the floor, but he’s already up to his ears in the Tory mess as is.

The local elections look more mixed for Labour. Only six polls were counted overnight and the party has gained in some areas, but the real winner was Ukip which looks on course to come second overall. That creates a massive headache for Tory leader David Cameron who looks like he will tack right to try and placate his nervous MPs, and there could be rumblings of a leadership challenge as the Telegraph notes that Zac Goldsmith could possibly be persuaded to hand over his seat to Boris Johnson. Expect all eyes to focus on next week’s Queen’s speech as the Con-Dem government tries yet another relaunch.

But that relaunch is expected to continue to ignore the main issue, namely that austerity is not the answer. Even though chancellor George Osborne is looking to continue with cuts – the Mail reports he is planning to ignore the suggestions from the IMF – it looks like policy is often made with the focus on what is best for the cabinet rather than the country. Many of the papers report on UKUncut’s legal action over the sweetheart deal signed between HMRC and Goldman Sachs. The headlines say it all: “Goldman Sachs ‘let off £20 million tax bill to save Osborne’s face’ so much for policy based on what’s best for the country, more like what’s convenient for the chancellor. What would Dave say?

Then again prime minister David Cameron’s decision not to declare his wife’s stake in a company that plans to build hundreds of homes on greenfield land is considered at the very least to be ‘naughty’ according to one member of the public administration committee, especially when Cameron does think it relevant to declare her interests as a patron of a number of charities. Could this be a slow, smoking gun that reignites the sleaze scandal and drives ever more people into the arms of the extremists like Ukip…

 

Morning Star

 

Daily Mirror

 

Sun

 

Express

 

Mail

 

Times (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • Universities veto ads for unpaid interns (p1)
  • Tory pain laid bare as voters tell why they are heading for Ukip (p4)
  • Tax chief signed ‘sweetheart deal to spare chancellor’ (p11)
  • A&E depts to face meltdown this weekend (p11)
  • Ukip’s not a serious party – Philip Collins (p27)
  • Former HBOS director quits (p41)
  • Europe cuts interest rate (p43)
  • GM cuts costs (p43)
  • Boss quits at Rolls-Royce (p44)

 

Indie

 

Guardian

 

Telegraph

 

FT (no links all stories behind paywall)

  • ECB cuts rate as Draghi signals he will act (p1)
  • Diamond misjudged public anger (p2)
  • Cameron moves to contain Tory fury (p3)
  • Internal successors eyed at Shell (p17)
  • GM narrows Europe losses (p21)
  • Siemens cuts sales forecasts (p21)
  • Rolls-Royce aerospace unit head quits (p22)

 

Edited by Mik Sabiers

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