Latest Conservative Party news

  • Cameron lines up pensions expert as minister
    Cameron lines up pensions expert as minister 5 hours ago

    Prime Minister David Cameron said on Saturday that he would appoint a well-known pensions expert, Ros Altmann, as a financial services minister if he returns to power after next month's election. Altmann, 59, frequently comments in British media on pensions and has worked as an advisor to Cameron's government and that of Tony Blair. She is also a former director-general of Saga Group , which provides insurance and travel services to over-50s. Pension reform has been a major policy for Cameron's government, which has removed some of the restrictions on how older people can cash in their personal pension savings. More »

  • The Latest: White House hopefuls gather in New Hampshire
  • Sturgeon Warns Miliband 'Don't Let Tories In'
    Sturgeon Warns Miliband 'Don't Let Tories In' 7 hours ago

    Nicola Sturgeon has said voters will not forgive Ed Miliband if he turns down the chance to kick-out the Tories. Ms Sturgeon told Sky News, Mr Miliband needed to be more than just a pale imitation of David Cameron. "Ed Miliband knows as well as me that if there is an anti-Tory majority, the only way David Cameron gets back into Downing Street is if Ed Miliband is prepared to stand back and let him back in. More »

  • Labour slams PM immigration record
    Labour slams PM immigration record 8 hours ago

    Labour will address immigration concerns head on today with an attack on the Tory record and a pledge to create a new Government task force to crack down on exploitation. More »

  • G20 more upbeat on growth, but officials fret over Greece
    G20 more upbeat on growth, but officials fret over Greece 8 hours ago

    By Anna Yukhananov and Jason Lange WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Group of 20 leading economies struck a hopeful tone on the outlook for global growth on Friday, even as officials fretted that Athens' inability to strike a deal with its lenders could upset Europe's tentative recovery. In a communique after a two-day meeting, G20 finance ministers and central bankers welcomed brighter economic signs in rich nations, but lamented weakness in emerging markets. "Risks to the global economy are more balanced since we last met," the finance officials said. More »

  • Britain backs eventual yuan inclusion in IMF's SDR basket 8 hours ago

    By Randall Palmer WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Britain favours the eventual inclusion of the Chinese yuan in the International Monetary Fund's SDR basket of currencies, finance minister George Osborne said on Friday, saying it was important to include emerging powers in the world system. French Finance Minister Michel Sapin, however, voiced disappointment with Britain's surprise decision last month to join the Beijing-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) on its own, instead of taking a joint Western approach on the issue. More »

  • Saturday's National Newspaper Front Pages
  • Conservatives overtake Labour in Survation pre-election poll
    Conservatives overtake Labour in Survation pre-election poll 9 hours ago

    (Reuters) - Britain's ruling Conservative party overtook Labour to score 34 percent support ahead of the May 7 election in an opinion poll by Survation published on Friday. The survey, conducted for the Daily Mirror newspaper, put Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives up four points since April 9, while Labour were down two points at 33 percent. (Reporting by Rishika Sadam in Bangalore; Editing by Kevin Liffey) More »

  • Labour and Conservatives tied again ahead of election - YouGov poll
    Labour and Conservatives tied again ahead of election - YouGov poll 9 hours ago

    (Reuters) - With less than a month left to the May 7 election, Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives and opposition Labour party are tied at 34 percent, according to a YouGov poll for The Sun newspaper published on Friday. Labour and Conservatives remain unchanged at 34 percent from a day earlier, according to the latest YouGov poll. The poll put UK Independence Party unchanged at 14 percent, the Liberal Democrats at 9 percent, up 2 points, and the Greens unchanged at 5 percent, the newspaper said. More »

  • Republican presidential contenders clash in New Hampshire
    Republican presidential contenders clash in New Hampshire 9 hours ago

    NASHUA, N.H. (AP) — The Republican Party's most ambitious stormed into New Hampshire on Friday for an early state showdown that highlighted the diversity, political challenges and sheer size of the GOP's 2016 presidential class. More »

  • Nine Journalists Told Elveden Cases Dropped
    Nine Journalists Told Elveden Cases Dropped 10 hours ago

    Most of the outstanding charges against journalists involved in Operation Elveden have been dropped following the latest failed prosecution. Nine of the 12 journalists awaiting trial or retrial as part of the inquiry into payments to public officials have been informed by the Crown Prosecution Service that no further action would be taken. The group includes Andy Coulson, the former News of the World editor and director of communications to David Cameron, who still faces a perjury charge in Scotland. There were angry calls to "stop persecuting innocent journalists" after The Sun's Tom Wells, Neil Millard and Brandon Malinsky and former Daily Mirror reporter Graham Brough were found not guilty of conspiring to commit misconduct in a public office. More »

  • Prosecutors drop illegal payments case against Cameron ex-aide Coulson
    Prosecutors drop illegal payments case against Cameron ex-aide Coulson 13 hours ago

    British prosecutors have dropped a case against former Rupert Murdoch editor Andy Coulson who had been due to stand trial in June on charges of making illegal payments to public officials. Coulson, a former editor of the News of the World who was once Prime Minister David Cameron's director of communications, had already been jailed last year for encouraging phone-hacking by journalists on the now-defunct paper. He had been due back in court to face allegations, which he denied, of also authorising illegal payments to police officers to obtain the telephone directories of Britain's royal family. More »

  • Martin O'Malley attacks Hillary Clinton! Uh, really? 13 hours ago

    Possible Democratic presidential candidate Martin O’Malley took a swipe at Hillary Rodham Clinton on Thursday. Speaking to reporters at Harvard University following a speech, Mr. O’Malley criticized Mrs. Clinton for changing her views about same-sex marriage and immigration. “I’m glad Secretary Clinton’s come around to the right position on these issues,” said O’Malley, according to Talking Points Memo. More »

  • Corruption charges against UK journalists dropped
    Corruption charges against UK journalists dropped 13 hours ago

    Most of the British journalists who were facing trial for allegedly paying police and other public officials for stories have had the cases against them dropped, prosecutors announced Friday. More »

  • UK election: All eyes on Scotland, as Labour scrambles for votes 14 hours ago

    Keith Aitchison was a staunch Labour Party supporter as a young man in Glasgow. He even campaigned for the party ahead of elections. Now retired to the small Highland city of Inverness, Mr. Aitchison is still politically active, but he has switched allegiance to the pro-independence Scottish National Party. “I came to the conclusion that within the Westminster political system you can’t change things because everything is pointed towards the need for votes in the south of England,” Aitchison says while volunteering at the local “Yes” shop, a souvenir store that opened in the run-up to Scotland’s failed independence referendum last September. Aitchison is one of thousands of former Labour supporters expected to back the SNP in Britain’s general election on May 7. More »

  • PM 'sympathy' for abuse victims
    PM 'sympathy' for abuse victims 15 hours ago

    David Cameron has sympathised with those who feel "frustrated" that Lord Janner will not face charges over alleged child abuse. More »

  • Scottish Labour leader could lose own seat, poll finds
    Scottish Labour leader could lose own seat, poll finds 15 hours ago

    The leader of the opposition Labour Party's Scottish arm could lose his own parliamentary seat to the Scottish National Party (SNP) in a general election on May 7, according to a poll published on Friday. Jim Murphy is leading Labour's effort to fight back against a surge in support for the SNP that could cost the party its chance to lead the next British government. For him to lose his seat to a nationalist rival would be a humiliating symbol of Labour's collapse in Scotland, previously a reliable reservoir of Labour support. Lord Ashcroft Polls found that in Murphy's constituency of East Renfrewshire, 40 percent of those surveyed said they would vote for the SNP candidate, 31 percent for Murphy and 25 percent for the Conservative candidate. More »

  • Insight - In Labour's Scottish bastion, nationalists prepare an upset
    Insight - In Labour's Scottish bastion, nationalists prepare an upset 16 hours ago

    By Andy Bruce, Kate Holton and Guy Faulconbridge GLASGOW/LONDON (Reuters) - In Scotland's biggest city, nationalists have triggered a once-in-a-century shift in political loyalties that could dash Labour leader Ed Miliband's dreams of winning the May 7 election and thrust secessionist 'kingmakers' to the heart of British power. The shifting currents in Glasgow, the citadel of Scottish socialism for more than a century, show the seriousness of the nationalists' bid to end Labour's dominance of Scotland, a significant change in recent British political history. Scots voted to preserve the United Kingdom in a Sept. 18 referendum but the once marginal Scottish National Party (SNP) has spent two decades persuading Scots that it is a worthy alternative to Labour, which many voters say has abandoned its Scottish heritage. "We've got less than three weeks to turn it round but I'm confident that we can," said Murphy, a 47-year-old teetotal vegetarian who opinion polls show has so far failed to stem a flood of support from Labour to the SNP. More »

  • Miliband 'won't need to woo SNP'
    Miliband 'won't need to woo SNP' 17 hours ago

    The spectacular surge of the Scottish National Party in the polls has put the spotlight squarely on the question of their potential relationship with Labour in a hung Parliament, in the wake of last night's TV encounter between Nicola Sturgeon and Ed Miliband. More »

  • Political Times: Miliband's big win, Cameron's job high and the neck-and-neck …
    Political Times: Miliband's big win, Cameron's job high and the neck-and-neck … 17 hours ago

    Ed Miliband secured a crucial pre-election victory last night as he beat Nicola Sturgeon by four points (35% vs 31%) to win the second TV leaders debate. The so called "challengers" event, hosted by the BBC, saw the leaders of Labour, the SNP, Plaid Cymru, the Greens and Ukip battle it out with just weeks to go before polling day. The other notable take from the night was when Eurosceptic firebrand Nigel Farage clashed with veteran presenter David Dimbleby. This morning, David Cameron was handed some good economic news. More »

  • British betting odds point to 'messy' election
    British betting odds point to 'messy' election 17 hours ago

    British bookmakers were offering Friday their shortest-ever odds on a hung parliament in next month's general election, with David Cameron's survival as prime minister too close to call. More »

  • Osborne - IMF/G20 meetings more gloomy due to Greek situation 17 hours ago

    The Greek financial crisis has helped make the mood at international financial talks in Washington this week "notably more gloomy," British Chancellor George Osborne said on Friday. "It's clear now to me that a misstep or a miscalculation on either side could easily return European economies to the kind of perilous situation we saw three to four years ago," he told reporters on the sidelines of meetings of officials from the Group of 20 and the International Monetary Fund. More »

  • Prescott's son David vies for seat
    Prescott's son David vies for seat 17 hours ago

    David Prescott is facing an uphill task to follow his father into parliament but he insists there could still be a "Portillo moment" in a seat the Tories have held since the 1920s. More »

  • Labour leader Miliband to PM Cameron - 'Come and debate me'
    Labour leader Miliband to PM Cameron - 'Come and debate me' 17 hours ago

    Britain's opposition leader Ed Miliband on Friday accused Conservative Prime Minster David Cameron of trying to "duck, weave and dive" his way into power at a May 7 vote, challenging him to a head-to-head televised debate. Buoyed after opinion polls on Thursday showed he had won a five-way pre-election debate in which Cameron had opted not to take part, Miliband sought to pressure the Conservative leader into changing his decision to also swerve a two-way debate. If he had guts he'd come out and accept my challenge and debate me one-to-one," Miliband said in a campaign speech in the English city of Lincoln. Labour and the Conservatives are tied in most opinion polls going into what is set to be the most unpredictable British election since the 1970s. More »

  • Election 2015: Ed Miliband claims David Cameron hasn't got the guts to debate …
    Election 2015: Ed Miliband claims David Cameron hasn't got the guts to debate … 17 hours ago

    Ed Miliband has followed up his challenge to David Cameron to debate him head-to-head, issued during the 16 April "challengers" TV debate, by claiming the prime minister hasn't got the "guts" to go one-on-one. The Labour leader, during a speech in Lincoln, said Cameron wanted to "duck, weave and dive" his way back into power after the Tory leader only took part in one TV leaders' debate, the seven-way hosted by ITV. The Labour leader came out on top of last night's event after a poll from Survation showed that he had beaten SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon by four points (35% vs 31%). More »

  • British unemployment rate at multi-year low ahead of election
    British unemployment rate at multi-year low ahead of election 17 hours ago

    By William Schomberg and David Milliken LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's economy created the largest number of new jobs in nearly a year and unemployment hit its lowest rate since mid-2008, official labour market data showed on Friday, the last such report before a closely fought election on May 7. Prime Minister David Cameron hailed the numbers, which cover the three months to February, as underlining his government's "jobs miracle". The opposition Labour Party stressed the slow pace of Britain's recovery in living standards during Cameron's tenure. The unemployment rate now stands at 5.6 percent, down from 7.9 percent at the time of the last election. More »

  • Cameron no-show puzzles Britons at last election debate
    Cameron no-show puzzles Britons at last election debate 18 hours ago

    By Andrew Osborn LONDON (Reuters) - Over 4 million people watched the final TV debate of a knife-edge election campaign in Britain on Thursday night, but many voters wondered why Prime Minister David Cameron didn't take part, something his ministers struggled to explain. Cameron stayed away, having elected to appear in only one previous leaders' debate, a tactic his advisers felt would deprive opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband of the chance to boost his poor personal ratings by clashing with the incumbent. With just three weeks before what is shaping up to be the closest British general election since the 1970s, Cameron's Conservatives remain neck-and-neck with Labour in most opinion polls and there is no sign of either coming up with a game-changer before May 7. Data showed that the second most searched-for question on Google during the 90-minute debate was: "Why is David Cameron not at the debate?" The most popular question was "What is austerity?" Even though Cameron was absent, his ministers turned up for the post-debate "spin room" event in London and tried to convince the public, via broadcasters, why the debate was actually a victory for him. More »

  • Labour courts youth with pledge to end unpaid internships
    Labour courts youth with pledge to end unpaid internships 18 hours ago

    By William James LINCOLN, England (Reuters) - Britain's opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband on Friday pledged to stop companies using long-term unpaid internships as a source of cheap labour, seeking to woo young voters in a bid to win an unusually close May 7 national election. Polls show the Labour Party is neck and neck with Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives. Speaking at a university in a marginal parliamentary seat currently held by the Conservatives, Miliband told an audience of young Labour voters from across the country that he would stop employers hiring unpaid interns for longer than four weeks. "In this country, if you want a good job in a sought-after sector, you're often asked to work for free, month after month after month," Miliband said at the Bishop Grosseteste University in the English city of Lincoln. More »

  • UK Jobless Rate Falls To 5.6% As Pay Rises
    UK Jobless Rate Falls To 5.6% As Pay Rises 18 hours ago

    The UK's jobless rate has fallen to 5.6%, according to the last set of official figures before next month's General Election. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said employment continued to rise, hitting a new record high last month and unemployment continued to fall. The proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 in work (the employment rate) was 73.4%, the highest since comparable records began in 1971. It meant the unemployment rate fell 0.1% on the previous month to its best level in almost seven years at 5.6%. More »

  • Farage fights for seat as UKIP tries to build on gains
    Farage fights for seat as UKIP tries to build on gains 18 hours ago

    DOVER, England (AP) — Saul Webster enjoys a good tipple, and nobody begrudges him one. But that doesn't make it good politics for the retired schoolteacher to pose for a campaign event with Nigel Farage, the U.K. Independence Party leader, while carrying a bottle of hard cider and a half-drained glass. More »

  • Miliband refuses to rule out deal
    Miliband refuses to rule out deal 18 hours ago

    Ed Miliband has repeatedly refused to rule out a post-election deal with the Scottish National Party, as David Cameron sought to ramp up fears about higher borrowing and taxes if Nicola Sturgeon props up a Labour government. More »

  • UK unemployment dips as election looms
    UK unemployment dips as election looms 19 hours ago

    Britain's unemployment rate has hit a fresh six-year low of 5.6 percent, official data showed Wednesday, in upbeat news for the government before the May 7 election. More »

  • Home from Brussels, Hill assures Britons EU is close to them 19 hours ago

    By Alastair Macdonald and Huw Jones LONDON (Reuters) - European Union policymakers are much more favourable to British interests and ideas than many Britons think, Prime Minister David Cameron's nominee to the EU executive told an audience from the City of London on Friday. Three weeks before an election in which Cameron has tried to fend off Eurosceptics by promising a referendum on leaving the EU if voters return him to power, Jonathan Hill, EU financial services commissioner, said he had been struck since arriving in Brussels how much common ground there was with London. Pledging to play a role in overcoming misunderstandings that stem from different traditions in politics and the media on either side of the English Channel, Hill said: "This idea that Britain is isolated in the EU or somehow that British views are eccentric it not what I have found at all." "Single markets, free trade, better regulation. Those all sound like quite familiar things in British domestic politics," he said, listing priorities of the new European Commission under Jean-Claude Juncker, whose appointment Cameron tried to block on the grounds the Luxemburger favoured too much EU regulation. More »

  • Opposition leaders in TV clash three weeks before UK vote
    Opposition leaders in TV clash three weeks before UK vote 19 hours ago

    The opposition parties vying for a role in Britain's next government went head-to-head late Thursday in a crunch television debate three weeks from what promises to be the closest election in decades. More »

  • Britain's opposition Labour Party hold narrow poll lead - Populus
    Britain's opposition Labour Party hold narrow poll lead - Populus 19 hours ago

    Britain's opposition Labour Party hold a one percentage point lead over Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservatives, according to a Populus poll ahead of a May 7 election. The poll put Labour on 34 percent, up one percentage point, and the Conservatives unchanged on 33 percent. The UK Independence Party was down one point to 14 percent, the Greens also down one on 9 percent and the Liberal Democrats up one on 9 percent. The two main parties have been neck-and-neck in the polls since the beginning of the year, with neither establishing a lead beyond the typical 3 percent margin of error in most surveys.     Pollsters say the Conservatives would need a lead over Labour of 7-9 points to secure an overall majority of 326 seats, while Labour would need to be around 3 points ahead, but that assumes a uniform swing across the country and no change for the other parties. More »