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Live Reporting

Alex Hunt and Pippa Simm

All times stated are UK

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  1. Northern Ireland welfare reform bill fails to pass


    Northern Ireland's controversial Welfare Reform Bill has failed to pass at Stormont.

    A majority of 58 assembly members voted in favour and 39 voted against.

    However, the bill failed to pass because the nationalist Sinn Féin and the SDLP put forward a petition of concern.

  2. Umunna 'might run for Labour leadership one day'

    Allegra Stratton

    Newsnight Political Editor

    Chuka Umunna

    Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna has not ruled out one day running to lead the Labour Party - but says he hopes a vacancy does not arise.

    Mr Umunna, who is backing Liz Kendall to replace Ed Miliband, said he had withdrawn from the contest because his "heart wasn't in it".

    He previously cited the "pressure and scrutiny" that came with the role.

    The Streatham MP told BBC Newsnight there were "no skeletons", adding: "I have absolutely nothing to hide."

    Full story here.

  3. Today's summary

    Here's a summary of today's main political stories:

    - Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has attacked the "speed and scale" of cuts planned by the UK government

    - Labour leadership contender Liz Kendall has secured the backing of five senior shadow cabinet ministers, including shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna

    -David Cameron has told European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker that "British people are not happy with the status quo" in the EU, during talks on Britain's future in the 28-member bloc

    - Legislation to help more housing association tenants in England to buy their homes at a discounted price will be included in tomorrow's Queen's Speech, the government said

    - Ex-Lib Dem MP Sir Malcolm Bruce claimed politicians tell "brazen lies", as he defended the actions of ex-Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael over a leaked memo

    - Former Defence Secretary Liam Fox has criticised calls for an early EU referendum, saying those making the calls have "ulterior motives"

    - Northern Ireland's first minister Peter Robinson remains in hospital after suffering a suspected heart attack. 

  4. MP in spot of Twitter bother

    Taxi driver during demonstration in central London

    Labour MP Ian Austin seems to have got himself into a bit of trouble on Twitter this afternoon, after tweeting that the black cab demonstration in central London had held up his journey from Victoria to Westminster by two and a half hours.

    Here's his original tweet: 

    And here are some of the many comments that followed:

    Perhaps the Dudley North MP was not expecting the response that followed - and quickly sought to iron out the situation, by explaining:

  5. 'Politicians have always lied'

    The Daily Telegraph

    Sir Malcom Bruce's comments that politicians tell "brazen lies" has provoked much reaction and criticism today. But the Telegraph's Julia Hartley-Brewer says the "outrage" over his remarks is "absurd".

    Quote Message: Politicians lie. Of course they do. We all do. Politicians have always lied to us, are constantly lying to us and will always lie to us. And that's because they are just like us. Voters know politicians lie. Poll after poll tells us that ordinary voters don’t trust a word politicians say and largely regard them with the same low level of esteem they have for the likes of estate agents and journalists."
  6. Tomorrow's agenda

    There will be more rolling live political coverage tomorrow, a day likely to be dominated by the Queen's Speech. The event, which marks the formal opening of the new Parliament, is one of the highlights of the parliamentary calendar, full of both pageantry and political significance.

  7. Welfare woes?

    BBC assistant political editor tweets...

  8. Cooper in free childcare call

    The Independent

    Yvette Cooper

    Shadow home secretary Yvette Cooper - one of the contenders for the job of Labour leader - has called for a revolution in childcare. In an article for the Independent, she says Labour needs to radically change the way Britain supports families by offering free childcare for all.

    She calls for a Scandinavian-style system of universal childcare, with 30 hours of free care for all pre-school youngsters over the age of two. Ms Cooper also says there should be a new system of tax credits to cover the period after a mother finishes maternity leave.

  9. Cameron's EU charm offensive

    Matthew Thompson, Newsnight producer

    David Cameron around the table with other European leaders

    Just as David Cameron’s European charm offensive was warming up this week, two of the continent’s leading left-wing newspapers were quick to douse him in cold water. “Le ‘no thanks’ de Merkel et Hollande à Cameron” shouted Le Monde , as the Guardian splashed on the same story: a leaked agreement between the French and German leaders to pursue tighter political union in the Eurozone without treaty change.

    This, they suggested, would make sore reading for the Conservatives, since treaty change has long been something that the prime minister has suggested he would like to see. And yet, most of the detail of this leaked memo seems simply to confirm what we already know.

    More here (see Newsnight post 15.36)

  10. David Cameron and conventional weapons

    Marc Williams

    Newsnight Election Producer

    Peers in the House of Lords
    Image caption: Peers in the House of Lords

    Much of the focus on the Queen's Speech tomorrow will be on whether, on issues such as Conservative plans to replace the Human Rights Act, the Tory whips will be able to preserve their slender Commons majority. The Times today also reports on how party managers might soft pedal on their manifesto commitment to reduce the number of MPs to 600 because of fears of a backlash from those MPs who face losing their seat in the changes.

    Some of the focus, however, has rested upon how the situation in the House of Lords will evolve given that non-Conservative parties have a sizeable majority. The Tories only have 224 out of the 780 peers. It's at this point that the Salisbury-Addison Convention and the Parliament Acts come into play. 

    Read more from Newsnight here (post 11.36)

  11. Sturgeon to make 'positive' EU case

    Scotland First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is to visit Brussels next week to set out the Scottish government's opposition to the UK leaving the EU. Prime Minister David Cameron has committed to holding an in/out referendum on Britain's membership by 2017 at the latest.

    Ms Sturgeon said the SNP did not think a referendum was "desirable" but as the vote was "inevitable" the party would "work to protect Scotland's interests".

    She has said the SNP will propose a "double majority", meaning that Britain could only withdraw from the 28-member bloc if all four nations in the UK agreed to it. 

    Quote Message: During the run-up to the referendum the Scottish Government will make a strong and positive case for staying in the EU - and I look forward to delivering that message in Brussels next week."
  12. All done

    House of Commons


    After four days of "swearing in" of MPs in the House of Commons, the process has finally come to an end. MPs won't be back in the chamber until tomorrow morning, when the new Parliament is officially opened by the Queen.

  13. Too many contenders?

    Telegraph commentator tweets...

  14. Minister: Right to buy will create more homes

    Housing association properties

    Every housing association home sold under the right to buy scheme will be replaced with a new property, Communities Minister Greg Clark has promised. Some 1.3m housing association tenants in England are to get the right-to-buy their properties (the right to buy is being phased out in Scotland), under the government's plans.

    Mr Clark said the bill, to be included in tomorrow's Queen's Speech, would allow people to fulfil their home-owning aspirations. But critics say it will make the housing crisis worse.

    More here.

  15. Police asked to investigate Carmichael

    BBC Scotland political correspondent Tim Reid

    Alistair Carmichael

    A member of the public has complained to the police about the conduct of the former Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael. The BBC understands the complaint was made in person at a police station in Wishaw, Lanarkshire - not in Mr Carmichael's constituency in Orkney and Shetland where protests were held over the weekend.

    Mr Carmichael is facing calls to resign after admitting he backed the leaking of a memo during the election campaign incorrectly suggesting Nicola Sturgeon wanted David Cameron as prime minister. It is not known what offence, if any, Mr Carmichael is alleged to have committed.

  16. Sir Malcolm 'completely wrong' - MP

    Some more reaction to Lib Dem Sir Malcolm Bruce's comments  - in defence of Lib Dem MP Alistair Carmichael - that politicians tell "brazen lies". James Cleverly, the new Conservative MP for Braintree, said Sir Malcolm was "completely wrong" and if he wanted to help Mr Carmichael, "he should stop talking".

    Quote Message: Frankly, in my experience politicians rarely lie much at all because the risks to do so in almost all circumstances are so massively outweighed."

    Meanwhile, Labour's John Mann said Mr Bruce's comments were surprising for someone who once chaired a Commons select committee.

    The Bassetlaw MP said Mr Carmichael's case demonstrated the need for voter-initiated recall of elected MPs rather than the system implemented before the election, which requires the process to be triggered by Parliament.

  17. Skinner in position...

    House of Commons

    Dennis Skinner - who's been having a bit of a territorial skirmish with SNP MPs about where to sit - is in his usual seat as MPs, including Boris Johnson, queue to swear in to the House of Commons.

  18. 'Swearing in' continues

    In Westminster, the House of Commons is continuing its process of swearing in MPs - new and old. Its an age-old ritual that is necessary in order for members to formally take their seat in the House. The process has lasted several days already, but this afternoon sees the final group of MPs take the oath or affirmation.

  19. 'Rubik's Cube'

    BBC Radio 4

    Rubik's Cube

    Labour is not going to win over voters by having a "Rubik's Cube approach" to politics, leadership contender Mary Creagh says. Asked how she would appeal to those Labour voters who went to UKIP, those who went to the Tories and those who went to the SNP, Ms Creagh told Woman's Hour:

    Quote Message: It's a massive, massive challenge and we aren't going to do it by sort of having a Rubik's Cube approach to politics, where we put one face to one person and then try and present another face to another, because we just end up in a scramble."
  20. Yvette Cooper speech

    The Spectator

    Labour leadership contender Yvette Cooper is to give a "big policy-rich speech" this week,writes Isabel Hardman- who adds it will be an attempt to counter the charge that "no-one really knows what she stands for". The shadow home secretary's campaign has been "phenomenally well-organised" so far, she says.

  21. Swinson backs Farron in Lib Dem race

    Tim Farron

    Former Lib Dem minister Jo Swinson is backing Tim Farron to suceed Nick Clegg as leader. In an article for the Lib Dem Voice website, she says Mr Farron is a "star communicator" with the "talent, character and verve to lead us, and the infectious enthusiasm that will inspire us and others to follow him and champion our liberal cause". Ms Swinson lost her seat at the general election but, as a Lib Dem member, will still have a vote.

  22. Fox opposes early EU vote

    The World at One

    BBC Radio 4

    Former Conservative Defence Secretary Liam Fox says he will vote to leave the EU unless a "looser" relationship between the UK and Brussels can be achieved. He also urges David Cameron to take his time over the timing of the poll, saying some of those pushing for it to be held before 2017 have "ulterior motives which are not entirely honourable". These people "want a decision made quickly to limit the level of debate", he adds.

  23. Assisted dying

    The World at One

    BBC Radio 4

    Lord Falconer

    Former Attorney General Lord Falconer says he will attempt to reintroduce his private member's bill to legalise assisted dying for some terminally ill patients in this Parliament. But his chances of success are dependent on the member's bill ballot, he says, adding that it was "very odd that Parliament may be deprived of debating this very important issue...whatever your view, everyone agrees that Parliament should be debating it". Lord Falconer was speaking after the businessman Jeffrey Spector died aged 54 at the Dignitas centre in Switzerland following a six-year illness.

  24. Monday's No 10 press briefing

    Norman Smith

    Assistant political editor

    The prime minister stands by his claim that EU treaty change is essential to secure the reforms he wants ahead of the EU referendum. Number 10 said the PM had been advised the change was necessary to get the changes in welfare and immigration that he is seeking.

    The spokesman declined to comment on whether these treaty changes could be brought about by a protocol or some other arrangement short of full treaty negotiation. Pressed over the possible timetable for a referendum, the spokesman said the PM's priority was to get the right outcome.

    The spokesman declined to say whether Mr Cameron's demands would be on the formal agenda in next month's EU summit or discussed in the margins.

  25. No 'unions' candidate' in Labour race

    Frances O'Grady

    Frances O'Grady, general secretary of the Trades Union Congress, has told Buzzfeed News there is no "unions' candidate" in Labour's leadership race. She said the new "one member, one vote" system for the contest means the unions have far less sway over Ed Miliband's successor.

    But she also told the website it was right for union leaders, such as Unite's Len McCluskey, to "try and guide their membership". Mr McCluskey has called for "a genuine debate" about the party's direction and said it was "essential that the correct leader emerged".

    About 3.5 million union members are affiliated to the Labour Party, with a total of £11m donated from unions to the party last year.

  26. Treaty change required?

    BBC assistant political editor tweets...

  27. Labour's deputy leadership race

    A Labour MP tweets...

  28. Coming up from 1pm

    Radio 4

  29. Holding firm

    BBC assistant political editor tweets...

  30. 'No pruning' in Downing Street

    Downing Street garden

    Gardeners in Downing Street and the Royal Parks in London are on strike today - for the first time since 1978 - in a row over pay and conditions.

    Members of the GMB union employed by contractors OCS are protesting at changes to pay arrangements, including moving from weekly to monthly pay.

    The union said the strike would affect the post bank holiday clean-up. It also comes one day before the State Opening of Parliament when the Queen will go past the bedding outside Buckingham Palace which the union warned will not get completed.

    A GMB official told the Press Association that further industrial action was likely if the dispute was not resolved.

  31. Dodds: UK government 'needs to act'

    The controversial welfare reform bill is being debated by the Northern Ireland Assembly at the moment - and it is expected to be vetoed.  Sinn Féin and the SDLP have signed a petition of concern , which means the bill will not get the necessary cross-community support.

    DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds said: "If it cannot be implemented and if people will not face up to economic and political reality in Sinn Fein and elements of the SDLP then it is over to the British Government. It is over to them to say what they are going to do and in our view they have to step in and take welfare reform powers."

    Quote Message: Remember Scotland, with its strong devolution settlement in the Scottish Parliament - welfare is not a devolved matter so it is clear that there is precedent in this area and the government needs to act, in our view, to resolve the crisis."
  32. Dodds on NI welfare powers

    Nigel Dodds

    The Democratic Unionist Party has called for the UK Government to step in and take control of welfare powers in Northern Ireland. Deputy leader Nigel Dodds said it was the only way to deal with the stalemate over reform to benefits. Separately, Mr Dodds has said the party is not planning to appointing an acting first minister while Peter Robinson recovers in hospital from a suspected heart attack. Mr Dodds says the situation will be kept "under review", adding that there is a "very strong" team of ministers in the Northern Ireland executive. 

  33. Legal high ban on the cards

    Person taking legal highs

    Legislation to introduce a blanket ban on so-called legal highs is expected to be included in the Queen's Speech tomorrow.

    A Home Office source told BBC South East political editor Louise Stewart that the proposal had been included in the Conservatives' election manifesto, which stated that "we will create a blanket ban on all new psychoactive substances, protecting young people from exposure to so-called 'legal highs'".

  34. Gender balanced ticket?

    HuffingtonPost executive political editor tweets...

  35. Hold EU vote in 2016, says EEF

    Terry Scuoler, chief executive of EEF

    Terry Scuoler, chief executive of EEF - the trade body which represents UK manufacturers - says the in/out referendum on Britain's EU membership should be held "as soon as is reasonably possible", saying uncertainty creates doubt, "which is the enemy of investment".

    Mr Scuoler suggests it could take place as early as autumn 2016, which he says would give the prime minister sufficient time to conduct "meaningful" negotiations.

  36. Labour leader race

    With Liz Kendall getting four more nominations this morning it's worth a reminder that contenders for the Labour leadership need to get the support of 35 Labour MPs to make it through to the mass vote. There have been suggestions that Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper have already sewn up a big chunk of the 232 Labour MPs - but it's worth pointing out that Burnham told BBC 5 live last week that he'd be willing to "lend" nominations to a rival if they fell just short of the 35 mark.

  37. 'No running commentary'

    (L-R) Jean Claude-Juncker and David Cameron at talks

    Some more reaction just in to David Cameron's talks with European Commission President Jean Claude-Juncker. EU Spokesman Margaritis Schinas said there was "nothing further to add" to Downing's Street's statement last night.

    Quote Message: This was an informal occasion that allowed both leaders to discuss calmly and openly and at this stage we will not be offering a running commentary on the process, nor negotiating in the public arena."
  38. Labour: Right to Buy plans 'don't add up'

    Terraced housing

    The government has confirmed it will include in tomorrow's Queen's Speech a bill to let 1.3 million housing association tenants in England buy the homes they rent at a discounted price. The pledge was announced by the Conservatives during the election.

    New communities minister, Greg Clark, told BBC Radio 4's Today programme that the government wanted to extend the opportunity for people to own their home.

    However, Labour shadow housing minister Emma Reynolds said the Conservatives' plans "don't add up". 

    Quote Message: Ministers have not set out how this policy will be paid for, and housing experts have said that the plan is unworkable, unfunded and will lead to fewer affordable homes."
  39. Analysis: Labour leadership race

    Norman Smith

    Assistant political editor

    Chuka Umunna's endorsement of Liz Kendall as the next Labour leader is significant, as there seems to be a degree of momentum building up behind her which could put her in position to challenge the candidate seen as the runaway favourite, Andy Burnham. Mr Umunna was seen to be a potential favourite for the top job, before he pulled out, and Tristram Hunt - who has also endorsed Ms Kendall's candidacy, is well regarded in the party.

  40. 'Extraordinary outburst'

    SNP MP Pete Wishart has responded to Sir Malcolm Bruce's defence of Lib Dem MP Alistair Carmichael earlier today, saying it was "an extraordinary outburst".

    Quote Message: Sir Malcolm Bruce's suggestion that 'every MP' tells 'brazen lies' is astonishing and will come as a revelation to his former constituents in Aberdeenshire, who have every right to now be asking themselves about things Sir Malcolm has said as an MP over the last 30 years."

    He said Mr Carmichael had contested the election "on a false prospectus" and voters in his Orkney and Shetland constituency "have a right to ask whether he is still fit to serve as their MP".

  41. Progress candidate?

    The Spectator assistant editor tweets...

  42. NI welfare debate under way

    Northern Ireland Assembly

    Northern Ireland assembly members are debating the final stage of the controversial Welfare Reform Bill. It is proceeding despite Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson's admission to hospital with a suspected heart attack on Monday. However, it is expected the bill will be vetoed. Sinn Féin and the SDLP have signed a petition of concern which means the bill will not get the necessary cross-community support.

    Here's our main story. Or you can follow the debate live over at BBC Democracy Live.

  43. Umunna backs Kendall as Labour leader

    Liz Kendall (right)

    Some more senior Labour figures have come out in support of leadership contender Liz Kendall. Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna - who briefly put himself forward for the top job, shadow communities secretary Emma Reynolds, shadow climate change minister Jonathan Reynolds and shadow justice minister Stephen Twigg have writtena joint article in The NewStatesmanendorsing her candidacy.

    They say Ms Kendall has "asked the tough questions and started to chart a course to the answers".

    Quote Message: She has been courageous in challenging conventional wisdom. She has no compunction in moving Labour beyond our comfort zone and is determined to build a team ready to chart a route forward. This is exactly what our party needs and that is why we are nominating her to be the next leader of the Labour Party."
  44. Reaction to Bruce comments

    Lib Dem blogger tweets...

  45. Carmichael complaints

    BBC political correspondent tweets...

  46. First Queen's Speeches

    Clement Attlee

    All eyes will be on the Palace of Westminster on Wednesday as the Queen reads out the legislative plans of David Cameron's new government.

    It will be a chance for the first all-Conservative government for almost 20 years to set out its stall for the next five years.

    BBC political reporter Tom Moseley looks at how some other new governments have used their Queen's (and King's) speeches.

  47. EU poll timing 'not in our gift'

    Victoria Derbyshire

    When do you want a referendum? Laura Sandys says: "I think once we've got some understanding of what the exactly the renegotiation looks like and how that's being framed we need to get on with the referendum."

    Meanwhile, John Redwood thinks it's not "in our gift" and says "we have to see what  kind of response we're getting".

  48. Bruce: SNP bullying Carmichael

    Sir Malcolm Bruce (centre)
    Image caption: Sir Malcolm stood down at the election

    Earlier Today, senior Lib Dem Sir Malcolm Bruce claimed the SNP wanted to "extinguish all opposition" in Scotland by trying to force Alistair Carmichael out as an MP.

    The ex-Scottish secretary has faced calls to resign after admitting he backed the leaking of a memo during the election incorrectly suggesting Nicola Sturgeon wanted David Cameron as PM.

    Sir Malcolm, an ex-Lib Dem deputy leader . said the MP had made a mistake - but that it was not unprecedented for politicians to "tell lies".

    Here's our story.

  49. Redwood on nation states

    Victoria Derbyshire

    Conservative MP John Redwood says democracy comes at nation state level but the EU "blocks" national governments from carrying out their policies. "If they give us nothing by way of a new relationship than we will vote to leave," he adds.

  50. Cameron 'on a dangerous trip'

    From a European perspective, Green MEP Ska Keller says David Cameron is seen as going on "a very dangerous trip". While she agrees on the need for EU reform, she says it can't go the way David Cameron "seems to suggest". The EU is a political union and not just a free trade union, she adds. Ms Keller also notes that European leaders are busy with other issues at the moment - such as the Greek crisis, and Ukraine.

  51. Redwood: There's a long way to go

    Victoria Derbyshire programme

    Pro-European and former Conservative MP Laura Sandys says the mood music following last night's EU talks is "very positive". She welcomes the PM's "big diplomatic offensive" and suggests there is "a common theme" in other EU capitals for less red tape and more powers for national parliament.

    Asked about his thoughts, John Redwood, a eurosceptic Tory MP, says it's a start "but there's a long way to go". He says the election gave the Conservatives a mandate for change - and adds that David Cameron must communicate that mood to other European leaders.

  52. Jenkin: 'Fundamental change' needed

    Conservative MP and eurosceptic Bernard Jenkin was on the Today programme earlier, where he was asked about Britain's future in the European Union.

    Mr Jenkin said David Cameron had "made it clear he wants a fundamental change in our relationship with the EU, that he wants a relationship based on trade and co-operation not continuous centralisation".

    The Harwich and North Essex MP said he was "mystified" by reports that reform could be achieved "without fundamentally changing the treaties", adding: "Either the treaties as a whole fundamentally change or we have to fundamentally change our relationship with it which is what the prime minister has suggested."

  53. What'll be in the Queen's Speech?

    As well as the entry below explaining what the Queen's Speech is, why not familiarise yourselves with the bills expected to feature in the government's legislative agenda. We've put together a list here. 

  54. What is the Queen's Speech?

    The Queen and Prince Philip during the 2010 State Opening of Parliament

    There's been much talk already this morning of the Queen's Speech, which is taking place tomorrow. Don't know what it is or why it's important? Get up to speed here.

  55. Peter Robinson still in hospital

    Peter Robinson

    Northern Ireland First Minister Peter Robinson remains in hospital after suffering a suspected heart attack. Mr Robinson, 66, was taken to the Ulster Hospital, Dundonald, on Monday morning after he became ill.

    The leader of the Democratic Unionist Party was then transferred to Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital (RVH) where he underwent a procedure. The first minister's hospitalisation comes on the eve of a major debate at Stormont over welfare reform.

  56. 'Innovation not insecurity'

    Nicola Sturgeon says the Scottish Government's vision of an economy is based on "innovation rather than insecurity".

    "We want to climb the global competitiveness rankings on quality rather than racing to the bottom on costs," the first minister adds.

    She acknowledges this can't be achieved by government alone and underlines the need for a "partnership" with businesses, the third sector, the wider public sector and trade unions.

  57. Sturgeon on Scottish devolution

    Nicola Sturgeon

    The SNP will seek greater powers for the Scottish Parliament, Ms Sturgeon adds. She says the party wants the recommendations of the Smith Commission on Scottish devolution carried out in full and also calls for new powers over business taxes, employment law and the minimum wage.

  58. Election an 'opportunity and challenge'

    Speaking from Heart of Midlothian FC's Tynecastle Stadium Nicola Sturgeon says the result of the general election provides an "opportunity" - to ensure Scotland's priorities are better understood - and a "challenge" - working with a majority Conservative government.

    She says the party will continue to oppose the "scale and speed" of Westminster spending cuts and campaign. On the EU, she says the party is against withdrawing from the union and will propose "a double majority" - whereby a British exit would only be possible if all four nations agreed to British exit.

  59. Sturgeon attacking Westminster cuts

    Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

    Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is making her first major economic speech since the election, in which she is attacking the "scale and speed" of spending cuts planned by the UK government.

    An "alternative to austerity" was the centrepiece of the Scottish National Party's successful general election campaign. The SNP leader will also reiterate her party's support for Britain's continued membership of the European Union.

    More here.

  60. Analysis: Cameron's EU talks

    Norman Smith

    Assistant political editor

    David Cameron absolutely needs countries like Germany and France on board for these EU negotiations, which is why he's beginning this whirlwind tour of European capitals this week, And it's why he had European Commission President Jean Claude-Juncker over for talks last night, which Downing Street described as "friendly and constructive". So much of these negotiations hinge on personal chemistry and a lot of last night will have been about trying to build up a personal rapport with Mr Juncker - who Mr Cameron tried to block as commission president, and who will be absolute key to negotiations.

  61. En guarde?

    Financial Times chief political correspondent tweets...

  62. Healey to run for deputy leader

    John Healey

    John Healey, the former Labour housing minister, has announced he is running to be deputy leader of the party. The MP for Wentworth and Dearne said he had not originally intended to stand but was "dismayed at how narrow and shallow the debate has been so far".

    He becomes the seventh candidate, meaning at least one or two of those already declared will lack enough MPs' support to make the ballot paper. But Mr Healey said he was confident of gaining enough support.

    Also standing are Rushanara Ali, Ben Bradshaw, Angela Eagle, Stella Creasy, Caroline Flint and Tom Watson.

  63. Lying in public life

    Sir Malcolm says it would be "much better" for the Lib Dems, reputationally, if Alistair Carmichael stayed in his job - saying the SNP are trying to "bully" him out of office. "This is precisely where the SNP are judging other people by the standards they don't apply to themselves," he adds.

    Put to him that his comments suggest lying in public life is widespread, Sir Malcolm says:

    Quote Message: "No. Yes, well I think the answer is lots of people have told lies... The point I'm making is we should of course hold people to account and if people lie they should take some consequences but Alistair has taken consequences..."
  64. Scotland 'divided and bruised'

    Today Programme

    BBC Radio 4

    Sir Malcolm Bruce, who retired as a Lib Dem MP at the 2015 election, goes on to attack the SNP over its response to the matter. He says Scotland is "divided and bruised" with the nationalists dominant and wanting to "extinguish all opposition". Continuing his attack, he says the SNP's mistakes "do not bear examination". Sir Malcolm adds that Mr Carmichael "misconducted himself" as a minister but this "doesn't prejudge his capacity to be an MP".

  65. 'People are entitled to make mistakes'

    Today Programme

    BBC Radio 4

    Sir Malcolm Bruce says Alistair Carmichael has recognised he made a mistake, foregone his severance pay and apologised for what he has done. "People are entitled to make mistakes," he adds. Put to him that Mr Carmichael lied about knowing about the memo, he says he didn't know the exact circumstances but Mr Carmichael hadn't read the memo and was only aware of its circumstances.

    Read more: Carmichael rejects calls to quit

  66. Carmichael's future

    Today Programme

    BBC Radio 4

    Alistair Carmichael

    Former Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael,  MP for Orkney and Shetland, is rejecting calls for him to resign over a leaked memo, released before the general election, incorrectly suggesting that Nicola Sturgeon wanted David Cameron to remain as prime minister.

    BBC correspondent Matthew Price, who is in Shetland, tells Today that, locally, the Lib Dems will not comment publicly on the matter. But he says nationally Carmichael has the support of his party's leadership. He's been speaking to some of Mr Carmichael's constituents about whether he should step down.

    Some think he should, saying it was a "stupid" thing to do. Others think he should stay, saying he made "a mistake". Price says there's anger and disappointment in Mr Carmichael - but whether it is enough to force him out remains to be seen.

  67. Talks at Chequers

    David Cameron and Jean-Claude Juncker
    Image caption: David Cameron and Jean-Claude Juncker held their talks at the British PM's official country residence
  68. From Le Monde

    The Cameron-Juncker meeting came as reports suggest France and Germany are planning to announce further eurozone integration.

    French newspaper  Le Monde  is reporting that the two countries have agreed a deal to bring about closer political union between eurozone countries without the need for changes to the treaties which govern the EU.

  69. Cameron-Juncker talks

    David Cameron has told European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker that "British people are not happy with the status quo" in Europe. The prime minister hosted Mr Juncker at Chequers ahead of a week of efforts to renegotiate Britain's EU membership.

    The EC president "reiterated that he wanted to find a fair deal for the UK", said a No 10 spokesman after the talks.

    Earlier, No 10 confirmed UK-based citizens from most EU countries would not get a vote. The eligibility rules will be broadly the same as for a general election, rather than for local or European polls.

    Mr Cameron has promised to hold an "in-out" referendum by the end of 2017.

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  70. Housing association changes

    The local government secretary tweets...

  71. Good morning

    Hello and welcome to rolling coverage of political developments - with all the build up to Wednesday's Queen's Speech and the latest on David Cameron's effort to make progress on his plans to renegotiate the UK's relations with the European Union.