EU speech due on Wednesday

Downing Street says David Cameron's speech on Europe will be delivered in central London on Wednesday.

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Clegg: Jobs at risk if you 'head to the exit door'

Speaking this morning during his radio phone-in show on LBC, the Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said years of guesswork and uncertainty over Europe needed to come to an end.

What we need to do is yes, work together across party lines in Britain and in other countries to constantly reform and improve Europe. I want to see it become less bureaucratic.

But, I don't think you serve the British national interest - and I certainly don't think you protect the three million jobs dependent on our place in Europe, if you somehow suggest you're heading to the exit door.

Years and years and years of guesswork and uncertainty are not good for the kind of stability you desperately need to foster a recovery after this terrible economic shock we suffered some years ago.

– Nick Clegg, speaking to LBC


Cable warns Cameron not to 'gamble' over Europe

Vince Cable will urge David Cameron not to take a "dangerous gamble" with the national interest today as the Liberal Democrats mount pressure over Europe.

On the eve of the Prime Minister's expected announcement of a future referendum on UK membership of the EU, he will reinforce warnings the strategy risks damaging economic recovery.

Vince Cable at the Liberal Democrats' annual conference last September Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

Any effort to negotiate large-scale exits from existing EU powers would make it "next to impossible" to safeguard Britain's best interests in the single market, the Business Secretary will suggest.

Labour to accuse PM of 'sleepwalking UK out of the EU'

Labour is expected to accuse the Prime Minister of "sleepwalking" towards British exit from the European Union later today.

"The real tragedy of tomorrow's speech is that David Cameron's party won't let him address the undoubted need for change in the EU in a sensible way," Shadow Foreign Secretary Douglas Alexander will say.

"We have a Prime Minister who simply cannot reconcile the demands of his party with the needs of the country.

Shadow foreign secretary Douglas Alexander Credit: Dave Thompson/PA Wire

"The gap between the minimum the Tories will demand and the maximum our European partners can accept remains unbridgeable.

"For many in his party, getting David Cameron to commit now to an in/out referendum is not about securing consent. It is about securing exit.

"And we will have a British Prime Minister sleepwalking towards exit, knowing he is letting down the national interest, but too weak to do anything about it."

25 Conservative MPs urge Cameron to embrace the EU

More than 25 Conservative MP’s have submitted a letter to David Cameron prior to his Europe speech on Friday urging him to offer a "positive vision" of British leadership in Europe.

The group wants Mr Cameron to say that rather than leaving the EU, it is in Britain’s national interest to lead it and that official Conservative pro-European policy still stands.

We are the mainstream of the Conservative Party.

We are pro-leadership – both of our party and our position in Europe.

We are fundamentally united by our belief that the UK national interest is best served working for changes within the EU, not being marginalised at the fringes.

This group believes that the nation would be best served by the Conservative Party campaigning for a ‘yes’ vote in any future in/out referendum.

– Laura Sandys MP

UKIP climbs above Lib Dems in voter poll

Nigel Farage's party has leapfrogged the Lib Dems in the latest poll. Credit: Sophie Duval/EMPICS Entertainment

The UK Independence Party is enjoying its "highest level of support" among voters, according to the latest survey, as the Prime Minister prepares to make a keynote speech on Britain's role in Europe.

Polling company Ipsos Mori's January Political Monitor found 9% of those certain to vote in the General Election said they would put a cross next to Ukip, a two point rise since last month.

It placed Nigel Farage's party ahead of the Liberal Democrats, who fell a point to 8%.

Mr Farage today said David Cameron, who will speak in the Netherlands on Friday, was trying to "deflect" the issue of Europe for five years but predicted that the debate would be decisive in securing UK's exit.

The eurosceptic MEP told the European Parliament: "The longer this debate goes on, the more likely the UK is to leave the European Union, and this debate will not stop."

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