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Conservatives keep up pressure on 'English votes for English laws'

While the Labour leadership debated the economy today, the Conservative party continued to push English MPs voting on English laws. William Hague said any party that did not link such reforms to more powers for Scotland could pay at the General Election. ITV News Deputy Political Editor, Chris Ship, reports:

Sturgeon warns voters of Tory/Ukip coalition

Scotland Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon warned voters they risked being governed by a Tory/Ukip coalition as Nigel Farage went on the campaign trail in the country.

Ms Sturgeon said: ''Nigel Farage's presence here today helpfully illustrates the choice people have to make next week - we can vote Yes and always get the governments we vote for as a country, or we can vote No and take the risk of another Tory government, or perhaps another Tory government with Ukip.

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Tory MPs 'set to defy Cameron over EU vote'

As many as 100 Tory MPs could be preparing to defy the party leadership by making a personal pledge to vote for a British exit from the EU in an in/out referendum.

The Independent reports that the eurosceptics are prepared to promise to vote 'No' to EU membership regardless of what concessions David Cameron can win from Brussels.

The Prime Minister has pledged to renegotiate the terms of British membership and then give the British people an in/out referendum in 2017.

David Cameron may be facing a backbench revolt over EU membership. Credit: Wiktor Dabkowski/DPA/Press Association Images

One backbencher, Rochester MP Mark Reckless, told the paper: “My election manifesto will confirm my view that we should leave the EU.”

It is thought many Tory MPs consider making such a pledge the only chance they have of holding on to their seats in the face of a surge in support for Ukip.

Tory MP Chris Kelly to stand down from Dudley seat

Conservative MP Chris Kelly has announced he will stand down from his Dudley South seat at the 2015 general election.

The 36-year-old will be leaving Parliament after just one term, having won the constituency from Labour in 2010.

In a statement on his website he said he was "proud to have served the good people of Dudley South for the past five years" but did not give a reason for his decision.

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Farage: By-election win would signal landslide in politics

Ukip leader Nigel Farage said a by-election win for his party in Clacton would signal a "landslide in British politics".

Ukip leader Nigel Farage accompanies Douglas Carswell on a walkabout in Essex. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

The Conservative Party is set for a humiliating defeat to Douglas Carswell - who resigned from the Tories - according to an opinion poll in the Mail on Sunday, which gave Ukip a massive 44 point lead.

Mr Farage predicted a Ukip win would result in "more and more people coming over to us" and predicted the party could hold the balance of power after the next General Election.

This is the moment. If we win the by-election in Clacton, it will create a landslide in British politics. If we lose, then selling ourselves as a party that can win a significant number of seats will get a lot harder.

– Nigel Farage speaking to the Sun on Sunday

He added: "If Douglas wins this by-election, then there will be more and more people coming over to us. We could end up holding the balance of power by next May."

Poll suggests big Ukip win in Clacton by-election

Ukip look set to win the Clacton by-election convincingly, according to a new poll.

The by-election follows the decision by MP Douglas Carswell to defect from the Conservatives to Nigel Farage's party.

Nigel Farage and Douglas Carswell on a walkabout in Clacton. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/Press Association Images

The Survation poll for the Mail on Sunday has Ukip on 64%, way ahead of the Tories on 20%, with Labour on 13% and the Lib Dems on just 2%.

Mr Carswell's personal appeal has helped the Ukip cause, with one in three respondents (34%) saying they would vote Ukip because they like him.

Family of ex-Tory minister praise health professionals

The family of former Conservative minister Sir David Mitchell, who died aged 86 following a long illness, have paid tribute to the health professionals who looked after him.

Former transport minister Sir David Mitchell. Credit: PA

Sir David Mitchell, the former Member of Parliament for Hampshire North West and minister in the Thatcher governments has died today aged 86.

The family has expressed its gratitude to the health professionals and carers who enabled him to die peacefully in his own home.

– A family spokesman

Former Conservative minister Sir David Mitchell dies

Former Conservative minister Sir David Mitchell has died aged 86 following a long illness, his family has announced.

Sir David, who served under Margaret Thatcher in various departments including industry, transport and Northern Ireland, was the father of former Cabinet minister and current Tory MP Andrew Mitchell.

He was an MP from 1964 to 1997, representing Hampshire North West, and died at his home in Odiham, Hampshire, in the early hours of this morning.

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