Live updates

Tories attacked for 'out of touch' bingo and beer tweet

The Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps has been criticised by Labour for tweeting a poster celebrating the cut in bingo tax and beer duty announced in today's Budget that "helps hardworking people do more of the things they enjoy."

Grantcolour_normal

#budget2014 cuts bingo & beer tax helping hardworking people do more of the things they enjoy. RT to spread the word http://t.co/5vbL7RDAg5

Bjhnvw4imaaercf

Labour's media team has responded:

9bd7677350a1193b19597259290303e7_normal

Dear Tories - what else do you think "they" do that you don't? #outoftouch

Tories' Budget tweet backlash sparks parody versions

Read more: The eight key points from the Budget

Advertisement

Tory chairman launches scathing attack on Clegg

The Liberal Democrats treat the UK's businesses as an "afterthought" and Nick Clegg "cheated" the country out of reforms aimed at cutting the size of the Commons, Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps has claimed.

In a strongly-worded attack on his coalition colleagues, he accused the Lib Dems of not being "as pro-business as you would want them to be" and claimed they had hindered efforts to create jobs.

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps.
Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Mr Shapps told the Express Online, "Nick Clegg not only cheated his agreement with us, but fundamentally cheated his agreement with the nation by not going through with having fair size constituencies.

As the coalition parties set out their stalls ahead of the 2015 General Election, Mr Shapps also criticised Mr Clegg for "boasting" about Tory initiatives he had blocked while in Government.

Tory chair: Miliband's response on Flowers 'ludicrous'

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps has insisted Ed Miliband's response over the Co-operative Bank row was "ludicrous" and stepped up pressure on Labour over the merger deal with Britannia.

Mr Shapps told the BBC's Sunday Politics there were "conflicting reports" about how much the Labour leadership knew about former Co-op Bank boss Paul Flowers' past, which included him standing down as a Labour councillor after pornography was found on his computer.

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps on the BBC's Sunday Politics.
Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps on the BBC's Sunday Politics. Credit: BBC/Sunday Politics

He said, "Arguing about what they knew and when, I think there's a much bigger issue here. This morning you have got Ed Miliband saying 'we don't have to answer any of these questions', they are somehow all smears. This is ludicrous".

Labour has denied this, saying Mr Miliband and shadow chancellor Ed Balls did not know the reason why Flowers quit in 2011.

Read: Labour acted with 'complete integrity' over Co-op

Labour free schools policy has 'bureaucracy attached'

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps said Labour's policy on free schools remains unchanged Credit: PA Wire

The chairman of the Conservative Party Grant Shapps said Labour's policy on free schools remains unchanged and still features a "load of bureaucracy attached".

The new shadow education secretary Tristram Hunt earlier signalled that the Labour party had dropped its opposition to the Conservatives' free schools policy.

Speaking to BBC News, Mr Shapps said: "This is the same old Labour policy. They have been saying this for months.

"Free schools will only be allowed in specific circumstances in specific areas with a whole load of bureaucracy attached."

Union leader is 'the real winner' of Labour reshuffle

The Conservative party have accused Ed Miliband of using his shadow cabinet reshuffle to please the unions after a series of high profile promotions and demotions.

The Conservative party chairman said that the real winner of the Labour reshuffle was Unite general secretary Len McCluskey.

Len McCluskey is the real winner of this reshuffle. Ed Miliband’s purged the moderates and promoted those who want the same old Labour policy of more spending, more borrowing and more debt.

That’s exactly what got us into a mess in the first place And it’s hardworking people who would pay the price through higher taxes and higher mortgage rates.

If Ed Miliband is too weak to stand up to Len McCluskey, he’s too weak to stand up for hardworking people.

– Grant Shapps, Conservative Party Chairman

Advertisement

UN insists rapporteur broke no rules over 'bedroom tax'

Raquel Rolnik at a press conference in central London earlier this month. Credit: PA

The United Nations has insisted its special rapporteur did not break any rules on her controversial visit to Britain to study the coalition's so-called 'bedroom tax'.

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps had written to UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon criticising Raquel Rolnik's interventions on the policy.

Jane Connors, an aide to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said Mr Ban had asked her to respond.

"Country visits are governed by rules and procedures set out in the code of conduct referred to above and the manual of operations adopted by special procedures," she said.

"Ms Rolnik's visit was planned and organised over many months in consultation with the Government in compliance with these rules and procedures."

Conservatives: Freeze would increase bills by £125

Grant Shapps said Ed Miliband's energy price promise would increase household bills. Credit: PA

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps said a price freeze would actually increase household energy bills over the next two decades.

"While we're forcing energy companies to put their customers on their cheapest tariffs, Ed Miliband would introduce an energy policy that would add £125 to the typical household's bill," he said.

The party said a 2030 decarbonisation target supported by Labour would mean a rise of that scale over the next 17 years.

Tories: Miliband wage plan is 'same old Labour policy'

Conservative chairman Grant Shapps has responded to Ed Miliband's claim that only Labour will fight for minimum wage earners amid a "crisis" in the cost of living.

Conservatives back the minimum wage. But if Ed Miliband was really on the side of hardworking people then he would have supported our welfare changes to ensure work always pays and should have voted in favour of halving the amount of income tax someone working full-time on the minimum wage pays.

Ed Miliband's policy is for more borrowing and more debt - the same old Labour policy that got us into a mess in the first place - and would mean higher taxes and higher bills for hardworking people.

– Tory chairman Grant Shapps

Watch: Miliband condemns Cameron for 'crisis' in cost of living

Tories call on Miliband to publish Falkirk report in full

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps has called on Ed Miliband to "come clean and publish Labour’s report into the Falkirk selection in full."

Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps.
Conservative Party chairman Grant Shapps. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Wire

Mr Shapps added, "It’s clearer than ever that [Unite chief] Len McCluskey is calling the shots in the Labour Party."

Load more updates

Advertisement

Today's top stories