PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers
- Sign up to see last 24 hours
Dont have an account?Sign up here
Danny Alexander said today's IMF forecast upgrade was proof that the economy was recovering. "I think this is more good news for the UK economy; the IMF has, as you said, nearly doubled its forecast for growth this year compared to their... Continue to article
Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has announced the next round of regional growth funding Foreign secretary William Hague attends the launch of the FCO's annual human rights report Home secretary Theresa May attends the Combating Human... Continue to article
Labour party leader Ed Miliband delivers a speech on the cost of living in Birmingham (10.30) and meets Irish president Michael D. Higgins in Windsor Chancellor George Osborne meets Brazilian finance minister Guido Mantega and Brazilian ... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said a new report by Britain's car manufacturing industry that said Britain should stay in the EU showed the country's trading relationship with Europe would change were it to exit the union. "It’s clear from listening to... Continue to article
Downing Street confirmed that the Government was considering whether to make emotional cruelty a crime. The Prime Minister's Official Spokesman said: "This is an area of concern. That's why late last year the Ministry of Justice ran a sh... Continue to article
Both US parties are up for rent, and patriots of all stripes should be troubled Continue to article
Nicola Sturgeon said commonsense was breaking out in the Scottish independence campaign. "The Scottish government has said ever since George Osborne, Ed Balls [and] Danny Alexander ruled out a currency union is that this is bluff for the... Continue to article
Mark Reckless implied that David Cameron would be unable to engineer a negotiation of Britain's membership with the European Union sufficient to satisfy eurosceptics like himself. “Even the Liberal Democrats are now saying that what the ... Continue to article
Vince Cable dismissed a snap poll showing a majority of voters backing Nigel Farage over Nick Clegg after last night’s debate, arguing the Liberal Democrat leader’s arguments would win over those who are not already “highly charged” about E... Continue to article
First Beaker, now Kermit. Yes, the green frog has come out against Scottish independence in an interview with the Big Issue to the delight of the Better Together campaign. I am reliably informed that Beaker agrees with @KermitOfficia...
Danny Alexander said the Liberal Democrats had delivered all four of their main manifesto commitments. "I’ve been clear, George Osborne has been clear for some time that dealing with the deficit is going to take longer, there are going t... Continue to article
Nick Clegg said Grant Shapps’ tweet of a Tory poster was “silly”, but should not detract from a strong Budget. “I think the tweet was a bit silly, partly because actually the issues involved in this Budget were really quite serious, incl... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said he had been astonished by the Conservatives 'beer and bingo' campaign advert. “I thought it was a spoof at first – it’s just pretty extraordinary. It may be our budget, but it’s their words. I think it’s rather patro... Continue to article
Danny Alexander tells us all NHS staff will get 1% pay rise OR 3% increment for new skills. Unison: 70% nurses WON'T get pay rise this year
Danny Alexander said the Government’s plan to offer a 1% pay rise to NHS staff, but not to those on incremental pay or senior managers, was fair. “What we’re saying today is that everybody who works in the public sector, who is covered b... Continue to article
Treasury press release The government has today set out the pay awards for over one million public sector workers in line with the policy of a one percent pay rise in 2014-15. The following independent Pay Review Bodies (PRB) were ask... Continue to article
Danny Alexander managed to please Ed Balls at Treasury Questions today by revealing that he wasn’t opposed to the Shadow Chancellor’s call for the Office for Budget Responsibility to audit… Continue r... Continue to article
Since I became the Deputy Prime Minister I have had the privilege of spending a bit of time representing Britain’s interests in other parts of the world. I have visited Latin America and Asia to boost exports. I have been to Africa, ... Continue to article
Iain Duncan Smith accused Cardinal Vincent Nichols of having his facts wrong when he said the Government was making “punitive” cuts to welfare. “I don’t agree. I don’t agree with him on this. It would be good if he actually called me bef... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said the Liberal Democrats wanted to go further on cutting income tax for low-paid workers. "In our manifesto of 2010 we fought hard and we promised to deliver the £10,000 income tax free allowance. We reach that objectiv... Continue to article
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander speaks at the National Association of Pension Funds investment conference in Edinburgh Northern Ireland secretary Theresa Villiers speaks at an Association of European Journalists event ... Continue to article
Danny Alexander welcomed today's unemployment figures. "This is more good news for the UK economy. As a Liberal Democrat in a coalition government, it shows me that our economic plan is working, there are more people in work in this coun... Continue to article
Treasury press release Comment from Danny Alexander on today’s employment numbers "This recovery wouldn’t be happening without the Liberal Democrats in Government. Quarter by quarter, job by job we are rebuilding Britain’s economy. Ev... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said Alex Salmond's speech had "nothing new" and described it as "a pretty panicky response". "There's no bullying going on here, I'm a Scottish MP, I will have a vote in this referendum like 5m other Scots will have. Wha... Continue to article
The first meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Flooding was chaired today by the Prime Minister David Cameron. The new Committee was set up by the Prime Minister earlier this week to coordinate strategic long-term plans on flood recovery a... Continue to article
Danny Alexander rejected allegations that he, George Osborne and Ed Balls were bullying Scots into voting no to independence and said he did not want people 'bamboozled' by the SNP. "Under those arrangements of course, an independent Sc... Continue to article
Nick Clegg has laughed off the idea Danny Alexander has “gone native” in George Osborne’s Treasury. The Chancellor’s aide Rob Wilson claimed last night that Mr Clegg had complained that Mr Alexander had become too close to the Conservat... Continue to article
Prime minister David Cameron chairs a COBRA meeting on flooding in England Home secretary Theresa May makes an oral statement updating the Commons on the Hillsborough disaster (12.30) Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander (1... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said he saw no case for cutting the top rate of tax below its current rate of 45p. “I don’t see any case at all for cutting it below 45; 45 is in the middle of the pack internationally, it’s similar to our major competito... Continue to article
Boris Johnson refused to rule out the possibility of the Government cutting the top rate of tax before the 2015 election, despite Danny Alexander warning that any reduction would have to happen over his dead body. “Who can say what will ... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said Ed Balls' spending plans showed voters that Labour would go back to their old ways if they win power in 2015. "What we've looked at is the approach to borrowing that Ed Balls set out on Monday - he wants to balance t... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said he was against raising the top rate of income tax to 50p, insisting the 45p rate on incomes over £150,000 was "the right place to stay". “I think we’ve got the position about right at the moment; I think the 45p rat... Continue to article
Danny Alexander said the Liberal Democrats would cut pensioner tax relief on big pension pots and use the money to raise the personal allowance further. "It’s not news that the Liberal Democrats favour a mansion tax, we announced it befo... Continue to article
Liberal Democrats press release Danny Alexander said: "This is further evidence that the recovery is becoming established. 2013 was the first year since 2007 to see economic growth in all four quarters. To ensure the recovery is long ... Continue to article
Downing Street has backed Danny Alexander over his comments on Britain's credit rating, saying what matters most for the Government is "having the right policies in place".
The Chief Secretary to the Treasury this morning hinted at the possibility of Britain losing its AAA status, claiming the credit rating was not the "be-all and end-all".
"What matters is have we got the right policy mix for the country to get people back into work, to support economic growth, to deal with the huge problems in our public finances?" he told the Today programme.
"The credit agencies reflect on those things and the ratings they give are a reflection of the credibility of that mix."
The Prime Minister’s spokesman supported Mr Alexander’s comments, insisting what mattered was that the Government was tackling the deficit.
“I think the point the Chief Secretary was making is that credit ratings agencies have a role to play, but what they do is that they make judgements on credit ratings," he said.
"What matters for the Government is having the right policies in place. Clearly, an important part of that is having a credible policy for reducing the deficit."
Shadow chief secretary to the Treasury, Rachel Reeves, said Mr Alexander's comments "suggest Ministers are worried about more bad news from the rating agencies".
"Instead of a change in rhetoric the country needs a change of course and a plan for jobs and growth," she added.
Danny Alexander is to clamp down on loopholes that allow civil servants to avoid paying the full rate of income tax.
An official investigation found that 2,000 senior civil servants earning more than £58,200 avoided paying the full rate of tax by being employed ‘off payroll’, though service companies or employment agencies rather than directly.
Details were revealed in a letter from Mr Alexander to the Chancellor George Osborne, seen by BBC Newsnight. Mr Alexander said: “The sheer scale of off-payroll engagements across government, and the length and size of these contracts, suggests that the scope for artificial tax minimisation may be greater than previously understood.
Mr Alexander is to force any official who has been employed for more than six months on more than £220 a day to become full staff members.
Ed Balls has blasted Wednesday's Budget as being "one of the most unpopular, unfair and flawed Budgets in decades".
The Shadow Chancellor added that the Budget was not just "bad politics but bad economics" but also a "missed opportunity".
His remarks come as Danny Alexander defended the Budget as one for "people who work hard, play by the rules and are under pressure".
In an interview with The Times, the Chief Secretary to the Treasury said he was "happy" with the decision to lower the top rate of tax from 50p to 45p, and added he he "absolutely no idea" how many Cabinet ministers would benefit from the change.
Mr Alexander said he was are some people "might react against" the move to freeze tax allowances for pensioners, but insisted the move was part of an overall "positive change" for the elderly in the UK.
Danny Alexander has unveiled tough new rules for Whitehall departments that break off-payroll rules.
As many as 3,000 civil servants are thought to minimise their tax bills by being employed via contracts with private firms.
The Chief Secretary to the Treasury announced measures to curb the practice, which it is believed loses the country millions of pounds in revenue each year.
There will be heavy fines for those who do not comply with the new rules. Mr Alexander said it was important that "senior public sector staff pay and are seen to pay their full share of income tax".
Head of the Civil Service Sir Bob Kerslake said: "I believe it is completely inappropriate for any senior permanent position in the civil service to be held by a contractor instead of a civil servant paying tax in the ordinary way.
"These new measures are an important step in addressing the relatively small number of cases that breach this principle."
Government departments will have to find a further £16bn in cuts as the Treasury tries to keep spending down. In a speech to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander will warn of the need for greater austerity measures. He will say the cuts are: "another signal of our unwavering determination to deliver the fiscal consolidation we promised”.
The Health and Safety Executive has ruled to terminate contracts of two executives from the Office for Nuclear Regulation after it was discovered they were receiving payments through private companies rather than the staff payroll. Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has written to his Cabinet colleagues to order a Whitehall-wide review to find out how many public officials were not paying tax at source.
16/04/2014 on BBC News
08/04/2014 on BBC News
02/04/2014 on BBC News
31/03/2014 on Today, BBC Radio 4
28/03/2014 on World at One, BBC Radio 4
27/03/2014 on Sky News
23/03/2014 on The Andrew Marr Show, BBC One
Summaries and transcripts from TV and radio
2 hours ago on Today, BBC Radio 4
2 hours ago on Today, BBC Radio 4
22/04/2014 on Sky News
1 minute ago