Political

The Sunday papers on Lords, environment and Chris Huhne

Good news for our environment:

Cabinet ministers have agreed a far-reaching, legally binding “green deal” that will commit the UK to two decades of drastic cuts in carbon emissions…

The deal was hammered out after tense arguments between ministers who had disagreed over whether the ambitious plans to switch to more green energy were affordable. The row had pitted the energy secretary, Chris Huhne, who strongly backed the plans, against the chancellor, George Osborne, and the business secretary, Vince Cable, who were concerned about the cost and potential impact on the economy…

Green groups had feared that ministers would refuse to back the committee and were accusing them of reneging on Cameron’s promise to lead the “greenest government ever”. But with Clegg and the Liberal Democrats desperate to boast a success on one of their key policies, supporters of a deal won the day. A government source told the Observer: “This is a victory for the cause of enlightenment over the dark forces at the Treasury.” [The Observer]

And from the Independent on Sunday:

George Osborne is to become an unlikely ally of Nick Clegg in the battle to reform the House of Lords … In meetings with peers to persuade them to support their own abolition, Mr Clegg has made it clear that he is prepared to use the Parliament Act to force the Bill through the Lords…

Lib Dem party managers are also preparing to turn the issue into a major test of Ed Miliband’s leadership of the Labour Party. An internal briefing for staff at the Lib Dem HQ suggests that Mr Miliband is seen as weak and unable to unite his party in favour of reform.

The Sunday papers also have several stories about Chris Huhne and allegations that he pressurised someone to take driving points for him. The gaps and inconsistencies in the stories – along with several factual errors that I’ve spotted – suggest none of the newspapers really has the solid evidence their headlines suggest. Why, for example, if they have solid evidence has none of the newspapers named the other person who, if the claims were true, would have broken the law? However, the police have announced they are investigating, so more may become clear shortly.

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