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Daily Political Media Summary: 28 April 2010

Reform Scotland

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Daily Political Media Summary: 28 April 2010

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All newspaper references refer to Scottish editions. Where there is a link to a newspaper’s website, the relevant page reference is blue and underlined. 

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General Election

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Conservative Candidate: Philip Lardner, the Conservative candidate for North Ayrshire & Arran, was suspended from the party last night after he posted a blog saying that homosexuality was “not normal”.  (Scotsman page 1, Herald page 7, Daily Telegraph page 6, Courier page 10, Press and Journal page 11, Guardian, Daily Mail page 2, Daily Express page 5) 

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Cuts and Tax Rises: The Institute of Fiscal Studies has declared that the three main UK parties have not shown the electorate how they plan to carry out public spending cuts. The IFS says that the Lib Dems accounted for only 25p for every £1 required, the Conservatives only 18p and Labour 13p. (Scotsman page 6, Herald page 7, Daily Telegraph page 1, Press and Journal page 11, Times page 7, Financial Times page 4, Guardian page 1) 

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SNP Court Case: The SNP will learn today if their legal challenge against the BBC to be included in the final General Election leaders’ debate has been successful. (Scotsman page 7, Herald page 6, Daily Telegraph page 10, Courier page 1, Press and Journal page 1, Times page 7, Daily Mail page 1, Daily Express page 2) 

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Polls: According to a Populus poll for the Times, support for the Liberal Democrats in Scotland has increased sharply. (Times page 1, Daily Mail page 2) 

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Hung Parliament: David Cameron’s team is exploring the possibility of a deal with nationalist parties in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland rather than working with the Lib Dems in the event of a hung parliament. The SNP, Plaid Cymru and the unionists say the price of support is the protection of their parts of the UK from the worst effects of spending cuts. (Financial Times page 1) 

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Economy

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High Street Sales: Britain’s high street sales have risen for the third consecutive month and retailers are confident of continued acceleration in the coming months. (Scotsman page B1 

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Crime

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Racism: Scottish Government figures show the number of victims of racist crime in Scotland has risen to its highest level in five years despite a fall in overall incidents. Aberdeen has the most reports per head of all local authority areas in Scotland with 479 reported incidents in 2008-2009 up 57 per cent from last year. (Scotsman page 15, Herald page 8, Courier page 11, Press and Journal page 1) 

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Health

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GP Survey: The initial results of a Patient Experience Survey have been published, allowing Scots to check the performance of their GP practice. The findings could influence funding allocations to practices and full results will be published later this year. (Scotsman page 11, Press and Journal page 14) 

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Bowel Cancer: Scientists are calling for a rethink of current testing methods for bowel cancer, arguing a one-off screening test could save thousands of lives every year. In Scotland, 3,500 cases are diagnosed each year and there are over 1,500 deaths. (Scotsman page 23, Daily Telegraph page 14, Times page 16, Guardian page 6, Daily Mail page 19, Daily Express page 8) 

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Breast Cancer: A blood test for breast cancer is being made available to women in Scotland for the first time. (Herald page 2) 

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Transport

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Airline Assistance:  The European Commission will approve state aid for airlines after the volcanic ash crisis, while stressing the support should not become “unfair assistance” undermining competition. (Scotsman page 10, Herald page 2, Daily Mail page 1, Daily Express page 14) 

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Trams: Edinburgh’s first tram will open to public viewing today but will not be operational for at least another two years. (Scotsman page 24) 

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Education

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College Funding: An investigation by the National Union of Students in Scotland has found colleges across the country have received soaring demands for financial help, with all but 21 colleges seeing an increased demand and 66 per cent had experienced a rise of more than 10 per cent. (Scotsman page 40) 

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Teacher Cuts: Teachers are attacking Glasgow City Council’s plans to lay off school supply staff during upcoming exams after just one weeks’ notice. (Herald page 1) 

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Politics

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Fishing: Fisheries Secretary Richard Lochhead will argue for decision-making powers over fishing to be returned to Scotland in a debate concerning the future of the Common Fishing Policy in Brussels. (Scotsman page 17, Herald page 11, Press and Journal page 7) 

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DNA Records: MSPs in the justice committee have voted against raising the length of time that innocent people’s DNA can be held on file from the current three years to six. It backed raising the minimum age a child can be tried in an adult court from eight to twelve. (Scotsman page 20)