Morning Call: pick of the papers

The ten must-read pieces from the Sunday papers.

1. The coalition counts on blaming Labour for everything. Bad move (Observer)

Rafael Behr notes that David Cameron's strategy depends on voters forgetting the good times, however illusory. But they won't.

2. Nick Clegg's Lords reforms could destroy the authority of the Commons (Sunday Telegraph)

The Deputy Prime Minister's passion for constitutional change has been written off as harmless Lib Dem pottiness – but it could do immense damage to our system of government, argues Peter Oborne.

3. Willetts banks on the silver vote (Independent on Sunday)

Many older people will gain under the coalition, and be unaffected by its most draconian measures, says John Rentoul.

4. That's our cash leaking from Ulster's pipes (Sunday Times)

Northern Ireland has more rainfall than most of the UK and it gets its water from a lake that is full at this time of year. So how did it run out of water?

5. What can David Cameron learn from Margaret Thatcher? (Sunday Telegraph)

The Iron Lady's reign could teach our Prime Minister a thing or two, believes Tim Montgomerie.

6. Who will confront the hatred in Hungary? (Observer)

The European Union seems happy to ignore the repression that is happening under Viktor Orbán, says Nick Cohen.

7. What's green about encouraging us to drive? (Independent on Sunday)

Steep fare increases today and an uncomfortable return to work on crowded trains will galvanise a rebellious new movement, says Alexandra Woodsworth.

8. You cannot hide, so fight the web spies (Sunday Times)

Jenni Russell argues that the technologies that exposed diplomats during the WikiLeaks revelations have the capacity to do the same to us, too.

9. My New Year's prediction: the coalition won't collapse – just be hated (Sunday Telegraph)

All the contortions and concessions required to keep the alliance going will lead to irreparable dissatisfaction, says Janet Daley.

10. Afghanistan: our mandate for action is finally exhausted (Observer)

This editorial argues that we will be withdrawing our troops not because we have won or lost in any conventional sense.

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Lord Sainsbury pulls funding from Progress and other political causes

The longstanding Labour donor will no longer fund party political causes. 

Centrist Labour MPs face a funding gap for their ideas after the longstanding Labour donor Lord Sainsbury announced he will stop financing party political causes.

Sainsbury, who served as a New Labour minister and also donated to the Liberal Democrats, is instead concentrating on charitable causes. 

Lord Sainsbury funded the centrist organisation Progress, dubbed the “original Blairite pressure group”, which was founded in mid Nineties and provided the intellectual underpinnings of New Labour.

The former supermarket boss is understood to still fund Policy Network, an international thinktank headed by New Labour veteran Peter Mandelson.

He has also funded the Remain campaign group Britain Stronger in Europe. The latter reinvented itself as Open Britain after the Leave vote, and has campaigned for a softer Brexit. Its supporters include former Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg and Labour's Chuka Umunna, and it now relies on grassroots funding.

Sainsbury said he wished to “hand the baton on to a new generation of donors” who supported progressive politics. 

Progress director Richard Angell said: “Progress is extremely grateful to Lord Sainsbury for the funding he has provided for over two decades. We always knew it would not last forever.”

The organisation has raised a third of its funding target from other donors, but is now appealing for financial support from Labour supporters. Its aims include “stopping a hard-left take over” of the Labour party and “renewing the ideas of the centre-left”. 

Julia Rampen is the digital news editor of the New Statesman (previously editor of The Staggers, The New Statesman's online rolling politics blog). She has also been deputy editor at Mirror Money Online and has worked as a financial journalist for several trade magazines. 

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