Daily Briefing

Ten Things You Need to Know Today: Sunday 21 Oct 2012

The Week’s super-quick catch-up on the main news talking points, available from 8am daily

1. TORY AND LIB DEM SUPPORT PLUNGES
Support for the Conservative Party has fallen to 30 percent leaving the party 13 points behind Labour and just one point above UKIP. The Mail On Sunday poll also produced bad news for the Liberal Democrats, whose eight percent standing leaves them in fourth place behind UKIP. An Opinium/Observer puts the Tories on 31 percent.
2. EBAY AND IKEA TAX AFFAIRS PROBED
Internet auction giant eBay has channelled funds through Luxembourg and Switzerland to avoid paying nearly £50m in tax in Britain, reports The Sunday Times. The report reveals that eBay paid little more than £1m in corporation tax on sales of almost £800m last year. Furniture chain IKEA has used an offshore network to halve its tax bill.
3. GEORGE MCGOVERN DIES AGED 90
Democrat Senator George McGovern, the primary ‘victim’ of the infamous Watergate break-in, has died in South Dakota aged 90. A vocal opponent of the Vietnam war, he lost to Richard Nixon in the 1972 presidential election. Later it emerged that the Democrats’ HQ had been broken into and in 1974 Nixon became the only president ever to resign.
4. ADELE 'GIVES BIRTH TO BOY'
Singer Adele has reportedly given birth to a baby boy. Adele and her partner Simon Konecki are said to have become parents last week, four months after they announced her pregnancy. Charity worker Konecki, who has a five-year-old daughter with his ex-wife, lives with chart-topper Adele in a 10-bedroom home in Sussex.
5. TEBBIT SLAMS GOVT 'INCOMPETENCE'
Norman Tebbit has launched an attack on David Cameron's "dog of a coalition government" saying it "seems unable to manage its affairs competently". Lord Tebbit, who served in government under Margaret Thatcher, told The Observer that Mr Cameron needs to impose "some managerial discipline not just on his colleagues but on himself".
6. LEBANESE CABINET TO QUIT
Lebanese prime minister Najib Mikati has announced that his cabinet will resign as soon as a national unity government can be formed. The announcement follows the death of general Wissam al-Hassan in a car bomb, which some have blamed on the Syrian regime. Hassan's funeral is due to be held in Martyrs' Square in central Beirut.
7. MPS DODGE RULES TO TRAVEL FIRST-CLASS
Over 180 MPs are using a loophole in parliamentary rules to buy first-class rail tickets at the taxpayers' expense, a Sunday Telegraph investigation has found. Rules ushered in following the 2009 expenses scandal normally require MPs to travel by standard class, but 185 MPs, including a third of the shadow cabinet, are beating the system to travel first class.
8. RUST AND BONE WINS BEST FILM AWARD
Director Tim Burton and actress Helena Bonham Carter, husband and wife, have both been given BFI fellowships at the London Film Festival awards. "It's very thoughtful for them to give us both one at the same time,” said Bonham Carter - there would be no jealousy at home. French-made drama ‘Rust and Bone’ was named best film.
9. UNBEATEN FRANKEL BOWS OUT ON A HIGH
Frankel, the world's leading racehorse, has ended his career with a 14th consecutive victory in the Champion Stakes. He has earned nearly £3m in a glorious career that saw him accumulate an aggregate winning distance of more than 76 lengths. Willie Carson said of Frankel: "This is the best horse I have ever seen and I think it is the best horse ever."
10. FERGIE ANGER OVER RIO T-SHIRT PROTEST
Sir Alex Ferguson has criticised Rio Ferdinand over his refusal to wear a 'Kick It Out' T-shirt yesterday, seemingly as a protest over the handling of John Terry's abuse of his brother Anton. Describing Ferdinand's protest as "disappointing", the Manchester United manager said Ferdinand had "let us down" and "will be dealt with".