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Page last updated at 13:12 GMT, Sunday, 11 October 2009 14:12 UK

Sopel's best of Sunday politics

Jon Sopel
Jon Sopel

Time to take stock? A calm period of reflection after the three main party conferences? Do we see the policy debate in a fresh light?

Nah. Not a bit of it. It's same old, same old. Back to MPs expenses, Gordon Brown's durability and the dogfight that will shape political debate between now and the election.

New vision

Gordon Brown would have hoped (though probably too knowing to have expected) that the debate would have moved on to the dividing lines between Labour and Tories. But instead, news that Gordon Brown had been to Moorfields eye hospital was exercising many.

Lots of interesting comments on this - but perhaps the most interesting came from the Shadow Defence Secretary Liam Fox on Sky's Sunday Live with Adam Boulton. In his former life, he was a GP - and this was his judgement.

Liam Fox on Sunday Live with Adam Boulton

Liam Fox MP, Shadow Defence Secretary

Liam Fox MP, Shadow Defence Secretary and former GP, says there are plenty of reasons to want Gordon Brown to leave office; his deteriorating eyesight is not one of them.

Tomorrow marks the 25th anniversary of the Brighton bomb, and on the BBC One Politics Show Frank Gardner, victim of a terrorist attack in Saudi Arabia that has left him in a wheelchair, went to meet Lord Tebbit who was dug out of the debris and whose wife was left paralysed. It was a riveting listen.

Lord Tebbit on the Politics Show

Lord Tebbit

Lord Tebbit talks about the firemen who saved him and others after the 1984 Brighton bomb.

There was some big picture politics - Andrew Marr had Home Secretary Alan Johnson on the sofa. One of the fascinating dividing lines that has emerged from the party conferences is big versus small government.

Ronald Reagan the great, populist, right wing US President once said there was no more dread phrase than: "I'm from the government and I'm here to help you".

David Cameron seemed to echo that sentiment in his conference speech. Stand up Alan Johnson to defend the role that government plays.

Alan Johnson on the Andrew Marr Show

Alan Johnson

Home Secretary Alan Johnson on the philosophical difference between Labour and the Conservatives about the role of government.

And back on the Politics Show the Chancellor Alistair Darling made a strong attack on Tory economic policy.

Alistair Darling on the Politics Show

Alistair Darling

Chancellor Alistair Darling says Conservative plans to make immediate public spending cuts are "utterly mad".

Final clip goes to Chris Grayling, the Shadow Home Secretary. I spoke to him about the MPs expenses scandal. And this one for the connoisseurs - the need for leadership on the issue. When? Err - tomorrow. Take a look.

Chris Grayling on the Politics Show

Chris Grayling

Shadow Home Secretary Chris Grayling talks about MPs showing leadership over expenses... but he will be waiting for the letter.



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