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June 1st 2016

Memo from Brussels

The mood among Cameron’s counterparts in the European Council – the heads of state and government of the EU’s 28 member states – is largely resentful and unsympathetic. None of them are truly expecting...
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May 7th 2016

New York State of Mind

You'll be forgiven a slight sense of déjà vu. When Donald J. Trump first announced he was running for President the news was greeted with knowing laughs. He would be quickly and roundly exposed...
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April 28th 2016

Good Kid, Mad City

Zac Goldsmith is a nice man. Everyone says so, from ex-brother-in-law Imran Khan to many of the environmental activists and Green Party types that he has campaigned alongside for years. He is also rich, good...
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April 13th 2016

Pirates of the Caribbean

One of the most durable sources of progressive frustration in UK politics has been the steadfast refusal of the electorate to accept that it is not rich. Logical, Fabian arguments for higher taxation have often...
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March 21st 2016

From a Whisper to a Scream

Back in 2003 Iain Duncan Smith, fresh from delivering a 'back me or sack me' turn at his party conference, was digging in as Leader of the Conservative Party. His close advisors, including a...
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March 16th 2016

Budget 2016

This afternoon’s Budget 2016 was a far cry from George Osborne’s triumphant Autumn Statement and Comprehensive Spending Review 2015 just a few short months ago, where he ringfenced numerous government departments, u-turned on tax...
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January 22nd 2016

Up all night to get lucky

For understandable reasons, the attention of the Westminster bubble (and indeed, of these notes) has been captured of late by the ongoing shenanigans at the top of the Labour Party. Every day has brought...
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January 8th 2016

He's behind you!

A lot of politics is theatre. There's the story-telling, of course. You have to recite other people's words with freshness and sincerity but also learn how to improvise when it all starts to go...
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December 18th 2015

Look to the future now, it’s only just begun

MPs depart for their Christmas break after an extraordinary year in British politics. Like a failing, long-running TV show, democracy has served up a series of increasingly unbelievable and outlandish plot twists in 2015. It's...
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November 27th 2015

You can run on for a long time

George Osborne delivered his Comprehensive Spending Review and Autumn Statement this week with his back to the wall, looking out from a tight political corner. Weighed down by promises made in the heat of an...
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October 2nd 2015

Born to run

The last of 2015’s season of political festivals sees the Conservative Party descend on Manchester next week. The boys and girls in blue have much to celebrate and will not be shy about it. For...
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September 24th 2015

Reason to believe

Sections of the Labour clan gather in Brighton next week for a family reunion that will be charged with resentment for some and jubilation for others. The results of the Leadership contest are still...
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September 19th 2015

Dancing in the dark

This weekend the Liberal Democrat Party gathers in Bournemouth for their annual conference. There is not a great deal for them to celebrate, aside from having finally been liberated from their two-year conference deal...
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September 16th 2015

Put Your Left Leg In

17th August 2015 As ballot papers land on Labour members' doormats this morning, the Party's elite is struggling to work out a strategy - any strategy - for effectively countering the Corbyn surge. The truth...
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September 16th 2015

Let's Stick Together

14th September 2015 No-one can accuse the Labour Party of 'playing it safe' with their choice of Leader this weekend. Jeremy Corbyn breaks every rule of modern political gravity. He is older (66) than any...
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