In the Autumn of 1974, the Prime Minister called a ‘crisis’ election to end the parliamentary deadlock, halt Britain’s economic decline and to combat the fake smears media. Despite a heightened sense of societal breakdown, the electorate could not enthuse themselves for one of the dullest campaigns in history. The snap October 1974 general election… Continue reading Britain’s Last ‘Crisis’: ‘Fear and Loathing’ in the October 1974 Election
The modern era of big, open, political betting began in 1963 when Ron Pollard of Ladbrokes offered odds on the Conservative leadership contest for the ordinary punter. It was a dismal start as the 5/4 favourite Rab Butler was beaten by the 16/1 shot Alec Douglas-Home. In offering the market Pollard tapped into a long,… Continue reading The Political Punt: Will Corbyn or Johnson defy the Odds as Attlee, Thatcher and Blair did?
Listening to Conservative Ministers speak, you’d be forgiven for thinking that they were the ones in opposition. Matt Hancock talks of the elderly social care crisis, Priti Patel has criticised local councils for the rise in poverty and the Prime Minister rejects that austerity has anything to do with him. On Marr, the release of… Continue reading Fourth Time Lucky: Is Boris Johnson Following John Major’s 1992 Strategy?
The morning headlines make for grim reading following Jeremy Corbyn's interview with Andrew Neil last night. Corbyn is not the first, and won't be the last, to be skewered by the best political interviewer in the business. In another political age, it was David Frost who destroyed Neil Kinnock's slender hopes of winning a General… Continue reading Election 87 Revisited: Corbyn’s Kinnock Moment
As the Labour Party enters its ninth year in opposition, comparisons are being drawn to the 1980s and how it took them, and the Democrats, over a decade to win elections again. As Richard Carr argues in his timely book, it was the special relationship between the moderates on both sides of the Atlantic that underpinned their fightback. … Continue reading All Mod Cons: How Labour and the Democrats Learnt to Win Again
Many expect Boris Johnson to enjoy some form of honeymoon. History shows us that it may rapidly depend on the handling of 'events'. In the age of Brexit and now ‘Boris’ it remains to be seen whether there are any ‘iron laws’ left in British politics. One which will be tested over the next few… Continue reading The ‘Inevitable’ Honeymoon? A Short History of the ‘Prime Ministerial Bounce’
It’s almost 100 years since Nancy Astor became the first woman to take a seat in the House of Commons. On her first appearance in the House, she was physically stopped from sitting down by her male colleagues, whilst 'supposed' close friends Winston Churchill and Neville Chamberlain ‘would blank her in the corridors’. Women of Westminster:… Continue reading The Natural Rebels: Women of Westminster Who Changed Politics