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A look forward: 2018 London elections (part 3)

January 3, 2018

Today, we conclude our look forward to the May 2018 local elections in London. You can find the first part of the series here (including details of our methodology) and the second here. Our concluding part covers the ten London Boroughs starting with the letters M through to W. Merton – likely Labour hold We […]

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A look forward: 2018 London elections (part 1)

January 1, 2018

As a New Year begins, I am setting out the scene for this year’s London elections, a critical test for the three main English parties. This is the first of three posts, setting the scene and covering 10 boroughs (B to G, alphabetically). May’s local elections will be a crucial test for the British political […]

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Corbyn’s Copeland Catastrophe?

March 1, 2017

There is no doubt that Labour’s performance in the Copeland by-election last week was historically bad: a government last won a by-election seat off an opposition in 1982. But Jeremy Corbyn’s most die-hard supporters have tried to explain this poor result away. Do their arguments hold any weight? You have read the headlines: this is […]

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By-Election Special: Tooting

June 15, 2016

Today sees the by-election in Tooting following the resignation of Sadiq Khan as he takes on the Mayoralty of London Much of the talk about today’s Tooting by-election has been about the tightness of the result last year. Without the advantage of Sadiq Khan’s 11 years’ incumbency, is Labour in trouble in this part of south […]

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Shy Lefties and the Tory Assumption

May 12, 2015

This afternoon the place where I work is having a champagne celebration of the election result. I don’t work at Conservative Party Central Office, but sometimes it feels like it.  I have had to endure weeks of a straight up assumption that I vote Tory and that a Labour minority government in an arrangement with […]

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Labour’s Options Narrow As Nick Clegg Sides With The Tories

April 24, 2015

Two developments today have strengthened Tory hands. The first and least surprising was Nigel Farage confirming that UKIP were ‘no longer neutral’ over who is to be Prime Minister and calling for a Tory-UKIP pact to ensure that David Cameron is.   Although hardly a shock there had been, at one point at least, a sense […]

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Why the Tory Scaremongering About the SNP isn’t Ending Anytime Soon

April 20, 2015

Having not got much traction with their initial ploy of going directly after Ed Miliband – which veered from portraying him as an uber-geek to a Terry-Thomas style ladies’ man, the Tories have bet their house on going after Ed Miliband through the proxy of the SNP.    It has felt as if they (and their […]

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General Election preview: Cardiff North

March 4, 2015

As a belated nod to St David’s Day, we turn to Wales for our latest post in the series looking at constituencies that could change hands in this year’s general election When the Conservatives won Cardiff North from Labour in the last general election, it came as no surprise to most observers. Indeed, the only […]

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#976: 1985, Talking Heads, Road To Nowhere

January 2, 2015

The Tories launched their first election poster today, which immediately (and justifiably) unleashed a torrent of twitter abuse and parodies. The poster depicts a road disappearing into the distance to no discernible destination with no markings or signs on it.  Over which are some claims in writing including the straight out lie that the deficit […]

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David Cameron Wags The Dog

August 29, 2014

David Cameron has had a very bad week.  It began with Boris Johnson confirming that he would seek the Conservative nomination for the safe London seat of Uxbridge and South Ruislip.   Boris would not be bothering to do so unless he thought there were good chance that the Tories will lose the election, so that […]

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Labour Gives Up

July 24, 2014

It didn’t get that much publicity but last weekend saw the Labour Party’s National Policy Forum agree the party’s basic policy positions for the next election.  Yes there is the conference to come in the Autumn but it has been a good long while since it mattered a jot.   What came out of that Policy […]

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London’s New Political Landscape

July 9, 2014

Last Thursday’s council by-election in Tower Hamlets’ Blackwall and Cubitt Town ward brought to an end this year’s local elections in London (both this election and the previous week’s in Barnet’s Colindale ward were held back from the main 22 May elections due to the death of a candidate). The London Local Elections Unlike much […]

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Local Election Briefing – Harrow

May 20, 2014

For another of our looks at the forthcoming local elections, we turn to the north London borough of Harrow. At the last general election, the Labour Party in London had some consolation as Brown’s government lost: it more than doubled the London boroughs where it had a majority of the councillors from eight to seventeen […]

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John Stuart Mill tells it like it is…

January 18, 2014
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UKIP target #8: Aylesbury

September 2, 2013

“Through Amersham to Aylesbury and the Vale, In those wet fields the railway didn’t pay. The Metro stops at Amersham today.” (J Betjeman, Metro-land) Our eighth constituency in our series spotlighting seats where UKIP outpolled the all Westminster parties in May’s county council elections takes us to Buckinghamshire. The first six constituencies that we reviewed […]

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UKIP target #7: Bognor Regis and Littlehampton

August 26, 2013

In our series on constituencies where UKIP won most votes in May’s county council elections, we have moved from Kent on to West Sussex to find our seventh seat. So far in our series, all the constituencies are Conservative-held seaside seats with a history of strong Labour performances. Labour won four of them (Castle Point, […]

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UKIP targets #5 & #6: The Thanets

August 18, 2013

We have reached the halfway point in our examination of constituencies that UKIP notionally won in the May 2013 county council results UKIP were seen as doing well in May’s county council elections along the east coast. As we have seen, they notionally won three constituencies in Lincolnshire and the East of England. But they […]

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UKIP targets #4: Sittingbourne and Sheppey

August 7, 2013

For the fourth constituency in our series looking at constituencies notionally won by UKIP in this year’s county council elections, we cross the Thames Estuary to Sittingbourne and Sheppey There is an explosion that could hit the town of Sheerness soon. No, this isn’t a clichéd political metaphor. A mile off the coast from the […]

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UKIP targets #3: Castle Point

July 21, 2013

Our third post in our series looking at constituencies where UKIP could win based on May’s county council results takes us to south Essex. The May 2013 county council results showed strong support for UKIP along the east coast, with them topping the poll in three parliamentary seats from The Wash to the Thames and […]

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UKIP targets #2: Great Yarmouth

July 5, 2013

For the second in our series on constituencies where UKIP could make a Parliamentary breakthrough, we turn to the Norfolk seaside town of Great Yarmouth. Whilst Boston and Skegness appears to offer UKIP its best chance of winning a seat in Parliament, the East Coast offers other possibilities. They had strong showings in a number […]

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By-Election Special: South Shields

April 14, 2013

The resignation of David Miliband from Parliament has triggered a by-election on 2 May in his South Shields constituency, the same day as the local elections. Results The graph above shows the 2010 result, with Labour clearly in a dominant position, taking just over half the total vote. Miliband’s majority was over 11,000: the sort […]

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Is it possible to like right-wing people?

March 4, 2013

I posted the following status update on Facebook yesterday: “People I want to hate but secretly think they would be a bit of a laugh down the pub:- Case Study 1. Nigel Farage.” I naively throught that people would agree with me. I was wrong. Instead, I opened up Pandora’s box. What followed was a […]

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By-Election Results: Croydon, Middlesbrough and Rotherham

December 2, 2012

Apologies for the delay, but here is our usual round-up on the by-elections that took place on Thursday.  They can pretty much be summed up as great for UKIP, good for Labour, bad for the Tories and calamitous for the Liberal Democrats. Rotherham The most interesting of the three was Rotherham, which saw UKIP’s share […]

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Tory-UKIP Pact: What on Earth Is In It For UKIP?

November 27, 2012

Since Michael Fabricant floated the idea of a Tory-UKIP pact yesterday, it has been squashed from great heights by the leaderships of both parties.   UKIP’s leader Nigel Farage has said that such a pact would be unthinkable while David Cameron remains leader of the Tories, as Cameron failed to retract his 2006 description of UKIP […]

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Mayor Result in Bristol Shows Labour Short of a Breakthrough

November 25, 2012

Labour’s failure to win the mayoralty of Bristol in last week’s elections shows that the party has a long way to go in the capital of the South West. Labour did far better than the Coalition parties: indeed, it received 80% more first preference votes than the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats together. But Labour lost […]

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A Look at the By-Election Results

November 17, 2012

So, the nation has voted. Well, at least a few people did. The Police and Crime Commissioner elections have, probably rightly, been ignored by much of the electorate, and significant numbers who did vote went to spoil their vote to register their protest. Sadly, the tumblr site showing examples of these seems to have been […]

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By-Election Special: Rotherham

November 14, 2012

The resignation of Denis MacShane hs prompted yet another by-election, this time in Rotherham. The result in 2010 was not very close: The cause of the election has pushed the Labour Party to unusual haste – MacShane resigned on 2 November and the by-election will be held less than four weeks later on 29 November, […]

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Europe: Phobic, Sceptic, Schizo, Phile?

November 1, 2012

I was brought up in a deeply pro-European house. My father, born just before the war, had been profoundly affected by what he saw being unearthed at Belsen and Treblinka, Auschwitz etc and was rightly persuaded by the pro-European politicians of the 1950’s and 1960’s who made the very persuasive argument that in order to […]

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The Coalition 2015 Fallacy

October 2, 2012

Westminster Village conventional wisdom has developed over the last few months to the effect that the most likely result of the next general election is a further hung parliament and therefore another coalition government, with the Lib Dems in prime position.    Unsurprisingly, given the Westminster Village’s usual record (see for example the consensus around the inevitable […]

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South East Boundary Changes Part 5: Kent

June 15, 2012

For the fifth in our series looking at the proposed boundary changes for constituencies in South East England, we are paying a visit to the Garden of England. Kent only had Conservative MPs between 1979 and 1997 and in the run-up to the 1997 general election Labour was only predicted to take two seats, and […]

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