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Author: David Herdson

Labour dis-United?

Labour dis-United?

Does Liverpool risk triggering a breach between Labour and its biggest affiliate? Of all the elections being contested on May 6, one of the easiest to call should have been the Liverpool mayoral race. On both previous occasions, Labour won on first preferences with a lead of at least 30%. Labour holds all four parliamentary seats with majorities of at least 27,000 or 60%. It is not quite one-party territory – a fifth of the council seats are held by…

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Command syndrome: Brexit and Covid have defined Johnson’s leadership style

Command syndrome: Brexit and Covid have defined Johnson’s leadership style

  Settling in – not even reverting – to being a normal PM will be tough, maybe impossible Boris Johnson is an oddity of a prime minister in many ways. For someone with such an impeccable establishment background, there’s a distinct air of the outsider to him. Maybe its that while he may be amusing and entertaining to many, he’s not especially clubbable; to be at the centre of attention, he has to be to some extent apart; he always…

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Elections 2021: who wants what, who’ll get it, and what then?

Elections 2021: who wants what, who’ll get it, and what then?

For a mid-term, the govt is doing very well. That could spell a tricky summer for Starmer Elections are back on the menu. Lots of them. After the cancelled local election round last year, every person in Britain will have at least one vote to cast in May, many people will have several. That alone has the potential to dramatically shift the politics of the country but perhaps all the more so after a year in which the executive has…

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A fractured SNP will struggle to campaign at full-throttle

A fractured SNP will struggle to campaign at full-throttle

The Salmond fall-out, trans rights and factionalism will be hindrances in the campaign for independence If you lose your head, it’s all over. Not quite what one Scot (who was at the time an Egyptian-born Spaniard), said to another (though that one was American), but it might as well have been. Wise words to an immortal; wiser still to a politician – and ones that Scottish nationalists would do well to reflect on. The SNP has dominated Scottish politics for…

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Jupiter in eclipse? Macron looks a very weak odds-on favourite

Jupiter in eclipse? Macron looks a very weak odds-on favourite

Time to look ahead to 2022 No incumbent French president has won re-election since the terms were reduced from seven years to five. Granted, there are not many examples – two – on which to base what might appear to be if not a rule of thumb then certainly a trend. But nor is the Élysée exactly a secure base from which to a presidential campaign (compare here with the American presidency). So why is Emmanuel Macron such short odds…

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Senedd shake-up: what happens if Welsh Labour lose their majority?

Senedd shake-up: what happens if Welsh Labour lose their majority?

No permutation looks a natural fit Elections: remember them? For most of the country, they’ve become a distant memory. Aside from a handful of council by-elections in Scotland in the autumn, there’s been nothing for ten months. They are, however, due to return with a vengeance in May with elections for some or all of 149 English councils, plus 13 mayors (including London and all the large combined-authorities), 40 Police & Crime Commissioners, the London Assembly, Scottish Parliament and Welsh…

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Biden: Europe’s last American

Biden: Europe’s last American

An old normalcy will do nothing to shake Europe from its complacency Chicago has produced more than its fair share of colourful politicians. Rod Blagojevich – recently pardoned by Donald Trump – was impeached in 2009 as Governor of Illinois for attempting to sell (among other executive actions) Barack Obama’s former senate seat after the latter was elected president. A half-century earlier, Mayor Richard J Daley ran the city like a fiefdom, making and breaking presidential campaigns along the way….

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Lucky. Trump’s farcial self-coup failed because of little more than the happenstance of his inadequate political awareness

Lucky. Trump’s farcial self-coup failed because of little more than the happenstance of his inadequate political awareness

A lifetime of cod-dictatorship left him unprepared for the real thing Where did it go wrong for Donald Trump? Wednesday’s events will prove a watershed moment for his political career. Beforehand, he was absolutely dominant in the Republican Party, with the expectations of many that he would remain so even out of office. Now, that aura of raw power shines far more dimly – not merely because he finally crossed a line unacceptable to many in the GOP but because…

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