Web Only: the best of the blogs

The five must-read blogs from today, including predictions for 2010 and a poll boost for Caroline Lu

1. Iain Dale makes ten predictions for 2010 and forecasts that Ed Miliband will replace Gordon Brown as Labour leader, Britain will lose its AAA credit rating and Jeremy Paxman will take over as host of Question Time.

2. The Green Party's Derek Wall reports on an ICM poll suggesting Caroline Lucas will win in Brighton and become the Greens' first MP.

3. As President Obama prepares to spend New Year's Eve in Hawaii, the Huffington Post's Bill Lucey looks at how former presidents have seen in the new year.

4. Over at Liberal Conspiracy, Dave Osler attacks the authoritarian right for calling for new curbs on civil liberties in the wake of the bombing attempt on Flight 253.

5. Liberal Democrat Voice's Mark Pack wonders what role the "worm", an instant poll tracker, could play in the party leaders' live TV debates.

 

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Cabinet audit: what does the appointment of Liam Fox as International Trade Secretary mean for policy?

The political and policy-based implications of the new Secretary of State for International Trade.

Only Nixon, it is said, could have gone to China. Only a politician with the impeccable Commie-bashing credentials of the 37th President had the political capital necessary to strike a deal with the People’s Republic of China.

Theresa May’s great hope is that only Liam Fox, the newly-installed Secretary of State for International Trade, has the Euro-bashing credentials to break the news to the Brexiteers that a deal between a post-Leave United Kingdom and China might be somewhat harder to negotiate than Vote Leave suggested.

The biggest item on the agenda: striking a deal that allows Britain to stay in the single market. Elsewhere, Fox should use his political capital with the Conservative right to wait longer to sign deals than a Remainer would have to, to avoid the United Kingdom being caught in a series of bad deals. 

Stephen Bush is special correspondent at the New Statesman. He usually writes about politics.