Articles in The Politics Column
Hereditary power is booming in Britain.
Lynne is uninspired by Ed Miliband.
For three stagnant years, Labour failed to convince peop
The Conservative Party is unsure whether Ed Miliband is
For both David Cameron and Ed Miliband, 2013 was a year
The differences between David Cameron and Ed Miliband ar
There is a new puppy in Downing Street – plaintive-eyed,
When David Cameron stood for the Tory leadership in 2005
There is one simple Labour answer to the question of wha
Conservatives have given up trying to agree on whether B
When challenged to justify their belief that they can wi
David Cameron and George Osborne follow what might be ca
There should be a word for the mixed emotions that worki
The Prime Minister could declare war and no one would no
In the executive lounge on the 23rd floor of the Manches
Labour’s confidence – what is left of it – rests on a te
Painted in a certain light, Britain in the summer of 201
‘‘Anger is to make you effective,” wrote the American no
New Labour’s triumph over the Conservatives at the end o
The Conservative Party’s dedication to the memory of Bar
When an election looks hard to win, MPs sometimes seek s
At the last election, fixing politics seemed as urgent a
There is a stark choice facing British politics, express
Politicians face a simple choice when the public disagre
If the Tories had set out in government with the aim of
Harold Wilson was wrong.
Would the UK Independence Party shut up shop if it achie
Jim Murphy is not often lost for words.
There is no fixed degree of contempt that the public fee
George Osborne knows better than most how tax pledges ca
Outside the pawnbrokers on Market Street in Eastleigh, S
Tory MPs know that repetitive disloyalty and conspicuous
Conservatives are sometimes accused of living in the pas
It is not most people’s idea of a race.
Labour’s response to coalition policy sometimes reminds
The Conservatives have made it easy for Labour to like t
One of the most potent weapons in the arsenal of the Cha
There is no stylish way to fetch awkward policy decision
There are all sorts of coalitions in British politics.
One of David Cameron’s great concerns ahead of the Autum
Some ideas in politics are so bad that even disavowing t
Measured in general election victories, the only success
It is the noisy, knife-edge votes in parliament that fur
British voters do not judge prime ministers according to
If there is such a thing as a good booing, Ed Miliband g
If there is such a thing as a good booing, Ed Miliband g
David Cameron will be remembered by history as, among ot
The annual party conference season reveals so much about
The Conservatives are suffering from what you might call
Few sentiments pollute political judgement like the feel
David Cameron doesn’t lurch. It isn’t his style.
Conservatives who mistrust David Cameron once found evid
The longest journey begins, as every family knows, not w
When broken governments cling to power, disunited and bl
It is more than 20 years since the Conservative Party la
No political relaunch is ever entirely successful.
It says something not very flattering about British demo
David Cameron, speaking in a marathon parliamentary deba
Every recent Tory prime minister has used a big moment t
If David Cameron does not already regret his failure to
The Lib-Lab pact, like moustaches and flared trousers, i
The word “Eurosceptic” is in danger of losing its meanin
When the story of this parliament is retold in the inevi
Now would be a good time for Ed Miliband to think about
Aides in the office of the leader of the opposition have
A few months after the coalition was formed, I asked a y
David Cameron and Ed Miliband both struggle to keep News
David Cameron’s government has been accused of many thin
A good point is often wasted in a lost argument.
George Osborne is admired in the Treasury for his capaci
If the coalition needed romance to survive it would have
Is David Miliband the first cabinet minister to be barre
Labour strategists have attempted to turn the tables on
Gordon Brown has been widely criticised on the left for
With Labour’s leadership crisis apparently resolved, fin
The wood-panelled committee rooms inside the Palace of W
When the history books are written, will they say that t
How often have we wished that an election would fall con
In the end, it was an anticlimax.
Shortly after the 2001 general election, a meeting took
After a successful G20 summit, Gordon Brown believed he
From when David Cameron became Conservative leader in De
Could Gordon Brown call an election this year rather tha
During opening skirmishes between Gordon Brown and David
Why has Gordon Brown apparently gambled his reputation,
Global summits matter a great deal to the politicians, a
The shadow of paramilitary violence is lengthening over
How do we make our judgements on politics and political
When Alex Salmond remarked recently that it wasn’t so mu
Students at Harvard's John F Kennedy School of Governmen
Ed Balls doesn’t do “off message” these days.
The mood among Labour MPs has turned black since the sta
As the the dust and white phosphorus settle over Gaza, t
During the 2001 Conservative leadership contest, the sec
One of the few iron laws in modern politics is that a pr
Everyone seems to be talking about the New Deal.
The New Statesman doesn't do political awards.
Gordon Brown will resist calls for a 2009 general electi
It's being called the "new taboo" in Downing Street, whe
As the recession nights of winter 2008 grow longer, thou
So why didn't the police go for David Davis?
The second-biggest rally addressed by Barack Obama this
So the government has ripped up the new Labour rule-book
It is impossible to know how many regular readers of the
When Robert Kilroy-Silk was elected as MP for Ormskirk i
During the Labour party conference in September, one big
Last December, when it looked as if Boris Johnson's mayo
Anyone who has ever experienced the misery of unemployme
For a man who this summer was denounced as “mad” by supp
In the final weekend, as the polls held unusually steady
Future Labour leaders are like buses, sometimes you wait
Something very odd is happening.
The search is on for the "Brown Bounce".
Can it really be the case that Peter Mandelson has final
I seriously worry when thoughtful people portray the cur
Credit where credit is due - and you have to say that a
At a time of national crisis, it seemed there was only o
Smug is the default facial expression for the shadow cha
Never underestimate Gordon Brown.
As the increasingly fractious Labour tribes gather for t
There is nothing quite like a Morning Star frin
The behaviour of much of the Labour Party reminds me of
Just by way of a thought experiment, let's try to be as
There is an eerie calm as the new political season creep
There is something uniquely dreadful about the situation
The battle lines are now drawn and the fight for the sou
Over the summer, as new Labour's "Prosecco plotters" pla
A single, distinctive observation stands out from the th
May I suggest some summer reading?
The post-Gordon era is upon us.
This past week, I found myself hunting people trafficker
The propitious start to Gordon Brown's first year as Pri
One of the first messages I received after David Davis r
So why has no one moved against Gordon Brown?
It is surely only a matter of time before someone sugges
What if people who want to see this government re-electe
If Gordon Brown thinks he's having a bad time, I have ju
Until the electoral tsunami struck on 1 May, the Labour
I bumped into Martin Bright as I was leaving the Sky New
Around the country people have begun to ask themselves a
It is tempting, in the light of the rebellion over the a
So, how bad is it for Gordon Brown?
Gordon Brown and his fractious team of advisers finally
It is a quirk of political history that the fifth annive
First it was going to be the green Budget.
Ten years ago this month it first became clear that new
It has become something of a sport for the tormentors of
"If you want a war, you can have it." These were the wor
Now we have the missing draft of the government's notori
What used to be called "Lib-Labism" has been a central t
On Friday 22 February 2008, a private member's bill will
Last April I wrote that the name of Michael Ashcroft sen
Plus ça change.
There is nothing more unattractive than a politician who
I have now been working for six months on an investigati
Several Muslim groups took the unprecedented step this m
As we enter the new political season, it's out with the
The New Statesman does not employ an astro loge
At the latest meeting of the Parliamentary Labour Party,
Tony Blair left some serious incendiary devices behind f
I remember the night the Northern Rock crisis broke very
The serialisation of Gordon Brown's latest book, War
Another Queen's Speech, another anti-terrorist crackdown
When I saw that King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia was berati
If not yet for peace, this Middle East envoy business al
There are two British politicians who would have been ex
It turns out that Jack Straw was one of the "greybeards"
One of the most important functions of a Labour party co
It's easy to sneer at the trade unions.
You have to admire his cheek.
It didn't take long for the grand theories to emerge aft
"It was a huge relief.
August has proved the cruellest month for David Cameron.
If you can't indulge yourself on honeymoon, when can you
If there was one thing David Cameron had to do during Ju
As I rose from my seat to get off the train at Blackpool
On Thursday 7 September 1978, James Callaghan decided to
As a journalist, Alastair Campbell never knowingly broke
Even before the terrorist attacks it was going to be a p
Slowly but relentlessly the Brown revolution is coming.
On 30 April this magazine predicted that ministers would
There were moments during Tony Blair's speech to the Reu
There are two areas of policy in which Gordon Brown has
So what exactly did Gordon Brown mean?
At one of the endless meetings to decide who should stan
Now, when it really matters, we are about to witness ano
In the world of Westminster spin there are all sorts of
As we enter the final weeks of the Blair era it seems th
Tony Blair has had pretty much of a free hand to act.
How easy it is to conjure up a story about splits and di
As part of his preparations for this year's Budget, Gord
Ideologically uncertain, unsure of a political direction
Gordon Brown is in serious trouble.
As I write, more than 1.3 million people have signed the
What is wrong with the Liberal Democrats?
As Labour has stumbled from crisis to crisis, each of it
It is the worst-kept secret in 11 Downing Street that Go
While browsing at the second-hand bookshop during the lu
One revealing paradox of British politics is that the mo
The political landscape of Britain changed beyond recogn
Ten years ago, as Labour prepared for power, Tony Blair
Just before David Cameron took over as leader of the Con
Cash for honours, loans for peerages, or just plain old-
It is troubling, if not entirely out of character, that
When the Queen rises to present the tenth speech of "her
When the Plaid Cymru MP Adam Price began his campaign fo
The power of patronage has always dazzled politicians wh
When, in last May's reshuffle, Tony Blair appointed Ruth
It has become almost a requirement in Labour circles to
Too often over the past 20 years, Conservatives have gat
Progressive politics in a globalised economy comes down
Now that the din over the Labour leadership has calmed t
When I was growing up, gambling was something that disti
Ten years ago a group of academics, journalists and poli
Why are so many of the brightest in the Labour Party pre
I had been looking forward to this particular Sunday.
As MPs enjoy their liberty in locations from Tuscany to
When I started writing this column, Charles Clarke took
New Labour has always been something of a conspiracy.
It is now a matter of days until John Prescott takes ove
The battle for the hearts and minds of Britain's Muslims
Any idea of a stable and orderly transition is dead.
It was difficult not to get a sinking feeling from the n
It seemed a reasonable enough question: which Whitehall
The net is tightening in the loans-for-honours scandal.
George Bush and Tony Blair are not the only supporters o
The security services may not have been covered in glory
According to Patricia Hewitt the NHS has had its best ye
While the left continues to fragment along the fault lin
You can't beat posh sex.
The Labour Party has rediscovered equality.
The plan is simple enough: to take on Gordon Brown direc
Would it matter if the government stopped passing laws?
In the late 20th century, a dynamic centrist politician
Politics is about the pursuit of power.
Labour is beginning to map out its nightmare landscape o
We are back, then, in the bracing climate of three-party
The Prime Minister describes the education white paper a
There was a time, not so long ago, when the ownership of
Take a look at the following front-page story: "All Brit
From the scrum of journalists, backbenchers and research
During conference, a new Conservative hero emerged.
Most people in the Conservative Party now realise they h
Amid the staged triumphalism and warm self-congratulatio
It is easy to despise the Liberal Democrats.
Barely a week goes by without a senior Labour politician
Those Labour ministers who can remember Antonio Gramsci
In the wake of recent events, looking back at the mornin
Tony Blair's assertion that al-Qaeda and the IRA are fun
The formula that has determined British politics since 1
Raymond Seitz, US ambassador to the UK in the early 1990
A favoured definition of a management consultant is some
In all the statements by senior Conservatives about who
Like ageing cabaret artistes approaching the end of thei
They don't want to lose him but they think he ought to g
The past two weeks have been like attending my own funer
So much for favours: three times in the past two years t
Every schoolboy or girl is told to stand up to the bully
The sneaking feeling is in fashion for the first time in
It is a depressing, defining moment.
Imagine the following: the prime minister invites the le
Which world capitals has Jack Straw visited most in his
At Labour's focus groups, they have been asking particip
The relationship between state and individual supposedly
It is easy, conveniently easy, for governments to confla
Everyone else has to wait in line: Tony Blair does not.
Escape was close at hand - only to elude them.
With six months to go before the likely date of the gene
Never one to understate his case, Tony Blair is now prom
The hubris of the Prime Minister has long been misunders
Iraq is coming home for Tony Blair.
All politics, one female minister reminded me, is person
Which party advocates a cap on state spending?
The next time Downing Street lets it be known that Tony
Old Europe is dead. Long live . . . what exactly?
Having spent the best part of a decade slating Tony Blai
Tony Blair began the case for his defence a week early.
Tony Blair has pencilled in the third week of June next
With the local and European elections out of the way, th
At his cabinet meeting on 22 April, Tony Blair apologise
Over the past few days, the two pillars of Tony Blair's
There is a nightmare in Downing Street and it goes like
Over the past few days the British have been told that t
Tony Blair welcomes Libya's foreign minister to Downing
Hutton inquiry equals blame equals scalps.
As the Prime Minister and his people seek to pick off th
Cast your mind back to the mid-1990s.
The Chancellor holds the future of the Prime Minister in
Is grown-up politics about to commence?
British diplomats can be relied upon to provide a laconi
We now know why Tony Blair didn't let up on Monday, so s
The days of IDS are numbered.
The Labour conference in Bournemouth was one of contradi
The final act in the drama has been performed.
Gordon Brown has looked into a future he has craved for
As Lord Hutton concludes the first stage of his investig
Poor Tony Blair.
In this hot, remorseless August, amid the astonishing sp
It is a law of nature that Downing Street and the BBC ar
Tony Blair, the brand, has in recent years consistently
The guest list is impressive.
In the best spirit of British amateurism, expect a fudge
As Saddam Hussein was losing his grip in Baghdad, at Wes
A one-liner, only half in jest, is doing the rounds in W
Tony Blair's European dream is unravelling.
The irony is lost on no one in Whitehall.
Chat Show Charlie ended 2002 doing what he likes doing m
Relations between Gordon Brown and Alan Milburn are, onc
Ken Clarke's swagger and Cheshire Cat smile are more pro
Close to two years ago, I went to see Charles Clarke in
When trade union leaders met to lend their support to th
The policies they espouse are the same.
Triangulation is one of Tony Blair's favoured tactics.
News of the astronomical sum recently paid for Marilyn M