Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in political blogging.
David Herdson at politicalbetting.com looks at the recent tendency for the Lib Dems to announce policy, only to be corrected by the Conservatives, while Paul Goodman at ConservativeHome asks if the Tories and Lib Dems could merge to fight the next election. Paul Linford sees fractures in the coalition already, and apparently David Davis has been overheard referring to the government as the ‘Brokeback Coalition’. Iain Dale has some comment on this, saying that it is ‘refreshing’ that people are making comments about top politicians getting on (as compared with the fractious Blair/Brown relationship).
Tom Harris MP at And another thing… asks, ‘Why couldn’t Dave win?’, especially after what the Tories claim were 13 years of one of our worst governments. Paul Goodman at ConservativeHome says that the government should publicise the full list of quangos it intends to axe.
Sunder Katwala at Next Left says that there are rumours that Ed Balls may quit the Labour leadership race – Labour Uncut has more. Sophie Elmshurst at The Staggers says that Ed Miliband now has the backing of Unite, the UK’s biggest trade union. Jan Boucek at the Adam Smith Institute’s blog is critical of David Miliband’s plans to solve the ‘jobs deficit’.
Tim Worstall thinks that Vince Cable is acting strangely, and Sunder Katwala at Next Left wonders if Nick Clegg betrayed 2.7 million Lib Dem voters by forming a coalition with the Conservatives. George Eaton at The Staggers says that it is looking increasingly like the Conservatives will not put candidates up against the Liberal Democrats at the next election, but Peter Hoskin at Coffee House is more cautious about this.
Jess Freeman at Party Lines blog takes a quick look at the government’s decision today, to axe the UK Film Council, and Wat Tyler at Burning our money is concerned that welfare gets paid to even those who are on not on low incomes.
Iain Dale is concerned that, on the eve of a trade mission to India, the UK does not yet have a trade minister. Tim Montegomerie at ConservativeHome says that David Cameron is backing Turkey’s entry into the EU. According to George Eaton at The Staggers, the Tory right is organising a ‘Brokeback Club’ to challenge government policy. Iain Dale thinks that this a bad idea.
Caroline Crampton at The Staggers says that Gillian Duffy (of ‘Bigotgate fame’) now backs David Miliband for Labour leader, while Michael Dugher at Labour Uncut writes to warn against Labour lurching to far to the left as it did after it’s defeat in 1979. Hopi Sen makes the case against David Miliband (as a thought experiment).
Guido has a sighting of Gordon Brown in the Commons.
Peter Hoskin at Coffee House says that up to 1.8 million currently on incapacity benefits, could return to work and Iain Dale has some thoughts on the Olympic legacy after 2012. Political Scrapbook addresses apparent untruths in Theresa May’s upcoming Home Office Police White Paper.
Tim Montegomerie looks at the weakness of the Lib Dems’ position, while Samria Shackle at The Staggers says that Labour is gaining votes from the Lib Dems. Rachel Reeves MP, guest blogging at Left Foot Forward is critical of Vince Cable’s recently announced plans, which she says do little for SMEs. Jess Freeman at Party Lines Blog wonders if Lib-Dem MPs rebelling against the academies bill might cause headaches for the coalition.
Sunny Hundal at Liberal Conspiracy has a close look at David Miliband’s campaign. Mike Smithson at politicalbetting.com is edging towards the older Miliband for the Labour leadership. Tim Montegomerie at ConservativeHome looks forward to a new Labour leader – Labour will be easier to fight that way. Hopi Sen (continuing his series) makes the case against Ed Miliband. George Eaton at The Staggers says that Labour is now only two points behind the Tories in a recent poll – David Blackburn at Coffee House says that the poll is worrying for the Tories. Sunder Katwala at Next Left says that Labour should support the AV referendum, but not the upcoming bill which also includes a reduction in the size of the House of Commons. Mark Valladares at Liberal Bureaucracy prefers Old Labour to New Labour, especially considering they will now be voting against the AV reform bill in its present form.
Mike Smithson at politicalbetting.com says that people may be ‘misremembering’ having voted for the Li-Dems during the election. Sunny Hundal at Liberal Conspiracy says that the Lib Dem deputy leader, Simon Hughes, would have preferred a Lab-Lib coalition to the present one, and Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting says that Nick Clegg is the coalition’s ‘weakest link’, and lists some of his recent actions that may have damaged the government. Shamik Das at Left Foot Forward discusses Bank of England Governor Mervyn King’s appearance at the Treasury Select Committee today and whether Nick Clegg changed his mind towards reducing the deficit more quickly after a warning from King.
David Blackburn at Coffee House looks at who should make concessions to please the ‘AV rebels’ – Cameron or Clegg? Will Straw at Left Foot Forward says that electoral reformers should oppose the coalition’s ‘gerrymandering’, and George Eaton at The Staggers says that Labour should try to amend the bill, but not stop supporting a change to AV. Kiran Stacey at the FT’s Westminster Blog says that the amended bill could ‘kill’ the referendum as Labour will no longer support it in this form. Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting finds that Scotland would not be as proportionately representative under AV as it is now.
Ian Austin at Labour Uncut is critical of David Cameron’s ‘double-talk’ (as compared with some of his previous comments) on Israel in a speech given in Turkey yesterday. On the other hand, Ben Fox at Left Foot Forward says that Cameron is ‘pragmatic’ on Turkey and Europe.
Sarah Mulley at Left Foot Forward says that this week’s trip to India by David Cameron have exposed his differences with Vince Cable on immigration policy – specifically on the proposed cap. George Eaton at The Staggers warns of ‘cracks’ in the coalition over immigration. Tim Finch of the ippr guest blogs at Liberal Conspiracy on immigration and deportation/return policies.
Asa Bennett at Party Lines Blog looks at Theresa May’s intended changes to the ASBO system and liquor licensing.
Hopi Sen makes the case against Andy Burnham.
Nick Robinson’s review documentary of the five days of coalition building after the election in May, airs this evening. Ahead of Nick Robinson’s documentary tonight, Paul Smithson at politicalbetting.com asks if it was Gordon Brown’s inaction was what made the coalition possible? George Eaton at The Staggers reports that the TUC has withdrawn its invitation for Vince Cable to speak, citing his support for the coalition’s cuts.
Sunder Katwala at Next Left finds that there is growing support for a two bill solution to the AV referendum and boundary review legislation.
Paul Coterill at Liberal Conspiracy is concerned that Nick Clegg is misleading voters on the state of the economy, while Hopi Sen has a cheer and a boo for Clegg, but Tom Harris MP at And another thing…is no fan of Clegg’s behaviour. Asa Bennett at Party Lines Blog has some warnings that the recovery may not be beginning despite recent positive figures of GDP growth.
Samira Shackle at The Staggers looks at David Cameron’s recent comments on Pakistan, and asks if he was right to make them. David Griffiths, blogging at The Staggers discussing David Cameron’s India trip this week, says that Cameron has ignored religious divisions and violence there.
Iain Dale has some thoughts on the death of the ASBO. Paul at Though Cowards Flinch is pleased that ASBO’s are being axed. Shamik Das at Left Foot Forward looks at Michael Gove’s latest mistake – only 158 schools have applied for academy status, not 1,000 as he stated in June.
George Eaton at The Staggers says that Labour has a history of long opposition periods – but it may have a chance at improving that record this time. Jess Freeman at Party Lines Blog explores whether Labour is neglecting its members who are not English, while Hopi Sen makes the case against Diane Abbott. Mike Smithson at poiliticalbetting.com says that the latest YouGov poll indicates a David Miliband victory in the Labour leadership competition.
Liberal Conspiracy reports that the Treasury has no money for Trident, and that the cost will have to come out of the MoD’s budget, while Paul Goodman at ConservativeHome looks at Iain Duncan Smith’s proposed welfare reforms – a ‘radical’ simplification is apparently on the cards. Hopi Sen still thinks he is doomed as a Cabinet Minister, however.
Samira Shackle at The Staggers has more on the lower than previously stated applications for academy schools from yesterday. Jim Pickard at the FT’s Westminster Blog is not convinced that Eric Pickles’ plans to allow people to vote in local referendums for or against council tax rises will not have its desired effect
Peter Hoskin at Coffee House reports that Ed Balls is now at last place in the Labour race according to the polls.