Chris Gilson takes a look at the week in political blogging.
Anthony Wells at UK Polling report finds that support for the AV referendum is high in principle, but this support drops significantly in the eyes of the public if there will be substantial costs involved. Paul Linford takes an in-depth look at the difficulties faced by the Lib Dems over the referendum – defeat could mean the break-up of the coalition; though Iain Dale doesn’t think so. Mike Smithson at politicalbetting.com thinks that a move to AV might see a reduction in support for the Lib Dems.
David Herdson at polticalbetting.com asks how long can International Development can be excluded from cuts, while Wat Tyler at Burning our Money looks to history for lessons on employment growth during recessionary periods. Peter Hoskin at Coffee House commends the Treasury for asking Departments to plan how they might effect 40% cuts, while Sunder Katwala at Next Left is rather more cynical.
Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting says that Labour should amend the referendum bill to something that is ‘truly proportional’, but Neil Robertson blogging at Left Foot Forward accuses Labour of ‘attacking from the right’.
Conor Ryan at Conor’s Commentary has some thoughts on Michael Gove’s proposed 16-19 school reforms and Paul Goodman at ConservativeHome looks at David Davis’ recent criticisms of recent proposals on prison reform.
ConservativeHome has a league table of Cabinet satisfaction ratings – (Iain Duncan Smith leads the table with 87%). Fraser Nelson at Coffee House blogs his approval of the strengthening ties within the coalition. Iain Dale says that most MPs aren’t lazy.
Stephen Dunn at politicalbetting.com looks at how we might redraw electoral boundaries with the aid of sophisticated computer algorithms.
John Redwood says that the government must ‘set the record straight’ over public sector job losses, while Jim Pickard at the FT’s Westminster Blog looks at whether the government might change strike legislation to avert cuts-related industrial militancy.
Eamonn Butler at the Adam Smith Institute’s Blog is positive about the 40% cuts edict from Treasury – it’s only ‘exploring the options’. Samira Shackle at The Staggers says budget cuts will fall disproportionally on women, with 70 per cent of revenue raised coming from tax and benefit changes to com from female tax payers. Conor Ryan at Conor’s Commentary decries the abandonment of the building plans for a large number of schools. Hopi Sen is concerned that the brunt of the government’s cuts might be borne by the welfare budget with significant consequences for the poor.
Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting agrees with SNP MSP Ian McKee that Scotland should be exempt from a UK migrant cap.
Guido has some thoughts on the AV referendum – some of the Labour leadership candidates have some reservations about AV, and may want to vote ‘No’ to undermine the coalition, while Jon Bernstien at The Staggers floats the idea that the Lib Dems may still walk away from the coalition even if they win the electoral reform referendum. Sunny Hundal at Liberal Conspiracy has a round-up of the government’s intended constitutional changes.
Mark Pack takes a look at the size of the House of Commons since the 1800s – Nick Clegg’s announcement today that the House will shrink to 600 MPs is one the biggest decreases in the number of MPs ever. Sunder Katwala at Next Left thinks that a smaller parliament will be a step back for gender equality.
George Eaton at The Staggers does not think that David Cameron will get a particularly warm welcome if he speaks at the Lib Dem party conference later on this year, as Iain Martin at The Wall Street Journal asks – What if David Cameron had won the election?
Anthony Wells at UK Polling Report looks at how second preferences have changed since the election, and has some thoughts on whether this might hurt Labour. Sunny Hundal at Liberal Conspiracy says that it’s in Labour’s interests to support vote reform, and gives three reasons why. Iain Dale says that we should cut the number of Ministers, too. Peter Wrigley at Keynesian Liberal gives ‘one and a half cheers’ for Clegg’s constitutional reforms.
Tim Montegomerie at ConservativeHome looks at some department’s attempts to reclassify policies as part of other departments that are avoiding cuts (such as health).
Sean Fear at politialbetting.com looks at why the Tory right is not in open revolt over the coalition’s plans.
Lloyd Evans at Coffee House is critical of Speaker John Bercow’s apparently heavy-handed approach.
Mike Smithson at polticalbetting.com looks at the ‘shy Labour’ factor in the election. John Woodcock at Labour Uncut disagrees with Ed Miliband on flexible labour markets. Adam Ramsay at Liberal Conspiracy says that the left must set the debate, rather than ceding political ground to the right.
Nathan Trout at Political Scrapbook looks at infighting within the BNP leadership.
George Eaton at The Staggers explains why the NHS should not be exempt from public sector cuts; and later, he ponders whether the coalition will listen to the OECD’s warnings about unemployment. Hopi Sen has an idea for linking Gilt interest to government spending rates. Kevin Meagher at Left Foot Forward looks at Vince Cables 1960s vision for BIS.
Sunny Hundal at Liberal Conspiracy blogs on the apparent atmosphere of mistrust between Number 10 and the MoD.
Paul Goodman at ConservativeHome says that the government is ‘rolling on’ Thatcher’s revolution, while Richard Darlington at The Staggers says that there are ‘echoes of Blair’ in Cameron’s Big Society plans. John Redwood looks at Michael Gove’s administrative problems (although Conor Ryan at Conor’s Commentary says that Gove has made bigger errors).
Iain Dale looks at the possible scrappage of Earl Day Motions in parliament. Gary Gibbon at SnowBlog talks about a possible senior civil service talent flight to the private sector.
Shamik Das at Left Foot Forward says that the Lib Dems have the most seats to lose if the number of MPs is reduced to 600 – they have more seats than any other party in isolated areas, surrounded by seats of opposing parties.
James Ruddick at Labour Uncut is worried that the Tories are re-writing Labour’s history in government, whilst Sunny Hundal at Liberal Conspiracy looks at the achievements of the Labour government’s and its legacy of the welfare state, while Ed Jacobs at Left Foot Forward looks at the greater than expected cuts facing Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Guido blogs on Ed Balls’ ‘aggressive campaign’, while Andy Burnham’s campaign accuses Balls of running a smear campaign on him, while Sunder Katwala at Next Left looks at how much money matters in the Labour leadership race – David Milliband has raised the most by far. George Eaton at The Staggers has more on the elder Miliband’s fundraising powers. Paul Linford at polticalbetting.com reckons that the real race is now down to the two Milibands.
Mark Pack blogs briefly on the reduction of police powers to stop and search, John Redwood has some thoughts as well, as does Lynne Featherstone.
Peter Wrigley at Keynesian Liberal is very critical of Michael Gove’s administrative issues in announcing which school building projects will be abandoned, and concerned about the economic consequences of abandoning these projects. Sunder Katwala at Next Left has a good round-up of thinking on the Gove affair – it may have hurt his chances of being a future Tory leader. Nick Robinson has some further analysis.
Paul Goodman at ConservativeHome says that theTreasury is now no longer blocking Health Secretary Andrew Lansley’s reforms of commissioning – transferring this responsibility from PCTs to GPs. Eamonn Butler at the Adam Smith Institute’s blog is very supportive of this move saying, “it is the first step towards making the NHS the funder, but no longer the provider, of healthcare”.
Jeff at SNP Tactical Voting muses on the possibility of a total Lib Dem wipeout in next year’s Scottish elections.
Alex Barker at the FT’s Westminster Blog looks at how the OBR may have ‘tweaked’ unemployment forecasts prior to the budget, erasing 175,000 potential job losses. Wat Tyler at Burning our Money has more. Peter Hoskin at Coffee House blogs on the potential independence of the next OBR chief.