Local elections: why Labour bucked the trend in Wales

Anyone listening to the Today Programme on Radio 4 this morning would have heard John McDonnell denying vigorously that yesterday’s local election results were a disaster.  His argument: Labour had held Cardiff, Swansea, Newport, Neath and Port Talbot.  They had stemmed the tide in Wales.  Diane Abbott was saying much the same thing this afternoon. […]

Theresa May and a moment of the purest weakness

Theresa May’s extraordinary comments this afternoon — to the effect that there are some in Brussels who are seeking deliberately to influence the UK general election by spreading fear — deserve a little deconstruction. The fact that they appear to come straight from the Donald Trump playbook is far from the least concerning aspect of them. The EU is […]

Brexit and nostalgia: a narrative for social democrats?

The return of blue passports, or the royal yacht Brtiannia; gunboats being sent to Gibraltar; the return of imperial measures – it’s not difficult to see the world of Brexit Britain as a sort of contemporary version of Passport to Pimlico, with the symbolism of empire once again dominating Britain’s political discourse.  And it is […]

Anatomy of a disaster: Labour after Copeland and Stoke

After the by-elections, the comment on the state of Labour.  For the Labour Party – which won Stoke and lost Copeland – the very fact that its, rather than the Tories’, performance was the focus of attention ought to be bad enough, given that the Government is in clear disarray over Brexit.  But there is, […]

Triggering Article 50 is the point of no return – and the UK isn’t ready

Prime Minister Theresa May has made it clear that she intends to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, giving the UK’s formal notice that it will leave the EU, by the end of March 2017.  How that process happens depends on a case in the Supreme Court, whose verdict is expected shortly; it will […]

In praise of Warren Morgan

When, a little over eighteen months ago, I moved from Brighton to Cardiff, I decided that I wouldn’t comment on Brighton and Hove politics any more; for all the attachements and friendships formed in my time as a Labour activist and council candidate in the city, the time had come to move on. However, I […]

If Labour is to win, it must oppose Brexit

A new report by the Fabian Society suggests that Labour will not be able to form a Government on its own after the next General Election; the implication is that Labour will have to make alliances in order to win. It’s a sobering read: although the most sobering part, perhaps, is the tacit acceptance of […]