Morning Report: Westminster awakes as Nick and Dave rekindle their romance

January 7, 2013 8:36 am

Dedicated LabourList readers will remember that (long ago) we used to do a feature called “Morning Report” each weekday, as a way of rounding up the news that mattered in the Labour movement and looking ahead to what might happen over the next 24 hours.

Well as a 2013 resolution, it’s back…

morning_report.png

As Westminster wakes from the Christmas hibernation Clegg and Cameron are renewing their vows relaunching the coalition today. It’s unclear at this stage what exactly the rekindling of their Rose Garden romance might look like (I’m guessing sickly and/or awkward AKA “Coalicious”) but the event has been pre-butted by Michael Dugher in The Mirror (with obligatory references to hard-working families).

Co-incidentally (and perhaps unfortunately for the government) today is also the day that millions lose their child benefit. The Guardian reports Yvette Cooper’s concerns that the losers from child benefit cuts will be women – and the Daily Mail fears “tax return misery”. Is 2013 going to be as omnishambolic as 2012?

What the government are banking on this week is that Labour will annoy voters and/or have an internal row over the “welfare uprating Bill” on which there is a vote tomorrow. The brouhaha has begun in earnest today, with Jacqui Smith quoted at length criticising the plans in the Daily Mail.

However David Cameron is facing his own internal brouhaha over Europe. Yesterday he was attacking UKIP again on Marr – much to the annoyance of some of his more strident backbenchers. Today there’s a pincer movement from Peter Mandelson in the Guardian and Douglas Alexander on Politics Home attacking Cameron’s behaviour as “absurd”, “economically insane” and symptomatic of his “weakness”. Neither man seems convinced by arguments for an EU referendum.

And finally – the Tories love nothing more than attacking Ed Balls, especially the PM (his obsession is getting out of hand). Yet despite reducing his majority to just 1200 in 2010, the Conservatives can’t even find anyone willing to oppose the Shadow Chancellor at the next election. Seemingly the previous candidate “fears the seat is unwinnable by the Tories”.

I wonder what the hand gesture for that is…?

Latest

  • News Blair says the West must be prepared to work with Putin and the Egyptian military

    Blair says the West must be prepared to work with Putin and the Egyptian military

    Tony Blair may not have been Prime Minister for nearly seven years now, but his views – particularly on foreign policy – are always newsworthy. This morning he gave a wide-ranging and controversial speech at Bloomberg’s London HQ on the Middle East, urging the West not to pull back from the Middle East as an unsolvable problem, but to engage. Although despite the billing, this was as much a speech about faith as it was about geo-politics. At the roots of Blair’s […]

    Read more →
  • News Labour set up rapid rebuttal unit for election campaign

    Labour set up rapid rebuttal unit for election campaign

    Labour plan to step up their media monitoring process in the run up to the 2015 general election, according to The Independent. A team will be in charge of rebutting negative media to avoid a re-run of the 1992 election, where an onslaught of attacks from the press played their part in a unexpected Conservative victory. Michael Dugher, the MP in charge of Labour’s communications, is this week in the US discussing strategy with new appointment David Axelrod and other political […]

    Read more →
  • Featured UKIP, England and St George

    UKIP, England and St George

    Labour tends to view UKIP like Nelson viewed the signal at the Battle of Copenhagen. He held the telescope to his blind eye and said, ‘I really do not see the signal’.  Our image of  UKIP is a protest vehicle for disaffected, older, right wing Tories in the South. But UKIP represents more significant trends than this caricature suggests. UKIP is a symptom of the deep social and economic changes that have taken place over the last thirty years. Its […]

    Read more →
  • News Why are the Lib Dems so shy?

    Why are the Lib Dems so shy?

    Regular readers will know that we’re always keeping an eye on Lib Dems leaflets. Their local propaganda sheets are always good for a questionable bar chart, or forgetting the name of the generic place their text is for – but they can also be quite shy about their party affiliation too. For example, take the “Islington Chronicle”. Sounds like a local paper, and there’s no Lib Dem logo and barely a splash of their trademark yellow. But it is, in […]

    Read more →
  • News Scotland Seats and Selections Have the Tories given up on Scotland?

    Have the Tories given up on Scotland?

    This morning we noted that the Tories haven’t selected candidates in nearly half of the most marginal Labour and Lib Dem seats. But what’s particularly telling is that in over 60% of target seats in the Midlands and the North they have so far failed to select a candidate, while the Independent claims that in Scotland there are no Tory parliamentary candidates at all. However, Mark Wallace over at ConHome notes that the Tories have in fact selected a total of two […]

    Read more →