Friday, 5 October 2007

The Poliblogs 5th October 2007

White House To Brown - 'Up Yours, Pal'

Oh dear. Via Think Progress, the Telegraph has an article attracting attention Stateside: There's concern about Brown," a senior White House foreign policy official told The Daily Telegraph. "But this is compensated by the fact that Paris and Berlin are much less of a headache. The need to hinge everything on London as the guarantor of European security has gone."

Blair Watch

Brown has blown it

Apologies if this post is a bit repetitive - but I really do think the last few days has been a watershed in British politics. A week ago, I really believed that Gordon Brown was riding so high in the polls that he would not be able to resist going for a 'cut and run' opportunistic General Election. I thought his Conference speech was authoritative and worked well - even if I didn't swallow a word of it. But then he went to Iraq in the middle of the Conservative Party Conference to make an announcement that 1000 of our troops would be home by Christmas.

A view from Rural Wales

Opinion Poll Poker

Has Gordon Brown been bluffing or will he call a general election this month? Opinion Poll Poker is the game everyone is playing as surveys rain down on us this weekend. So you can be an informed punter Michael Thrasher and I have assembled a rule of thumb guide to key benchmarks focussing on the gap between the two main parties and what it would mean at a General Election indeed.

Boulton & Co.

Polls, damn polls and statistics

I don’t get this, I really don’t. Political opinion polls, we’re led to believe, reflect an accurate representation of the views of voters. Last week, New Labour had a 13 per cent lead according to a IPSOS-MORI poll. Tonight, according to a YouGov poll for Channel 4 News, that lead is now just four per cent.

Chicken Yoghurt

How “certainty to vote” is behind the Tory bounce

The boss of Populus, Andrew Cooper, has very kindly given me advanced sight of the detail from today’s poll in the Times and I reproduce part of it above. There are two main features:- A big disparity between the responses of Labour and Tory voters when it comes to their likelihood to vote and evidence that Labour is not picking up as many 2005 Lib Dem supporters as they had been in recent surveys. So for every three that are going to Labour four are now saying they will vote Tory. From those saying they are “certain to vote” the Tories have a hefty lead.

Political Betting

Election timing

Having been swept along with General Election hype over the last two weeks I have now taken a deep breath and tried to think through whether I believe this is a good idea.

Luke’s Blog

Theresa May MP: Come on Gordon, Bring it on!

Well, what a week. I opened my first conference speech by saying: “we have the policies, we have the candidates, and we have the will to fight Gordon Brown and win the next general election – whenever it is called.” And, this week, hasn’t the Conservative Party shown it.

Conservative Home

David Cameron repeats his call for an election.

David Cameron is still calling for Gordon Brown to announce a snap election. All those in the media who claimed that Cameron was bluffing have been proved wrong. With last nights polls looking very favourable (particularly the Guardian) I can't see Brown going for it now. He did his best to disrupt the Tory conference by not ruling out an election and announcing false claims of troop withdrawals. He failed.

Daily Referendum

No election but Brown needs to pray

Is it really that surprising to anyone that there has been a conference bounce for Cameron cutting the Labour to between zero and four depending on which poll you read? This polling question, and the inevitable yearly bounce that each party gets is one of the reasons I don't believe there will be an autumn election. It was obvious that the the Tory share would increase after a conference and blanket coverage.

Dizzy Thinks

The class struggle at Royal Mail

Something is badly wrong with Britain’s postal services. That much dawned on me when I moved to a new flat in inner London last year, and Royal Mail lost three packages destined for the new address in just four months. Any amount of visits to the local sorting office, which I could only fit in on Saturday mornings thanks to the inconvenient opening hours, were to no avail. It was quite clear that the staff – both the guys at the counter and the supervisory people supposedly put on the case – couldn’t care less about my missing packages.

Dave’s Part

The new profiteers

Lord Darzi's report makes the government's desire for privatisation clear, but this will only lead to more debt and deficit in our hospitals.

Allyson Pollock

Sticking with Dave

Conservatives 07: The Tory leader knows his party must change. If they lose again they should deepen the Cameron project, not abandon it.

Sunder Katwala

Fixed term Parliaments... please!!!!

There must surely, by now, be a growing demand for fixed term Parliaments.

It can't be fair for local election dates to be fixed, Euro elections dates to be set, and yet the House of Commons to still operate on a system that hugely benefits the Prime Minister.

Paula Keaveney

Could Cameron really survive an election defeat?

Amid the ongoing welter of election speculation, one piece that caught my eye today was from Simon Jenkins in the Guardian, in which he argues that while David Cameron's Blackpool speech showed him to be a Prime Minister in the making, he is not yet one that is ready to take over the job in less than a month's time.

Paul Linford

Political Implications of Gordon Brown’s Decimation of the Post Offices

Yesterday the closure of 75 Post Offices was announced in my region - the East Midlands. The list is at the end of the article. In my region there may be implications for the rise of Independent Mayors and Councillors - this may interest the Our Kingdom people. There’s a lot to be said about these closures. First a few reflections on the proposals:

The Wardman Wire

Remaining questions

So why isn't the election off? Surely, you may say, with polls this tight, this volatile and with a history of overstating Labour’s ratings; surely with difficult boundary changes; and surely with there being no need to risk all now, Gordon Brown will pull back? Not yet he ain't. His aides still say that the decision has yet to be taken.

Nick Robinson

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