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Archive for the ‘europe’


Levers of power 422

Posted on October 17, 2019 by

16 votes, up to a maximum of 31, you say?

If only there was a party with enough MPs to turn that round, eh?

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The problem of England and Wales 131

Posted on October 14, 2019 by

As we write this, in between bouts of weeping with exhausted misery, frustration and rage, Her Majesty’s Opposition’s interminable will-they-won’t-they game of attempting – maybe, one day, perhaps – to bring down the government and force a new election leading to a new EU referendum continues.

And as the SNP in particular devotes huge amounts of energy to trying to stop Brexit, against the wishes of its own voters, we wondered how the public not just in Scotland but in the two constituent nations of the UK that voted Leave felt about that.

Uh-oh.

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The broad church 187

Posted on October 12, 2019 by

Our feather-ruffling Panelbase poll of SNP voters is now almost at an end, with only one further revelation to come tomorrow. So we thought it was worth taking a moment for a little bit of closer examination of just who the respondents were.

We know, of course, that the criteria for the sample was people who said they currently intend to vote for the SNP with their constituency vote at the next Scottish Parliament election in 2021. But what else do we know about them?

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Priority boarding 173

Posted on October 09, 2019 by

It’s been quite the week so far. For the vile and sickening crime of [check notes] finding out what SNP voters were thinking about the important political issues of the moment, we’ve had (especially on Facebook) a two-day barrage of stuff like this, and worse:

So, y’know, on with what we always do: reporting the facts.

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Honest dirty hands 320

Posted on October 08, 2019 by

Yesterday’s poll results attracted quite a surprising amount of anger from people who apparently don’t consider it at all important to the cause of independence to find out what people intending to vote SNP at the next Holyrood election think.

They’re probably not going to like these ones much either.

A third of SNP voters are unconvinced by the First Minister’s constant assurances that a second indyref will be delivered in the next 18 months. But the related question posed by several readers yesterday was “If you don’t think the SNP has a coherent strategy for securing a new vote, what would YOU do, Mister Smartypants?”

Which is annoying, because it’s a question we’ve answered in various contexts half a dozen times in the past year and a bit. So we thought we’d see if voters had been paying any more attention.

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What you want to believe 350

Posted on October 07, 2019 by

This site has repeatedly – much to the displeasure of some readers – expressed the view in 2019 that the SNP doesn’t know what it’s doing with regard to Brexit. But it turns out we’re not the only people who feel that way.

Last week we commissioned a Panelbase poll of SNP voters only (specifically those currently planning to use their Holyrood constituency vote for the party in 2021), and these were the results.

In other words, nobody has a clue what the goal is, let alone the strategy.

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Labour and Brexit: clarity at last 130

Posted on September 23, 2019 by

Labour just had a vote at their party conference to decide on their Brexit policy. On a close show of hands, the party voted not to have a policy on Brexit until after the next general election, and – we promise you we’re not making any of this up – delegates immediately demanded to have another vote to overturn that vote.

A few minutes later, Momentum activist Cathleen Clarke and former Tony Blair adviser John McTernan appeared on Sky News to sort it all out for confused viewers.

Good luck in the next few months, everyone.

The letter 278

Posted on September 10, 2019 by

We saw this earlier, and thought “Oh God, what now?”

So we had a look.

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The British sense of fair play 159

Posted on September 07, 2019 by

We’ve talked about this subject before, but a couple of findings in a new poll today by Survation really caught our eye.

And that tells us something quite profound about the UK’s voters.

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Hopeless times 417

Posted on September 06, 2019 by

Sitrep: we’ve given up any hope of turning on the television and seeing a politician – any politician – telling the truth.

Boris Johnson is lying about negotiating a new deal with the EU. Jeremy Corbyn is lying about pretty much everything (in so far as he even knows what he wants the truth to be, let alone what it actually is). Jo Swinson is lying about wanting to meaningfully work with other parties to stop Brexit. Nicola Sturgeon is lying about wanting to stop a no-deal Brexit – she just wants to stop Brexit full stop.

(Unfortunately, this also means she’s lying about having any real intention of holding a second independence referendum before 2021. If she did, she wouldn’t have all her MPs and MSPs frantically running around parliaments and courtrooms trying to destroy her own democratic mandate for it, which would leave her needing to secure a fresh one 20 months from now. And assuming she’d have any more idea how to put it into practice than she has with the ones she’s already got.)

The government is lying about the fact that it doesn’t have confidence in itself, and the opposition is lying about the fact that it does. Everyone now says they want an election, but somehow it isn’t happening because nobody wants it yet, and nobody can agree when they DO want it, and they’re all lying about why.

And absolutely everyone is lying about the fact that whatever they’re trying to do right now has any chance of solving the present shambles. Johnson is just stalling to run the clock down until no-deal, although he swears blind that he isn’t, and the opposition just wants to drag the whole agony out for several more months with not the slightest clue what they’d actually do then.

Grimly, the closest thing that British voters currently have to an honest man is Nigel Farage, who is at least clear about what he wants and what he’s prepared to do to get it. Which is ironic, as he’s only anywhere near getting it because he’s spent his entire political career lying through his teeth about it.

We don’t mind telling you, folks, it’s been pretty hard to get up in the mornings.

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Chaos and conspicuous lounging 441

Posted on September 04, 2019 by

So, British politics, eh? We’re basically on strike until things make at least an iota of sense, because there’s no point in attempting political analysis right now when events can overtake you before you’ve finished typing a sentence.

But let’s just have a quick recap on what we know.

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Coup versus coup 658

Posted on August 28, 2019 by

Today, a collection of UK politicians who were to all intents and purposes attempting to arrange a coup have been complaining that the government has beaten them to it by organising a coup against their coup. The fox has ambushed the chickens.

Boris Johnson’s move to prorogue Parliament for most of September and a chunk of October actually only represents a couple of weeks of extra holiday time for MPs – Westminster would be shut for most of the time in question anyway for party conference season.

The Commons would open for business again on 14 October, in time to debate the outcome of a crucial European Council summit on 17-18 October. If that meeting doesn’t provide any new deal – and it’s vanishingly unlikely that it will – then there’ll be no time for anything other than a no-deal Brexit.

But there wasn’t anyway.

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