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If Miliband got it right, Cameron would be finished, Eagle Eye

If Miliband got it right, Cameron would be finished

A bit slow getting to the article in yesterday’s Times (pay wall) by Dominic Cummings, Michael Gove’s brilliant former special adviser. He says he recently conducted focus groups in marginal constituencies with people who voted Conservative in 2010 but who were unlikely to do so next year. This research was for Business for Britain, the [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Friday, 27 June 2014 at 12:30 pm

Merkel’s Misjudgement, Eagle Eye

Merkel’s Misjudgement

I may have been too harsh on David Cameron in my column for The Independent on Sunday today. I said it did not bode well for his hopes of renegotiating British terms of EU membership that he had misjudged Jean-Claude Juncker’s bid to be president of the European Commission.
Actually, though, it was Angela Merkel who [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 22 June 2014 at 7:26 pm

Blair is un-Blairite on free movement of EU workers, Eagle Eye

Blair is un-Blairite on free movement of EU workers

I agree with Ed Miliband and disagree with Tony Blair about Europe in my column for The Independent on Sunday today.
Here is a graph that shows the relative success of Miliband and Yvette Cooper’s approach to the question of immigration. YouGov regularly asks: “Which political party [do] you think would handle [asylum and immigration] best?” [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 8 June 2014 at 2:42 pm

New Zealand Butter All Over Again, Eagle Eye

New Zealand Butter All Over Again

David Cameron’s plan for European renegotiation and referendum became clearer in an important interview with Andrew Marr this morning (transcript here).
It is not quite New Zealand butter – Harold Wilson’s cosmetic renegotiation in 1975 of slightly better terms for imports from Commonwealth countries – but it is hardly the “fundamental” change Cameron has implied before.
The main elements [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 11 May 2014 at 5:56 pm

Never Closer Union, part 2, Eagle Eye

Never Closer Union, part 2

Further to my previous post, a footnote on Ed Miliband’s article in the Financial Times (limited free access). He says that “ever closer union” – the phrase that David Cameron wants to excise from the EU treaties – is “not Labour’s vision for Europe”. And he wants to transfer power to national parliaments. But he doesn’t say [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Wednesday, 12 March 2014 at 11:31 am

“No, we don’t want an in-out referendum”: Ed Miliband, right first time, Eagle Eye

“No, we don’t want an in-out referendum”: Ed Miliband, right first time

“No, we don’t want an in-out referendum,” Ed Miliband told the House of Commons in January last year. There was uproar, and afterwards Ed Balls told him off for not adding “now” at the end of the sentence. But what Miliband said then has turned out to be what he meant.
Today is a triumph [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Wednesday, 12 March 2014 at 11:14 am

Peak UKIP, Eagle Eye

Peak UKIP

UKIP is in decline from now on, I argue in The Independent on Sunday today. The foremost academics who study the party, Robert Ford and Matthew Goodwin, were politer in their assessment of its showing in the Wythenshawe by-election, that it was a “solid advance”.
That is true, but a solid advance is not enough. The [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 16 February 2014 at 10:26 pm

Judo Leadership, or Appeasement?, Eagle Eye

Judo Leadership, or Appeasement?

Are parliamentary tactics like an evolutionary arms race? John Rentoul explains

By | Eagle Eye | Sunday, 2 February 2014 at 8:52 pm

The Tory Fifth Column, Eagle Eye

The Tory Fifth Column

Matthew Parris has a furious attack on the Tory fifth column in The Times today (pay wall):
I believe that a group of Conservative backbench MPs — quite a small group, much smaller than what the news media like to call the “Tory Euro-rebels” — are content that should their party lose the coming general election, [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Saturday, 18 January 2014 at 11:57 am

How many Tory MPs really want to leave the EU?, Eagle Eye

How many Tory MPs really want to leave the EU?

I do not believe that there are as many as 95 Conservative MPs who really want to leave the EU, but I have taken the dunderheadedness that gives the opposite impression as the subject of my column in The Independent today.
There may be about 20 Tory MPs who have publicly said that they think Britain [...]

By | Eagle Eye | Tuesday, 14 January 2014 at 11:26 am

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