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The Constiutional Mess

This piece from the LSE blog suggests that a wholesale reform of the UK constitution is necessary as in the aftermath of the changes introduced by New Labour the current settlement is obtuse and untidy. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/archives/32372   Advertisements

Votes for 16 year olds

An excellent article from the BBC on whether or not the 16 year olds should be able to vote. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-21742512  

Have the American’s finally had enough of pork

As the sequestration looms Americans seem to have finally had enough of ‘pork barrel’ politics as this article about a protest involing a giant inflatible pig suggests…   http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/federal-eye/wp/2013/02/27/cut-the-pork-but-hold-the-sequestration-protesters-say/

Leader of the House

An excellent piece from the New Yorker on the role of the House Majority Leader. http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/03/04/130304fa_fact_lizza

The Power to Persuade

The growth of Presidential power in recent decades has consistantly been linked to the ability of the President to ‘persuade’ voters from the bully pulpit a phenomenon linked to the growth of first radio and then TV. This article in the New Yorker suggests that the bully pulpit might be more limited than some commentators … Continue reading

Obama’s New Cabinet: Women and Ethnic Minorities

The failure of Obama to nominate ethnic minority candidates to Cabinet vacancies has already been lampooned on the Daily Show. http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/mon-january-14-2013/zero-dark-appointees   But on a more serious note it looks as though Obama will struggle to reach the levels of minority representation he achieved with his previous cabinet. On a positive note his cabinet looks likely … Continue reading

Scottish Blueprint for Independence

The SNP have published a blue print for Scottish Independence in the event of a ‘Yes’ vote in 2014. Key aspects of the document include: – Codification of the Scottish constitution, the blueprint refers extensively to the USA as a source of inspiration. – The Scots intend to include greater protection for (entrenched) individual rights. … Continue reading

The Constituion in podcast/ video form

The Constitution Society has some excellent video clips and podcasts on the subject of constitutional reform- most are only a couple of minutes in length. I would strongly recommend watching and noting some of the following: This debate on whether or not to codify our constitution- is a 25/40 mark essay on the subject distilled … Continue reading

The House of Lords

House of Lords reform has been one of the most controversial areas of constitutional reform since 1997. Here are two excellent posts by Andrew Blick from the Democratic Audit blog: This one looks at the consequences of an elected chamber for the constitution http://www.democraticaudit.com/what-would-be-the-constitutional-consequences-of-lords-reform While this second piece argues that the piecemeal nature of the … Continue reading

Bipartisan Immigration Reform

An interesting piece in the Lexington concerning fresh hope for a bipartisan solution to the immigration problem. http://www.economist.com/blogs/democracyinamerica/2013/01/immigration-reform-0

Roe v Wade- The 40th Birthday

Roe v Wade is 40 years old this year. This seminal SCOTUS ruling is still as relevant to American politics today as it has ever been. The New Yorker has produced an excellent set of articles on the significance and relevence of Roe v Wade. http://www.newyorker.com/talk/comment/2013/01/28/130128taco_talk_toobin http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/11/14/111114fa_fact_lepore And for those of you who would rather … Continue reading

Obama’s Second Term

The inaugeration of President Obama has sparked a flurry of articles about his achievements/legacy and second terms in general. Here are links to one or two of the best: Firstly the Economist looks to the history books- with a piece entitled ‘How will history view me’. The article suggests that Obama has to focus on the … Continue reading

Tensions in the Coalition

Tensions within the coalition have been increasing in recent months and the friendly relationship evident in the Number 10 Rose Garden back in May 2010 seems like a life time away.   There have been a couple of good articles looking at the tensions in the coalition over recent months. This piece in the Telegraph … Continue reading

Embrace your inner geek- does image matter?

Ed Miliband seems to have come to the conclusion that rather than suggesting he is not a policy wonk he should embrace what the rest of the world has known for a long time.., This attempt to embrace substance over style was unveiled on the Andrew Marr show at the weekend. This piece in the … Continue reading

Conference Season

After the long summer break party politics returns with a vengeance this weekend as the party conference season starts. The conference season will see the media indulge in a brutal post- mortem of each party: their policies, leaders and unity will all be disected by TV commentators and newspaper editors alike. Will Clegg survive until … Continue reading