This category contains 35 posts

Tory Rebellions Over Europe

The division within the Tory party between the moderately Eurosceptic leadership and the Europhobic backbenchers continues to cause problems for David Cameron. The ‘Ballots and Bullets’ blog from Nottingham University has two interesting posts on this issues: dated 31/10 and 1/11. http://nottspolitics.org/ Advertisements

Lib- Lab: A match made in heaven?

If recent trends in Third Party support continue, Vernon Bogdanor’s prediction that the winning party will need 86 seats more than the party that comes second to form a majority administration. This raises the spectre of another coalition in 2015- if so will the Liberals get back into political bed with the Conservatives ( a … Continue reading

The hollow centre

Many political scientists believe that the key to electoral success is to position yourself in the ideological centre because most voters are naturally inclined to position themselves in a moderate position. The New Statesman questions whether or not all of our political parties have failed to follow the electorate to the centre of the ideological … Continue reading

Labour’s Ideology

Ed Miliband has actually managed to make a speech that the media thought was good. I don’t think I thought that I would ever have the opportunity to type those words but yesterday’s offering from the Labour party leader seems to have gone down very well. Miliband’s speech was not a tour de force of … Continue reading

Labour’s Economic Policy

The Political Parties topic in Unit 1 requires you to understand the nature of party policy and how these policies compare. Probably the most important area is economics- most elections come down to the old adage of ‘it’s the economy stupd’ and 2015 is likely to be the same. Ed Balls made his keynote speech … Continue reading

The Rise of UKIP

A worrying thought in many ways- but this piece that Mr Carr Hill spotted in the Guardian makes interesting reading about the potential impact of UKIP on the Conservative performance at the next general election. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/19/ukip-force-shape-2015-election

The reshuffle

David Cameron conducted his first major reshuffle last week and the details of who is in or out; promoted or demoted dominates the Sunday papers. The Guardian’s Andrew Rawnsley suggests that Cameron has provided a masterclass in how NOT to reshuffle a cabinet. http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/sep/09/andrew-rawnsley-cameron-cabinet-reshuffle There have been quite a few grumblings this week that the … Continue reading

Conservative Euroscepticism

This piece from Tim Bale examines the recent relationship between the Conservative Party and Europe and suggests that an ‘in-out’ referendum on membership could occur in the future. This speculative story links to Unit 1 material on referendums and parties as well as Unit 2 questions on the constitution. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/2012/06/11/britain-eu-exit-bale/#more-24326

Duverger’s Law

Duverger’s Law is a classic piece of political science. Maurice Duverger writing in the 1950s stated that plurality electoral systems led to 2 party party systems. This post from Patrick Dunleavy on the LSE politics blog suggests that outside of the USA Duverger’s Law is a dead parrot. http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/2012/06/18/duvergers-law-dead-parrot-dunleavy/#more-24544 This post is packed with excellent … Continue reading

One of the most scathing headlines…

Steve Richard’s analysis that the Queen’s speech is ‘a ragbag of eyecathching measures worthy of Tony Blair’ is a rather damning indictment of the coalitions legislative agenda. This opinion piece looks at the motivations for the measures and the triumph of spin over substance. http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/steve-richards/steve-richards-queens-speech–a-ragbag-of-eyecatching-measures-worthy-of-tony-blair-7728975.html

The Week in Westminster

Peter Oborne is always good value and this week’s edition of Week in Westminster was particularly good for Unit 1. Tory divisions over the budget were discussed and there was a great section about representation for minor parties under FPTP with George Galloway, Caroline Lucas and Nigel Farage all expressing their views about the nature … Continue reading

Tory Backbenchers Threaten House of Lords Reform

This story is a god- send to AS politics pupils- if ever there was a multipurpose example this is it… For many Liberal Democrats constitutional reform was the pay back for getting into a political bed populated with ‘nasty’ Tories back in 2010, we all know that electoral reform didn’t go well for the Liberals … Continue reading

How divided are the Conservatives?

Very- is the short version of the answer put forward by Peter Oborne in the Telegraph. The nature of right wing opposition to Cameron is an important aspect of any question on the unity of the Conservative or the relative unity of Labour and the Conservatives . http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/conservative/9211677/The-Right-wing-agitators-out-to-get-David-Cameron.html

H’Angus the Monkey- voting for the ‘other’ parties

Yesterday my set and I were talking about the nature of the UK party system and the fact that how we vote and who represents us elsewhere is different to the nature of representation at Westminster. Our voting behaviour at all levels of elections and our representaiton in second order chambers (EU Parliament, GLA, Scottish … Continue reading

Bradford West By- Election

Over the Easter break George Galloway made a return to Parliament. The former Labour Party MP and leader of the Respect Party was elected as MP in Bradford West. (You need to update your stats on the make up of Parliament- its not just Caroline Lucas representing a minor party in England now!) By- Elections … Continue reading

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