Region Archives: Wales

Can UKIP show its mettle in devolution?

nhamilton

Despite their significant media exposure I think it’s fair to say that so far UKIP’s main successes have come at the ballot box and not at the dispatch box. That the party serves as a repository for protest votes rather than enacting detailed policy is evidenced through the record of long-standing elected members. In his more…

Should doctors strike?

doctor-563428_640

There is to be a further strike by junior doctors in England next week. They will not work between 8 am and 5 pm on 26 and 27 April. In previous strikes, cover for emergencies was maintained; this time it is ‘all out’. (The strikes, and the challenges of the new contract, don’t apply in more…

Northern Ireland’s first fact-checking service launched: FactCheckNI

FCNI Postcard

FactCheckNI — Northern Ireland’s first ever fact-checking service — was officially launched at the Skainos Centre in Belfast. The project — funded by the Big Lottery Fund through Building Change Trust — aims to influence public policy in regards to the voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) sector, keep politicians right in terms of both more…

Just a day to go to the Big EU Debate from Belfast

1day

Tomorrow evening we’ll be holding our EU Referendum debate featuring some of the leading pro-leave and pro-stay campaigners. We’ll be pitting Owen Paterson MP (a former Secretary of State) against Vernon Coaker MP (the current Shadow Secretary of State). We’ll have Kate Hoey MP against former Conservative MEP, John Stevens. The good news is that more…

Referendum & devolution: 3 different pictures

Will they toe the line together?

The elections this May are almost certain to see the return of familiar faces of both nationalism and unionism. Of course I’m referring to the elections to the Scottish Parliament and the Welsh Assembly, whose electorates will go to the polls on 5 May and then again most likely later in the year for the more…

“How deep is Nicola Sturgeon and Kezia Dudgale’s social democratic commitment?”

scotland councils centralised

I don’t share David’s view of the Spanish election result. The most remarkable thing (apart from the low turnout increased turnout, actually) is how poorly Podemos performed compared to expectations earlier in the year. The limited returns from Syriza’s pitch in Greece perhaps coloured expectations? Scotland by contrast got its play for freedom in earlier, more…

Labour’s choice of its enemies

Labour Party in Northern Ireland

LABOUR IN SEARCH OF A SOUL: Labour has a lack of clarity about its own morality and its own purpose. It needs to become a united fighting force again. At this moment, it’s hard to imagine it trying to solve these problems any time soon.

“future banknote designs, starting with the new polymer £5 note, will explicitly represent all four nations of the UK.”

As mentioned in this BBC report focused on the first Bank of England polymer banknote – a £5 note featuring Sir Winston Churchill which will be issued in 2016. Banknotes will feature images from all four nations of the UK starting with the new £5 note entering circulation in 2016. [Timing, eh? – Ed]  Eh?  more…

All the right votes in all the right places – how the Tory electoral strategy triumphed

Lib Dem Falls

The General Election of 2015 has been the worst for opinion pollsters since their calamitous evening in 1992. Whilst almost all pollsters and commentators had expected a hung parliament, with weeks of constitutional crisis, deadlock, and possible three party coalitions, in the event the Conservative Party won an absolute majority. As was widely predicted, Labour more…

Why Unionism and Nationalism are Feckless

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The SNP is on the crest of a wave. But it really has nowhere to go and, ultimately, will wane. Here’s why. The SNP is essentially a single issue pressure group pretending to be a real political party. In this respect it’s like Sinn Fein, the DUP/UUP, Plaid Cymru. Now, I hear you say, the more…

Look over there…a view of the UK election from Ireland

I have never made a secret of the fact that I am no expert on politics outside of Ireland.  I watch elections in other countries in a disinterested fashion.  The systems are strange and I find it gives you an insight into just how bizarre politics can look when you are not involved.  The UK more…

Mr Cameron, The Tories & ‘compassionate’ conservatism: compelled to justify neoliberal politics at #ge2015?

As the 2015 British general election campaign gathers momentum, the prospect of a hung parliament looms large. Concerning Scotland, the 2014 Scottish Referendum may have produced a result that was to the satisfaction of supporters of the ‘no’ campaign, but the Scottish National Party’s subsequent rise as an extremely decisive contender in national-level politics could more…

Valleys of trouble – Labour’s difficulties in their Welsh heartland

Anglesea 2013

Last night’s leaders debate marked the introduction of Leanne Wood, and her party Plaid Cymru, to the British mainstream political audience. Plaid received 165,394 votes in the 2010 General Election, fewer than the DUP (168,216) and Sinn Féin (171,942). Leanne Wood unashamedly played to the audience at home throughout the debate, and it is very more…