Posts Tagged ‘Charles Kennedy’

Sunday News Review

22/08/2010, 08:04:11 AM

No defection after all

“Charles Kennedy has described claims he is considering joining the Labour party as “complete rubbish”, following reports that he was about to resign in disgust at the Liberal Democrat pact with the Tories. The former Lib Dem leader emerged from a meeting with constituents in Dingwall to declare he would not be joining Labour.” – The Scotsman

David’s pitch for the middle classes

The Labour leadership front-runner will use a campaign speech to tell activists the party still has much to do to re-establish its electoral appeal after its support “collapsed across social classes” three months ago.

“You just can’t craft an election majority out of a minority. It is dangerous to pretend we don’t need the middle classes – just as it would be to suggest Labour does not need to win back the hope and trust of working-class voters. – David Miliband, The Independent

Little brother targets core support

Ed Miliband steps up his bid for the Labour leadership today by promising substantial tax cuts for any company prepared to guarantee a “living wage” of at least £7.60 an hour. The commitment is designed to appeal to the party’s core supporters who believe New Labour took insufficient measures to combat low pay, despite having introduced a legally binding minimum wage that now stands at £5.83 an hour. – The Guardian

Lib-Lab pact?

The Liberal Democrats will discuss the prospect of “working co-operatively” with Labour before the next election, despite agreeing to form a government with the Tories, it emerged last night. The prospect of closer links with the opposition will be raised at the party’s conference in Liverpool next month.

A consultation document on Party Strategy and Priorities, which will confront Lib Dem activists with the dilemmas raised by the decision to go into government with the Tories, will declare that: “nearer the next election, the Labour leadership will start thinking about how to promote and achieve the idea of working co-operatively with the Liberal Democrats. – The Independent

Haggling for seats down under

Prime minister Julia Gillard has said that no major party had won a majority of parliamentary seats in Australia’s general election and she had started negotiating with independent MPs in an effort to cling to power. – The Press Association

Labor can expect the support of the first-ever Green member, and probably also a former Green turned independent, who seemed likely to win a seat. The Liberal party would have to rely on three other independents, two of whom have had links to the conservative National party, which is part of the opposition coalition. It may be days before the final outcome is known. – The Guardian

Playing games

“Shadow education secretary Ed Balls has called for the return of tax breaks for the games industry following the collapse of Realtime World. “The Tory-Lib Dem government is putting the future of the computer games industry in Scotland at risk,” he wrote. “The terrible news this week about Realtime Worlds could be just the start unless the coalition government rethinks its decisions, which are costing jobs and risking the recovery.” – Digital Spy

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Saturday News Review

21/08/2010, 09:29:17 AM

Kennedy talks step up

Labour stepped up its attack on the Liberal Democrat wing of David Cameron’s coalition government by hinting Charles Kennedy, the former Lib Dem leader, has been in talks to defect to Labour and take several of his party colleagues with him.”– The Guardian

The fight down under

“Australians go to the polls tonight in what is predicted to be one of the closest battles in decades and offering a stark choice between two very different leaders.” – Wales Online

“The World Cup had Paul the “psychic octopus”. The Australian election – the closest in years – has Harry, the Australian saltwater crocodile with supposed predictive powers. Like Paul, Harry correctly picked Spain to win the World Cup last month. Now Harry has forecast a win for Julia Gillard in tomorrow’s vote.” – The Guardian

Posting the union vote

“Labour leadership candidate Ed Balls is to visit a number of post offices in the coming week, pledging his support to keeping the Royal Mail publicly owned. The shadow education secretary will launch his support in Glasgow on Saturday, followed by Durham on Sunday, Burnley on Monday, Wolverhampton on Wednesday and other parts of the country later in the week.” – The Press Association

Barmy Burnham

“Andy Burnham has long been a staunch supporter of Top of the Pops, so when he was asked at a Labour leadership campaign event in Nottingham this week whether he still planned to lobby for the programme to be returned to the BBC, his answer was a foregone conclusion, according to today’s diary in the Independent.

But as well as praising the show, he went on to complain that the BBC was too “London-centric”, perhaps referring to the ongoing controversy over the reluctance of certain BBC bosses to relocate to new premises in Salford. According to Burnham, the Beeb has also lost touch with “ordinary people” — and he went on to rachet up the rhetoric, saying that “they’d never hire someone like John Peel now”.” – The New Statesman blog

How to host a party by David Miliband

“Under the headline “What you should be doing”, the document starts at 5:30pm: “Get in from work, give the place a quick vacuum and general tidy (or not, if you’re not that type).” In case the idea hadn’t occurred, hosts are told to “prepare food and drink… no one can resist a delicious spread of food!”…” –

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Friday News Review

20/08/2010, 08:07:26 AM

The campaign crosses the border

“The Shadow Energy Secretary, who today begins a three-day tour of Scotland with a visit to Govan shipyard, is said by his camp to have secured most first-preference votes among Labour MSPs and is doing “particularly well” on second preferences among Scottish Labour MPs.  A source close to Ed Miliband told The Herald: “We are not taking anything for granted but are encouraged by the response among Scottish parliamentarians. We’re confident that, by the time people vote, Ed will have majority support in Scotland.” – The Herald Scotland

“Ed Balls explaining why he thought he was not doing as well as his opponents north of the Border: “It’s partly having had an English portfolio. It’s partly through people thinking to themselves we need to move beyond Gordon Brown and I started off as being the person three months ago who was closest to him.” – The Herald Scotland

The Philip Green agenda

“Sir Philip has been hired to advise on Whitehall efficiency. His wife Tina is a Monaco resident and as owner of Arcadia received a £1.2bn dividend in 2005 on which UK tax did not have to be paid.  Alastair Campbell, the former Downing Street spin doctor, said the deficit would already be smaller if billionaires paid the same amount of tax as everyone else.” – The FT


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