Tag Archives: barack obama

The Independent View: Could the USA’s November mid-term elections herald the return of the long-fabled “Liberal Hour”?

USA Flag - Some rights reserved by freefotoukThe November mid-term elections in the United States will be vital for the future of the Democratic Party, as it not only seeks to retain its control of the Senate, but possibly reclaim the House of Representatives after four years under Republican control.

If it wishes to do so, the Democrats must be clear in what it stands for in social policy, and carry out a programme of major liberal reform that fulfils the promises of hope and change that Barack Obama evoked amongst so …

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged | 9 Comments

If Alistair Cooke reported the Obamacare standoff: “A real shutdown… not really!”

Alistair CookeThere are voices from history that cannot be forgotten. Among them is that of Alistair Cooke, a Brit who understood America like no other.

There are times when I really miss Alistair. He had a unique ability to explain to us the seemingly bizarre and sometimes incomprehensible machinations of American politics and government.

Of course, he spoke of much more than politics in his Letter from America broadcasts. His tale of Gershwin and Russian immigration still gives me goose bumps. His lament on the closure of Woolworths captured the aspirations of a generation. He even managed to make golf sound entertaining, even vaguely important.

Posted in News and Op-eds | Also tagged | 8 Comments

Danny Alexander MP writes… Trident: The UK’s voice on an international issue

I believe Trident is the UK’s last, unreformed bastion of Cold War thinking. And I believe we can adapt our nuclear deterrent to the threats of the 21st century by ending 24-hour patrols when we don’t need them and procuring fewer submarines.

This is the conclusion I draw from the Trident Alternatives Review that the Coalition Government published in July – a Review that clearly would not have happened without Lib Dems in Government.

But when the Review was published, some of our critics claimed any changes to Trident would seriously damage our relationship with the US. …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 25 Comments

Steven Spielberg presents… President Obama: “I’m Daniel Day-Lewis.”

The 2013 White House Correspondents’ Dinner, the annual event which disproves any notion the Americans can’t do irony…


(Watch it on YouTube here.)

And here’s the full 20 minute Obama routine:

Posted in LDVUSA and YouTube | Also tagged | Leave a comment

The Eurosceptic tide is turning. Lib Dems must be in the vanguard

We have become used in recent months to unrelentingly bad news about our relationship with Europe. ‘UKIP now the third party’, ‘Majority would say no to EU’ and ‘UK heads for the Brexit’ have become commonplace headlines. But while the current polls and general debate are still far from positive, several recent developments suggest the tide is starting to turn on the antis – and are enough to give cheer to pro-Europeans from all sides.

First – in case you missed it – the Obama administration has made clear in no uncertain terms to its concern about the UK’s Eurosceptic …

Posted in Europe / International and Op-eds | Also tagged and | 40 Comments

The Independent View: A reply to Mark Pack from Obama’s Director of Data

The Crystal Ball chart blogged by Mark Pack highlights the interesting cases of Alaska and Utah. These outliers make sense given the dynamics of the race (the large Mormon population in UT provided a boost to Romney while the absence of Sarah Palin from the ballot hurt Republican performance in AK relative to 2008). But why do we not see more turbulence in the battleground states?  Surely the gobs of money spent in these states along with the monumental ground efforts of the Obama campaign would push these states away from the crowd? The answer to this apparent disconnect …

Posted in LDVUSA, Op-eds and The Independent View | Also tagged and | 5 Comments

What does the data show about the Obama campaign’s use of data?

So far, there has been a weird paradox at the heart of the coverage about the Obama 2012 campaign machine. On the one hand we’re all meant to be impressed by how it was based on data and analysis, honing campaign techniques and targeting activity based on what the data said. On the other hand, we’re meant to take it all on trust (or trust plus bucketloads of anecdotes; i.e. trust) that this hard-nosed, evidence-based approach to campaigning worked. Where’s the evidence that the reliance on evidence really worked?

There’s been remarkably little presented. Which is why the following graph is so

Posted in LDVUSA | Also tagged and | 7 Comments

Romney’s polling day technology meltdown: Orca

The usual post-electoral defeat search for explanations and people to blame has an added edge for the Republicans after Mitt Romney’s defeat earlier this month. Not only did Romney lose, he lost in all the states that were picked as being in serious contention, the Republicans actually lost ground in the Senate (when they had hopes of making gains) and the initial voting analysis shows the Republicans with a big problem: the parts of the electorate that are growing are the parts which vote against them the most heavily.

Posted in Campaign Corner and Online politics | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

Opinion: US Elections – I’m not one to gloat, but….

I am still musing on what a wonderful night it was on Tuesday into Wednesday. I stayed up all night until I finally threw in the towel at 6.45am. It was a bit tedious at first, but it got really exciting at around 3am.

Over the last few weeks, I have been a very regular visitor to FiveThirtyEight, the home of Nate Silver. So, perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised that the man’s forecasts have turned out to be right.

Posted in LDVUSA | Also tagged , and | 8 Comments

LibLink: Mark Pack’s five lessons from the US election

I’ve long suspected that the Voice’s Mark Pack doesn’t need to sleep and his clear thinking after a long electoral night kind of backs up my theory. As my neural pathways crumble from lack of sleep, he has already put together five lessons we should learn from both Obama’s win and Romney’s loss.

He talks about the important of the non white male vote. While Romney might have done well amongst white men, he lost many other important groups of voters, including women, who make up the majority.

Mark also made a good point about the many emails which came out of …

Posted in LibLink and Online politics | Also tagged , , and | 6 Comments

Four more years – thank you

Thank you to everyone who joined in our live blog/tweet following the exciting results from across the Atlantic tonight. Many thanks to everyone who used the hashtag #LDVUSA to join in!

It was a great night – to see all the potential Romney paths to victory disintegrating one by one and a EV total of 332 looking on the cards for Obama!

Analysis and post-mortems can wait for another day. For now, it’s celebration time! WoooooHoooooo!

Posted in LDVUSA | Also tagged | 6 Comments

#LDVUSA – Three nifty ways to help make sense of tonight’s election results

It can often be a mathematical nightmare trying to work out who’s winning as US Presidential Election night progresses. Sometimes, some poor souls even end up having to rely on David Dimbleby to explain what’s going on! Poor things!

Here are three nifty tools to help you make sense of what is happening tonight:

Posted in LDVUSA | Also tagged and | 4 Comments

LibLink: Sarah Ludford MEP – ‘US Presidential Election – What will be the impact on EU/US relations?’

Over at the Endeavours Public Affairs blog, Lib Dem MEP for London Sarah Ludford looks at this Tuesday’s presidential election and what it means for Europe. Here’s an excerpt:

The Obama administration has in any case been perceived as not very interested in Europe, except as a source of financial and economic worry, with a strategic shift of US focus to the Asia-Pacific region distracting from relations with the EU. It’s a sobering cause for reflection that neither candidate has talked about Europe in their campaigns, even in the televised debate devoted to foreign affairs.

Posted in LibLink | Also tagged , and | 2 Comments

If Obama wins, this Republican ought, perhaps, to be top of his list of people to thank

This is John Kasich, Republican Governor of the state of Ohio, USA.

It is possible to argue, credibly (albeit amid much debate), that if Barack Obama wins re-election on November 6th, the first person he ought to thank is John Kasich.

Polls suggest that, despite the hyperventilated efforts of the Romney campaign to generate some “big mo” after the Denver debate, Obama is still ahead in vital Ohio.

Posted in LDVUSA | Also tagged , and | 2 Comments

Unravelling the US election – or not, as the case may be…

There are just 16 days to go until the US Presidential election. Liberal Democrat Voice will be live-blogging the election results as they come in on the night. Hopefully, the count won’t go on as long as it did in 2000, or we might be in for a very long live blog.

I should declare, up front, that I am inveterately

Posted in LDVUSA | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

Romney campaign: Writing the “How not to” manual

The Mitt Romney campaign in the US has an interesting approach to some of the accepted campaigning golden rules:

Before televised debates, you lower expectations of your candidate

…That way when they do reasonably well, everyone is surprised and your campaign gets a bit of a lift. So what did Romney’s campaign do? Well for weeks we have been told that Romney is closeting himself away with advisers for long sessions to prepare

Posted in Europe / International | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

Tom Brake MP writes… Romney’s bought the latest gadget, but he’s forgotten to read the manual

Romney’s bought the latest gadget, but he’s forgotten to read the manual.When Obama stormed to the Presidency he did so in glorious Technicolor while his opponent was still campaigning in black and white (or at least fifty shades of grey). In contrast, Obama campaigned with panache and proved what can be achieved by harnessing the power of social media.

His victory, for me, was a Kennedy/Nixon moment – one campaign looked modern and dynamic, the other looked tired, sweaty and frankly a bit outdated. The result was rather predictable in the end. Obama triumph. Slam dunk.

But if Obama’s victory four years …

Posted in Online politics and Op-eds | Also tagged and | 1 Comment

Paddy Ashdown: Why the World will never be the same again

Last week, Paddy Ashdown came to the Edinburgh Book Festival. He filled the main theatre twice over with two very different talks.

The first, Why the world will never be the same again, was chaired by the Today Programme’s James Naughtie.

“I wouldn’t trust the UN to run a Liberal Democrat jumble sale”

Speaking without notes and with compelling candour, Paddy told us that we were condemned to living in one of those turbulent times when the balance of power in the world shifts. He saw two such major shifts. The first was a vertical one. Individual nation states could not alone regulate …

Posted in Europe / International and News | Also tagged , , , , and | 11 Comments

A longer read for the weekend: how Obama orders the death of terrorists

This week the New York Times ran a fascinating, detailed study of the drone war being fought by Barack Obama as he decides which alleged terrorists will be targeted by the American military:

Posted in LDVUSA and News | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

The importance of community politics in a homogenous political scene

When I first became aware of politics the world was looking towards Obama as a beacon of hope and change. As an 18 year old it was inspiring enough to want to change the world and campaign against inequality. However since I have gained further exposure, it has become apparent that politics attracts a disproportionate amount of young, careerist men. I refer to the likes of David Miliband, brought up in Hampstead yet representing the safe Labour seat of South Shields (which has a child poverty rate of 28%). When people say they don’t see a difference between the …

Posted in News and Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 7 Comments

Politics in pictures: How Cameron, Clegg & Miliband led from the front this week

It’s been a tumultuous week in the political world. So let’s have a look at how the three main party leaders led from the front in statesmanlike fashion…

David Cameron played badminton in a suit…

Ed Miliband bought sausage rolls in Greggs…

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 6 Comments

LDV Caption Competition: The Obama & Cameron ‘Special Relationship’ Edition

There’s no prize at stake – just the opportunity to prove you’re wittier than any other LDV reader…

Here’s the popular leader of a leading nation whose economy is on the road to recovery on a Boy’s Night Out with David Cameron. What do you think might be being said or thought by or about them?

And the winner of our last caption comp is…

Some fantastic entries for our most recent caption competition, David Cameron & Alex Salmond “Who’ll take the Highland?” Edition.

Posted in Caption Comp | Also tagged | 13 Comments

What The Spectator says: ‘Obama the Lib Dem’. (PS: It may even be a compliment.)

Over at The Spectator, Jonathan Jones looks at the US and UK approaches to their forthcoming budgets — cutting the deficit, taming debt, etc — and his fourth and final point concludes:

Obama the Lib Dem. It’s striking how similar Obama’s tax priorities are to those of the Liberal Democrats, even though the specifics differ either side of the Atlantic. Obama wants to extend the payroll tax cut for ‘160 million hardworking Americans’, which he says is worth ‘about $40 in every paycheck’ for ‘the typical family earning $50,000 a year’. The Lib Dems have been pushing to raise the

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 6 Comments

US Presidential election – hold onto your hats!

The 2012 US Presidential race is certainly going to be interesting. That’s for sure. There is no end of permutations, twists and turns ahead which will make very entertaining viewing for us over this side of the pond.

Every time you make a statement about the election, there are caveats and “but ifs” which follow.

It’s tempting to say that Obama is sunk because of the US economy. However, there are strong signs now of a solid recovery. Last week’s job news was very positive and polls are showing a thawing of anti-Obama feeling.

You could also say that

Posted in News | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

NEW POLL: Who is your Liberal Voice of the Year?

Today’s the day we launch our search for the Liberal Voice of 2011 to find the individual or group which has had the biggest impact on liberalism in the past 12 months. This is the fifth annual award, and as is our tradition, we’re looking beyond the ranks of the Lib Dems to find the greatest liberal who’s not a member of our party.

The list of nine nominees appears below. These were sought from Lib Dem members via our most recent survey; 233 nominations were submitted, and each of those short-listed needed to clear a threshold of five.

Posted in LDV Awards and News | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , and | 25 Comments

Jake Holland writes: Connect is here to help you win

All Liberal Democrat campaigners will agree that there’s no worse feeling at the end of a hard-fought election campaign than losing by a handful of votes.

In the 2010 General Election, we were less than 1000 votes away from winning in 10 constituencies. Analysing these results, it was clear that our campaign technology had fallen behind the other two main parties. Tasks that our opponents took for granted, such as linking a campaign system directly to a website, or organising a nationwide volunteer phone bank, were beyond our capabilities.

Connect is the cutting edge in campaign technology that will put us

Posted in Online politics and Party policy and internal matters | Also tagged and | 6 Comments

The weekend debate: Would Mitt Romney make a better President than Barack Obama?

Here’s your starter for ten in our weekend slot where we throw up an idea or thought for debate…

Over the last three years Obama has had to concede much of his programme to Republicans in Congress. His healthcare reforms had to be significantly watered down even before Republicans won back the House of Representatives in 2010. And the reforms themselves have since acted as a lightning rod for criticism of the President.

Obama is struggling to get the economy going again amid continued turbulence in the global economy and unemployment is staying stubbornly high despite the massive £800 billion stimulus package. …

Posted in LDVUSA and Op-eds | Also tagged and | 8 Comments

The countdown to Connect has begun

News from Lib Dem HQ of the Liberal Democrats’ new campaign software:

Campaigning across the party is set to get a major boost when Connect comes online later this year. Connect is the UK version of the world’s leading campaign software that’s being built for the party by Voter Activation Network (VAN).

It is based on the tried and tested technology successfully used by Barack Obama and the Democrats in the US and in several other countries around the world. Connect combines high level security and stability, powerful campaigning tools …

Posted in Party policy and internal matters | Also tagged , , and | 18 Comments

Opinion: What the US debt ceiling crisis can teach Britain on coalition and compromise

The crisis in the US Congress has finally come to an end and President Obama was able to raise the country’s debt ceiling without invoking the 14th Amendment. It has been a weekend of worry and apprehension as to how far extremist factions such as the Republican Tea Party were willing to go and whether they were prepared to bring the country to the lowly depths of economic default.

Neither major party had seemed prepared to give up what means most to them; the preservation of continued support for Medicare and Social Security (Democrats) or the need for heavy fiscal cuts …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 14 Comments

Opinion: Why we should praise Louise Mensch

So the press have dug around into Louise Mensch MP’s past and discovered, shock horror, that she ‘probably’ took some drugs at a nightclub when she was in her twenties. Why this is news is frankly beyond me but why this has come out now, is not. The press are doing their thing, taking on someone that has taken them on. The ‘probably’ is a bit of a give away. There are lots of ‘probablys’ floating around the News of the World scandal. True or not, a ‘probably’ can hurt.

In the case of Louise Mensch I doubt it will …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 37 Comments
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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarT-J 1st Nov - 12:58am
    Sorry, David, I thought I was responding to anecdotes of your experience of LibDem internal politicking with anecdotes of my experience of the Greens. Having...
  • User Avatarmalc 1st Nov - 12:01am
    The bookies now have the LibDems at odds on - 5/6 - to get less than 25 seats at the next GE - I doubt...
  • User AvatarSesenco 31st Oct - 11:55pm
    For me, the most telling observation about the Rochester & Strood byelection thus far is that Labour, if it is to form the next government,...
  • User Avatarmalc 31st Oct - 11:47pm
    The best odds on the parties to win Rochester: UKIP 1/11 Tories 10/1 Labour 80/1 Greens 500/1 Britain First 750/1 LibDems 1000/1
  • User AvatarRoland 31st Oct - 11:27pm
    @Stuart, I get your point of view and broadly agree with your assessment of the news worthiness of a public figure's sexuality. However with respect...
  • User AvatarPeter Chegwyn 31st Oct - 11:21pm
    Paul - There are 13 candidates declared so far in Rochester but no 'Bus Pass Elvis' as yet. It's generally accepted that there's a margin...