Tag Archives: john rentoul

What links Jeremy Hunt and Peter Lilley? (Tip: If you’re not sure who they are, that’s the clue.)

Who’s the most famous cabinet minister? And who’s the least famous? That’s what YouGov set out to find out by inviting its representative sample of the public to type in the name, unprompted, of the post-holder of six senior cabinet positions. Here’s what they found…

identifiable cabinet ministers - yougov

So Iain Duncan Smith (36% correctly naming him as Work and Pensions secretary) and Jeremy Hunt (28% as health secretary) are the least famous cabinet members. Though, to be honest – like John Rentoul and with due respect to Mike Smithson …

Posted in Polls | Also tagged , , , , and | 4 Comments

Which member of the LDV team gets a mention in today’s national press?

Step forward…..

Screen Shot 2014-05-04 at 11.24.30

If you follow our Nick on Twitter, you’ll know he loves interesting use of language, whether it be puns, silly signs or malapropisms.

Some time ago, he suggested to John Rentoul that it would be a good idea to do a feature on the Top Ten Malapropisms. And so, here in today’s Independent on Sunday, it came to pass. “This one is Nick Thornsby’s idea.” says the first sentence.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 1 Comment

Liberal Conspiracy is dead – and so too’s the amateur blogger (more or less)

Sunny Hundal announced on Friday that left-of-centre blog Liberal Conspiracy is coming to an end:

I no longer have the time to maintain Liberal Conspiracy as a daily-updated news and opinion blog, so as of today I’m going to stop. This site will become an occasionally updated personal blog, with the odd guest-post.

It’s fair to say LibCon received an underwhelmed response from Lib Dems when it was launched six years ago, mostly on account of it including the word Liberal in its title but not so much in its outlook. Sunny himself was sport enough to respond to

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , , and | 4 Comments

Registers and recall: I support them both. But they’re not going to clean up our democracy

The weekend’s revelations that two Labour peers and an Ulster Unionist were filmed offering to lobby ministers for cash, following hot on the heels of Tory MP Patrick Mercer’s resignation of the Tory whip over similar allegations, has re-ignited the question of how to clean up Parliament.

Two proposals are being pushed, both of them originally pledged in the Coalition Agreement.

Register of lobbyists

First, there’s a register of lobbyists, intended to bring greater transparency to the way in which professional lobbyists seek to influence government decisions. This is one of Unlock Democracy’s top campaigns:

If we don’t know

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 12 Comments

So you think Ukip are the new third party? Let’s have a look at the data…

Food for thought for John Rentoul (who calls Ukip ‘The new third party’ here), courtesy of PoliticalBetting’s Mike Smithson:

(Hat-tip: Vote Clegg, Get Clegg Facebook page.)

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 101 Comments

Why there isn’t a British Nate Silver

A skim-read of Wednesday morning’s headlines might have left folk confused as to who had been declared the victor of the US presidential election: Barack Obama or Nate Silver.

For those who don’t know Nate Silver, he’s the analytical guru behind the FiveThirtyEight blog (named after the number of electoral college votes), now housed at the New York Times, which scrutinises and filters opinion polls. He first rose to prominence four years ago after predicting the winner in 49 of the 50 US states during the Obama-McCain presidential contest, …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , and | 17 Comments

Alan Johnson – “an instinctive cutter”

Given how I’ve previously pointed out that Yes, ministers can disagree and the world doesn’t end, it would be wrong to shout “splits! splits!” at what is going on in the Labour Party over economic policy. The latest disagreements between leader Ed Miliband and Shadow Chancellor Alan Johnson do however highlight just how much work Labour has to do to work out its economic policy.

As John Rentoul has pointed out:

Johnson made clear to Rachel Sylvester and Alice Thomson that he did not share his leader’s enthusiasm for making the 50p-in-the-pound top income-tax rate permanent: “I am only

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 9 Comments
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    "An independent Scotland would be a socialist utopia". I've never heard that and it's certainly not true. What is true is that Scotland is less...
  • User AvatarRichard Whelan 21st Jan - 2:54pm
    Caron This is great news particularly since our government's policy vis a vis Brexit has the potential to have an adverse impact on women. Just...
  • User AvatarBill le Breton 21st Jan - 2:49pm
    Don't know about anyone else but I become more and more and more and more impressed with Sarah Olney every week. She has that campaigner's...
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 21st Jan - 2:21pm
    I wasn't there for that part of the discussion so I don't know exactly what happened.
  • User AvatarGlenn 21st Jan - 2:14pm
    The Tories are not breaking up the UK. When it happens it will be the inevitable consequence of devolving power. As for fighting for the...
  • User AvatarLaurence Cox 21st Jan - 2:01pm
    Labour are panicking, that is why they lash out at us. This Daily Telegraph story indicates that they will lose Copeland: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/01/20/exclusive-labour-set-lose-copeland-by-election-partys-canvass/ I suspect that...