Geordie Not Sure

The battle of egos over at the Mail has reached new heights: literally.

After a newsroom land-grab by MailOnline of desk space used by the Mail on Sunday a couple of months ago, sources reveal that Geordie Greig threw his toys out of the pram. The one time prince-over-the-water is getting tetchy.

By way of consolation for this Sudetenland-like annexing, Mail on Sunday editor Greig and his deputy were given new professionally interior-decorated offices.

Special permission was sought to raise the ceiling: specifically so it was higher than Dacre’s wood panelled bat-cave. And a Smeg fridge was thrown in for good measure. 

The Policy Lifecycle: Tweets, Troublemakers and Traditions

Sponsored post.

Since the 2005 election, Westminster has changed. The traditions, the green benches, and the antiquated language remain, but politics is now digital, fast-moving, and relentless. The new reality still includes a few certainties, as demonstrated by the Government’s recent announcement on cigarette packaging. Here are 12 things to think about when you’re following an issue:

  1. A big development may be slipped in under the radar… For example at 8pm, during a Wednesday evening Adjournment Debate
  2. News will be broken on Twitter – after all, everything happens on Twitter first now
  3. The opposition’s first response will be tweeted, long before they manage to put out a press statement (47 minutes, in this case)
  4. In the rush to report breaking news first, not every outlet will get their facts straight
  5. The debate will be cross-media, with comments made on the radio ending up on TV and online
  6. Politicians will take the argument out of the chamber… and even away from party politics (sometimes)
  7. Stakeholders will have their say, even if the press ignores them
  8. The media will get excited about whatever Nigel Farage says
  9. Social media makes it easier to turn armchair opposition into action
  10. An announcement of Government intent is rarely the end of the story, thanks to troublesome backbenchers
  11. In the meantime, parliamentarians will not wait patiently. Instead, they will table written or oral questions and bring it up in debates
  12. And while everyone waits for the Government to act, recalcitrant backbenchers will keep up the opposition.

When stories develop this quickly, you need a monitoring service you can trust. Intelex, the new political intelligence service from Lexington Communications, combines an app, dashboard and insight and analysis from our team of experts. Launching tonight, Intelex will change the way you see monitoring.

Find out more about Intelex – sign up for our launch event, or email us today.

Friday 13th For Kensington Selection

Standard reveal the dates:

“The Evening Standard understands that the local party will be given six names by Central Office next Tuesday and they will be allowed to whittle that list down to three. A party spokesman confirms this timetable, but wishes to emphasise that the initial six will be the product of ongoing discussions between the local party and party HQ. The chosen three will then pitch to members and face a vote three days later at the Town Hall, next Friday. The local member says security will be “very tight” so only members of the association who live within the Kensington constituency (and not those in neighbouring Chelsea and Fulham) can get in.”

Lucky day for one…

Former Tory MP Denies “Rent Boy Ring” As Cops Search Home

Former Conservative MP Harvey Proctor tells the Today programme he wants to be interviewed by police “at the earliest opportunity” after his home was searched by police investigating allegations of child abuse. He says he “never attended sex parties” and was not part of a “rent boy ring”…

Alastair Campbell on TV Debates: Then and Now

Alastair Campbell, today, on why David Cameron is a coward for ducking the TV debates:

“How well I remember David Cameron proclaiming how marvellous the TV leaders’ debates were and, more importantly, how vital they were to the democratic process in the modern media age. And how pathetic it is, five years on, to watch his wriggling and weaselling to avoid them… I can see why one on one, policy v policy, plan v plan, he might want to duck this. But it is morally cowardly and democratically wrong.”

Alastair Campbell, in 2001, on why Tony Blair was not a coward for ducking the TV debates:

“The UK is not electing a president and our political and constitutional positions are entirely different. [We are not taking part because of] all the blah and the ballyhoo that would surround it… four days of build up to every debate, this is where they’ll stand and this is what they’ll do, and this is the people advising them and this is what they’ll wear, and blah blah blah.”

What was that about “pathetic”, “weaselling”, “morally cowardly and democratically wrong”?

Back to the Future – With Home Ownership

Sponsored post.

Great Scott! Homeownership has reached its lowest level in 29 years. We’re heading back to pre-Thatcher levels of owning. Only a third of 25-34 year olds now own with a mortgage, compared to 53% in 2005. And the Bank of Mum and Dad (aka – the parents of middle England) are panicking.

So why does this matter? Every party needs a positive message to tell the electorate. And housing could be the answer. No party has a decisive lead on housing with voters – it’s an area yet to be claimed. Pledge to boost home ownership by building more affordable homes – around 250,000 a year – and the party that does could kill two birds.

Worried parents up and down the country would be reassured that the kids will be alright – that they do have a future. And voters would see the party aren’t all about doom and gloom. That there’s light at the end.

Influential commentators on the right and the left agree. And best of all, KPMG and Shelter have already done the homework, to show how it can be done.

For more detail visit: thehomesweneed.org.uk

Kensington Deadline Noon Today

The next MP for Kensington has until noon today to submit their 500 word candidate application for the seat. There is increasing chatter around local boy and former Boris adviser Kulveer Ranger, who is believed to be in the running though has to overcome the not inconsiderable obstacle of being a man. Guido understands there has been an unprecedented level of entries from candidates for the seat. These will be whittled down to a final three, who will then be presented to the association in the coming weeks. Two hours til deadline…

GOD Delusion: Pampered Panjandrum Strikes Back

There’s a punchy interview with the departed head of the civil service Gus O’Donnell on the front page of the Indy. The former Cabinet Office bigwig has settled a few old scores with ‘out of touch’ ministers:

“There are still a few out there [who say:] ‘We send our kids to public schools, we have private health care, we travel by car or chauffeur, we don’t go on public transport… There are unfortunately too many people in politics who just don’t get it; who just don’t understand what life on benefits would be like… we need to really care about public services”.

While Guido likes GOD’s idea for primaries, it would be remiss for him not to point out that Gus sent his own daughter Kirsty to Alleyn’s, the private school in Dulwich. He also enjoyed the spoils of the Government Car Pool chauffeur service when in office, and was on a higher salary (and pension) than the PM. Just sayin’… 

Ashcroft Scottish Marginal Polling Presentation

[…]

PMQs SKETCH: Who are We and What are We Doing Here?

gallery_guido (2)

It’s always exciting to discover a new low in PMQs. We’ve been bumping along the bottom since the New Year and here we had stomach-fluttering slump.

The prodigious noise in the chamber – so chamber reporters said – was mainly […]

Clegg and Cameron at Sixes and Sevens

Red magazine have been quizzing the party leaders…

Tell us in six words why we should vote Lib Dem?

“Stronger economy. Fairer society. Opportunity for all.”

Yep, that would be seven words.

Tell us in six words why we should

[…]

Boxgate: Proof Party Leader Stood on Box for Photo-Op

A concerned wee reader gets in touch regarding the use of boxes by politicians in photo-ops:

“At just 5’5” and with our MEP, Ian Duncan, and David Cameron being well over 6 foot, I confess I’m perched on a box

[…]



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Quote of the Day

Tim Shipman to Adam Boulton on the TV debates…

“If Cameron gets in a car to go to the debate, Lynton Crosby will stage a car crash.”

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