What if Roy Jenkins had become Prime Minister? Mr Speaker’s Lecture, 25 February 2019 Despite the 43 year age difference us, maybe because of it, Roy Jenkins was the closest political friend I have ever had and one of my closest friends. He inspired me from the moment I read his biography of Asquith as a 14 year old until literally the evening before he died sixteen years ago, when we discussed on the phone his planned biography of JFK and his concerns about the imminent Iraq
This week 8 MPs quit the Labour Party to form a new Independent Group. As I argue in the Guardian, the ball in now Jeremy Corbyn’s court. The key issues of Europe, Antisemitism and deselection are not “left v right” but “right v wrong”, and Jeremy Corbyn will have no one to blame but himself if they end up encouraging a wider Labour split. Then Anna Soubry, Heidi Allen, and Sarah Wollaston quit the Conservative Party to join this new group. The clear driver of these MPs leavi
This week, Theresa May’s ultimate strategy was simultaneously laid bare and then destroyed. First, UK chief negotiator Ollie Robbins blew the lid on May’s plan when he was overheard late at night in a Brussels bar saying that she is deliberately running down the clock to force MPs to back her deal or face no deal. But then on Thursday Parliament heavily defeated the Government on its statement of May’s current Brexit approach. This is critical because it shows that there is n
Parliament has completely shut down due to Brexit. The House of Lords is being asked to agree a record 19 complex No Deal regulations next week - almost the entirety of its business. Non-Brexit government and legislation has virtually ceased.
So this week I got out of London and continued my tour of the country, travelling to Hereford, Salisbury, Maldon, Chester, Oxford and Chipping Barnet. These packed meetings all over country show that there is now a significant ground mo