Archive for William Hague

Good Week, Bad Week 24/06/12…

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on June 24, 2012 by eljmayes

Good Week

David Cameron- The Prime Minister has had a relatively good week, with his party slightly improving their position in the polls and a spat with Argentina that played well to the home audience. Cameron’s net personal ratings have improved markedly with YouGov in the past few weeks also, with the Tory leader now ten points or so ahead of Ed Miliband. A concern for the Tories will be how the rise in fuel duty in August affects the public mood. At the current time fuel prices are at their lowest level for months so a three pence rise in duty would not be that noticeable. However if fuel prices rise George Osborne could come under pressure to defer the rise in duty to the winter.

Nick Clegg- Clegg has had his usual quiet week, only being awoken by Michael Gove’s radical education reforms.

Ed Miliband- Miliband’s week hinged on a speech where he addressed the subject of immigration. Whilst I applaud the Labour leader for finally tackling a very difficult subject for his party, the speech did seem to hint that Labour would only tinker with the current status quo. Miliband needs to be bolder on immigration than the Coalition to renew trust with the working class and those aspirational voters who deserted Labour in 2010.

Bad Week

Harriet Harman- Harman was absolutely schooled at (stand in) Prime Minister’s Questions by William Hague this week. Performances of this ilk will make some in Labour party wonder why Harman is still Deputy Leader after five long years in her role.

Andy Burnham- Burnham seemed to have a lackluster performance substance wise on Question Time this week. That said, presentationally Burnham is streets ahead of  of nearly everyone in the Labour party currently.

Jimmy Carr- Carr was rumbled this week for tax avoidance. The new 737 will have to wait therefore.

Good Week, Bad Week 29/04/12…

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 29, 2012 by eljmayes

Good Week

Ed Miliband- Miliband has had yet another good week, largely by default. His party are consistently well ahead across the polls, a prominent Cabinet member looks to be on the way out and his number two’s predictions about a double dip recession have rung true. The fact still remains that Labour has no clear narrative or policies three years ahead of a General Election. In the short term this is acceptable although in the long term it is clearly not. Unless the incompetence from the Coalition continues for three solid years Miliband and Labour will need a vision for Britain to win the next General Election.

Ed Balls- Balls has been proved right this week as the country dropped back into recession. Britain should be more like America in the Shadow Chancellor’s eyes, using an addition stimulus to provide growth. Why I don’t feel this stance will work for Labour in the long term is very simple- the public now have (largely) accepted that cuts are necessary and that further spending is folly.

Alan Sugar- Lord Sugar this week spoke out in writing against Ken Livingstone. This move will have some impact on Livingstone’s campaign, casting doubt on whether or not he can rule London for all ethnic groups.

Bad Week

David Cameron- Cameron has had a woeful week. The economy is officially in recession and Jeremy Hunt looks as if he will be exiting the Cabinet very soon, forcing an early summer reshuffle on the Prime Minister. Obviously the recession is incredibly bad news for the Coalition as it’s a tangible story/statistic that can never be erased. The Hunt/Murdoch issue may prove to be more damaging however, as the ghosts of sleaze from the nineties return to haunt the Tories.

Nick Clegg- Clegg has had his usual quiet week soured by his frankly diabolical approval ratings with YouGov.

George Osborne- Osborne may leave the Chancellor’s role in the summer to be replaced by William Hague. If that were to happen, I’d imagine Osborne would become the new Foreign Secretary in straight job swap.

Jeremy Hunt- Hunt as I write this is barely hanging onto his job in the Cabinet. I’d wager by the time I write the next “Good Week, Bad Week” he will have resigned, likely to have been replaced by Hugh Robertson.

Ken Livingstone- Another week goes by without Livingstone declaring his tax returns, compounding his issues with the electorate of trust.

Good Week, Bad Week 26/02/12…

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 26, 2012 by eljmayes

Good Week

Ed Miliband- The Leader of the Opposition has had yet another solid week. His attacks on the Coalition’s NHS reforms are resonating with the public and his personal approval ratings with YouGov are on the rise. That said, Miliband still has a long way to go before he can feel confident of winning the General Election. Labour are still neck and neck with the Tories in the polls and his approval ratings are roughly where William Hague’s approval ratings were in his second year as opposition leader. Miliband has recovered from his woes of January well but questions still remain if he can draw up a viable narrative which will guide Labour back to power.

George Osborne- Borrowing figures came in slightly lower than expected this week, allowing the Chancellor some wriggle room in the Budget next month. I expect Osborne to freeze petrol duty in the medium term plus bring forward infrastructure projects in rural areas in the Budget next month to sure up his party’s core vote. I don’t see the personal tax allowance being raised sharply, even though the Lib Dems have been lobbying for such a measure.

Mitt Romney- Romney got through this week relatively unscathed, matching Rick Santorum in the Arizona CNN Debate. Until one of the candidates in the GOP race drops out I cannot imagine Romney relinquishing his position as front runner for the Republican Presidential Nomination.

Bad Week

David Cameron- The Prime Minister has had much the same week as last week, being heavily criticised on his proposed NHS Reforms from all sides. Cameron will take heart from his personal ratings with YouGov, which are still nearly (minus ten percent) in the positive region with all voters. Cameron will also know that Miliband can’t dine out on his beleaguered NHS Reforms forever and that the economy will still be the most important issue with voters at the next General Election.

Nick Clegg- A typically dull week for the Deputy Prime Minister spiced up by him seeming to say that young people were a “very naughty word” in a BBC interview.

Andrew Lansley- The Health Secretary marches on with his NHS Reforms knowing that his chances of surviving a reshuffle are slim at best.

Good Week, Bad Week 26/06/11…

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , on June 26, 2011 by eljmayes

Good Week

David Cameron- The Prime Minister has had a rather uneventful week this week. A solid if  unspectacular outing at Prime Minister’s Questions, a partial victory over another Greek bailout and the announcement that operations in Libya have cost two hundred and fifty million pounds were the only real highlights. Cameron handled each of these situations well in his usual relaxed manner.

Ed Miliband- The Leader of the Opposition’s performance at Prime Minister’s Questions was yet again decent, although Labour supporters would hope he doesn’t keep using the same tactics every week of pressing the Prime Minister on a particular fact. This tactic as I have stated before can wear thin if used too often so Miliband needs to devise a different tack at Prime Minister’s Questions to avoid being labelled as a one dimensional leader. Miliband’s decision to scrap Shadow Cabinet elections is six months too late in my opinion. That said, this change should not really damage his leadership within the Labour party as the majority of the PLP seem to back the move away from having an elected Shadow Cabinet. Going forward, how Miliband deals with the proposed strikes this week could prove to be vital in his attempt to solidify his position as Labour leader.

William Hague- Hague was on top form this week talking tough and rocking his shades in the desert.

Bad Week

Nick Clegg- The Deputy Prime Minister’s bank share plan fell flat on it’s face this week. Giving every taxpayer in the land shares in rescued banks sounds like a great idea, but when you analyse the logistical nightmare that would ensue from such a scheme it seems a simple rebate may be a better idea.

Harriet Harman- Harman again this week floated her idea that a woman must hold one of the top two positions in the Labour party to no support from her party leader. This idea is bonkers on so many levels, especially the fact the Deputy Leader of the Labour party doesn’t really have a brief and it’s essentially a non-role. Back to the drawing board Harriet.

Ed Balls- Balls this week had to pay around one thousand pounds back to his constituency landlord after leaving his office in such a terrible state. Balls needs to clean up his act.

 

Good Week, Bad Week 03/04/11…

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 3, 2011 by eljmayes


Good Week

David Cameron- The Prime Minister has had a good week on balance, with the UK hosting the Libyan Conference and a satisfactory performance at Prime Minister’s Questions. Hosting the Libyan Conference was a coup for Cameron who is clearly trying to set himself apart from the somewhat calamitous foreign platform performances of Gordon Brown. At Prime Minister’s Questions Cameron called Ed Balls “the most annoying man in British Politics” in a clear attempt to isolate the Shadow Chancellor from the rest of his party. Whether or not that label sticks for Balls only time will tell, but certainly Cameron wants to be seen dividing the opposition into left and right.

Alex Salmond- Thanks to the England International on Tuesday, many south of the border would not have known that STV hosted a Leaders Debate between the four major Scottish parties. Salmond predictably won the debate with Annabel Goldie of the Conservatives coming second in my opinion. The SNP now lead in some of the opinion polls and should now be favourites to win the most seats in the Scottish Parliament come May.

Boris Johnson- Johnson put on one of his better media performances on Question Time, disagreeing with certain Tory policies. It’s obvious why Johnson is doing this for two reasons. Firstly, he knows his opponent in Ken Livingstone will likely campaign far left of the usual Labour position and Johnson himself can afford to campaign firmly in the centre ground. Secondly, Johnson knows that London is more left leaning than right leaning, and that campaigning to the right would result in almost certain defeat for the current Mayor of London.

Bad Week

Nick Clegg- Clegg has had a bad week as the rumours about a possible leadership challenge gather pace from either Tim Farron or Chris Huhne. Personally I believe Clegg should issue an ultimatum to his party to back him or (perhaps) sack him in a ballot, showing authority over his party and solidifying his position until 2015 should he win.

Ed Miliband- Miliband has had a bad week as the fallout from his disastrous TUC speech last week kicked in. Jibes in Parliament and a dozen or so of his MPs backing UK Uncut have only made the situation worse. The Leader of the Opposition isn’t unelectable yet and shouldn’t be written off at this point in time but he is currently one major gaff away from “William Hague Circa 2000” territory in my opinion.

Iain Gray- Gray performed woefully in the STV Scottish Leaders Debate, not being able to differentiate Labour’s policies from those of the SNP. Labour’s chances of forming a Government north of the border seem to be rapidly decreasing as the weeks go by and Gray needs to do something very quickly to reverse that.

Was Miliband’s TUC Speech His “HAGUE” moment?..

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , on March 28, 2011 by eljmayes

In short I think not. For those who haven’t seen The Leader of the Oppostion likening his fight against two billion pounds worth of cuts per year to the fight against equality, civil rights and apartheid: –

I doubt Miliband’s misguided comments will resonate with the voting public like the disastrous pictures of William Hague on a log flume wearing “that” hat for two reasons. Firstly, Miliband said something laughable and not wore something laughable, therefore the evidence is a lot less tangible and less likely to be used against him. And secondly, we are four years away from a General Election so the indiscretion of the 26th March will have faded by then Labour hope. Miliband may wish to avoid such comments close to a General Election however, unlike his good friend Neil Kinnock just before the country went to the polls in 1992: –

Good Week, Bad Week 13/03/11…

Posted in Politics with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 13, 2011 by eljmayes


Good Week

David Cameron- Cameron has had a rather uneventful week barring the ongoing situation in Libya. He looked confident and assured on The One Show (despite being upstaged by an owl) and had a decent showing at Prime Minister’s Questions. A concern for the Prime Minister however has to his party’s poll ratings which look to be on the slump, especially in the YouGov daily series of polls where they are now behind Labour by over ten points.

Ed Miliband- Miliband has had a quiet week much like Cameron. A competent performance at Prime Minister’s Questions was followed by a sensible period of silence immediately after Lord Hutton’s pension recommendations shows the Leader of the Opposition is growing into his role. I hear he also won a game of pool this week as well.

Alex Salmond- Salmond’s speech at his party’s conference this week was surprisingly solid. Instead of aiming (much) venom at the Coalition or indeed Labour, Salmond reamed off several positive SNP achievements in the past four years for the bulk of his speech, ahead of the Scottish Elections in May. The SNP could gain at the ballot box thanks to a collapse in both Coalition parties vote share, although I do think all signs currently point to a minority Labour administration North of the border after May 5th.

Bad Week

Nick Clegg- Clegg’s week up to Friday was the usual uneventful one, after Friday however it “heated up”. The Lib Dem Spring Conference in Sheffield required a rumoured Policing budget of two million pounds, which is rather embarrassing for the Deputy Prime Minister given he is the MP for Sheffield Hallam. Away from the cost of holding the event, there does seem to be a feeling of dissension amongst Lib Dem activists and MPs over the Coalition’s plans going forward on NHS reforms. This is a worry for Clegg as clearly he wishes to pull his party away from the left to a more central political position and embrace the NHS reforms but the body of his party look like they wish to stay where they are. The controversies over the weekend (plus the events in Japan it has to be said) have distracted attention from Clegg’s big speech today, which could be at best described as competent.

Douglas Alexander- Alexander is still trying to pin blame upon William Hague for events that went on in Libya over a fortnight ago, telling him to “get a grip” countless times in the last week alone. Whilst I understand opportunities to hold the Foreign Secretary to account should be exploited by his shadow, Alexander’s questioning Hague’s competency is a a little rich given he oversaw the idiotic booking of an Elvis impersonator during Labour’s 2010 General Election campaign.

William Hague- Hague’s position as Foreign Secretary after this week still looks to hang in the balance, and although I feel he will hang on in the short term, he may relinquish his role in any future Cabinet reshuffle.

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