Center-right leaders in Britain, Spain and the United States have put the interests of their parties ahead of the good of their countries. Both their parties and their countries have suffered as a result. Read more
The contest to succeed Theresa May as Conservative Party leader and prime minister of the UK is about halfway through. A field of more than two dozen candidates has been whittled down to two by parliamentarians. The final contenders are Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt.
The entire thing has an air of ridicule to it. Many in the country have watched the televised debates between the candidates setting out their policies on not just Brexit but controversial domestic issues, such as social care and high-speed rail. But out of millions, only 150 to 160,000 party members have a vote.
On top of this, to spend the better half of two months choosing a new leader, who will be the new prime minister by default, when the country faces perhaps its greatest crisis in half a century seems rather like rearranging the deckchairs on a sinking ship — futile and even a little insulting to those who suspect more could have been done with the six-month Brexit extension granted by the EU in April. Read more
When Boris Johnson’s last bid for the Conservative Party’s leadership failed, I argued here that the former mayor of London’s many flipflops had finally caught up with him.
“You can only change your mind so many times before people start to see you for the political opportunist you are,” I wrote.
My mistake was to think the British right cares about principle and integrity. Read more
Boris Johnson has finally put his head above the parapet and launched his bid to become Britain’s next prime minister.
At a well-orchestrated event on Wednesday, which saw the former foreign secretary joined by a number of Conservative Party heavyweights, Johnson warned that his party faces an existential crisis if it fails to deliver Brexit.
“Delay means defeat, delay means Corbyn,” he warned.
Britain is due to leave the EU on October 31. Read more
In last month’s European elections, Britain’s Conservative Party outdid expectations that it would perform poorly by performing terribly. It placed fifth with just 9 percent support, the party’s worst result since 1832.
This is a humiliation for a party that prides itself on being Britain’s “natural party of government”. Theresa May promptly announced she would step down as prime minister and party leader. Twelve candidates are vying to replace her, including the former mayor of London, Boris Johnson.
A fresh face won’t be enough avert the next electoral disaster, though. The Conservatives have lost their reputation for competence and prudence during the Brexit process and the issue of Europe — which has brought down every Conservative prime minister since Ted Heath — is unlikely to go away. Read more
The outcome of local elections in the United Kingdom last week painted a stark picture for the country’s two major political parties.
The ruling Conservatives were expecting to lose around 800 of their 5,521 seats. They ended up losing 1,330 and with it control of 44 councils.
Labour, who were expecting gains, ended up losing 84 seats and control of six councils.
The clear winners were the Liberal Democrats, who more than doubled their seats, from 658 to 1,351, with 19 percent support. The Greens also won.
It is tempting to write up the result to those parties’ pro-EU message, but there is actually more at play. Read more
Friday was meant to be Brexit Day, but it wasn’t. Instead, after two “meaningful votes” about leaving the EU, a third was held in Parliament, which — like the previous two — did not succeed.
On Monday, Parliament will continue its indicative voting to see what, if any, resolution to the crisis can command a majority in the House.
Meanwhile, British politics continues its Brexit-themed realignment. Read more