Six and a half years after Gordon Brown finally badgered Tony Blair out of Downing Street, the relationship between these two men still dominates British politics. Why? Because David Cameron… Continue reading The post How the warring ghosts of Blair and Brown still haunt their successors appeared first on Spectator Blogs.
Tony Blair won the 1997 general election by a landslide and in the early days of that Labour Government - Labour accepted a £1 million donation from Bernie Ecclestone the diminutive and very wealthy face of Formula One motor racing.Show More Summary
About seven years ago, I interviewed Bill Rammell, a Labour foreign office minister who that time was in charge of Tony Blair's policy to stop drug production in Afghanistan. As a portfolio, it struck me as something of a tough one, roughly equivalent to being tasked with being Minister in Charge of Wave Prevention to [...]
As the Telegraph reports today, Sir Jeremy Heywood, the Cabinet Secretary, is blocking the publication of correspondence between George W Bush and Tony Blair ahead of the Iraq War, together with later correspondence between Gordon Brown and Mr Bush – thus effectively stalling the already heavily delayed Iraq Inquiry. • Tim Stanley: The squalor of [...]
If you want a career in politics, don’t listen to Tony Blair. Seems odd, I know, given how successful a politician he was, and how I am regularly accused of being a Blairite zombie, but there you go. Sometimes hard … Continued
Tony Blair was doing his former-prime-minister routine the other day, at an event hosted by the excellent Mile End Group in London. These occasions always serve as a reminder that the Blair premiership was the most expensive training programme ever undertaken in history.
Newcastle upon Tyne Andrew Adonis is not your conventional ‘retired’ politician. The sprightly 50-year-old shadow infrastructure minister remains more influential than his current job title suggests. After running Tony Blair’s… Continue reading The post Andrew Adonis interview: HS2, free schools and running for Mayor of London appeared first on Spectator Blogs.
How different politics was in the 1990s. Remember Bill Clinton in America, feelin’ folks' pain? Politicians – like young Tony Blair – were learning to triangulate, positioning themselves oh-so-reasonably between two competing points of view. Another US import, the “spin doctor”, was busy rationing MPs' access to the broadcast media, making sure those that got [...]
No, not Tony Blair in a big tent in the desert, but our man Taki in the Big Apple. In tomorrow’s Spectator, Taki writes, with characteristic tact, on the Middle… Continue reading The post Another dodgy deal with Gaddafi appeared first on Spectator Blogs.
So farewell then, Tom McNally. The decision of the avuncular Lib Dem Lord to stand down as deputy leader of the House and leader of his party there, may seem a minor political footnote, but it matters. Since Tony Blair swept away the...Show More Summary
Relatively soon after Tony Blair became prime minister a new question started doing the rounds at Westminster. “When oh when,” people began asking, “is the real Tony Blair going to stand up?” When I say “people”, I actually mean those commentators, MPs and activists who could broadly be described as the soft Left. People like [...]
I'm often wrong, about lots of things. So this morning I tested a pet theory: that nothing good can come from reading the memoirs of a spin doctor. Or politician (there are some exceptions in this category). I didn't read Tony Blair's non est mea culpa, nor Alistair Campbell's version thereof. There is a finite [...]
From the Sunday Telegraph For a long period, the Conservative Party’s troubles could only be properly understood with reference to the brutal way in which Margaret Thatcher was removed from office in November 1990. Her many supporters could not forgive their fellow Tories, who had knifed a three-time general election winner. The memory of that act [...]
A couple of weeks ago my good friend John McTernan penned a piece for this paper about the fallout from the Syria vote, headlined “David Cameron's No 10 isn’t a patch on Tony Blair’s”. He argued that the Government's defeat “goes to the heart of a continuing critique of Cameron’s No 10 team: do they [...]
Alastair Campbell tweeted the following last night: "Gordon Brown had many many strengths and did some great things. But why he needed people like Damian McBride and Charlie Whelan a mystery." I was a political reporter throughout the Blair era, and there is no mystery at all why Mr Brown felt that he needed to [...]
It is impossible to overstate the damage done to the Foreign Office during 13 years of New Labour. The institution came under systematic and malicious attack. Tony Blair sidelined the organisation, setting up his own informal foreign policy apparatus, while handing out ambassadors’ jobs to various cronies. Diplomats with independence of mind (particularly the Arabists [...]
This morning the Today programme broadcast an interview with Tony Blair in which he gives his reaction to the Syria vote. Part of it consisted of a frankly embarrassing attempt by him to minimise the impact that Iraq had on last week’s debate. But the most newsworthy element was when he openly criticised Ed Miliband’s [...]
There is an old political adage which says “oppositions don’t win elections, governments lose them”. I’ve never bought into it. Long after the voters had fallen out of love with Margaret Thatcher and Tony Blair, both were still winning elections. That was because despite public antipathy – even hostility – the alternative seemed too unpalatable. [...]
Tony Blair set out this sober response to the 'Stop the war' and 'Hands off Syria' campaigners in the Sunday Times the other day - with the wry observation that there are already multiple hands on Syria - most notably Russia, of course, and China's as well, albeit more indirectly. Show More Summary
In the slow march to war in Iraq in 2003, relations between the UK, France and America were at an all time low - as the UK Labour Prime Minister, Tony Blair made a strategic alliance with a Republican President, George Bush, while aShow More Summary