Sanchismo reloaded: what’s going on in Spanish politics?
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
2d ago
Pedro Sanchez is back as Spanish Prime Minister, despite securing less votes and seats than his main rival. José Magone unpacks how Sanchez managed it and what’s happening now in Spanish politics. The Spanish general election of 23 July 2023 did not provide a clear absolute majority for either of the two main political parties: the People’s Party (PP), led by Alberto Feijóo, or the Spanish Socialist ‘Workers’ Party (PSOE), led by incumbent Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez. Yet as election night drew to a close, Sanchez and his party leaders were to be found dancing on a platform in front of the pa ..read more
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Of course the pandemic was political: the Covid Inquiry and the constitutional question
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
2d ago
Coree Brown Swan, Paul Anderson and Judith Sijstermans analyse the Covid Inquiry’s hearings in Scotland, highlighting that both the UK and Scottish governments incorporated constitutional politics into their pandemic responses. They argue that should not come as a surprise nor should it necessarily be seen as inappropriate.  The UK Covid Inquiry has turned its attention to devolution, recently visiting Scotland, before continuing this week in Wales. Like earlier sessions, the Inquiry, and certainly much of the media coverage, focused on the retention of WhatsApp messages. But also at the ..read more
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The pandemic and devolution – intergovernmental relations under stress
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
2d ago
Coree Brown Swan, Paul Anderson and Judith Sijstermans explore what the Covid Inquiry’s hearings in Scotland have highlighted about relations between the UK and Scottish governments during the pandemic. They argue that the use of the Inquiry as a forum to put forward different perspectives on devolution suggests that new structures for managing intergovernmental relations are not yet working optimally. The UK Covid Inquiry has wrapped up its public hearings in Scotland on decision-making during the pandemic. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the evidence exposed a difficult and even dysfunctional relati ..read more
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The SNP’s independence push: navigating public opinion
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
4d ago
Stephanie Luke analyses UK in a Changing Europe’s latest polling by Redfield & Wilton. She highlights that the SNP will struggle to keep the Westminster seats it currently holds if the party focuses too much time on independence alone. Redfield & Wilton’s Brexit tracker polls for UK in a Changing Europe can be found here, and the data tables can be downloaded here. The Scottish National Party made big gains across Scotland in the 2019 general election, with former leader Nicola Sturgeon saying the country had sent ‘a clear message on a second independence referendum’. Since then, two t ..read more
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Do Labour supporters back a softer Brexit?
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
4d ago
John Curtice explores what Labour voters think about a closer relationship with the EU, looking at levels of support for specific ways in which Brexit might be softened.   Redfield & Wilton’s Brexit tracker polls for UK in a Changing Europe can be found here, and the data tables can be downloaded here. Should he win the next general election, one of the key decisions that will face Keir Starmer will be whether and how far to seek a softening of the terms of the Brexit deal negotiated by Boris Johnson. Although Labour have ruled out any attempt to rejoin the EU, the party has left ..read more
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Is immigration costing the Conservatives votes?
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
4d ago
John Curtice analyses public attitudes towards immigration, highlighting that while there has been an increase in the number who think that immigration is too high, voters appear to be abandoning the Conservatives for a broader set of reasons. Redfield & Wilton’s Brexit tracker polls for UK in a Changing Europe can be found here, and the data tables can be downloaded here. For a government that had argued that Brexit would deliver lower levels of immigration, there were two unwelcome bits of news in November. First, it emerged that net migration had reached a new record high annual total o ..read more
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Has Reform UK really come of age?
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
1w ago
Paula Surridge and Sophie Stowers analyse Reform UK’s performance in the Wellingborough and Kingswood by-elections, suggesting that despite the commentary to the contrary the party has in fact been under-performing in by-elections.  By-elections have long been an opportunity for voters to express dissatisfaction with the incumbent government, even more so in an election year. In these circumstances it is not unexpected for smaller parties to do particularly well. Take, for example, the Heywood and Middleton by-election near the end of the 2010-2015 parliament, where UKIP secured 38.7% of ..read more
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Core vs swing voters: unpacking Labour’s electoral dilemma
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
1w ago
Zain Mohyuddin compares Labour’s core supporters with the swing voters the party is trying to appeal to, exploring where they differ on issues and how this might feed into Labour’s electoral strategy.  During election campaigns, political strategists and media coverage understandably focuses on the preferences of and issues that matter to swing voters. Archetypal swing voters from previous elections include the Essex Man, Mondeo Man, and Workington Man. A recent report by Labour Together identified two new such segments in the electorate, deemed critical to Labour’s prospects at the next ..read more
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The unexplored impacts of international students
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
1w ago
Dr Julian Costas-Fernandez, Dr Angus Holford, and Dr Greta Morando outline their recently published research which finds that international students do not damage the educational or labour market outcomes of the domestic students they study alongside. International students and their dependents are a rare migrant group in that the number of them in the UK can be rapidly reduced through government policy. The government has restricted family visas for the dependents of taught students. And in recent weeks the claim that international students crowd out domestic student participation and op ..read more
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The restoration of power-sharing in Northern Ireland: back to the old routine?
UK in a changing Europe
by Alex Walker
2w ago
With power-sharing in Northern Ireland restored but the debate on Irish unity still to the fore, Peter McLoughlin examines the political dynamics at play. Power-sharing government has finally been restored in Northern Ireland. For many, however, there is limited cause for celebration. We have been here before, with the region’s political institutions collapsing and then being revived multiple times since they were established by the Belfast/Good Friday Agreement in 1998. Most people in Northern Ireland are eager for their politicians to simply get on with the job of addressing the manifold cha ..read more
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