Coulson jumps ship

… and there was me suggesting he was the political survivor of the year for the last 12 months (which I guess he was) on the Seven Days Show. Make sure you tune in on Sunday as we are sure to be discussing this and all of the other stories from the weeks comings and goings.

The question now is who will replace him?

Taking no pleasure in Alan Johnsons resignation

Ok, the first part is a little lie. In a way I’m pleased Ed Balls is in the position he is in, as I don’t think he’s a huge vote winner, but that’s beside the point. If the first editions already out today are to be believed I don’t take any pleasure in the resignation of Alan Johnson. Yes I may poke fun at him asking did he go because “he failed to deliver” but when you have both worked for Royal Mail I think you are allowed a little post office humour.

He always struck me as a decent kind of guy. Indeed when I was at Royal Mail and had dealings with his office and his adviser he always seemed to be a nice guy. I am not sure he was well suited to the role of Shadow Chancellor, but that is probably the least of his worries.

The reshuffle is certainly interesting. I hope the party, for example, will use every opportunity to remind Liam Byrne of his immortal words about there being no money left whenever and wherever he speaks. Will this reshuffle give Labour new impetus? Probably – just as any reshuffle would. If I were Ed Miliband would I keep an eye on my closest colleagues for obvious reasons? You bet! Do I believe advisers of current Shadow Ministers may have briefed against Johnson – you would hope not, but yes. Do I feel a little sad for Alan Johnson. Having read some of the headlines, yes I do.

BIS dont know if stripping Cable of responsibilities has cost taxpayer money

When part of Vince Cables responsibilities were sent over to DCMS I asked the question as to how many staff would transfer departments (if any) and what cost there might be. A simple enough question?

BIS seemingly don’t have or don’t want to tell the answer:-

How many staff, if any, will transfer Departments following the decision
to transfer specific responsibilities from the Secretary of State for
Business, Innovation and Skills, to the Secretary of State for Culture
Media and sport, and what the overall cost of such a move will be.

Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (‘the Act’), you have the right

. know whether we hold the information you require

. be provided with that information (subject to any exemptions under
the Act which may apply).

I am writing to inform you that the information you have requested is
currently not held by the department. There is no recorded information
that indicates how many, if any will transfer departments following the
decision to transfer specific responsibilities from the Secretary of State
for Business, Innovation and Skills, to the Secretary of State for Culture
Media and sport, and what the overall cost of such a move will be

PMQs 19th January 2011


To listen to the action from Prime Ministers Question today, click the play buttom above.

Normal service will hopefully resume

Apologies for the lack of posts. Unfortunately the host of the domain seemed to change where the website was being directed meaning that some people. myself included, could not access the site. That problem has nearly been rectified, however some people (including myself) are still struggling to access the site depending on who your Internet provider is.

All very complicated for a luddite such as myself – however normal service should be resumed shortly.

Seven Days Show 16th January 2011


In today’s episode of The Seven Days Show (episode 56) we discuss the ex Labour MP who announced he is standing down from the Commons; the recent by-election in Oldham East and Saddleworth; bankers and their bonuses; whether there could be a snap election; the referendum on AV; the Speaker spat and this t-shirt.

To listen to the podcast click the play button above.

To subscribe to Tory Radio on Itunes click here.

Caution! The content of this t-shirt may cause offence to some readers


Yes Vote in AV Referendum Leads by 6 Points

ComRes for the Sunday Mirror and The Independent on Sunday tomorrow asked the official question drafted by the Electoral Commission:  At present, the UK uses the “first past the post” system to elect MPs to the House of Commons.  Should the “alternative vote” system be used instead?

Yes               36%
No                30%
Don’t know    34%

(Answers were weighted by likelihood to vote.)

So what if anything does this tell us? Well there is al to play for given the number on undecideds, and getting the vote out will be crucial. Game on.

Zetters Political Companion

Issue number two of Zetter’s Political Companion is now available.

It has chapters on:
• The Government
• The House of Commons
• The House of Lords
• Whitehall Departments
• Political Parties
• Devolved bodies (Scottish Parliament, AND Welsh, Northern Ireland and Greater London assemblies)
• The European Union (European Parliament, European Commission, Council of Ministers)

The first issue includes details of the recently-announced ministerial responsibilities, plus the membership of House of Commons Select Committees and All-Party Groups. It has contact details for thousands of politicians and civil servants, including recently elected MPs and recently elevated Peers.

The book is priced at £20 for a single copy, or £65 for an annual subscription (four issues).

To order please email;

60 Seconds in Politics 14 January 2011

In todays 60 Seconds in politics we discuss the Oldham East and Saddleworth by election; Baroness Warsi and her reaction; and the end game in the Speaker spat.


To listen to the podcast click the play button above.

Make sure you tune in to The Seven Day Show with Iain Dale to catch up on all the political news from the last seven days, coming Sunday.