First published on Portland Communications for The Brexit Desk
Governments have limited bandwidth. Limits to how many priorities they can pursue. This Government has had its decided for it – by a referendum of the people – and it is dominating the agenda like nothing else.
Theresa May was hoping there would be a little capacity in the system for her pet projects – bringing back grammar schools, workers on boards – but alas. Nicola Sturgeon used the hiatus between the House of Commons and Lords on Monday to drive a coach and horses through the Prime Minister’s wishful thinking.
Downing Street has now got to manoeuvre Britain’s leaving the European Union and keeping Scotland in the United Kingdom. This would be tough for a good Prime Minister. (more…)
First published on Progress Online for The Last Word
May’s weakness exposed, leadership in local government and an impressive start for Open Labour – Progress director Richard Angell has this week’s Last Word
The Tories in 2015 told Britain not to vote Labour because Ed Miliband would be a disaster for the economy and he would be pushed around by Nicola Sturgeon. If it was not for the fact that the National Health Service was in crisis and the government’s only idea for improving schools is to bring back grammars, you might have to pinch yourself to remember who won.
The morning after Sturgeon ambushed the country and announced her intention to legislate for a second referendum on Scottish independence, the Times ran with a government source saying: ‘This timing is completely unacceptable … it would be irresponsible to agree to it and we won’t.’ If half of what the first minister said about being kept in the dark about how Brexit might proceed is true, the fault in many ways lies with Theresa May and her operation in No 10.
May likes to maintain that her ‘thoughtful’ style is a strength and shows that she is considered. It is anything but. The weakness of No 10 and her inability to know her own mind is why so much of Brexit is still unclear and why she cannot show her own colleagues, let alone parliament or the devolved administrations, the respect and consideration they deserve. (more…)