From The Independent: America’s political landscape has undergone a transformation, after a new crop of politicians – more diverse, more female and more progressive – helped Democrats seize control of the House of Representatives and place Donald Trump under unprecedented scrutiny.
From The Independent: A Conservative official has admitted the party’s own research shows people are “far more likely” to vote Labour on “caring stuff” and as a result tailored their local elections message on bins and council tax.
From Girl Gang HQ: “She’s a liar liar, you can’t trust her. No no no noooo. We’ll let you come up with the moves (probably best not to copy hers)
“In our times of double speak and spin this hard enamel pin set says it how it is.
“Exclusively designed and sold by GGHQ – 15% of all profits will be donated to food bank charities in the UK.”
From The Guardian: In one of the more remarkable moments in the history of the annual United Nations General Assembly, the chamber of world leaders broke out in spontaneous laughter at Donald Trump’s claim that “in less than two years, my administration has accomplished more than almost any administration in the history of our country”.
Clearly taken aback, Trump said: “I didn’t expect that reaction, but that’s OK.”
The UN General Assembly literally laughed at President Trump for bragging about his administration
Posted by NowThis Politics on Tuesday, September 25, 2018
Cross-party group Campaign Together is currently recruiting for two paid freelance roles – Lead Organiser and Organiser. You will be someone that wants to help us mobilise everybody who is not a member of a party, or whose chosen party does not stand a chance in their seat, to campaign together to get rid of this disastrous and dangerous government. We will organise patiently in communities, train ordinary people to become leaders, and mobilise 10,000 canvassers over the course of the campaign, flooding marginal seats and helping beat progressive parties to beat Conservative candidates in 50 parliamentary constituencies across the UK.The Lead Organiser role will be responsible for leading and running the campaign, and liaising with and supporting our voluntary Management Board.
From Daily Telegraph: Analysts at the bank Keefe, Bruyette & Woods conclude that the chances of the Tory Government collapsing after failing to win support for a Brexit deal have jumped, which could lead to a snap election and Labour victory.
From The Independent: Scottish Conservatives leader Ruth Davidson has ruled out ever becoming prime minister for the sake of her mental health and relationship.
From The Independent: SNP membership has overtaken the Conservatives for the first time, pushing the UK’s governing party into third place.
From The Guardian: Momentum is aiming to circumvent national news outlets by training Labour activists to place news stories in local newspapers, citing concerns that party activists could have ignored a crucial part of the media industry in the last general election.
The Labour-supporting campaign group has unveiled the training programme, which will teach campaigners the basics of pitching relevant news stories to the regional press and ensuring local journalists are kept informed and supplied with material about events, campaigns, and protests.
The programme will be piloted in a number of marginal seats – including Middlesbrough and Stevenage – before being rolled out to around 40 constituencies across the country in the autumn. These will include constituencies with high profile Conservative MPs such as Iain Duncan Smith, Boris Johnson and Amber Rudd, along with a series of marginal seats in the midlands and Scotland.
During the 2017 general election, the Conservatives spent substantial sums buying wraparound adverts on local papers in marginal constituencies – reaching both the people who buy the paper and those who simply see them on display in local shops.
From The Guardian: Some argued that the dead generated more income for the Conservative Party than the living, because subscriptions from the party’s 124,000 members produced a paltry £835,000 for the party’s national accounts, which was half the £1.7m the party received from legacies and wills.
So concerned were the Conservatives about the idea that the party was literally dying off that the party deputy chairman, James Cleverly, tweeted on Wednesday night that local associations retained the bulk of membership subscriptions, amounting to a total of £4m a year. In any event, the claim is only true if the party’s living donors, such as the JCB owner, Anthony Bamford, and Lord Ashcroft, were excluded from consideration. Donors raised £34.3m between them, three-quarters of the Tories’ total annual income.
It also helps explain why the Tories have to spend so much time publicly fundraising. At this year’s fundraising Black and White ball, one person paid £55,000 to spend a day shadowing Theresa May; another paid £12,500 to have home-cooked dinner with the environment secretary, Michael Gove, and his wife, Sarah Vine.
From The Guardian: Replacing Theresa May with Boris Johnson, or other potential leadership candidates, would not boost the Conservative party’s chances of winning the next election, a poll has suggested.
In findings that will offer some relief to the prime minister, an ICM survey for the Guardian found that voters believe the Tories would be more likely to lose the next election if May was replaced by Johnson or five other potential successors.
The only scenario deemed likely to improve Tory prospects, according to the poll, was if the party was led by an unspecified person who was “quite young and able [and] not currently in government”.
From the Independent: The Tory government has quietly dropped controversial plans to force local councils to sell off their highest value social homes.
From Daily Mirror: Domestic violence victims have won a victory after a three-year fight, as the Tories finally abandoned women’s refuge funding reforms after they were warned women’s lives would be at risk.
From The Guardian: Labour has opened up its biggest poll lead over the Conservatives since shortly after last June’s general election, as the government’s chaotic handling of Brexit appears to have triggered a dramatic fall in support for Theresa May and the Tories.
The latest Opinium poll for the Observer puts Labour on 40%, the same score as last month, but four points ahead of the Tories who have dropped by six points since early June to 36%.
May’s leadership ratings have also nosedived, while those of Jeremy Corbyn have remained stable. May’s net approval rating – when the number of people who disapprove of the way she is leading the country is subtracted from the number who approve – has tumbled from -8% in June to -24% over a turbulent political period of just five weeks.
She is now well behind Corbyn who is on -12%, little changed from -13% last month.
From The Progressive Alliance: The Progressive Alliance is an historic campaign that began at a time when many progressive people had just about given up hope that British politics could change.
Together, we decided that something had to be done. We decided that if we wanted to change things, progressive people would have to start working together – not against each other. And then, on the announcement of a snap election by Theresa May, we launched the biggest tactical voting campaign in British political history.
Volunteers up and down the country began sowing the seeds of a new politics – leafleting, canvassing and even holding Bernie Sanders-inspired ‘Barnstorms’.
We held a huge launch party attended by nearly 1,000 people, with inspiring talks, comedy and performances by progressive leaders, poets, campaigners, comedians and musicians from the UK and progressive movements around the world.
Meanwhile, we managed to secure 41 local alliances between progressive parties. Courageous local heroes volunteered to put aside the old, tribal party politics, in favour of a new way of doing things – standing together, united, in order to defeat the Tories.
From Daily Mirror: Mexico has a new left-wing president after a landslide election victory. Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, an ally of UK Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, won more than 50 per cent of the vote, becoming the country’s first leftist leader in decades.
Coming Soon Our documentary film is close to completion. We need your help to spread the word about the film and more crowdfunding to deliver the best film possible. www.gofundme.com/thegreatnhsheistThank you#NHS70
Posted by The Great NHS Heist on Friday, June 29, 2018
“I’m Dr Bob Gill, a family doctor and NHS campaigner based in South East London.
“Over the last few years I have become aware of creeping privatisation in our National Health Service. There has been a concerted effort by consecutive governments to convert our NHS to a profit driven private health insurance system.
“In 2014 I co-produced a film, ‘Sell Off – The Abolition of your NHS’ which explained the dismantling of our health service. It has been shown at screenings around the country and been well received by audiences, judging by the feedback at over 50 such events I have attended in the last 18 months for Question and Answer sessions.
“I’ve had many requests to make another film. Our new project “THE GREAT NHS HEIST” will make clear what is going on and how the final betrayal will play out unless we act to stop the heist of our NHS.
“We will explore the measures being taken to drive us to an American-style health system and what is in store for us in a for-profit system.
“Our film can be made, with your support. We won’t have money for stock footage or fancy music but if we can raise enough to get to all our interviewees and cover our equipment costs then we will be able to tell this important story. All the people involved are putting in their time and expertise voluntarily.”
From The Observer: The Home Office has backed down over its refusal to release medicinal cannabis oil that it had confiscated from the family of a severely epileptic boy.
Sajid Javid said he had used an exceptional power as home secretary to issue a licence for Billy Caldwell to be treated with the oil as a matter of urgency.
Billy’s mother, Charlotte Caldwell from County Tyrone, said her family had “achieved the impossible” in getting the oil back, and criticised the “dreadful, horrific, cruel experience” her son had suffered.
Billy’s cannabis oil was confiscated at Heathrow on Monday. It contains a psychoactive substance called tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) that is illegal in the UK but available elsewhere, and had kept his epilepsy at bay.
After it was taken from him, Billy suffered two seizures that other medicines could not control and he was taken to Chelsea and Westminster hospital by ambulance on Friday.
Following Billy’s admission, the Home Office came under intense pressure to allow him to be prescribed the medicine that had successfully controlled his seizures for 300 days.
From The London Economic: Activate, the Conservatives’ imitation of Momentum, has folded after just eight months.
The political movement was set up to engage young people in centre-right politics but has struggled to make any headway since it was launched in August last year.
Many have argued that the group was doomed from the start having been set the impossible mission of becoming the vehicle for a conservative mass movement that never existed.
A visit to the Activate website returns a ‘404’ error – while the group’s Twitter account now shows only a single tweet under a revised name of “The artist formerly known as Activate”.
From BBC News: Ministers have reversed a 2014 move stopping people under the age of 21 automatically getting housing benefit.
Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey said the change would “reassure all young people that housing support is in place if they need it”.
It was estimated that 10,000 young people would have been hit by the move.
Ms McVey said that in return for the benefit “young people in return will have a Youth Obligation – an intensive package of labour market support for 18-21 year-olds looking to get into work”.