We’ve had three voting intention polls in the last couple of days:

  • Ipsos MORI‘s monthly political monitor had topline figures of CON 43%(+4), LAB 42%(nc), LDEM 6%(-3). Fieldwork was over last weekend (Fri-Wed), and changes are from January. Tabs are here.
  • YouGov/Times on Friday has toplines of CON 41%(nc), LAB 43%(+1), LDEM 7%(nc). Fieldwork was Mon-Tues and changes are from last week. Tabs are here.
  • Survation/GMB, reported in the Sunday Mirror, has CON 37%(-3), LAB 44%(+1), LDEM 9%(+1). Fieldwork was Wednesday and Thursday, and changes are from the tail end of January. No tabs yet.

There is no clear trend – Labour is steady across the board, Survation have the Tories falling, MORI have them rising. MORI and YouGov show the two main parties neck-and-neck, Survation have a clear Labour lead.

The better Labour position in Survation is typical, but it’s not really clear why. As regular readers will know, Survation do both online and telephone voting intention polls. Their phone polls really do have a significantly different methodology – rather than random digit dialling, they randomly select phone numbers from consumer databases and ring those specific people. That would be an obvious possible explanation for a difference between Survation phone polls and polls from other companies. However, this poll wasn’t conducted by telephone, it was conducted online, and Survation’s online method is pretty similar to everyone else’s.

Survation’s online samples at the general election were much the same as everyone elses. The differences were down to other companies experimenting with things like demographic turnout modelling in order to solve the problems of 2015, approaches that ultimately ended up backfiring. However, polling companies that got it wrong have now dropped the innovations that didn’t work and largely gone back to simpler methods on turnout, meaning there is now no obvious reason for the difference.

Meanwhile, looking at the other questions in the surveys the YouGov poll also included their all their regular EU trackers, following Theresa May and Jeremy Corbyn’s speeches. Neither, unsusprisingly, seem to have made much difference. 29% of people think that the Conservative party’s policy on Brexit is clear, up on a week ago (25%) but still significantly down from January (37%). 36% of people say they support May’s approach to Brexit, barely changed from a week ago (35%). For Labour, just 18% of people now think their Brexit policy is clear (down from 22% straight after Corbyn’s speech), 21% of people say they support the approach that Jeremy Corbyn is taking towards Brexit.


640 Responses to “Latest voting intention polls”

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  1. Reiver97

    Thanks for the link. The tables for the MORI Scottish poll are here

    https://www.ipsos.com/sites/default/files/ct/news/documents/2018-03/scotland-spom-march-2018-tables.pdf

    Westminster VI – SNP 39% : SLab 26% : SCon 25% : SLD 6% : SGP 4% : UKIP less than 1%

    Electoral Calculus predictor gives no. of MPs as SNP 41 : SCon 11 : SLD 4 : SLab 3

    Voting in an indyref2 – Yes 44% : No 49%

    Usual age difference – only those 55+ have a No majority, which probably explains the greater No margin among those with no qualifications, and those with no children at home

    61% think leaving the EU will make both Scotland and UK worse off.

  2. DANNY @ BZ

    Perhaps not on TOH’s views personally, but there was analysis of the views of leave voters. Most remainers believed leaving would cause a financial hit, most leavers thought it would not cause a financial hit. But a minority, like TOH, did vote leave believeing there would be a hit. I think it was around 90% of all voters voted for an outcome they believed would not cause economic harm, and the block which voted against their own economic interest was leavers.

    That’s pretty much my understanding, and why I mentioned TOH – one of the very few leavers who post here who recognised that some hit was inevitable.

    But maybe if you are at the bottom of the income range now it would be tempting to simply destroy the system and hope that when a new one arises, you might be better off. Could be a sensible strategy. Those already on low income have a lot less to lose, but remain never really pushed financial crash from brexit while leave pushed financial bonuses for NHS, etc, which probably most directly would benefit the poor.

    That’s what I’d be very concerned about if I was in HMG. We already have DExEU and Treasury estimates of the likely hit, and I’ll be astounded if they prove to be even vaguely accurate re how hard the hit will be.

    The tories ran a very genteel referendum campaign, which never really countenanced the idea that any tory, leave or remain, would propose anything which would harm the Uk.

    I agree, but that’s unsurprising since the referendum was mainly about destroying UKIP in the hope of re-uniting the Cons. The problem was that Cameron & Co made no real attempt to “sell” the benefits of remaining in the EU or even to insist on a specific Leave proposal: EFTA/EEA, WTO or whatever.

  3. THE OTHER HOWARD @ BZ

    Well penury isn’t going to happen as we will be leaving the EU.

    Perhaps you’re right, but it is a guess on your part and not a fact. If you are wrong, you may be much less happy with what a Lab HMG does, whether in or out of the EU.

  4. The Graun are giving Corbyn a right kicking for (having condemned the use of nerve agents) asking whether there is actually any evidence that this was carried out by the Russian state, or if the material could have been obtained by a third party due to Russian negligence, and then commenting that it is unfortunate that diplomatic capacity has been cut.

    From a personal viewpoint, I cannot see what is objectionable about any of this, unless the concept of habeus corpus has been suspended in favour of mob rule.

  5. @Trevor Warne – “Do you think the OBR have looked at it purely from an accounting accruals basis where as the actual cashflows will be all final at the end of transition (assumed to be Dec 2020 to match end of current EU MFF).

    It is pretty minor but I’d liked it all closed off and I did think that was the plan. Pensions, etc can all be estimated and converted to defined contributions with lump sum, etc. Illiquid assets can be estimated and netted off, etc, etc. I don’t see any need (or wording in the Dec join statement) that suggested we’d be keeping open some ‘unknowns’, even if they are fairly small.”

    Gosh – you must be absolutely dreadful at reading!

    Joint Report, clause 63) “The UK will remain liable for its share of the Union’s contingent liabilities as
    established at the date of withdrawal.”

    Joint Report, clause 67c) -“Payments arising from the financial settlement will become due as if the UK
    had remained a Member State. In particular, the UK will not be required to incur expenditures earlier than would be the case had it remained a Member
    State unless agreed by both sides.”

    Joint Report, note 9 – “The UK’s share of the liability related to pension and other post-employment benefits for Union staff and staff from the European Defence Agency, the European Union Institute for Security Studies and the European Union Satellite Centre as established on 31 December 2020 will be paid when these amounts fall due, unless an earlier schedule is agreed”

    Joint Report Clause 75) – “…the UK will provide a guarantee for an amount equal to [the EIB’s] callable
    capital on the day of withdrawal. This guarantee will be decreased in line with the amortisation of the stock of EIB operations at the date ofwithdrawal, starting on the date on which the outstanding stock reaches an amount equal to the total subscribed capital on the date of withdrawal and ending on the date it equals the total paid in capital on the date of withdrawal, both as defined in the EIB statute. ”

    There’s more, but I just picked these out as you don’t appear to understand the Joint Report (again!).

    It may be that agreement is reached to clear everything in 2020, but it seems more likely that we will retain ongoing commitments until such time as these are paid, which is what we have already agreed to. It could be decades until we clear everything.

  6. As an aside, ardent Brexiters really should be keen on as long a timeframe for payments as possible if they really do believe in Brexit.

    If it’s true that the UK is on the brink of an economic golden age, and the EU is about to collapse, then we would expect sterling to gain relative to the euro, and we’ve agreed to pay in euro. On the other hand…..

  7. Headlines from new Ipsos Mori Scottish poll as reported from Scot goes Pop:

    Scottish voting intentions for next Westminster election (Ipsos-Mori, telephone fieldwork):

    SNP 39% 
    Labour 26% 
    Conservatives 25% 
    Liberal Democrats 6% 
    Greens 4%

    Should Scotland be an independent country? (Don’t Knows excluded)

    Yes 48% 
    No 52%

    Do you support or oppose holding another referendum on independence within the next three years?  (Neutrals/Don’t Knows excluded)

    Support 47%
    Oppose 53%

  8. TREVOR WARNE

    Sorry-been watching proceedings in HoC-watched JC’s incredible response twice over on iPlayer-what drama.

    Anyway-Have now looked at OBR 2018 EFO-Annex B.

    All up-net net seems to be-on their estimate :-

    Euros Bn.

    Budget Conts net-2019 & 2020 21.5
    RAL -UK contr ** 20.2
    Others *** 0.3 refund

    =Total 41.4

    Cash Flow wise-they assume all significant cost done by 2025-with a very long tale of insignificant payments -mainly because Pen. Liabilities are paid as they arise-not as lump sum.

    Please note none of the above includes refund to BoE from ECB of investment capital stake around €55 million is expected to be returned in a single payment in 2021.

    ** Total RAL 256. UK cont around 12% = 31.7 -but Minus what we would have received for UK project Funding 11.5= Net net 20.2

    *** This includes
    Net Pen Liability ( % of 77 bn ) 9.5
    Minus refunds for stake in EIB/ EFSI & others
    Plus bits & bobs

  9. @ ALEC – ??

    Joint report:

    “Outstanding commitments at the end of 2020 – Reste a? liquider (RAL)
    61. The UK will contribute its share of the financing of the budgetary commitments outstanding at 31 December 2020 (RAL).”

    That sounds like a one-off bullet payment to me, timed for end of transition period Dec 2020.

    Annex B in the OBR report

    “B.25 The timing of payments related to the RAL is yet to be agreed. We have assumed that the RAL is paid out on a declining path over an 8-year period from 2021 to 2028”

    they then show those annual amounts in Table B.4
    (NB what we would have paid if we’d stayed is in Table B.1 but it is below what the EU have predicted)

    I am confused why the OBR say “yet to be agreed” fro RAL. If you can shed some light on that please do. I asked COLIN as I know he has looked into the RAL issue in depth.

    However, thank you for pointing out the wording from the joint report that does cover the timings and triggers for the remaining small ongoing amounts. That broadly matches with OBR B.27 onwards so all good.

    Table B.6 shows this amount nets to £2.5bn to be paid out between 2019-2064.
    http://cdn.obr.uk/EFO-MaRch_2018.pdf

    as you point out from note 9 in the joint report:
    “..unless an earlier schedule is agreed”

    Since we can estimate these values now, why not agree to pay them in Dec 2020 (or with an “earlier schedule (when it) is agreed”. Close the bill off asap rather than leave our ‘card behind the bar!’

    As you say yourself “It may be that agreement is reached to clear everything in 2020”

    P.S. I’m glad you have now read the joint report in full and are using its correct name rather than referring it to the WA.

  10. Seems like the co-ordinated interventions in parliament today from the Labour right on behalf of Theresa May and the Tory government are a prelude to either another leadership election or a split. Watch this space.

  11. @TW – “P.S. I’m glad you have now read the joint report in full..”

    Indeed. You should try it sometime.

    [Note: When I refer to the WA, I mean the WA. This is not the same as The Joint Report].

  12. TREVOR WARNE

    @”I am confused why the OBR say “yet to be agreed” fro RAL.”

    Because the JR says this :-

    “70. The second phase of the negotiations will address the practical modalities for implementing the agreed methodology and the schedule of payments.”

  13. BFR

    @” I worry about the understanding of people like Seamus Milne in that article.”

    ““The government has access to information and intelligence on this matter which others don‘t. However, also there is a history in relation to weapons of mass destruction and intelligence which is problematic, to put it mildly. So, I think the right approach is to seek the evidence to follow international treaties, particularly in relation to prohibitive chemical weapons.”

    Seamus Milne

    Today apparently :-)

  14. @ COLIN – thank you. I was typing my 3:19 as you posted your 3:18. It all seems to be in order other than fairly minor points
    a/ timing of RAL amounts (bullet payment in JR v spread out payments in OBR)
    b/ my preference to use the notes ALEC helpfully provided within the JR to agree an earlier schedule for the ongoing bits. not a huge amount given how long it is spread over and from UK side I’d have thought we’d prefer clean closure (rejoining some aspects might complicate the clean closure but timing wise it seems like we’ll fully leave then as a 3rd country rejoin as associate member of some bits – or not!)

    @ ALEC (2:32pm). Govt should not be into currency speculation – we’ll leave that to those that joined a common currency and now have their debt denominated in Euros, a foreign currency should they ever try to leave!

    3:29 :-) :-) Righto :-) :-)

  15. @ COLIN – thanks for highlighting pt70 in JR, ignore my a/ in above then, OBR just taking a view on the likely method and that is fair enough. All good. Appreciate you looking into it.

  16. BZ

    “Perhaps you’re right, but it is a guess on your part and not a fact. ”

    An informed guess of course, in the same way that Remainers have informed guesses that armagedon will occur. None of us know but frankly virtually anything is preferable to our staying in the EU as far as i am concerned.

    As to a Labour Government, I think the whole Nation will be unhappy if Corbyn style economics is ever put into practice but fortunately I actually think that there will be little chance of that.

  17. Bill Patrick

    “Similar results, different motivations. We saw what the far right and the far left have to offer in the 20th century; any historically informed person of good-will doesn’t want to go down either road again.”

    We can agree on that Bill, my sentiments as well.

  18. TREVOR WARNE

    Chart B3 on p 225 shows that the tail is long-but they are very tiny numbers after about 7 to 8 years-ie once RAL is paid off-OBR have assumed a front loaded spread of 8 years for RAL.

  19. Jmes Bloodsworth re Corbyn/Russia:

    “Learning the lessons of Iraq is important. First lesson: not everything is Iraq all over again.”

  20. Alec

    Re: Long payment terms

    As the EU won’t exist in brexiteer brains that far into the future, we should discount the “Brexit Bill” for those years where the EU doesn’t exist.

  21. List of names supporting an EDM from Labour MP’s breaking party discipline and siding with the Tories just been tweeted by Laura K.

    Every last one of them needs the whip removing. It’s pure sabotage.

  22. @CROFTY

    Anyone who supported the wars in Iraq (or Libya, Syria and Afghanistan for that matter) has no credibility when it comes to foreign policy. Of course someone like Bloodworth, who staked his political reputation on the existence of WMD in Iraq and the war being a success, is going to downplay Iraq’s significance.

  23. IndyRef2 – according to wiki, Ipsos Mori, along with some others pollsters, exclude 16 & 17yr olds and hence under report ‘Yes’ by 1%ish

    As I understand it Holyrood voted to request a Section30 approval for IndyRef2 (Mar’17) but May turned Sturgeon down. Does the Holyrood vote have a time limitation?

    I don’t see this as likely just yet but is it plausible to imagine a scenario where by May acquiesces and IndyRef2 happens in say Autumn 2018, either ahead of or because off Brexit meaningful vote?

    May needs SCON MPs but the maths for majority in HoC can also be solved with a lower denominator!

    I had thought a gridlocked HoC might create a new referendum, just considering if that might be IndyRef2 rather than BrexitTerms1

  24. There`s a surprisingly large difference in the Scotland MORI poll caused by the “Likely to Vote” filtering.

    Labour 28%, but LtV 26%
    SCON 23%, but LtV 25%

    An inspiring election campaign could make a big difference in seats won. At the 2016 GE the SCON campaign was pathetic – I have kept a letter supposedly written by Ruth Davidson that was riddled with factual errors, grammatical mistakes, and didn`t deal with most things of high concern to Scottish voters. But it said “say no to a new referendum” in umpteen different ways.

  25. PENNSYLVANIA

    Looks like the white working class have fallen out of love with Trump – a 20% swing against Republicans in a bye-election. If the Decocrats win control of House and Senate in November that makes a Trump impeachment much more likely.

  26. @ Alienated Labour – “Every last one of them needs the whip removing. It’s pure sabotage.”

    Yes agreed. And even better if they join with the LDs and even a few Tories to form a new Independent Party. I would vote for it in an instant as I am sure would swathes of the country.

  27. https://www.rte.ie/news/2018/0314/947251-gfa_rights_brexit/

    “People on the island of Ireland must have their rights, provided for by the Good Friday Agreement, protected in the same way when Britain leaves the EU next year.

    That is the view of the statutory joint committee, established under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement, which considers human rights issues in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland.

    It is recommending that the EU seek a legal commitment to retain the Charter of Fundamental Rights in Northern Ireland after Brexit.

    It wants these rights to be enforced by the Court of Justice of the EU in Northern Ireland.

    The joint committee is made up of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission and the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.”

  28. http://fedtrust.co.uk/brexit-and-the-withdrawal-bill-a-multi-player-game/#more-3024

    “Whether any of theses scenarios transpire, and what they lead to ultimately, will have been the product of a combination of different interlinked processes and institutions. The true significance of the European Union (Withdrawal) Bill is as a part of that continuum. The UK political system contains within it many variable elements, all of which have been stirred by the Brexit process. The combination is volatile. Whatever plans the May government has, it faces not only the question of whether they are realisable in theory (a debatable proposition in itself), but whether competing pressures will enable them to be delivered in practice.”

  29. @trevorwarne

    “As I understand it Holyrood voted to request a Section30 approval for IndyRef2 (Mar’17) but May turned Sturgeon down. Does the Holyrood vote have a time limitation?”

    As I understand it, there is no time limit on the Holyrood vote. Also IIRC May never actually formally responded to the request from the SG simply taking to television to say “Now is not the time” ( ignoring the fact that the SG was not saying that “Now was the time”).

  30. @Andrew Myers

    I’m sure the Tories will miss your vote – they’ll be needing every voter they can get.

  31. @ Alienated Labour – “Every last one of them needs the whip removing. It’s pure sabotage.”

    Yeah… you wouldn’t have ever got Corbyn going against the leadership of his own party.

    It does seem to some of us that principles are only allowed to cut one way and that those who disagree with you are somehow seen to have none at all.

  32. Interestingly the Ipsos Mori poll shows that 50% of those polled support or do not actively oppose holding Indyref2 in the next three years.

  33. THE OTHER HOWARD @ BZ

    Time will tell who is correct, but you don’t seem to have thought through the possibilities should a WTO exit not bring the benefits you are hoping for PDQ.

  34. @Crofty

    If your principles involve desperately trying to support a beleaguered Tory Prime Minister then perhaps you’d be better off crossing the floor. I see absolutely no reason why these people, who aren’t on the left let alone socialists, to remain a member of a left-wing socialist party (unless of course it’s simply to undermine and sabotage the Labour party, in which case it’s time to put some of these melts out to pasture)

  35. AL

    You’re being too silly to respond to – and this is not the place anyway.

  36. ALIENATED LABOUR @ CROFTY @ ALIENATED LABOUR

    With any luck for both of you the Cons will be first to suffer and give Lab the chance of a Lab HMG but in the longer run it will swing again.

    If Lab had the sense to back scrapping the plurality system for a more democratic one, the Cons would be in the wilderness most of the time.

  37. Personally I think Labour’s policy on Brexit is fine but there are those who think that it gives succour to a beleaguered PM and is out of step with the majority of Labour Party members and crucially voters.

    Having said that, I do think that some of the PLP are more opportunistic than principled and are taking an opportunity to defy the leadership.

    They key is if any meaningful front bench resignations occur, if not

  38. Finished now

    They key is if any meaningful front bench resignations occur, if not it can be dismissed as the usual suspects.

    NB) Anyone know if Corbyn, Thornberry and couple of other Labour privy councillors have been briefed confidentially, seems to me to be the appropriate protocol in such situations? Plus Blackwood and Cable perhaps?

  39. @Trevor Warne – “That sounds like a one-off bullet payment to me, timed for end of transition period Dec 2020.”

    As I said before, to comment on such matters with any sense of authority, you really need to get used to reading documents a bit more carefully.

    Clause 61 that you quoted only says that we will contribute our share of the liabilities as they stand in December 2020 – it doesn’t say that this is when we shall pay them. Your statement that I quoted above is therefore completely wrong, and I’m surprised that anyone could have drawn the conclusion you did from that clause.

    Sadly it is a feature of many of your otherwise quite interesting posts that you far too often just get things wrong, presumably because you simply misinterpret things.

  40. @Barbazenzero

    That’s a policy Momentum support, but which Corbyn and much of the PLP, both left and right, are not so keen on. I would personally go much further and see an end to the post-1690 political settlement, repealing the Acts of Union, Settlement etc and the introduction of a new constitution, a Commonwealth of Great Britain Act, just like the one Tony Benn used to advocate in his few years in parliament.

    Getting rid of the house of lords, all the peerages, having a federal Britain and devo-max for all the home nations, PR, stronger local and regional government, written constitution, the whole shebang. Make it a new country – even change the name on the passports from the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland* to really underscore this point. There’s absolutely no point trying to reform or work within the existing institutions, which have been too corrupt for too long to be worth salvaging, and so it makes much more sense.go start again with a clean slate. The possibilities are limitless.

    In fact, the next election if it comes soon will basically just be a rerun of the For the Few, Not the Many manifesto with a load of constitutional reform stuff added for good measure. At least that’s what I’m hearing anyway.

    We only need to win once. If we get in I can promise you all it will be the last Tory government this country ever has.

  41. JJ

    “Having said that, I do think that some of the PLP are more opportunistic than principled and are taking an opportunity to defy the leadership.”

    Wouldn’t disagree with that, as common sense and the law of averages says it is likely to be true.

    But of course that’s a long way from saying [which you certainly don’t] that anyone who disagrees with Corbyn should join the Tory party.

    Many disagree with him over some issues with the same degree of principle that he disagreed with his own party’s leadership for many, many years.

    Without ever being threatened with expulsion as far as I am aware.

    In fact he became leader explicitly because some who disagreed with his views felt it was nevertheless important that they were heard, and nominated him.

    It’s rather hard to envisage the reverse ever occurring and that is to the shame of the people currently in control.

  42. Oh yeah and I forgot, the asterisk, that’s for a United Ireland, which is the only sensible solution to the Irish border issue, and which would undo what was ultimately a great historical injustice commited by the British state to Ireland.

  43. Certainly, Corbyn rebelled numerous times.

    There’s a difference between one guy voting on a point of principle, and a bunch doing co-ordinated attacks timed to try and maximise to sabotage the party.

  44. I’m assuming Stephen Hawking didn’t believe in heaven, but if Jim Bowen did, I do wonder if there was a moment as the white light drew closer when the big voice said ‘let’s have a look at what you would have won’…”

  45. …maximise damage to the party.

    There is also the question of why Liberals keep trying to change the Labour Party into another Liberal party, when they could just go and join the LDs.

    Except of course, you can see why: Liberal parties aren’t that popular. Only reason the LDs got the vote they did in 2010 was to pretend to be rather more Labour. Some even fell for it!

  46. @ HIRETON – thank you. I had thought that some of the “No” in mid-late 2017 was masking some “Not yet” which should drift back to “No’ as time goes by. Some polling has broken the timing down to more specific ‘events’ (e.g. once terms of Brexit are known) and as you pass the ‘events’ the ‘support to hold IndyRef2’ grows.

    Unfort ‘within next 3yrs’ is a little vague – that covers everything from immediately (ie before we know Brexit deal) right out to probable end of transition, into whatever is after and very close to Holyrood 2021.

    Indy is obviously about a lot more than Brexit but given the complexity of the NI issue, ongoing ‘alignment’ v ‘recognition’ etc the UK-EU deal would have relevance to Scotland-rUK separation, especially given the high level of Scottish exports to rUK.
    http://www.gov.scot/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Economy/Exports/ESSPublication

    I don’t think we have polling to see what folks assume will happen Scotland-EU wise if Scotland left UK. You can take out the x-break info (e.g ‘Yes’ x ‘Remain’, not from this poll tho) but I think it needs to be worded as a separate question to make sense of it. If those kind of questions have been asked I’d be curious what the results are.

  47. ALIENATED LABOUR

    If we get in I can promise you all it will be the last Tory government this country ever has.

    EVER is a long time, but it is precisely what TOH left out of his calculations and may come back to haunt him.

    I disagree with you re Ireland, though. I’m sure it will happen eventually but only when the whole island wants it to happen.

  48. @ ALEC – ??

    COLIN kindly cleared up my confusion regarding the timing, he is our resident RAL expert and hence more of an authority than me for sure – that is why I asked him! I don’t have a direct line to DD, OBR or Barnier so I couldn’t ask them for comment ;)

    Since it is only a joint report nothing is written in stone but IMHO it would be beneficial for HMG to finalise and make all payments once, but only once, the relevant trigger passes – hence why I stated it as “I’d like…”
    (I’ve listed the timings and triggers before)

    In this specific case agree and finalise the OBR estimate of £20.7bn for RAL + other net liabilities (Table B.6) as soon as we have the full future arrangements in place (hopefully a fairly detailed framework in time for late Autumn 2018 meaningful HoC vote but we won’t know the full details until after Mar’19). Once a number is agreed and we have no reason to hold payments back (ie a trade deal has been fully agreed) then I’d like the bill paid.

    When you leave a club you pay the bill (once you’ve agree it and then only when it arrives and needs to be paid) but you also make sure to remove your card from behind the bar so those that remain can’t run up future bills on UK’s tab!

  49. Alienated Labour

    “having a federal Britain and devo-max for all the home nations”

    That’s an interesting concept.

    Since the units that were part of the federation would exercise their powers as of sovereign right, and not because they had been devolved (ie retained at the centre, if the centre at any time so wished), the Federal Parliament would have no power to legislate in these matters.

    However, the constitution could name all other powers (except defence and foreign affairs) as “devolved” to the nations. A reasonable constitution would specify particular circumstances under which the Federal Parliament could legislate in these devolved areas.

  50. More from Craig Murray (or rather his sources) on Novichoks.

    Now, somebody attempted that assassination in Salisbury, and the suggestion in Crofty’s link that US politics provided Russia with a good motivation to do it, is the most reasonable one I have seen.

    However, has the UK Government sexed-up its dossier again?

    https://www.craigmurray.org.uk/archives/2018/03/the-novichok-story-is-indeed-another-iraqi-wmd-scam/

    To summarise:
    1) Porton Down has acknowledged in publications it has never seen any Russian “novichoks”. The UK government has absolutely no “fingerprint” information that can safely attribute this substance to Russia.

    2) Until now, neither Porton Down nor the world’s experts at the Organisation for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) were convinced “Novichoks” even exist.

    3) The UK is refusing to provide a sample to the OPCW.

    4) “Novichoks” were specifically designed to be able to be manufactured from common ingredients on any scientific bench. The Americans dismantled and studied the facility that allegedly developed them. It is completely untrue only the Russians could make them, if anybody can.

    5) The “Novichok” programme was in Uzbekistan not in Russia. Its legacy was inherited by the Americans during their alliance with Karimov, not by the Russians.

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