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Polling Observatory #37: No Westminster polling aftershock from European Parliament earthquake

This is the thirty-seventh in a series of posts that report on the state of the parties as measured by opinion polls. By pooling together all the available polling evidence we can reduce the impact of the random variation each individual survey inevitably produces. Most of the short term advances and setbacks in party polling […]

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Nigel Farage: my part in his rise

The photo (above) is of the Radio 4 and 5 election night studio, at some point in the early hours of Friday morning, as the local election results trickled in. If you stare at it really hard, you can just about see the top of my bald head sticking out above the computer screen at […]

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Excluded from the political process: the right to political participation of persons with disabilities

  New research findings published by the EU Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) suggest that full political participation of persons with disabilities can be achieved if an adequate legal and policy framework is in place, which enables citizens with disabilities equal access to all aspects of the political process, such as voting in elections, being members […]

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Let the Millennials grow up (the apathetic youth and other myths)

  In two recent blog posts in reaction to PEW and Harvard Public Opinion Project reports on Millennials, John Sides warned against equating the millennial generation’s more liberal and Democratic-leaning preferences with a bright future for the Democratic Party. However, he closes his report acknowledging that the “political formation of younger Millennials isn’t over”. The […]

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Why UKIP Leader Nigel Farage should be invited to take part in the 2015 leadership debates

In the lead up to the 2010 general election, no one would have dreamed of inviting UKIP leader Nigel Farage to participate in the United Kingdom’s first ever televised leadership debates. Having consistently polled less than 5 per cent of the popular vote since the last general election, and without a single MP in Parliament, […]

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Television dramas have increasingly reinforced a picture of British politics as ‘sleazy’

  On the evening of 28th February 2007, 4.5 million ITV viewers saw Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott receive a blowjob. Thankfully, they did not see the real Prescott on the screen but instead actor John Henshaw who played him in Confessions of a Diary Secretary. Moreover, the scene was executed with some discretion: shot from behind a […]

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Polling Observatory #35 : Politics, Fast and Slow

  This is the thirty-fifth in a series of posts that report on the state of the parties as measured by opinion polls. By pooling together all the available polling evidence we can reduce the impact of the random variation each individual survey inevitably produces. Most of the short term advances and setbacks in party […]

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Tony Benn: A Reflection on a Life in Politics

  Tony Benn always divided politicians into signposts and weathercocks: those who hold firm to deeply-held principles and point the way forward, or those who flap about in response to events. Benn was most definitely a signpost. He rose to fame due to his brave decision to renounce his father’s hereditary peerage. He did so […]

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Parliamentary outreach – proving Bismark wrong

  When I first started researching parliament, about 20 years ago, the idea of a parliamentary outreach programme would have been laughed at so today’s launch of a new range of Outreach resources for universities is particularly welcome. The Parliament Outreach package of student visits, teaching resources, and research workshops is a far cry from […]

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For the love of archives

To commemorate the 100 year anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War many documents relating to the conflict are being made available online for the first time. Digitisation across all archives is rapidly increasing, providing researchers with instant data access and saving valuable time and expense. In 2012, 145 million documents were downloaded […]

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