Monday Politics

Dunce cap

It’s the coalition’s nasty incompetence we need to expose

Jacqui Smith  |  19 January 2015

The Tories started the political year with a campaign press conference. Leaving aside the impression of the ‘worst boy band in the world’, which the five cabinet ministers in a row conjured up, the point of the event was to signal that the Tories aim to make the general election about competence. There was real …

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Paris March Charlie Hebdo

Protecting, not undermining, our rights and freedoms

Jacqui Smith  |  12 January 2015

Events in Paris have been shocking and tragic. However, for those involved with protecting us from terror, they were far from unexpected. The continuing Islamist terror threat is real and known. In the United Kingdom there have been 140 individuals convicted of terror-related offences since 2010 and many other plots will undoubtedly have been foiled. …

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Power Pledge

A pledge to distribute power more equally

Jacqui Smith  |  15 December 2014

I sincerely hope that this will be the last coalition Christmas we will need to endure. At last the general election feels within touching distance – and the chance of a Labour government is real. One thing is for sure after next May’s election – we will see another jump in the number of women …

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School exam results

A little bit of character goes a long way

Jacqui Smith  |  8 December 2014

Today, Tristram Hunt is calling for schools to do more to develop character among young people. Quoting Winston Churchill and the idea of ‘British spirit’ was a clever way to ensure today’s speech got some good Sunday coverage. As a former teacher I can also imagine that there will be a fair amount of resigned …

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Michael Gove

Home truths for Michael Gove

Jacqui Smith  |  17 November 2014

Parliamentary discontent with the government’s handling of EU crime and justice measures, in particular the European arrest warrant, rumbles on today in the House of Lords. Timothy Boswell, chair of the Lords European Union committee, is tabling a ‘statement of regret’ ie ‘We’re flipping peed off with the handling of this’, with the cross-party support …

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Police tape

What will come after police commissioners?

Jacqui Smith  |  3 November 2014

Well done to Alan Billings and Labour campaigners in the South Yorkshire Police area. Last week, I was reading that the United Kingdom Independence party was ‘expected’ to gain this police and crime commissioner position. This week, I am reading much less about the fact that Labour and Alan succeeded in getting more than 50 …

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Discarded Labour rose

Time for Labour to stop trashing its own record

Jacqui Smith  |  20 October 2014

‘What is your greatest weakness’? – an idiotic interview question in my view, but nevertheless apparently a popular one. Suggestions for answering it include ‘I’m just too much of a perfectionist/workaholic’ and other lies. Despite the possibility of this question, preparation for a job interview should involve quite a lot of combing through our CVs …

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Ukip conference 2014

No need for new policy on immigration

Jacqui Smith  |  13 October 2014

If comment pieces were votes, we would have defeated the United Kingdom Independence party already and would no longer have to worry about having been 600 votes away from a disastrous by-election defeat last week. But they are not. None of the ‘easy’ responses to Ukip have yet worked – ignore them; talk about talking …

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Metropolitan police officer

Time to put security above political calculations

Jacqui Smith  |  1 September 2014

The last time the terror threat level was raised was in my first few days as home secretary in 2007. This followed the failed car bomb attack in London and the attack on Glasgow airport. At that time, the Joint Terrorism Analysis Centre, comprising key intelligence and security agencies and analysts, which determines the threat …

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Jeremy Clarkson

How have the BBC got it so wrong on Clarkson?

Jacqui Smith  |  4 August 2014

I am so disappointed by the BBC’s feeble response to Jeremy Clarkson’s racism. Of course, Clarkson is responsible for his own Neanderthal views and I expect little from him. However, I still think the BBC is a national treasure which (largely) upholds the values of decent journalism and inclusive broadcasting. So how have they got …

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