Douglas Alexander

Labour needs to make Europe accessible

Alex White  |  12 April 2013

Brace yourselves, a perfect storm is brewing. Next year’s European elections will draw out and intensify the debate on the right over Europe. A year before the general election, UKIP have a chance to make sure their single issue is on the agenda going into a Westminster election more firmly than any other single-issue party …

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Elite opinion and public scepticism

Greg Falconer  |  21 February 2013

When it comes to foreign policy, the British public and the three main parties do not currently see eye-to-eye. Two recent polls, on military intervention and Europe respectively, suggest an ominous divergence between the mainstream political elite and the electorate on key issues. In a week when the coalition sent a small UK force on …

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A midterm review of Labour

David Talbot  |  9 January 2013

At the midway point in parliament, the coalition renewed their vows. Gone was the bonhomie displayed in the sun-drenched Downing Street rose farden in May 2010, and instead a cold, formal, wood-panelled room was chosen as the suitable backdrop. The midterm review, rather generously self-marked by the government, nonetheless highlighted the sheer ambition of the …

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Assessing Labour’s Syria policy

James Denselow  |  9 January 2013

As the death toll continues to spiral, how should we assess Labour’s policy on Syria to date, and is there room for improvement? An extensive five-month report commissioned by the UN revealed last week that the generally accepted death toll of around 40,000 in Syria was wrong almost by half. Instead, the statisticians have showed …

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Purple progress

Adam Harrison  |  26 October 2012

Adam Harrison assesses the impact of The Purple Book one year on ‘Predistribution’, ‘One Nation Labour’, reform of the state and market, universal childcare, and greater activism on housing were just some of the proposals made last year by Labour modernisers contributing to The Purple Book. With the ambition to fashion a new Labour programme …

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The power of incumbency

Douglas Alexander MP  |  3 October 2012

The US elections offer opportunities and a warning By Douglas Alexander —The race for the White House is far from over and the result far from certain, but what I witnessed at this year’s convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, convinced me that the Democrats know what it takes to win the trust and support of …

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Rallying for Labour

Rachel Hodson  |  1 October 2012

Yesterday evening, through the less-than-welcoming weather, hundreds of activists came together at the Manchester Comedy Store to listen to what can only be described as a superstar line-up of our most inspiring progressive voices at the annual Progress Rally. The rally took place against the backdrop of an ill-judged, and terribly timed intervention from Len …

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Building the new centre ground

Bex Bailey  |  20 March 2012

Winning in 2015 requires an understanding of where the electorate will be. By anticipating now where people will be then, we can begin to build now a set of winning policies. However, as an audience member pointed out in the Progress political weekend session ‘Building the new centre ground: understanding the electorate of 2015’, we …

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Where is the new centre-ground?

Rowan Ree  |  16 March 2012

The political philosopher Antonio Gramsci viewed policy in terms of ‘settlements’ between competing political groups. These settlements provide the broad ideological boundaries of the time in which policies are created. Since the war there have been three broad Gramscian settlements.   The postwar social democratic settlement lasting from the 1945 Labour landslide saw power swap …

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No More Mr Nice Guy

Kevin Doran  |  25 November 2011

Labour’ position on Europe has hardened. Last week Douglas Alexander said, ‘Our task is to tell a new story about Britain and Europe’. It was a clear signal to the public that Labour will take a much more hard-headed approach  to the European Union. ‘We shouldn’t dust off the old arguments’ he told the Guardian …

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