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Category Archives: Current Affairs

Forza Europa!? The World Cup and euroscepticism

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Maybe it’s all the sun we’ve been having this week, but some foolish impudence leads me to write about football, a subject about which I know little and possibly care less. After an exchange of tweets with @DrBorjaGarcia yesterday, we decided that we’d tackle (sic) the question of the relationship between the World Cup and euroscepticism, each […]

Respecting voters’ ‘mistakes’: The EU and euroscepticism

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I’m just back from Montreal, where I was invited by the EU Centre of Excellence at the Université de Montréal and McGill University to participate in a roundtable on the European elections. My plan was simple: to go and talk about how well eurosceptic parties of different stripes had done, but how they were likely to be […]

I love the smell of democracy in the morning…

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It’s voting day here in the UK, so I’m off to the polling station to exercise my democratic rights. When I vote, I’ll be choosing who represents me in the world’s only supranational, directly-elected Parliament, a body that speaks for half a billion people. And because of a decision made some 15 years ago, there’s […]

Reporting Europe: euromyths and euro-reality?

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Tonight I’m speaking on a roundtable in Edinburgh on ‘Reporting Europe‘, where we’ll be considering how the media covers the EU and the influence of euromyths in the debate. I wrote about this last year, but it’s a good time to revisit the issue, given the quality (or perhaps ‘quality’) of the media coverage of the European […]

Will 2015 see the end of UKIP?

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It’s almost Easter, so it is also time for the Political Studies Association annual conference, held this year in Manchester. I had the great pleasure of sitting on a roundtable on UKIP with Rick Whitaker, Phil Lynch and Matt Goodwin, where we discussed the party’s support, strategy and organisation: much debate ensued. We’re producing a series of blog posts […]

Scoping the non-EU: Brexit’s paradox

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The IEA finally announced the winner of its Brexit Prize this week. Last June it unveiled a competition for submissions to map out in detail how the UK could leave the EU and pursue a new path. The winner would receive €100,000 (presumably ironically) and a handy rejoinder would be provided to all those who complain that […]

Nick, Nigel, Europe and us: A raging debate?

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So that was it, the big debate, in all its BBC Two glory. I think we all learnt something from it. For myself, I learnt that I’m almost exactly 10 years younger than Nigel Farage and that both he and Nick Clegg need to sack the people who write their “jokes.” Otherwise, I have to confess I was […]

Labour, Europe and the continuing absence of British EU policy

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It’s rewarding to know that Ed Miliband (or at least his minions) read blogs, even if incompletely. Last week, I wrote a piece off the back some press speculation about the Labour leader being about to offer a referendum. In that post, I noted that Miliband was going to be motivated to do this because of the […]

Starting a debate on Europe? Clegg v. Farage

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Despite the usual embarrassment of riches that I could cover, today I’m going to build on some of the thoughts that I discussed some weeks ago, regarding the LibDem’s strategy for the European Parliament elections. During the past weeks, we’ve seen Nick Clegg offer – and Nigel Farage accept – to have a public debate on things European, which will have […]

Britain as the Good European

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A couple of things have caught my eye this week in the world of UK-EU relations, one relatively minor, the other potentially much bigger. However, they are linked by a common strand of thinking about how the UK acts and is perceived. The minor thing was an article at the start of the week by Boris […]

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