John Harris

Journalist & Author

Archive for September, 2014

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Here comes Plaid Cymru: could Wales follow Scotland on the road to independence? video

Wednesday, September 17th, 2014

With Scotland on the brink of leaving the UK, John Harris travels through the blighted post-industrial belt of south Wales, and samples the quiet decline of Labour’s century-long dominance. Two radically different visions of the future are on offer: from the pro-independence Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood, and from Stephen Kinnock, son of the Welsh former Labour leader and now a would-be Labour MP

Features the Manic Street Preachers song Manorbier

Ukip’s rise in the east of England: a world turned upside down video Continue reading…

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Both of the Scottish independence campaigns are flawed here’s how | John Harris and John Wight

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

As the yes and no campaigns approach the home straight, John Harris and John Wight discuss where they have fallen down

Live blog: Monday’s developments on the Scottish referendum Continue reading…

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Both of the Scottish independence campaigns are flawed here’s how | John Harris and John Wight

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

As the yes and no campaigns approach the home straight, John Harris and John Wight discuss where they have fallen down

Live blog: Monday’s developments on the Scottish referendum Continue reading…

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Ukip’s rise in the east of England: a world turned upside down video

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

All eyes are focused on Scotland, but on the eastern edge of England, 2014’s other great political revolt is in full effect. In the first of a new four-part series titled Britain’s in trouble, John Harris travels around Ukip’s eastern heartlands and finds poverty, anger and the breakdown of normal politics. From the forgotten residents of Jaywick, England’s poorest council ward, to an encounter with Nigel Farage at the Royal British Legion, he finds out how a force made up largely of Tory exiles has managed to style itself as a party for the working class

Incidental music: Arcane Empire by the Ramsgate Hovercraft Continue reading…

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Scottish referendum underscores Labour’s decline as an electoral force

Sunday, September 14th, 2014

Voters on both sides of Scotland’s border describe a party that has lost touch with the views of ordinary working-class people

In Robert Muirhead’s spotlessly tidy home on the Hallglen estate outside Falkirk, the turned-down TV is churning through images of the latest walkabout by Alex Salmond, while we talk animatedly about what might happen on Thursday. Muirhead, 65, is a classic example of one of the demographic categories that will decide the outcome: older voters, whom polling suggests are not just against independence by a ratio of two to one, but more likely to stick to their guns and, unlike younger people, definitely cast their votes.

But age is only one of only several axes in the Scottish story. Thanks to allegations about the Unite union’s activities in an apparently moribund local Labour party, Falkirk recently became a byword for Labour’s forlorn position in Scotland. And like many people I meet here, Muirhead’s take on what is happening only underlines claims that the party has lost its way, with clear effects on the referendum campaign.

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