Phi Wire Hand Picked Politics - Live

  • Labour backs report linking obesity to alcohol

    • source icon
    • 09:50
  • Tim Montgomerie | Big beasts for big times

    • source icon
    • 09:24
  • Gerry Hassan | The third Scotland: self-organising, self-determining and suspicious of the SNP ...

    • source icon
    • 09:00
  • Heading to #Colchester in Essex with @chrisdavies49 for the Lib Dem European Par...

    • source icon
    • 08:35
  • James Morris | It’s not growth that wins elections, it’s being on the side ofordinary people

    • source icon
    • 08:35
  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

  • PoliticsHome | Only the latest five entries on the PhiWire are visible to non-subscribers

RSS

Osborne goes cockney. Again.

“Yeah…. I think it’s gonna be great, innit?” - the words of the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Second Lord of the Treasury.

Having dallied with a cockney twang last year, perhaps the sheer resilience of the new £1 coin overcame George Osborne when he was visiting the Royal Mint this morning.

ITV has the video in all its glory here

Et tu, Kermit?

First Beaker, now Kermit.

Yes, the green frog has come out against Scottish independence in an interview with the Big Issue to the delight of the Better Together campaign.

 

Of course, the nats might suggest Kermit isn't the first Muppet to oppose independence and after the combined efforts of George Osborne, Ed Balls, Danny Alexander, Jose Manuel Barroso and David Bowie all failed to significantly boost the anti-independence campaign, Alex Salmond and co may not be too worried about the latest endorsement for the union.

 

Boris' Budget Bingo

Not one to be willingly outdone by George Osborne, Boris Johnson has been out and about in a hi-vis jacket of his own today.

With the storm over Grant Shapps’ none-too-popular bingo poster still raging, the responses from two of the rumoured next Tory leadership candidates were quite instructive.

Where Osborne played with a straight bat; Boris was rather more blunt.

When confronted with the poster by a reporter, he began loyally:

“It seems to be celebrating the fact that we’re cutting tax on bingo and beer and that is the right thing to do. This is a Budget for everybody and I think it’s completely the right thing to do.”

Then he cracked:

“I didn’t write the blooming thing. We’re trying to get across the message that this is a Budget for everybody, as far as I understand.”

Budget betting: the picks

It was once the case that betting on the Budget consisted of no more than guessing which phrases would come up in the Chancellor’s speech. No more.

A mini industry has sprung up around the statement, with everything from the number of sips of water taken to how much the price of cigarettes will increase after today up for grabs.

Here are some of the best markets:

Ed Balls to be directly reprimanded by the Speaker: 25/1

First cliché: Economy/economic 5/2; Government 4/1; Growth 7/1 (full range of options here)

Osborne to refer to ‘food banks’: 20/1

Number of times the Speaker will need to call the House to order: 2

Colour of the Chancellor’s tie: Blue 10/11; Purple 5/2; Green 4/1

Number of sips of water: 2 or fewer: 5/4; 3 or more: 4/7

And Dot’s favourite, Osborne to say ‘lazy single people’: 100/1

Place your bets now.

Hey Stanley

Westminster’s best, brightest and the rest were out in force for a Macmillan Cancer Support fundraiser last night.

Among the acts were Jesse Norman playing the blues, John Hemming on the piano, MP4, and some sort of unclassifiable performance by recently-sacked ministers featuring Michael Fabricant wearing a wig and pink shorts. Obviously. The Daily Politics has clips in their full glory.

The evening managed to raise £100,000 for the charity, but could it yet have consequences in the House of Commons? Fabricant, who has previous on PMQs fancy dress, has revealed he’s been dared to “sit there demurely in Prime Minister’s Questions with that wig on”.

The wig may be unlikely, but Macmillan did get a good offer for an opening/headlining act next year. Stanley Johnson, sounding someone who had struggled manfully to get through the number in the past only to have the microphone cut off, said:  “I’d like to sing Hey Jude because I’ve never yet got to the end of Hey Jude.”

If musical talent runs in the family, it could be a long night.

 

)