Alistair Darling

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A new poll shows Scotland on the brink of independence. Time for the ‘no’ side to panic

20 April 2014 11:05

Politicians always manage to take some crumbs of comfort from opinion polls but, if you are Alistair Darling, it would be difficult to find anything positive in the dramatic new poll published by… Continue reading

No campaigner and object of Lib Dem bitching Alistair Darling. Image: Getty

Enough complacency. Enough bitching. The No camp needs to fight to save the Union

1 April 2014 10:14

Look up complacency in the dictionary and the chances are you will find a picture of a Scottish unionist next to it. For months – no, make that years – politicians… Continue reading

Image: Getty

Alistair Darling needs football fans—not financiers—to save the union

26 March 2014 12:08

Has the No camp got it wrong? This may seem an odd question to ask when the unionists are still leading in the referendum race but there is no doubt that… Continue reading

Apparently Jim Murphy has been striking a blow for the Unionist cause.

Jim Murphy takes Union fight offline

26 February 2014 16:59

‘The cyber-nat activity is disgraceful. They will trash anyone who disagrees with them. Their intention is to make people keep their heads down. Salmond could stop it, but he doesn’t… Continue reading

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Alis

David Cameron: Alistair Darling is the right man to lead the battle for Britain

29 December 2013 9:47

Today’s Sunday Times revives reports that senior Conservatives are concerned that Alex Salmond will prevail in next year’s referendum and that David Cameron will be the last British Prime Minister.… Continue reading

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Alis

Tory attacks on Alistair Darling show that WMD Unionism is MAD

4 December 2013 12:33

I don’t really understand why politicians spend so much time talking to journalists. Most of the time little good can come from doing so. Of course, from a personal or… Continue reading

Alex Salmond Reveals The White Paper For An Independent Scotland

Scottish independence is a little more likely today than it was yesterday

26 November 2013 14:53

The argument about Scottish independence which, it should be said, is not a new one is best understood in terms of the Overton Window. James Overton, an American political scientist,… Continue reading

Alex Salmond Reveals The White Paper For An Independent Scotland

Alistair Darling: the flaws in Alex Salmond’s white paper on independence

26 November 2013 13:59

Nothing has changed as a result of today’s White Paper. There is nothing that we found out today that we didn’t already know. Yesterday Alex Salmond’s case for breaking up… Continue reading

Prince Charles Attends Drumhead Service in Edinburgh

David Cameron ducks a debate with Alex Salmond. This makes sense but is still depressing.

27 September 2013 15:07

A novice poker player quickly learns – or had better quickly learn – that strength often connotes weakness and weakness is a reliable indicator of strength. But as the stakes… Continue reading


A bridge too far for Ian Katz

16 September 2013 17:54

More adventures in television from new Newsnight boss Ian Katz. Fresh from his truthful-if-embarrassing slating of Labour’s Rachel Reeves, I hear that Katz has upset another Labour big-wig, Alistair Darling.… Continue reading

The Championships - Wimbledon 2013: Day Thirteen

A Game of Numbers: Pollsters Go To War in Scotland

3 September 2013 12:19

On Sunday an opinion poll was just a poll. Nothing to be too excited by. Unreliable too. The real poll – the one that counts – is still a year… Continue reading

Johann Lamont, Alistair Darling, Ruth Davidson and Willie Rennie at the launch of Better Together Image: Getty

Ukip officially excluded from Scottish referendum campaign

5 June 2013 16:18

Tonight, the ‘cross-party’ Better Together referendum campaign will have their London launch. At an event in the heart of Westminster the begging bowl will go round, and a rallying call… Continue reading

2012 Olympic Games - Opening Ceremony

David Cameron’s Legacy? Preserving the Union or presiding over the Break-Up of Britain

4 April 2013 15:51

Politics is at least partially a matter of perspective. The same object can look very different depending upon the angle from which it is viewed. Which brings me to Brother… Continue reading

Your party needs YOU, Mr Darling.

‘Would you like to replace Ed Balls?’ The question Alistair Darling won’t answer

24 March 2013 17:02

Ed Balls is a good street fighter, but not a very loveable one. The polls suggest he is perhaps the least popular figure in frontline politics. His manner too abrasive… Continue reading

Have the coalition partners been honest on deficit reduction? Photo: Getty Images.

Fisking the coalition’s deficit-reduction boast

7 January 2013 17:10

‘We have reduced the deficit by a quarter in just two years’ — the coalition’s mid-term review. True. But when Gordon Brown proposed to do precisely the same in Labour’s… Continue reading

Photo: © Alan Davidson/The Picture Library Ltd

The Spectator Parliamentarian of the Year Awards

21 November 2012 14:51

The Spectator’s Parliamentarian of the Year awards are being held this afternoon at the Savoy Hotel. In total 14 awards were presented by Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Education,… Continue reading

The panel from last night's Spectator debate on whether George Osborne's economic plan is working.

The View from 22 – Battle of the Chancellors special

30 October 2012 14:26

The Spectator hosted a packed-out debate last night on the motion — ‘George Osborne isn’t working: we need a Plan B’ — and you can now hear the outcome for yourself. As Isabel… Continue reading


I Think Paul Krugman is Mistaken - Spectator Blogs

4 September 2012 18:03

The great sage – once described to me by someone who attended a (highly) derivative speech he made on the Scottish economy as Woody Allen with statistics and no jokes… Continue reading

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Alis

Darling: Osborne has given up on growth

19 August 2012 11:10

‘Unless you do something now it will be years before we recover.’ This morning those words come from former chancellor Alistair Darling in an open letter to George Osborne, but… Continue reading


Lawson: I would not have U-turned

29 June 2012 21:15

I’m presenting Radio Four’s Week in Westminster tomorrow at 11am and discuss George Osborne’s U-turn with former chancellors Alistair Darling and Nigel Lawson (the latter pictured above when editor of… Continue reading

British Chancellor of the Exchequer Alis

A solid, unspectacular start

26 June 2012 14:15

Tomorrow, the Spectator and six guest speakers (including Kelvin MacKenzie, Sir Malcolm Rifkind and Margo MacDonald) will debate the question, ‘Is it time to let Scotland go?’. You can find… Continue reading


Balls wants you to trust him

6 May 2012 18:24

It’s only ten days or so since Ed Balls was last quizzed by Andrew Neil, but there he was rehashing many of the same lines on the Sunday Politics today.… Continue reading


Labour’s plan would have cost us our AAA rating

14 February 2012 8:21

For Ed Balls this morning, there is only one conclusion to be drawn from the news about our credit rating: ‘A change of course is needed.’ But to what? Balls… Continue reading


Moody’s puts UK’s AAA rating on negative outlook

14 February 2012 0:08

‘It’s now clear that Britain’s economic reputation is on the line at the next general election, another reason for bringing the date forward and having that election now … For… Continue reading


Osborne owes Darling an apology

24 January 2012 11:08

Britain’s national debt rose to over £1 trillion last month, and will never return below this threshold. George Osborne is increasing net debt by 61.5 per cent in real terms… Continue reading