Iain Duncan Smith


Where will the Welfare Reform Bill go from here?

12 January 2012 9:40

Yep, it’s that battle over ‘fairness’ again. Labour peers, along with a decent scattering of Lib Dems and independents, believe that some of the government’s money-saving welfare measures are unfair… Continue reading


Why Tom Baldwin reckons Labour shouldn’t give up on Miliband

5 January 2012 14:43

Before Christmas, The Times’s Sam Coates managed to get his hands on Labour’s ‘media grid’ for the week — and much Westminster-y fun it was too. But now he’s gone… Continue reading


The referendum question

4 December 2011 14:58

As French and German officials make final preparations ahead of tomorrow’s meeting on fiscal union, it’s worth reconsidering the coalition’s triple referendum lock. James Kirkup has an incisive post on… Continue reading


The Tories’ latest frustration with the Lib Dems

27 November 2011 15:26

Nick Clegg’s interview in The Observer today highlights what is fast becoming one of the biggest tensions in the coalition: the Lib Dem desire to show that they are the… Continue reading


Unemployment rate highest in 15 years

16 November 2011 10:23

Today’s unemployment figures do not make for cheery reading. Youth unemployment is up to over a million and unemployment overall has reached 2.62 million, meaning that the unemployment rate is… Continue reading


The euro sparks a Cabinet row

3 November 2011 12:25

Word reaches me of a vigorous exchange of views in Cabinet this week between Chris Huhne and Michael Gove over the European question. Huhne, who has form when it comes… Continue reading


The post-riots landscape

1 November 2011 13:29

Back in August, the riots were being talked about as an event that would redefine our politics. But the economic news has been so relentless that the post-riots issues have… Continue reading


The welfare trap

28 October 2011 15:30

John Humphrys last night presented a documentary on welfare, the single most important topic in Britain. It was excellent, and I’d recommend CoffeeHousers watch the whole thing (on iPlayer here).… Continue reading


The government’s European tribulations continue

27 October 2011 11:37

It has been a fraught and ill-tempered week in Westminster. And — whether it is the rumour that Tory backbencher Andrea Leadsom told George Osborne to "f**k off", or David… Continue reading


Will IDS’s reforms get stuck in Whitehall’s digital mire?

19 October 2011 13:04

"7m caught in tax blunder," trumpets the cover of this morning’s Daily Mail. "After a series of errors, six million will get an average £400 rebate, while a million face… Continue reading


The poverty of the poverty measure

11 October 2011 9:40

‘400,000 children will fall into relative poverty by 2015, says IFS’ we read on The Guardian’s front page today — yes, one of the most pernicious ideas of recent years… Continue reading


Tories dodge a bullet on childcare

7 October 2011 11:05

In the past year the government has proven good at cauterising self-inflicted wounds. This morning’s announcement from Iain Duncan Smith on childcare stems another potential bleeder. His department have found an… Continue reading


Any questions for IDS?

2 October 2011 15:54

At 6pm this evening, I’m interviewing Iain Duncan Smith at a Conservative Party conference fringe meeting. He is fighting a war on at least three fronts: the welfare-to-work programme, the… Continue reading


Tories pray for no more from Europe

30 September 2011 11:46

Tory strategists had hoped to keep Europe off the agenda at this year’s party conference, but they seem to have failed already. The European Commission’s threat about welfare claims has forced… Continue reading


Miliband woos the strivers

26 September 2011 22:39

Finally, a good idea from the Labour conference. In his speech tomorrow, Ed Miliband will say he’d give workers priority over the jobless for social housing. This is the dividing… Continue reading


Welfare worries

26 September 2011 9:41

Away from Liverpool, the big stories of the day are the markets’ reaction to the putative Eurozone deal, which has been mixed so far, and the Telegraph’s splash about the… Continue reading


What Clegg failed to mention

21 September 2011 17:03

Nick Clegg’s speech will be remembered for its visceral attack on Labour. But it was remarkable for other reasons, notably for what he neglected to say. Clegg said next to… Continue reading


Pickles to take charge of dealing with Britain’s 120,000 "problem families"

8 September 2011 14:40

I understand that following a meeting in Downing Street this morning, Eric Pickles, the Communities and Local Government Secretary, has been put in charge of dealing with Britain’s 120,000 "problem… Continue reading


The breakdown of Clegg’s Cabinet alliances

5 September 2011 16:41

There used to be a time when some of the most important relationships in the government were between Tory reformers and Nick Clegg. The Lib Dem leader, to his credit,… Continue reading


Right to reply: Why do so many "new jobs" go to foreigners?

31 August 2011 9:26

On Monday, we published a post on George Osborne’s "jobless recovery" — the point being that 90 per cent of the recent rise in employment can be accounted for by… Continue reading


Exclusive: Osborne’s jobless recovery

29 August 2011 16:11

George Osborne was right to boast in the Commons that Britain has the “second highest rate of net job creation in the G7”. Coffee House recently pointed out that all of the… Continue reading


New immigration figures

25 August 2011 10:46

The Conservative wing of this government is on a quest to reduce net migration to, in the words of David Cameron, the “tens of thousands from the hundreds of thousands”. Liberal… Continue reading


Human rights wrangle

21 August 2011 14:44

A set-to has broken out this morning over the Human Rights Act. David Cameron has declared that he is going to fight the Human Rights Act and its interpretation. Cameron… Continue reading


Blair on the riots

21 August 2011 10:56

Tony Blair has dropped in to write an article on the social context to the recent riots. It’s insightful, especially as a testament of his failings in government. At the… Continue reading


WEB EXCLUSIVE: Full-length interview with IDS

17 August 2011 16:29

I have interviewed Iain Duncan Smith for tomorrow’s Spectator. In print, space is always tight and we kept it to 1,500 words. One of the beauties of online is that… Continue reading