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  • Labour Party Conference – the conversations on social media

    Political party conferences in 2014 don’t just happen in the conference floor or on TV – they now happen on social media as well. This conference season in particular will be a dress rehearsal for the coming months of the digital battle between the parties in the lead up to the General Election. To be […]

    Labour Party Conference – the 35% strategy

    Starting just 48 hours after the high constitutional drama of the Scottish referendum, Labour conference was fated to suffer in comparison. Not that the leadership were expecting fireworks – given their narrow lead in the opinion polls, the hierarchy only ever aspired to an uneventful, disciplined week in Manchester. But even given such a limited […]

    Conservative conference 2014: Mr Cameron’s leadership challenge

    The Conservatives head to their conference with a big opportunity, but also plenty of threats, many of which are of their own making. David Cameron’s task is to drag the party with him to a place the electorate finds appealing. That is why the Conservative party finds itself at a crossroads. Given Ed Miliband’s badly […]

    Former Royal Press Secretary Ed Perkins joins Portland

    Ed Perkins – currently Communications Secretary to The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry – joins Portland as a Senior Adviser. Ed, who joins in October to work across both UK and International clients, was appointed Communications Secretary to The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry two years ago. Very few people have […]

    Burnham reaches for Labour sweet spot on health reforms

    Among the narratives to have emerged so far from this strangely quiet and flat Labour Party conference has been job security and pay. Beyond the leading Sunday announcement on minimum wage, it has been scarcely possible to leave a fringe without some mention of in-work poverty and zero-hour contracts. As Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham […]

    Labour Conference 2014: the card yet to be played

    While all attention is on Scotland, preparations are ongoing for a vital party conference season. Ed Miliband heads into the final party conference before the election with an opportunity to win but without the commanding lead in the polls he might have hoped for. As a recently-elected Labour councillor in the “unchangeable” Tory borough of […]

    Party conferences: more party than conference?

    As we head into the last round of party conferences before the election, the trio of events should be more important than ever. But conferences are not what they used to be. First devised as a forum for debate and connection among the rank and file, in the TV age they became stage-managed showcases for […]

    Time running out for PCCs?

    These are not good times to be a Police and Crime Commissioner. An awkward birth – a muddle of shifting election dates, public apathy and party mismanagement – has been compounded by a series of public gaffes and missteps which have led to serious doubt over the future of the role. With rumours that Labour […]

    The Interview Dilemma

    Ian Katz’s piece (£) bemoaning the death of the political interview has implications for business leaders in the media too. He recalls that Rachel Reeves tweet, but concludes that in fact “a large proportion of political interviews – maybe even most – are boring snoring.” He blames “PR capos” who care more about delivering “the […]

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