Vince Cable

108: The Rollercoaster of Hell

At a time when every week feels like a momentous one, this week really was. We’ll be talking about this week’s events years from now, so let's try to make sense of it all.

Theresa May suffers the worst defeat any government’s endured in more than a century, and of course does not resign, or even seem to think there’s anything particularly wrong.

Instead she invites rivals to talks, while insisting she won’t budge on her red lines, which isn’t strictly speaking a negotiation.

Meanwhile Jeremy Corbyn refuses to even talk. Just another calm, peaceful week in Brexit Britain.

We look at whether our rival tribes will ever be able to put the national interest first (spoiler: almost certainly not), and try to figure out what might happen next.


98: Brexit’s going awfully well, isn’t it?

Jeremy Corbyn gets the rapturous reception you’d expect from a hall filled with Labour Party activists, but this year’s conference was dominated by Brexit — and Labour’s position seems no clearer now than it was a week ago.

This week Paul Osbourne and Robert Meakin explore how the Labour leaders who promised to listen to ordinary members decided that didn’t apply if the members were saying something they didn’t like.


Which is a similar strategy to the one Theresa May took with EU leaders. We look at how the meeting in Salzburg went so very, very badly wrong.


Plus we hear from Dr Pippa Malmgram, author of a new book on how political leaders around the world just don’t know how to connect with the people they’re meant to lead.

All this and Vince Cable’s erotic spasm, in a fun-packed 25 minutes.


96: Back to School

MPs return to Westminster after a summer of intrigue and infighting, and we return to look ahead to what could be an explosive couple of months.

Brexiteer Conservatives again ponder forcing out Theresa May in pursuit of the hardest possible exit from the EU — but might she beat them to it, and announce a plan to step down?

Will Frank Field’s decision to quit the Labour whip tempt other critics of Jeremy Corbyn to join him? And will the party change its position on Brexit to back a second referendum?

And we ask the big questions about the Liberal Democrats too: Are they still going? Have they booked a big enough table at the Harvester where they’ll be holding this year’s conference?

All this, plus we ponder life in London under Mayor Nigel Farage, a nightmare prospect that might (maybe, perhaps) happen one day.

94: Hanging by a thread

At the end of a dreadful week for Theresa May, the Prime Minister tries — and fails — to start her summer holiday early, just to stop her own MPs plotting against her.

Meanwhile, she stumbles through a series of knife-edge votes on Brexit, triggers all-out war in her party, and endures the humiliation of a Donald Trump visit.

We assess the implications of another dramatic week at Westminster, as well as asking why the leader of the anti-Brexit Lib Dems couldn’t make it to key Brexit votes, and why the Labour Party just can’t get away from rows over anti-Semitism.

Elsewhere, we look through some of the delightfully sarcastic placards in use at the anti-Trump demos in London and Edinburgh.

71: It's always about Boris

What is Boris Johnson up to? Does he want to be sacked? Does he still think he's in with a chance of the top job? Or does he just want to highlight how weak Theresa May is? We ask why he's undermined the Prime Minister, just as she's about to set out her strategy for Brexit. Meanwhile, Sir Vince Cable genuinely thinks he could be the next PM, as UKIP consider a leadership candidate who's too extreme for most of UKIP.