Thursday, April 29, 2010

Ten People Who Are Having a Good Election

Andrew Neil
Ubiquitous. His Daily Politics morning reports have been incisive and entertaining and he always seems to ask the question the politician doesn't want to answer. A pity he isn't chairing the debate tonight.

Michael Gove
The Tory Party's emerging safe pair of hands and an evangelist for free schools. Manages to promote the Conservative cause with a smile on his face.

Stephen Nolan
It takes something to slaughter three politicians on three consecutive nights. But Jeremy Hunt, Harriet Harman and Simon Hughes will bear testament to what an uncomfortable experience it was being grilled by 5 Live's weekend talk show host.

Nick Clegg
He has hardly put a foot wrong in this campaign and has capitalised on a very good performance in the first debate. He's managed to detach himself from the political mainstream and put himself at the head of the anti politician movement. May still trip himself up on hung parliament questions.

Laura Kuennsberg
The BBC News Channel political correspondent is increasingly assured and insightful in her political analysis. Could be an outsider for BBC political editor if and when Nick Robinson moves on. Has a great on screen sense of humour and a wicked laugh.

Will Straw
Has become the media's go to blogger of choice, eclipsing LabourList's Alex Smith, who may now regret standing as a council candidate. Straw comes across as the voice of sweet reason, even when he is being ultra loyal, but has firmly established himself in the media's mind as the top Labour blogger, even if his blog has a fraction of the readership of the right wing blogs.

Jon Sopel
The Campaign Show has allowed Sopel to come into his own, displaying an impish sense of humour, while at the same time giving out some tough questions in one to one interviews. This sort of show should continue after the election.

Sophie Long
The BBC News Channel presenter is usually stuck behind a desk reading an autocue but she has been following Nick Clegg around during the election and has filed some truly excellent reports from inside the Clegg campaign. I suspect her transfer to the Westminster beat may be imminent.

Andrew Hawkins
This election is the one in which ComRes came of age as a pollster. Hawkins, the ComRes chief executive, has also developed into an accomplished media pundit, not afraid to offer an opinion.

Tim Montgomerie
ConservativeHome may have become a little vanilla during the campaign, but Tim Montgomerie is rarely off the airwaves and has now become the unrivalled Tory pundit of choice for most broadcasters. If the Tories win, it's a position he's likely to maintain. If he wants it.


Anonymous said...

Usually I find Stephen Nolan obnoxious. His holier than thou attitude a total turn off. Which is usually what I do with radio at getting the hint that I heard his voice. So thanks to one of the Beeb few good features, the ability to listen on the net to old programs, I enjoyed his interviews. The one with Harriet was the nearest this to imagining a car crash with your earphones on!

Roger Thornhill said...

Re Sophie Long. BBC New Channel, unlike a sharks mouth, has no new sharp teeth to replace her. Just gum. Not another tooth in sight. BBC News would be improved if even Richard Madley and Adrian Chiles moved there it is so amateur, flabby, provincial, like it has been outsourced to Anglia Television.

Alan Douglas said...

Quite right re Tim, I went to Sky this a.m. and found Tim's head big-brother-like dominating the 2 minor figures in the studio.

Alan Douglas

Sian said...

agreed but where's David Davis - he has been sidelined (sadly) by high command - sure he's be in your list if he was allowed out!

Bartleby said...

You're not having such a bad election yourself Iain - far better than Guido, who seems to be more interested in making films these days.

BexleyTory said...

Andrew Neil is superb on Daily Politics and This Week, definitely agree he would be better for the debate than Dimbleby. Election night coverage too.

davidc said...

i would suggest eddie mair from the p.m. programme

his questions don't take longer to ask than to answer )j humphreys please note) and he doesn't let the person answer a question that hasn't been asked

Leon said...

Howe can you omit the god who walks amongst us in your list of people having a good election. Eddie Mair is streets, leagues, light years better than any other presenter/commentator/interviewer and we are blessed to be in his aural presence

Alex Smith said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carl Harris said...

Iain Dale a shocking omission!

GrimUpNorth said...

Why Andrew Neil is not chairing one of the debates is a mystery. His Daily Politics show is required viewing for us political anaoraks, and his series of debates with the party spokesmen on foreign affairs, finance, health etc have shed far more light on the the parties' different policies than the leaders debates.

Eddie Mair, of the BBC Radi 4's PM programme should also be mentioned in dispatches as having had a 'good election'.

Bartleby said...

Methinks Alex doth protest too much. Nothing bad about admitting regret A.

Alex Smith said...

Regret standing as a council candidate? As I told the BBC yesterday - and have many times upon being invited to appear - the internet/media game means relatively little to me in comparison to the council campaign.

Standing for council in the ward in which I grew up is a privilege. The manifesto is brilliant here, and it addresses real issues: why is there a ten year life expectancy gap between rich and poor in Islington, in the 21st century? Why has there allowed to fester a 13,000-strong waiting list for housing? Why do the ruling council want to cut our hugely successful and popular free school meals policy, which is proven to improve kids' ability to learn, concentrate, behave well and which has made teaching easier while embedding good dietary and social eating habits from an early age, and is taking away the stigma of free school meal tickets and expanding them to all? Big issues in my own back yard - if I regret anything, it's that the blog has taken time away from the campaign, not the other way round!

Unknown said...

I actually think David Cameron is having a good election too, and I am sure history will show he's played the campaign just about right

Stepney said...

And here's a list of 10 people who are just about to have a bad election:

1) Ed Balls
2) Oilver Letwin
3) Kerry McCarthy
4) Gordon Brown
5) Dawn Butler
6) George Galloway
7) Lord Pearson
8) Nigel Farage
9) Caroline Lucas
10) Zac Goldsmith

May 7th will be the day of staring into space and wondering where it all went wrong.

davidc said...

who, from the meja do you think is having a less than successful election ?

Anonymous said...

At first I didn't like Nolan, and thought he was a weak link in an otherwise excellent 5Live team. I'm pleased to admit I was wrong - he's now a "must listen" when he's got a politician on the show. His dinosaur-baiting of "Sir" Nicholas Winterton is a classic. (Train crash not car crash in his case).

Shamik Das said...

"Dawn Butler"?! Not from the soundings I've been getting. It's a different world out there on the doorstep. Clegg's flirting with the Tories has not gone down at all well for Teather, I can assure you. Could be a gamechanger here in Brent!

wild said...

David Dimbleby is more subtle than Andrew Neil, but both are good in my opinion.

David Dimbleby does not do original research like Andrew Neil (in other words he is rather lazy) but he is a grown up (which is important this day and age) and feels no need to make himself the focus of attention.

I like Andrew Neil because you feel he has a sense of the harshness of life, but at his worst he is all contempt (with more than a dash of Mr Chippy) and he is not as clever as he seems to think he is, notwithstanding the fact that he was educated in Scotland!

I think all the major political journalists are very wealthy, and so what politicians do does not affect them very much, so it is all a bit of a game to them.

Not caring very much about the consequences of politicians bad decisions is actually a very damming criticism.

Needless to add I detest the juvenile approach to questioning authority that has become so ubiquitous (since the Sixties?), but at its best (Jon Snow) it is bearable.

Anonymous said...

In my book...

- Laura K
- Eddie Mair
- Andrew Neill

All far superior to Humphreys / Naughtie / Dimbleby / Robinson / etc....

Simon Gardner said...

Re election night: I had foresworn any BBC election night coverage until the awful Dimbelbore had gone. Rather optimistically, I had hoped that would be this time.

Pretty good list. I’m going to add the odious Claire Ward (Watford) plus the whole of disappearing-down-a-hole UKIP.

And whichever poor buggers have to bat for Labour on the election night progs. And actually it looks like the Tory batters aren’t going to be having too happy a time either.

Dobson said...

agree with your list and like others would add Eddie Mair. Andrew is so good he should be mentioned at least twice...

Simon Gardner said...

The new who is your Tory casndidate game?

Take a grandparent's first name then street you grew up in double-barrelled with your first headmaster’s last name.

jailhouselawyer said...

75,000 people not having a good election!

Election row in Britain over prisoners barred from voting

eoghan said...

I agree with most of that and also agree with most of stepney's list of those about to have a bad election. Not sure about Ed Balls though - he seems to be manoeuvring himself into position for, if not the Labour leadership, then at least an improved stock.

Really, really hope it's a bad night for Dawn Butler. A bit of a Lib Dem bellwether.

I never know whether to do BBC TV or radio coverage on election night - it's still a tough call. The only thing with the radio coverage is that I'm more likely to fall asleep...

Jules Wright said...

Will Straw? Of Left Foot in Mouth?

Shurely not Iain? I've followed him from LL to LFiM and he's a self-censoring, specious makeweight with selective perception - much like his underwhelming old man. No gravitas; no depth; all thin polemic.