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Queen To Set Out Coalition Plans
Queen's Speech To Set Out Cameron's Plans For New Law
It's all pomp and ceremony before the Queen actually gets inside Parliament to open the new session. This tradition, although full of colour and regal grandeur, is not really as vibrant as the hues displayed or filled with an air of excited anticipation, but nonetheless it is an enjoyable spectacle of an age old tradition to watch.
This is the 56th time the Queen performed this ceremony of the State Opening of Parliament.
But the real deal about this convention is David Cameron's coalition government's outline of laws it wants to pass in the next year.
There are many measures to be passede, and include the
- Repeal of ID cards
- Powers for parents to set up schools
- Reforms to policing and
- A referendum on the voting system.
Undoubtedly, the programme will reflect compromises reached by the Conservatives and Lib Dems alliance.
It has been hinted at by Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude that it is going to be a "radical agenda".
And deputy prime minister Nick Clegg confirmed that this is a new and remarkable moment, when he told the BBC that while previous Queen's Speeches had been "about governments grabbing more power for themselves", this one would be "remarkably new".
It is expected that theThe Queen's Speech, will contain up to 21 bills and comes a day after the government revealed the details of plans to cut £6.2bn in spending this year.
There is one complex bill that the coalition party is agreed needs action taken, and that is parlimentary reform, especially after last year's expenses scandal.
It will give the public the right to throw out corrupt MPs between elections and legislate for a referendum on changing the voting system from first-past-the-post to the Alternative Vote format.
Following the Queen officially opening Parliament, Mr Cameron will begin several days of debate in the Commons over the plans.
Acting Labour leader Harriet Harman will respond for the opposition in what may not be a clash of titans, but will be their first clash across the despatch box.
The Queen's Speech will be followed on Wednesday 2 June by the first Prime Minister's Questions of the new parliamentary session and by the government's emergency budget on 22 June.
George Osborne To Call An Emergency Budget
So now the Conservatives and LibDems have got into power they are starting to make cuts. George Osborne has said the government will announce next week how it plans to make £6bn in spending cuts this year. But where is the money coming from?
Well, he said there will be significant reductions to the costs of quangos and some Whitehall departments, Mr Osborne also pledged to make it harder for the government to "fiddle the figures"
In response, his predecessor, Labour's Alistair Darling, said the coalition was running the "risk of stalling the economy". So is it further down hill from the 22 June, when the government holds its 'emergency budget?'
Because Britain's budget deficit is running at close to 12 percent of GDP, a similar level to that of crisis-hit Greece, Osborne is determined to bring it down in order that the UK avoids another economic crisis. He said "Greece is a reminder of what will happen if governments lack the will to act decisively and quickly."
He has also created a new Independent Office for Budget Responsibility that will publish economic and fiscal forecasts, rather than the government.
This office has been formed because, as Carl Emmerson, deputy director at the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies told Reuters. "When the Chancellor is producing his own forecasts there is clearly a concern that him or her might be tempted to make them look a little rosier than the true picture and that temptation has now been removed,"
To get operation of cutting cuts in motion, Laws, Osborne's deputy at the Treasury, will meet ministerial colleagues this week to agree on the 6 billion pounds of spending cuts this year, following advice from the Treasury and the Bank of England.
Brothers Miliband fight fo Labour Leadership
The former energy minister Ed Miliband has confirmed he is to stand for the Labour leadership. He declared his intention in a speech to centre-left think-tank the Fabian Society, saying the party must renew itself.
He is directly in competition with his older brother David Miliband the ex-foreign secretary.
Although the brothers are standing against each other, Ed Miliband said he had thought long and hard before going up against his older sibling, David on the other hand insisted "brotherly love will survive". We'll see.
So far the pair are the only two Labour MPs to have announced they are standing for the party leadership.
Perhaps these two political youngsters will bring Labour out of the mire and loss of voters support. Ed recognised this and said that Labour had to be "clear and honest" about the scale of its election defeat.
"The one advantage of opposition is the chance to renew, to think about the country we live in and the people we seek to represent," he said.
He believes, "Fundamentally, we lost touch with the values that made us a progressive force in politics and lost touch with the people we were meant to represent," and that labour had to face up to the fact that it "lost trust catastrophically" over the Iraq war and MP's expenses row.
But there was one crucial point he added, which is Labour must not allow itself to be divided. "We have got to leave the whole Blair/Brown business behind us... and move on with a new set of ideas,"
Good Luck boys may the best brother win!
Cameron & Clegg Show A United Front
The new PM David Cameron has said his "historic" Conservative-led coalition government will be united and provide "strong and stable" leadership.
It's early days but both David Cameron and Nick Clegg portrayed a united front, and at a very good-humoured press conference the Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg, who is now deputy PM, said they would "take Britain in a historic new direction".
On the agenda they intend to cut to the deficit, support the troops, clean up politics and build a "stronger society". Nick acknowledged "big risks" but pledged a "bold, reforming government".
The coalition is the first time the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats have had a power-sharing deal at Westminster and the first coalition in the UK since the Second World War.
However, there is still some uncertainty with rising unemployment, and the economic crisis. The coalition government has inherited a few high risk tasks, but according Clegg and Cameron they are not insurmountable. Clegg said it would be a "new politics": "It's a new kind of government, a radical, reforming government where it needs to be and a source of reassurance and stability at a time of great uncertainty in our country too."
It appears that Clegg and Cameron are trying their best to smooth over the problems they face and at the conference they both laughed off the differences between the parties and past animosity - Mr Cameron apologised after a past description of Mr Clegg as a joke was brought up by one of the reporter. He said they wanted to make it work adding: "If it means swallowing some humble pie, and it means eating some of your words, I can't think of a more excellent diet." It was a funny moment.
New Cabinet In No.10
It's the first day of business for the new Tory/LibDem government and the iconic moment was the PM and his deputy shaking hands outside 10 Downing Street.
They are also choosing new members of the cabinet. So far we have
Chancellor - George Osborne
Home Secretary - Theresa May
Foreign Secretary - William Hague
Defence Secretary - Dr Liam Fox
Lord Chanceller - Ken Clarke
Secretary of State
Health Secretary - Andrew Lansley
Business & Banking - Vince Cable
Nick Clegg Deputy PM
New PM Cameron with his deputy Nick Clegg have formed the coalition govt and will be outline full details of the new government later on today when it begins its first day in office.
It will be intersted to see what emerges and what policies they agree upon and which ones will be a stumbling block. It's early days, let's see how long they last!
David Cameron Makes His First Speech As Prime Minister
20.45 Cameron intends to form a coalition with the Lib Dems. Right now he is giving his first speech outside 10 Downing street. He says the "UK's best days lie ahead". He adds that he wants to rebuild trust in politics. He promises to be "honest about what government can achieve" and pledges to build a more "responsible society".
He mentioned a few times that there is a lot of hard work to come. I suppose the formation of a coalition will throw up many challenges, but once the Tories and Lib Dems agree that the main aim should be improving the lot of the UK.
He and wife Samantha pose for pictures outside No 10 and then enter the building.
David Cameron is the new Prime Minister
20.35 David Cameron has been to see the Queen and is now the new PM. He makes his way to Downing Street where he will take up residence as the Prime Minister of the UK.
20.18 Gordon Brown's Goodby Speech
At Labour Party Head Quarters, Mr Brown addessed Labour party members and staff. He praised Harriet Harman as "one of the best people you could ever have met" and Lord Mandelson has been a "rock".
20.09 Cameron arrives at Buckingham Palace
It has been decided that David Cameron is to be sworn in as the youngest Prime Minister aged 43, since Lord Liverpool in 1812
Gordon Brown Resigns
David Cameron is waiting in the wings to be appointed as the new Prime Minister of the UK
Gordon has told friends that he intends to leave politics altogether.
19.28 Gordon and his wife arrive at Buckingham Palace
19,23 Gordon Brown and family enter the Daimler for the final ride to Buckingham Palace
19.22 Gordon Brown Resigns. He thanks his staff referring to them as "brilliant servants for the country". He praises his wife and sons and says goodbye. After posing for photographs the PM takes his children and wife to the waiting car.
Now that it is quite clear that there is not going to be a Lab-Lib deal Labour's ruling executive have started the process to choose a new party leader.
Conservative Liberal Democrat Statement expected shortly
Talks Over Between Labour and LibDems
So the negotiating is over between Labour and LibDems and we still wait for a decision of the talks between the Conservatives and Lib Dems.
It is really a shambles that the UK is without a government and that Nick Clegg has literally held the country to ransom and played the two main parties off against each other.
But it is the end of the Labour party's bid to stay in office and as the former Lord Chancellor Lord Falconer told the BBC "I think that we are doing ourselves damage now in trying to do a deal, and probably, it's time to say stop," "The sense that people will bargain on any basis in order to stay in power is unacceptable." He doesn't think a Lab-Lib alliance can be formed and Labour should now "call it quits".
Is It A Move To The Right Or Left?
Nick Clegg has finished another day of talks but does not seem to be any nearer a decision as to whom he will make a coalition deal. But David Cameron's not having any of it and is now demanding that Nick Clegg makes up his mind. He says it's "decision time" for the LibDems over which party they will back to govern the UK.
Tories and LibDems to resume talks at 2 o'clock this afternoon.
The End of the Most Unpopular Prime Minister
After the election results on Thursday created a hung parliament, it was, I believe inevitable that Gordon Brown would have to stand down. The UK showed that they had no faith in him as a leader or the labour party. As he said "the country told us they want new politics", so he's done the right thing by stepping down as leader of the labour party.
Now the LibDems are in talks with Labour and I wonder whether Gordon giving in to Clegg's demand is a way to scupper the hopes of the Conservatives and LibDems forming a coalition government.
Day 4 & Still No Deal
Conservative and LibDem on Day 4 are still in talks and we do not know if they are any nearer reaching a decision on a coalition party.
But behind closed doors and in secret we hear that Labour were in secret talks with the LibDems over the weekend. Is this LIbDem's Plan B in case it doesn't work out with the Conservatives? But didn't the LibDem's want a sacrifice and would not talk with Labour unless they gave them Gordon Brown's head on a platter? So who is the conspirator to strike the first blow.?
Despite the talks there is one thing that is needed, a government!
It's Time for Talking & Striking A Deal
But who will make the deal? Gordon Brown, I doubt it. He is still holding out probably waiting to the last minute to accept defeat and leave 10 Downing Street before he is evicted; whilst the potential 'Kingmaker' Nick Clegg and David Cameron try and strike a mutually acceptable deal. I love the Times Saturday edition front page, picturing Gordon Brown beside Mr Cameron, with the "Clegg: deal or no deal!" slogan. Absolutely Brilliant. I wonder whose going to ring up with the best offer he can accept!
In the meantime this rather shambolic state of affairs is having an affect on the financial markets as they fluctuate busily.
Continue looking out for updates
Does Nick Clegg Hold The Power?
It appears that Nick Clegg does indeed hold the trump card when it comes to forming a viable government. Both the Conservative and Labour leaders want to talk to him in an attempt to forming a majority government, putting Nick Clegg in a very powerful position.
David Cameron Invites Nick Clegg to Talk
David Cameron has just given his speech where he says the UK needs a strong government to run the country and deal with the economy, cleaning up politics and the war in Afghanistan.
He adds there will be a new, modern Conservative Party in Parliament, and is proud of the fact that there was an increase in seats bigger than what Margaret Thatcher achieved in 1979. Whilst he is going for new and modern he should be careful not to alienate the senior/older conservative voters.
Possibly the main aspect of his speech is that the policies of the conservative party will be shaped and implemented with in a deal with the LibDems.
Is This The Prime Minister's Last Speech?
At 13.44 Gordon Brown makes his speech after losing the majority vote. He says he wants to resolve the situation of the hung parliament for the good of the country. He also said that a fairer voting system is needed, offering immediate legislation to bring this about. Dangling the PR carrot to the LibDems!
Is Gordon Brown in denial? He is still trying to keep his options open and wants to convey the message that he is happy to talk to the Lib Dems. He obviously did not hear Nick Clegg say he is not interested in talks with Labour and believes the party with the majority should be given the opportunity to govern the country.
Unclear Election Result Badly Affects The Economy
The prediction that a hung parliamet is the worst possible result for the pound and foreign exchange markets has now come to fruition, as the pound has slumped to a 13-month dollar low.
Investors, businesses and individuals are all concerned that a hung parliament will paralyse the formation of a credible deficit reduction plan and get the economy bouyant again.
Conservatives Didn't Quite Make It
The UK has a hung Parliament and David Cameron will be "the youngest prime minister since Lord Liverpool in 1912" if the politicians can sort out the political fiascobut of who will be prime minister. But can David form a sustainable government? We will have to wait and see.
The other crucial question is will Gordon Brown resign? If he can't cut a deal with the LibDems it is likely that he will have to, leaving David Cameron to run the country. However, it looks like the LibDems have some power because the Conservatives will also have to cut a deal with them.
Come back for more updates.
Labour Party Deflated
As Gordon Brown waits to take off from Edinburgh to return to London, BBC's John Simpson who is with him says "there's a strange and increasingly deflated mood among the Labour entourage. But Mr Brown won't give up until the game gives him up, but hope is definitely fading", the correspondent adds.
Cameron's Thank You Speech
After David Cameron held the constituency of Witney in Oxfordshire - quite comfortably - with 33,973 votes, he says in his thankyou speech, (rubbing salt into the wound!) "It's already clear that the Labour government has lost its mandate to govern this country," Sorry Gordon you're out and David is in as It looks as if the Conservatives are on target to win more seats than they have for some 80 years, & he says. "It's clear the country wants change and that change is going to require new leadership". Himself of course, and he continues "Whatever happens, we will do all we can to bring about that leadership."
Let's hope he can live up to the task.
More Swings In Favour of the Conservatives
7.5% swing towards Conservatives in Basildon South.
A Massive 13.2.% swing in Montogomeryshire where LibDem Lembit Opik loses his seat to Conservative.
Gordon Brown Holds His Seat
Gordon Brown holds his seat at Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath with an increased majority of nearly 5,000 votes. Thank Goodness as it would have looked pretty bad if he lost it!
Good on yer Gordon!
Now giving his victory speech, Gordon talks about there being "no greater privilege than to serve in parliament the people you have grown up with." But it sounds to me that he has given up and does not believe he will be the Prime Minister of the UK.
First Conservative Gain
Peter Robinson, leader of the DUP, has been defeated in Belfast East. The first major scalp of the contest and
Kingswood in Gloucestershire has given the Conservatives their first gain so far with a swing of 9.4%.
Putney, another swing from labour to conservative of 9.9%...a strong swing
UK Polling Stations Look Like Third World Voting
What is going on? UK voters unable to cast their vote, queuing for hours, queues trailing around the block, and 8 polling stations run out of voting paper. David Dimbleby and Jeremy Paxman likened it to scenes found in the third world where people queue for days in order to cast their vote. But the big difference is that they actually get to vote because in the third world there is not a curfew time of 10.o'clock!
It's an absolute shambles for a 1st world, technological, westernised country!
Labour - 3 seats
Liberal Democrat 0
First Results Due 11.p.m.
So the votes have been cast and now we await the results. Who do you think it will be?
This is a difficult one to answer but there is one thing for sure this election's results promise to be the closest in living memory.
Howeve, it is claimed that Britain is heading for a hung Parliament with David Cameron's Conservatives 19 short of a majority, suggests an election exit poll.
So far 1 seat has been won by Labour.
Check back in at 11.p.m.
General Election 2010 - It's Polling Day
Well, here we are, Thursday 6 May 2010, UK Election Day, the day we all (well most of us) go to the polling booths to place our X for the next political party to try and bring Britain back into prosperity and economic good health. Whoever gets in have a tough job ahead of them!
The main question of this hub is 'Who Should You Vote For?'. In this election there are more floating voters than ever before, so to help you make up your mind I've decided to add a great tool that aims to demonstrate which party represents your views.
Here is a short Resume for each of the main party leaders.
Gordon Brown - Labour
Gordon Brown the current Prime Minister deperately wants to be elected to 10 Downing Street, but his popularity as a prime ministerial leader has never been high. It seems he is just not liked by the public, maybe because of his gaffs, but I think it is a case that he is a passionate man who unfortunately gets angry when things go wrong! But out of the three main party leaders he has the most political experience, he's determined to implement policies at national and local levels, and improve the economy for which he is more equipped to do than his competitors who do not appear to have any firm plan in place to take the UK out of the recession.
He said "Whatever your doubts, whatever your disappointments, if you want to secure a recovery that is fair to all and public services that serve all... I ask you to come home to Labour."
Maybe, just maybe!
David Cameron - Conservatives
David Cameron in his slightly cocky manner believes victory is his, and promises '"hope, optimism and change" if the Conservative party wins the election. He is trying to win your vote by using social and economic change, which at this moment in time has blighted the UK. He suggested that only a Conservative victory could lift what he said was the "gloom and depression of the Brown years", and to be honest we all know that the recession has hit Britain hard with loss of jobs, businesses and banks going bust and a downward spiral for many into poverty, so if he really can bring the UK out of depression, he'll get my vote. But the problem with that is that he does not have any plan for recovery in place, although he says he does, none appear good enough to be published. So how can we trust him when he cannot even reveal the many plans he says he has. hmmmmn!
Nevertheless, the lastest opinion polls suggest the Conservatives are nudging ahead and are still some way in the lead but with a hung Parliament being a possibility.
Nick Clegg - Liberal Democrats
Nick Clegg has such optimism and is a good orator who convinces you that he is the right man for the job. After many years of disappointment from the Labour and Conservative governments, Nick makes the LIberal Democrats appear to be the best alternative to make Britain great again, he just needs the chance and opportunity to prove it to us. Listen to what he says, the election is "a once-in-a-generation opportunity" to break the mould of British politics, and urges people to vote "for the future you want". "This time is our chance".
He goes on to describe the prime ministerial race as the most "exciting" campaign in a generation, he said the choice voters faced was clear. "It is a choice between the old politics of the past and the new, different politics of the future."
Whilst Nick Clegg offers optimism and hope for the future, he is let down by one aspect, which is crucial to the UK's economic survival, and that is the ability to fix the economy.
Otherwise he's a nice chap really!
I'm not a politician and I'm not trying to sway your vote in any way, but I hope you got something out of my small contribution to the UK Elections 2010.