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Le Pen is ahead in the French polls; another indication that the people are going against the EU.


The EU really is screwed if the French decide to leave.


Pretty sure that Melenchon is also running on an anti-EU ticket. If both he and Le Pen get through then I expect complete chaos.

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The strange rebirth of Scottish Conservatism

At their wipeout in 1997, the Scottish Tories were at least hated. When I was reporting from the Scottish Parliament some 14 years later, things were even worse: there was curiosity, even pity, for Tory voters. One Tory MSP told me the party should rename itself "the effing Tories" because that's how they were known. Voting Conservative was no longer seen as a giant evil, more a harmless perversion - like cross-dressing (or cricket). Then Ruth Davidson came along, then Jeremy Corbyn - and now, everything has changed.


The above graph shows the latest voting intention in Scotland, with the Tories soaring above Labour and winning the support of a third of Scots. The Conservative and Unionist party is becoming the unionist coalition, with former Labour voters now giving up on the shell that is their party. Even under the energetic leadership of Kezia Dugdale, the institutional decay - and the Corbyn factor - has proved toxic.


On this poll, the Scottish Tories are poised to take several seats away the SNP, perhaps taking a dozen seats in all. It's still very early on in the campaign. But it's now possible to see the Davidson factor (and the Corbyn factor) at work. This also helps explain why Theresa May agreed to Davidson's request that the foreign aid pledge - something important for the Scottish Tory brand - was protected. Pete Wishart, the MP for Perth who once declared that "we loathe Tories in Scotland," will be feeling a little nervous.


The SNP's demand for a second referendum does seem to be focusing minds. Once again, something pretty extraordinary is happening in Scotland. and the PM's mission is simple: don't mess it up.



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I was discussing France over dinner tonight (being the mad middle-class bastard that I am).


I have to say I really feel for the French.


One of the truly great nations of the world, with a people with a proud history who continue to contribute massively to both the cultural and scientific development of the planet. And let's not forget a long-standing and steadfast ally of the British in good, bad, and very bad times.


This is a country which should be a powerhouse along German lines. Yet decades of complacent politics, a static economy, rising unemployment, ill-thought out immigration leading to social unrest and violence across the country (remember the riots in SE England in 2011? That's France every other week) has produced a tense, tired, and thoroughly pissed off populace crying out for change. Without which, the only development can be the continued decline of a once proud nation.


Something has to give, and I hope the French people get the change they deserve. Whether it proves to be Le Pen, or something else, remains to be seen. But they can't keep going on the way they have been.

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On the contrary it's to remove once and for all any possibility of a second Brexit referendum.


Sorry we will have to agree to disagree on this. That is what they are selling it as. Time will tell but I can very much see a second referendum, plenty good articles doing the rounds to back this up.

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"Something has to give, and I hope the French people get the change they deserve. Whether it proves to be Le Pen, or something else, remains to be seen. But they can't keep going on the way they have been."


M. Macron will defeat Mlle Le Pen comfortably but despite all his publicity it will be la meme chose deja vu again.

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