Latest from Coffee House

Latest from Coffee House

All the latest analysis of the day's news and stories

Fraser Nelson

Sunak was right to suspend Lee Anderson

When Lee Anderson was made deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, it was on the understanding that he’d explode now and again. Say something outrageous, cause a stir. The unelected Rishi Sunak had a wide conservative coalition to keep together and was mindful that, as a besuited Goldman Sachs alumnus, he may struggle to keep

Katy Balls

Will Lee Anderson defect to Reform?

Lee Anderson has been suspended from the Conservative party following comments he made about Sadiq Khan. The former deputy party chairman used an appearance on GB News on Friday to claim the London mayor had ‘given our capital away’ to Islamists, who he referred to as Khan’s ‘mates’. This afternoon a spokesperson for Chief Whip

Steerpike

Lee Anderson loses the Tory whip

Oh dear. Lee Anderson has now lost the Conservative whip after refusing to apologise for comments directed at London’s mayor. Appearing on GB News yesterday, the red wall Rottweiler declared that ‘Islamists’ have ‘got control of London’ and its mayor, Sadiq Khan. He told the network that Khan has ‘Given our capital city away to his

Freddy Gray

How badly will Nikki Haley lose in South Carolina?

Will Nikki Haley defy expectations and only lose by 20 points today? That seems to be closest thing to a point of contention as South Carolina heads to the polls for today’s dodo of a Republican primary.  The polls have shown Trump’s enormous lead shrinking in recent days from well over 30 points to around

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The shamelessness of Hope not Hate

You would think that a group called ‘Hope not Hate’ would have a lot of important things to talk about at the moment. It could look at how the threat of Islamist extremism is corrupting our democracy, for instance. It might raise the alarm about the MPs unwilling to vote with their conscience when it

Netanyahu’s plan won’t deradicalise the Palestinians

Four months after the beginning of the Gaza war, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has finally presented his security cabinet with a post-war plan for Gaza. Netanyahu had come under intense criticism, especially from American President Biden, for his lack of a plan so far. Israelis were warning as well that their country needed a

Why is the New Scientist defending cannibalism?

Most law students in the English-speaking world will have come across R v Dudley and Stephens, from 1884, which established the precedent that necessity is not a defence for murder. The case has a particular grisly attraction, as the defendants were sailors who had resorted to cannibalism after being cast adrift on a lifeboat for

Navalny showed there is a better Russia

Everything was angular about him: his brilliant smile, the choppy movements of his hands as he spoke, the western mannerisms he had picked up abroad at Yale. But it was the smile that really stood out. Alexei Navalny didn’t know me, probably didn’t trust me, but his smile was a signal of trust – an open sincerity I’d never seen among

Dartmoor’s mass trespass isn’t what it seems

The largest mass trespass in a generation will take place in Devon today. Hundreds of protesters belonging to the pressure-group Right to Roam will descend on Vixen Tor, a slightly sinister-looking granite outcrop on Dartmoor a few miles from Tavistock. Since 2003, access has been banned. But given that much of Dartmoor is already open

Steerpike

Watch: Truss turns on the Financial Times

Where would be without Liz Truss? The blonde bombshell hit Washington DC this week to attend the great right-wing jamboree that is the Conservative Political Action Conference. Appearing alongside Trump election mastermind Steve Bannon, Truss told the crowd that she had wanted to cut taxes and the size of the state while in No.10, but ‘the

Steerpike

Civil servants roll over £323 million worth of holiday

It was Douglas Jay who wrote that ‘In the case of nutrition and health… the gentleman in Whitehall really does know better what is good for people than the people know themselves’. But that instinct, it seems, deserts Sir Humphrey when it comes to planning his own holiday. For civil servants have today been told to ‘use it or

Iran and the Yakuza are natural criminal bedfellows

On Thursday, a 60-year-old Japanese crime boss appeared in a New York court to respond to charges that he helped traffic illicit material from Myanmar to Thailand. You might expect this to be a story about the Southeast Asian drug trade – it’s a vibrant business after all. In fact the supposed Yakuza boss, Takeshi

Ian Acheson

Why Prevent is still failing to tackle Islamist extremism

What is the core mission of the Government’s ‘Prevent’ strategy? When William Shawcross presented his review of our flagship counter extremism programme last year, he was clear: it was to stop people turning into tomorrow’s terrorists. The Home Office agreed, at least politically. How’s that going? A year after Shawcross reported on Prevent’s departure from counter terror watchdog

Ross Clark

Unreliable renewables will make energy more costly

It is of course good news that the Ofgem price cap for a dual fuel household bill will fall from £1,928 to £1,690 from April (that is the bill paid by the average householder). It means that there should be strong downwards pressure on inflation (the Consumer Prices Index) in April. Barring a jolt in

Net Zero’s days are numbered

If a week is a long time in politics, then 2023 belongs to a different age in the politics of Net Zero. Less than eleven months ago, the government was saying that ‘Net Zero is the growth opportunity of the 21st century. Earlier this week, former IMF chief economist Oliver Blanchard effectively poured water on

Kate Andrews

Falling energy prices raise hopes of a Spring rate cut

The good news started with the revelation that last month had produced a surplus of £16.7 billion for the Treasury – double the surplus of the same month last year and a record-breaking amount (in nominal terms) since records began. This has boosted hopes that the Chancellor will be able to offer up more tax

Steerpike

Was Cameron behind Prince William’s Gaza intervention?

Eyebrows in Westminster this week after Prince William opted to wade into the Gaza conflict. On Tuesday, the Prince of Wales declared that ‘Too many have been killed’, adding ‘I, like so many others, want to see an end to the fighting as soon as possible’. Royals typically remain neutral on geopolitical matters so why

Liz Truss’s Republican love-in at CPAC

‘Oh, that’s Liz Truss,’ a conservative reporter says as the former British prime minister passes us in the corridor at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). ‘She sucks. What’s she doing here?’ Trying to sell books, apparently. Truss is one of two Brits – alongside mainstay Nigel Farage – addressing CPAC. Her visit forms part

Mark Galeotti

Expelling the Russian ambassador would be a mistake

Jacob Rees-Mogg spoke for many people horrified by Alexei Navalny’s death in a Russian prison last week when he suggested that the Russian ambassador to the UK ought to be expelled in response. Labour’s David Lammy and the SNP’s Ian Blackford also advocated this back in 2022. This, however, would be a mistake. It’s a

Lisa Haseldine

Germany’s new anti-Ukraine party is unnerving the establishment

Her party may be less than two months old, but already Sahra Wagenknecht has put a cat amongst the pigeons in Germany. She launched her eponymous party, the Bündnis Sahra Wagenknecht (BSW) on 8 January this year, a few months after sensationally quitting the left-wing Die Linke party in October over disagreements on the party’s Ukraine

Did red tape worsen Britain’s inflation problem?

It has been a miserable few years for our quality of life. People have gotten used to that sinking feeling every time you read a price tag at the supermarket, receive an electricity bill or – particularly for younger generations – think about someday buying a house.This squeeze comes from prices rising faster than wages,

Chaos in the Commons benefits the SNP

Wednesday’s chaotic procedures in the House of Commons have handed an enormous soapbox to the SNP’s Stephen Flynn. The MP for Aberdeen South, who has led the Scottish National Party’s Westminster group since December 2022, has been intoning gravely that the debate ‘descended into farce’ and, with suppressed fury, told the speaker that he no

Nick Cohen

Violence is corrupting our democracy

Fascism begins with political violence on the streets. In 1922, Benito Mussolini ordered his supporters to march on Rome and threaten to overthrow the democratic government. In the early 1930s gangs of Nazis and communists fought for control of Berlin’s streets. In 1999, a mysterious bombing campaign, that killed dozens of people and destroyed apartment