Politics on Sunday: What came before the resignation?

Much of the Sunday political shows was focused on Amber Rudd’s future, which we now know was severely limited.

Brandon Lewis was sent out on the Marr show to defend Rudd. The interview had the potential to be quite interesting as Lewis was the immigration minister last year so he may have been sent out to defend himself. Beyond the standard defence of ‘tackling immigration is the right thing to do’, what the Chair of the Conservative party did manage to do was say Rudd knew of the ambition to increase deportations but it was not a target. When asked whether he and Amber Rudd had ever directly discussed deportation targets, Lewis replied by saying he has been in a room talking about increasing the number of returns.

Defenders of Rudd were also on Peston. Jo Johnson said he is a ‘big big fan’ of Rudd and she’s a great Home Secretary. Johnson also went on to say that it is unrealistic to expect a Secretary of State to see every single memo, which may be true but it is still that Secretary of State’s responsibility if things go wrong. Thankfully Robert Peston pointed out that this is not a trivial matter and is a central element of the department’s work. Ed Vaizey was also on Peston and he said Rudd is fantastic but the last week had not been great and she will have questions to answer (which she now won’t as she has resigned).

Various other matters were discussed throughout the shows. Leader of the Lib Dems, Vince Cable, talked about immigration, saying that several governments have decided the public are bigoted and they need policies to feed their desires. Cable said, ‘race has been a key factor in British politics’. Cable also took a more considered approach when speaking about Rudd’s future saying he wanted to hear what she had to say for herself. Marr did point out that this considered approach may be due to the Lib Dems perhaps being somewhat responsible for the hostile environment policy as they were in government at the time. Cable defended his approach and party by saying for much of his time in power he and his party were fighting against these policies.

Andrew Gwynne also appeared on Marr and he was asked about anti-Semitism. He said it has been made clear by Jeremy Corbyn that Labour party members should not be sharing a platform with anybody found guilty of anti-Semitism or expelled from the party. When asked why this was not put into the party rule book, he repeated his previous point saying it is clear what should and should not be done. He also said the Labour party wants to work with Jewish community groups to change the rules of the party to provide a wider definition of anti-Semitism. Marr provided an example of Jewish people being held responsible for the actions of Israel, Gwynne responded by saying people can criticise any government in a democracy but criticising Jewish people should not be happening. Gwynne is also managing Labour’s local election campaign and he attempted to cool expectations saying it would be difficult to get as good a result in 2014.

Mayor of London, Saqid Khan, also appeared on Peston. He said he thinks there will be protests when Donald Trump visits the UK but said it would probably be inappropriate for him to join in with the protests. He also spoke about how both Theresa May and Trump have created hostile environments in their own countries. Khan would back the Prime Minister if she was to give preferential immigration rights to EU citizens after Brexit. He also spoke about former Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, saying that he feels he should be removed from the Labour party and he cannot understand why it is taking so long for a decision to be made.

The leader of UKIP, Gerard Batten, appeared on Robert Peston and when speaking about anti-Semitism he accused the religion of Islam as being inherently anti-Semitic. Robert Peston later sent out a tweet saying Batten’s slur on Muslims is appalling and are the views of the UKIP leader. Batten was then questioned on a statement he has made saying that being called a racist is now worse than being called a murderer or a paedophile; Batten answered by saying he meant you are guilty until you can prove your innocence. Batten also spoke about Sadiq Khan’s statement that he wants an immigration system where EU migrants are given preferential treatment, Batten questioned whether this is racist as most EU citizens are white.

Other guests included: Kate Hoey, who said the one good thing that may come out of the Windrush scandal is that the Home Office may be properly reformed so we no longer see such ridiculous things happen like letters and passports being lost; Jo Swinson said she will be protesting Donald Trump when he visits in the Summer due to the values that he stands for; Ed Vaizey feels the Conservative will have to work doubly or triply hard to win back voters from a BAME background; and John McDonnell spoke about the local elections and said too many factors come into play for any prediction to be made now.

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Politics on Sunday – Windrush dominates

Discussion around the awful treatment of the Windrush generation dominated the Sunday political shows, which included all the usual shows but with Nick Robinson standing in for Andrew Marr.

Robinson asked David Gauke, the justice secretary, if he is ashamed of what has happened to people who were invited to this country and have spent the majority of their lives here. Gauke said he was and that the treatment of the Windrush British Citizens was wrong. The Justice Secretary was played a clip from 2004 of Theresa May on Question Time saying politicians should not blame other people for mistakes that are made – Robinson then suggested Amber Rudd should resign due to the failures that have occured.

Rudd is not popular with Brexiteers in her party and it was also revealed that she had boasted about her harsher immigration strategy. Gauke said Rudd should ‘absolutely’ stay in her job despite the clear issue. Throughout Gauke’s interview, he kept reiterating the point that addressing illegal immigration is right, however he did keep clarifying that those from the Windrush generation are not illegal immigrants.

Unsurprisingly, Robinson’s next guest Emily Thornberry, shadow home secretary, disagreed with Gauke and said that Rudd should quit as ‘she is clearly doing very badly at her job at the moment’. Thornberry made a strong case pointing out that people have died and lost their jobs and she does not see how Rudd apologising makes any of this better. Thornberry stated a few factors to show how the policy was deliberate, these are:

  • Government commitment to get immigration to the tens of thousands despite not being able to control EU immigration
  • The hostile environment policy and the ‘go home vans’
  • In new legislation on immigration checks protection for citizens born in the Commonwealth was removed

Thornberry was also asked whether she felt ministers are racist or was it the policy that was racist; she replied by saying she was not going to fling such accusations at people. She said, ‘it is unfair’ to have different rules for people that have not come from or are not coming from the EU.

Poet Benjamin Zephaniah also appeared on Marr and spoke about Windrush. He feels the black community is united and angry about their treatment – he said even black people who do not have any connections to the Commonwealth are angry. He also called for action to be taken ‘immediately’ to assist people who have been affected.

The talk around Windrush was not limited to the Marr show, as all the shows had guests who spoke on the matter. Shadow chancellor John McDonnell, spoke about the hostile environment policy and how it was a terrible. When asked who he thought was responsible, McDonnell said he thinks it is Theresa May as she was home secretary at the time and Amber Rudd as she is the current home secretary.

Baroness Warsi, a former chair of the Conservative Party, was interviewed on Peston and said it could have been her family that were victims of the current scandal and many first and second-generation migrants feared a circumstance like this happening and their fears have come true. Warsi was a member of the Government that oversaw the ‘go home vans’ and she was questioned on this by Peston. She said she was not publicly happy with the policy and privately she was ‘appalled’. She also referenced that the kind of thing she never thought would appear again in British politics has appeared again in the last few years.

James Brokenshire, former minister for security and immigration, was asked by Peston whether he felt personally responsible for what has happened. He replied by saying he thinks it is right the Government have apologised and he never foresaw this.

On Sunday with Paterson, Labour MP Dawn Butler said the Prime Minister is leading a Government that is putting institutionally racist policies into place. Butler said that May should consider her own position and an apology is not enough in this circumstance. Butler also said she sees the Windrush scandal as a disgrace. Tobias Ellwood, Conservative MP, represented the Government on Sunday with Paterson – he said the situation needs to be rectified as these are not people who should be facing the current situation they are in.

While Windrush dominated, there was some discussion with Emily Thornberry on anti-Semitism in the Labour Party – where she said it will be sorted out. She also told a story of how a woman started a conversation with her and started being anti-Semitic to show support to the Labour Party, Thornberry condemned this by saying it is unacceptable. Ellwood spoke on whether Parliament should be consulted on military action, he said it could give your strategy away. He also said the rules around war are being eroded.

John McDonnell said the mandate of the Bank of England could be changed, but its independence would be maintained. The change in mandate would likely be looking at giving the bank some responsibility over employment like the American model. Olympian Tom Daley also appeared on Marr and spoke about LGBT rights across the Commonwealth. He said he does not need to be worried about being who he is in the UK but if he was born in another country in the Commonwealth this would not be the case.

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Sunday politics 23 April

Politics on Sunday – Syria bombings dominate the political shows

Parliament returns from recess today and the Prime Minister faces a rough ride in the Commons with an emergency debate on her decision to join America and France in targeting President Assad’s chemical weapons facilities. The subject dominated yesterday’s political programmes, with several high-profile guests on both Marr and Peston discussing the issue.

On Marr, Corbyn attacked the Prime Minister over the decision not to consult MPs and demanded a ‘war powers act’, which would force governments to get parliamentary approval for military action. Corbyn also suggested ‘other groups’ involved in the Syrian civil war may have been responsible for the chemical weapons attack in Douma. Corbyn stated that there was no legal basis for the airstrikes, and criticised the Prime Minister for following Trump’s lead, describing it as a ‘policy made up by Twitter’. In regard to the Salisbury poisoning of Russian double-agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Corbyn said that he wants to see ‘inconvertible evidence’ that Russia was responsible for the attack.

The Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, also appeared on Marr, with a contrasting rhetoric, criticising Corbyn for denying the likelihood of Russian involvement in the Salisbury attack, describing his viewpoint as a ‘blindness to reality’. Johnson defended the decision to send air strikes, explaining the importance of sending a message to the Syrian leader to deter the ‘barbaric use of chemical weapons’. He also refused to rule out another attack on the region.

On Peston, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster David Lidington stated that there are no plans for legislation with regard to Corbyn’s proposal for a war powers act. Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry also appeared on the show, arguing that Trump should have worked with the UN. She said that it cannot be Donald Trump and the UN making decisions unilaterally. Green Party leader Caroline Lucas also weighed in on the issue, criticising the Prime Minister’s timing of the bombings and accusing her of purposely avoiding a debate in Parliament.

On Sunday with Niall Paterson, First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon also criticised the Prime Minister for not seeking Parliament’s approval. She said that the strikes risk ‘escalating an already dangerous situation’, and argued that they do not contribute towards a long-standing and lasting peace in Syria. These comments were echoed by Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Burgon, who emphasised the severity of taking a country to war and accused the Prime minster of paying more heed to the Twitter tantrums of Donald Trump than the British Parliament.

Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable claimed that the decision not to consult Parliament before launching the attack was taken for reasons of political weaknesses and fears of losing the vote. He said that it is essential that the Prime Minister builds a consensus at home before taking action abroad.


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Corbyn and Bojo


Politics on Sunday – violent crime crisis and Brexit’s impact on the Good Friday Agreement

The violent crime crisis and Brexit’s impact on the Good Friday Agreement dominated both Andrew Marr and Niall Paterson’s Sunday shows this week.

On the Marr Show, when talking about the significant rise in knife crime, Julia Hartley Brewer described it as ‘black on black’ crime and said that schools and family breakdowns had a role to play. Journalist Polly Toynbee accused stop and search of creating resentment that strengthened gang culture as well as anti-social and anti-police attitudes.

Secretary of State for Education Angela Rayner called for evidence-based, targeted stop and search. She said that this could be achieved through the presence of community and youth workers, who would be able to recognise which young people are vulnerable or at risk of getting involved in gang activity.

Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid spoke of the Serious Violence Strategy to be announced by the Home Secretary on Monday 9 April. He revealed that the strategy would focus on root causes and early intervention. Javid also spoke of the upcoming Serious Weapons Bill which would introduce measures such as making it illegal for under 18s to buy acid and for individuals to possess certain weapons, such as knuckle dusters and zombie knives. Javid claimed the evidence proved that the significant rise in violent crime was not due to the decrease in police numbers. He said that the Government would nevertheless be increasing the police budget by £450m in the coming year.

Paterson guest, Shadow Policing Minister Louise Haigh, welcomed the new measures, however, she criticised the absence of preventative measures. She claimed that taking action on the criminal side was not enough to solve the problem.

Also on Paterson, Stafford Scott, Tottenham community activist, said that the problem lay not just with the police but also with local authorities, central government and the Mayor’s Office who, according to him, ‘have all reneged on their responsibility to these young people’. Minister at the Home Office, Victoria Atkins, spoke of the dangerous impact social media can play in influencing young people to get involved in gangs.

George Mitchell, former US special envoy to Northern Ireland, urged the Government to recognise that it is ‘the futures of their economies [at stake], it is the possibility of resumption of conflict, of a reversion back to the time that nobody wants to go back to except for a very tiny fringe element on both sides.’

Adrian O’Neill, Irish ambassador to London, made an appearance on both Marr and Paterson. He spoke of the ‘indispensability’ of the Good Friday Agreement, referring to it as ‘a miracle’.

On the Marr Show, Christopher Wylie spoke about the Cambridge Analytica story and a potential re-run of the EU referendum. He stated that ‘we need absolute clarity that the decision made by the British people was made fairly and compliant with the law’. He argued that if that was not the case, then a second referendum was required.


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Round up

Politics on Sunday – Brexit, Vote Leave and the NHS on Marr, peston and Sunday with Paterson

There was no way Brexit would be upstaged for a second consecutive weekend on the Sunday shows, dominating the weekend’s coverage. It was discussed on both Peston and Marr, who each hosted several high-profile guests.

There are allegations that Vote Leave gave money to BeLeave (a group allegedly controlled by Vote Leave) so they could get around spending rules. These allegations came from a whistle blower who was not only in Vote Leave but in a relationship with senior Vote Leave figure, Stephen Parkinson. Stephen Parkinson is now a political secretary for the Prime Minister.

There were different calls for different steps to be taken.

Caroline Lucas (Marr) thinks there should be a police investigation, she does not think the Electoral Commission has either the resource or the power to act. She also referenced the Information Commissioner having to wait a week to get a warrant to enter Cambridge Analytica’s office.

Deputy Labour leader, Tom Watson (Marr) said the ministers that were involved in Vote Leave should answer questions to find out what they knew and when they knew it. Watson backed Lucas’ view that the Electoral Commission needs the powers and resources to further investigate. David Davis (Marr) attempted to calm the matter saying we should wait for the Electoral Commission to come to a conclusion.

Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt (Peston) defended Stephen Parkinson, saying as far as he knew Parkinson works with the highest integrity. Hunt went on to say the legal matters are for the Electoral Commission to decide on.

Ben Bradshaw (Peston) said it is for the Information Commissioner, the Electoral Commission and the police to decide on whether anything illegal happened. Heidi Allen (Peston) called for the facts to be separated from the gossip, on the wider story, she said, ‘the whole thing feels pretty filthy’.

David Davis was not just asked about the Vote Leave issue. He made the following claim on the UK’s future relationship with the EU: ‘It will be a free trade deal, a comprehensive one, the most comprehensive one ever’. Davis went on to say that the deal will not be like Norway’s.

The question of Northern Ireland was, of course, raised. Davis said the preferred and ‘likely’ way of resolving this issue will be the UK getting a customs agreement and free trade agreement making the issue easier to solve. The Brexit Secretary went on to say a backup plan does exist and this plan involves Northern Ireland remaining in the customs union. Marr challenged Davis on this saying that kind of arrangement does not exist anywhere in the world, to which Davis suggested the use of new technology could solve any old problems.

The Shadow Brexit Secretary, Keir Starmer was interviewed by Robert Peston and asked about where the Labour Party thinks the new British passports should be made. Starmer said the new blue passports should be made by a British company. When Robert Peston pointed out this could cost £120 million, Starmer replied by saying ‘To put it to a French company is the wrong thing to have done’.

After Tom Watson said a second referendum was something the Labour Party was open to but not calling for, Starmer had to answer a question on this topic where he made clear it was not a policy Labour were putting forward. Watson was asked about the sacking of Owen Smith; he said that when you join the shadow Cabinet you are bound to collective responsibility and your personal views should be put to the side. Watson said he did not think Corbyn had much choice but to ask Smith to step down.  Shadow Transport Secretary Andy McDonald backed up what Watson said, later on Sunday Politics.

One of the biggest non-Brexit stories to come out of the shows was Jeremy Hunt and the NHS. Hunt said he thinks a ‘10-year settlement’ will suit the NHS much better. He said it takes seven years to train a doctor and three to train a nurse, and to be able to structurally plan for this, the NHS needs longer term financial planning. He also said that the public wants more resources for the NHS and this can only really happen when tax is increased and the economy grows.

Hunt also hinted towards making the NHS more efficient in the way data is recorded, explicitly mentioning IT systems. The Health Secretary also dampened speculation that an extra £4bn a year is going to announced for the NHS in the summer, linking back to his earlier comments that he does not like the ‘feast or famine’ way the NHS is currently funded. Hunt didn’t stop there, he went on to set out a policy where mothers would see the same team of midwives through pregnancy and birth. Hunt himself said more midwives will be needed for the policy to become a reality.

Not for the first time since Jeremy Corbyn became Labour leader, the opposition leader’s views on anti-Semitism were questioned. This comes from 2012 when Corbyn defended an anti-Semitic mural on Facebook. The Labour leader has said he was defending free speech and did not realise the mural was anti-Semitic, though he has now said it is. Andy McDonald (this time on Sunday with Paterson) said Jeremy Corbyn has fought anti-Semitic behaviour for a long time. Starmer said the mural was very clearly anti-Semitic and that Corbyn ‘can speak for himself’. Peston thought it would worry people that someone who wants to be Prime Minister did not look closely enough at something before commenting on it.

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26 March

Politics on Sunday – 19 March 2018

The Sunday political shows were, of course, dominated by Russia. Andrew Marr had Russia’s Ambassador to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov on his show, who said that it would be worth questioning why the UK Government was able to identify the Novichok agent so quickly.

Chizhov suggested that to identify the nerve agent it would have to be tested against nerve agents the UK has in its possession. He also gave the defence that the country stopped making chemical weapons in the early 90s and all of their stockpiles of poisons were destroyed last year. The Ambassador said, ‘Russia had nothing to do with it’ when asked about the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal. Chizhov also disapproved of Boris Johnson’s manner after Johnson said it was likely Putin personally ordered the attack.

The Foreign Secretary was himself a guest on Marr and he dismissed the idea of the UK being involved in the attack as ‘satirical’. He also argued against the defence given by Chizhov, saying the stockpiling of nerve agents has been something Russia have been doing for the last decade. Johnson was also damming when speaking about the response to the attack, saying experts from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons will test samples.

It turns out Johnson himself played tennis with a lady whose husband was given an award by Vladimir Putin and served in a ministerial position under Putin because she paid £160,000 at a fundraising auction. Marr question whether the Foreign Secretary and the Conservatives more widely were best placed to comment on Russia with links such as these. Johnson confirmed the tennis match, featuring then Prime Minister David Cameron, did take place, but then said that if there is evidence of wealth being gained by corruption, agencies are in place that can withhold that wealth. He clarified that it is not for him to decide who does and does not deserve to hold wealth in the UK, and made clear that Russian people are not the enemy or ‘the object of our wrath’. Johnson is often criticised as not being serious enough for the role of Foreign Secretary, but this interview has gone some way to answering those criticisms.

Shadow Attorney General, Shami Chakrabarti, also appeared on Marr to give further explanation to the response of Labour. She said that if the Government is convinced Putin ordered the attack they must have seen more evidence than the leadership of Labour. Chakrabarti said she agreed with Theresa May that the Russia Government have a responsibility whether they lost control of the nerve agent or directed the attack. The Baroness said that the ‘tone’ of remarks by Jeremy Corbyn have been ‘spun’. She also stressed the need for everyone commenting on the incident to get their tone right.

The discussion on Peston also focused on Russia. If Theresa May was watching, she will have seen more agreement from the Labour Party in the position she took, this time from John McDonnell. The agreement from the main opposition party, including harsh critics like John McDonnell perhaps indicate that May got her response right. The Shadow Chancellor also pointed out that a pattern could be seen with previous attacks on Russian dissidents. McDonnell also responded to criticism the Labour Party have received aimed at their response to the incident saying that Seamus Milne said ‘exactly’ what the Prime Minister said.

Anna Soubry on Peston did not describe John McDonnell in complimentary terms, saying she views him as one of the most dangerous people in British politics.

Chair of the Conservative Party, Brandon Lewis, appeared on Peston and, like Johnson, was asked about links between Putin and the Conservative Party. When asked whether Lewis know whether any donors have links to Putin, he responded by saying due diligence has been done. Lewis then moved onto saying that some of these people have become British citizens after fleeing Putin and are taking up their right to take part in any aspect of British society they want to. When asked whether he felt proud about the remarks Gavin Williamson made last week that Russia should ‘go away and shut up’, Lewis said the intention of the remarks was correct and said everyone has their own way of doing things. When appearing on Sunday with Paterson, Lewis did not wholeheartedly defend remarks by Boris Johnson when he said Jeremy Corbyn had let his country down.

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19 March

Politics on Sunday – 11 March 2018

Chancellor Philip Hammond made an appearance on both Marr and Peston yesterday, where two topics (neither of which were Brexit!) were dominant: the economy and Russia. Ahead of the Spring Statement (Tuesday 13 March), Hammond gave his view on the state of the economy and said that there is ‘light at the end’ of the austerity tunnel as debt will begin to fall. However, Hammond made sure to point out that the UK is still that tunnel and the national debt must still come down.

When asked by Robert Peston whether he foresees the UK economy reaching a 60% debt to GDP ratio in our lifetime, Hammond responded by saying, ‘It depends on how long you’re planning on living’.

Hammond did have to face some Brexit-related questions. When asked by Peston about EU fishermen, Hammond responded it will be up to the UK to decide whether we allow European fishermen to enter our waters. He also said that it would come down to the results of the negotiation as to whether the UK will have access to the single market.

John McDonnell gave an alternative view of the economy on Marr by saying he did not see Hammond’s assessment as being accurate and that ‘austerity is holding growth back’, lamenting the lack of growth in wages. McDonnell accused the Government of passing the buck on financial management to those that depend on the funding.

All the guests on Marr had to face questions relating to Russia. Perhaps the most notable Russia-related guest was Marina Litvinenko, the widow of ex-Russian agent Alexander Litvinenko who died after being poisoned in London.  She came with a warning to Theresa May that ‘you need to be very selective who you are friends with’ as the history of wealthy individuals coming into a country needs to be considered.

She also made the point that as someone else has been poisoned, it must mean the actions required were not taken. John McDonnell encouraged his Labour colleagues not to appear on Russia Today and that if Russia was involved in the attempted murder of Sergei Skripal, then Britain will need to take steps to isolate the country. Hammond said if there was evidence of a foreign state being involved in the Skripal attack then the Government will be responding appropriately.

Jacob Rees-Mogg was a guest on Peston and he views Russia as a serious threat to the UK and said a robust response is needed. Rees-Mogg also commented on Russian bots, saying he did not know who looks at his Twitter and whether any bots promote his views.

Rees-Mogg also said he would want any money that comes from the UK leaving the EU to go towards the NHS as we are not currently spending enough on health. Over the weekend, Peter Dowd appeared on Russia Today and was questioned on his appearance by Niall Paterson. He said the Labour Party will be reviewing the policy of appearing on Russia Today and he makes a decision on every offer he gets to appear on TV.

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Sunday Political programmes

Politics on Sunday – 4 March 2018

This Sunday, the political shows offered up guests from across the political spectrum including the Prime Minister, First Minister of Scotland and the leader of the Lib Dems.

Theresa May was the headline guest on Sunday, with her appearance on Mar. The Prime Minister was, of course, speaking about the Brexit speech she gave on Friday where she was ‘being straight with people’.

The biggest point of note from the interview was May making clear that the UK will not be asking for ‘passporting’ rights in the Brexit negotiations, with May preferring to negotiate access to the EU’s financial services market in a new trade deal. Her reason for this is that the City of London is too important to be at the table without any say in the rules.

The rest of the Prime Minister’s appearance on the show was made up of her defending her speech and attempts at sending messages to Brussels with her ambitious and practical Brexit proposals. May also said that all sides in the negotiations are working for there to be no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

The discussion around the Irish border did not stop there, with the Deputy Prime Minister of Ireland, Simon Coveney, making an appearance (Coveney also holds the positions of Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, and Deputy Leader of Fine Gael). Coveney said he was ‘not sure’ whether the EU would support the UK’s plan for the Irish border. He feels that the EU would want to protect the integrity of the EU single market, Coveney said the idea put forward by May was a good way to start the discussion but by no means would it be a solution.

Lord Mandelson and Iain Duncan Smith also appeared on The Andrew Marr Show, in a blast from the past, both giving their take on Brexit. Mandelson pointed out that the UK is targeting the US for a free trade deal but Donald Trump has recently said free trade deals are ‘stupid’. Duncan Smith made the point that big is not always best when it comes to trade, referencing the UK’s financial services.

Robert Peston had his own high-profile guests with the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, and leader of the Liberal Democrats, Vince Cable. Sturgeon saw May’s speech as more of a concession that the UK will be worse off after Brexit. Vince Cable said it is possible that the Lib Dems could be involved in a new centre party being formed. Cable rejected tribalism and said that he knows of both Conservative and Labour MPs who are very unhappy at the moment.

John McDonnell appeared on Sunday with Niall Paterson and said Tom Watson should think about his relationship with Max Mosley. He said that although Watson said he was of the opinion Mosely had changed his views from years ago, it appears he has not.

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Politics on Sunday – 18 February 2018

The Sunday political shows continued despite Parliament being in recess for the last week. To quote a former Prime Minister, the focus was ‘education, education, education’.

The Education Secretary, Damian Hinds was out to represent the Government; his position was that courses that cost less to run could come with lower fees as he conceded that the Government expected more variety in tuition fees under the current system. Unsurprisingly, Hinds was not supportive of the Labour policy to scrap tuition fees.

Shadow Education Secretary Angel Rayner also appeared on Marr’s show, arguing that the reintroduction of the maintenance grant is needed. Rayner did not express any hope in the review due to be conducted – she said, ‘another review really isn’t going to solve the problem’. When questioned about the policy the Labour Party put forward before the election to wipe out student debt, Rayner switched focus and said the priority for the Labour Party is making sure that schools are safe.

Robert Peston made sure his show would not be outdone on education with Justine Greening and Lord Willets appearing. Before leaving the Cabinet, Greening said she wanted to make sure the cost of education was not just continuously looked at as action needed to be taken – implying that the review may be more inaction. Greening also pointed out that cutting fees for subjects in the arts or social sciences may lead to students from poorer backgrounds not applying for STEM subjects.

There was mention given to Brendan Cox’s decision to step down from the charities formed in memorial of his late wife, after allegations of his behaviour towards women in a previous role. The scandal around charity abuse was something focused on by Ruth Davidson who said the abusers are in the ‘lowest circle of hell’. She also said the scandal has made it much harder to make the case for UK aid, which is much needed.

It wouldn’t be Politics on Sunday without Brexit being mentioned and Andrew Marr interviewed Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament’s representative in the Brexit negotiations. Verhofstadt does not think that the UK will be able to get a deal like Canada with additional benefits. He also said Theresa May should think twice before she thinks she can pick and choose which EU regulations the UK adopts once it leaves the EU.

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Politics on Sunday – 11 February 2018

This Sunday, the political shows offered up guests from across the political spectrum and yet one of the biggest headlines was that Andrew Marr – a man who has been interviewing and reassuring guests for over 10 years – was caught on mic saying that Penny Mordaunt gave a good interview.

Guests who featured on yesterday’s political shows included Penny Mordaunt, Andrew Gwynne, Chuka Umunna, Anna Soubry, Henry Bolton, Alastair Campbell, John McDonnell, Neale Richmond and David Gauke.

International Development Secretary, Penny Mordaunt, was the guest who faced the most pressing questions in the wake of the scandal surrounding Oxfam. Mordaunt sent a strong message to the charity saying that funding will be withdrawn if it does not comply fully with the authorities. This was also a wider warning to aid charities that if they don’t protect vulnerable people they face the risk of losing Government funding. Mordaunt confirmed she is still chipper about the prospects for Brexit and rejected Marr’s suggestion that she and her fellow pro-Brexit MPs misled the public into thinking it would be an easy process. Mordaunt also said that in the coming week more meat will be put on the Brexit bone. At the end of the interview Marr told her the interview was ‘very good’ – which inevitably led to people voicing concerns at the political standpoint of the BBC.

Supporters of the EU, Anna Soubry and Chuka Umunna appeared together on Andrew Marr’s sofa to show a united cross-party image for Remain. Soubry went as far to say that she thinks there is a majority in the House of Commons who are against the UK leaving the Customs Union and the single market. Soubry also welcomed the fact that ideologically she was closer to Labour MP Umunna than her fellow Conservative Jacob Rees-Mogg. This was not the last mention of Jacob Rees-Mogg as Umunna said he cannot imagine Jeremy Corbyn instructing Labour MPs to vote the same way as some of the Brexiteers.

UKIP leader Henry Bolton also took questions from Marr. Bolton unsurprisingly does not want UKIP to have a leadership election. His reasoning was that if another leadership election took place then UKIP would not be able to shape the Brexit deal.

Appearing on Peston, Alastair Campbell raised concerns for the aid budget saying that due to the scandal surrounding Oxfam, figures on the right of British politics will use the scandal to further their aims and attempt to reduce aid spending. Campbell had his advice on Brexit rejected by John McDonnell, with the Shadow Chancellor accusing Campbell of ‘threatening politics’. James Cleverley suggested this was hypocritical, on Twitter.

Work and Pensions Secretary, David Gauke, represented the Government on Peston and he faced questions on whether Philip Hammond has been silenced by Theresa May after it was revealed that he would not be one of the Ministers ‘putting meat on the Brexit bone’. Gauke said the Chancellor not giving a speech ‘doesn’t mean the Chancellor is not expressing his views internally in the Cabinet’.

Check out the dedicated Canvas of political coverage by clicking here or on the image below.

You can make a canvas for any type of story, campaign or coverage.

Politics on Sunday – 4 February 2018

The Sunday political shows gave us guests from local, regional and national government alongside a former head of the civil service and the leader of the Liberal Democrats.

Andrew Marr’s headline guests were Amber Rudd and Gerry Adams. Rudd was asked about Brexit and Brexiteers in the Conservative party; she said they should be aware of the unity in the Cabinet committee on Brexit. Rudd rebuked Jacob Rees-Mogg for his suspicions of how civil servants in the Treasury are reporting their figures. The Home Secretary was confident about the prospects for Britain after Brexit saying the country will ‘absolutely grow’ once the UK has left the EU.

Asked a question about possibly becoming chancellor under Boris Johnson, if he were to become PM, she responded by saying the question was ‘too difficult to answer on a number of levels’ and so passed on answering.

Gerry Adams made what will be his last appearance on Marr in his position as President of Sinn Féin. He expressed a view that the current lack of government in Northern Ireland ‘could be solved by tomorrow’. Adams also gave a warning to Theresa May that her deal with the DUP will ‘end in tears’ once things hit a rocky patch.

He was also asked why he never joined the IRA; his answer was that he was very active in Sinn Féin and despite never joining, he never distanced himself from them. Adams did say that he wished nobody had been harmed in the conflict. He also made clear his view that Brexit will be a disaster for the people of Ireland as the UK Government is unclear on what they want to do. ‘Outstanding’ was the word the Sinn Féin leader chose to use when describing Jeremy Corbyn and said he would like to see him as the next PM.

Vince Cable and Claire Kober were the other guests of note on Marr’s show. The former began positively, highlighting the Lib Dems’ unity on the issue of Brexit. Cable also showed how things can change in a year by pointing out he was not even an elected politician this time last year. Sir Vince believes the Government is making a mess of negotiations with the EU, and he is continuing to press Labour to back the position of a vote on the final deal.

Former leader of Haringey Council, Claire Kober, has had a tumultuous week and she cited the abuse she received in her position and put it down to her being a woman. Kober said that she had not raised any complaints with the Labour NEC due to her lack of faith in it.

A number of pro-Brexit MPs have been voicing concerns that the civil service may not be acting in a completely neutral manner when approaching Brexit, so a former head of the civil service went on Peston on Sunday to say, ‘If you’re selling snake oil, you don’t like the idea of experts testing your product’. Lord O’Donnell did not have any time for the accusations against civil servants, saying they appear to be measures to ‘shoot the messenger’. His wider point was that people like to promote the impartiality of the Civil Service when it is convenient for them.

Shadow Attorney General, Baroness Chakrabarti, used part of her interview with Peston to respond to Claire Kober’s remarks on The Andrew Marr show. Chakrabarti said Labour must do more to get sexism and antisemitism out of the Party but said any complaint made to Labour’s NEC will be investigated. Chakrabarti also called for BBC Director General, Tony Hall, to do more on the issue of equal pay.

Housing Minister, Dominic Raab also appeared on Peston and confidently claimed that the PM would not support the UK remaining in a customs union – contradicting remarks made by Rudd. Raab did support Rudd’s remarks relating to unity in the party. Stella Creasy was another guest on Peston who spoke on the Claire Kober situation calling for Labour to act and sharing the difficulty she has experienced when it comes to making complaints.

Check out the dedicated Canvas of political coverage by clicking here or on the image below.

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Peston Marr

Politics on Sunday – 28 January 2018

The leader of the opposition was the big guest on a day that seemed to be all about Piers Morgan and that interview. 

With the exception of Jeremy Corbyn, Sunday’s political shows seemed to lack star power – it was as though high-profile politicians knew they did not have the clout to match up to Piers Morgan interviewing Donald Trump later that day. As such, the guests across all the morning shows mainly find themselves on the fringes of politics.

In his appearance on Andrew Marr, the Labour leader unveiled a new housing police aimed at reducing the number of homeless people. A Labour government would purchase 8,000 homes and make them available to people with a history of homelessness through housing associations. More controversially, Corbyn said his Labour government would allow local authorities to take homes that are being kept empty; he finds the idea of building luxury blocks and keeping them empty ‘grossly insulting’.

Corbyn provided clarity on what Labour does not want from Brexit without saying what they do want. ‘The remain ship has sailed’ was the remark Corbyn made as he ruled out Labour calling for a second referendum. The Norway model was also rejected with Corbyn saying he would want Britain to be able to be an important player in negotiating trade deals in the future. This referred to the fact that while Norway is in the single market, they are unable to influence it.

Andrew Marr spends too much of his time reading the Daily Mail, was an accusation Corbyn made against the presenter when he was told that he has not condemned the actions of the Government of Iran. Corbyn went on to say that the Labour Party has and will continue to take a tough stance on those that abuse human rights.

Minister for the Cabinet Office, David Lidington was one of the other guests on The Andrew Marr Show and he faced a similar line of questioning. Lidington’s presence was particular interesting in light of Philip Hammond’s remarks saying he wants the UK and EU to be as close as possible post-Brexit. Lidington said Hammond ‘is fully onboard’ with the plans of the government and the government wants future trade with the EU to be as free as possible. When asked about homelessness, Lidington did not present as many fresh ideas as Corbyn saying the Government is taking the issue seriously and investing in prevention.

Leader of the House of Lords, Baroness Natalie Evans, appeared on Peston and Sunday and Sunday with Paterson, expressing confidence that the EU Withdrawal Bill would pass through the Lords unscathed. Evans also suggested Jacob Rees-Mogg’s fear that BRINO (Brexit in name only) will happen, did not have any real substance to them. Rees-Mogg was also a guest on Peston and could not resist letting it be known that his view on Philip Hammond should not be expressed in public. Nadine Dorries was not as diplomatic as Rees-Mogg, she said he ‘needs to go’ when asked about Hammond’s future.

Check out the dedicated Canvas of political coverage by clicking here or on the image below.

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Politics on Sunday – 14 January 2018

Sunday marked the 2018 return of all the usual political shows, which meant there was a plethora of guests being interviewed.

Alongside new Chair of the Conservative Party, Brandon Lewis and Shadow Foreign Secretary, Emily Thornberry, Andrew Marr had guests coming from Holyrood and Hollywood with First Minister of Scotland and leader of the SNP, Nicola Sturgeon and Meryl Streep, Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks.

Emily Thornberry did very little to convince Donald Trump he would be welcome in the UK, labelling him ‘a racist’ and an ‘asteroid of awfulness’. The Shadow Foreign Secretary did not stop there, saying Theresa May had humiliated the Queen by inviting the President to the UK. Marr pulled Thornberry up on her remarks by saying this attitude could lead to it being harder for the UK to secure a trade deal with the US, but Thornberry responded by saying trade deals are complex processes and it would not depend on the pen of Donald Trump.

Marr finished the exchange by saying we do not know how long Trump will be around, it could be three more years or it could be until 2024, and greater diplomacy could go a long way. Thornberry also spoke on John Worboys, stating he is a ‘threat to women’, and previous rape cases have not been prosecuted properly despite improvements being made.

Brandon Lewis took a different approach to Thornberry by saying it was right for Trump to be invited and discussed how Britain should pursue its relationship with the US, declaring it a ‘very important relationship’. Lewis did condemn Trump’s alleged remarks where he is accused of referring to African Nations as ‘shithole’ countries.

Lewis was asked about abuse of politicians online, and he pledged a tough stance from the Conservatives, saying any candidates who personally abuse politicians online will be suspended. Marr asked Lewis whether he would apologise for the abuse Diane Abbott receives from Conservatives; he didn’t apologise but pledged the strong stance. Marr then moved onto questioning how the online presence of the Conservatives compares to that of the Labour Party who are generally perceived as being better. Lewis said the Conservatives will aim to get better in a respectful manner.

Marr also called the reaction to this tweet from the Tories about banning credit card charges, ‘slightly embarrassing’ as it showed the Conservatives taking credit for EU legislation. Lewis also spoke on the Worboys case letting us know he understands the outrage and how the Justice Secretary will be doing all he can to make sure Worboys remains behind bars.

Sturgeon on Brexit
The First Minister of Scotland was given a very different line of questioning, mainly focusing on how Brexit will impact Scotland. Sturgeon put forward her view that staying in the single market and the customs union would be the least harmful option. When asked whether she accepts that Scotland will be leaving the EU, Sturgeon said she wants an alternative and for the least damaging scenario to be the one that is followed. Marr questioned Sturgeon on whether the Scottish people are actively interested in Scotland becoming an independent country as it does not affect their day-to-day lives. Sturgeon argued back saying this is a misconception people have been making for her entire political life. She said it is not a ‘constitutional abstraction’ as independence is linked to the economy and living standards.

Robert Peston’s headline guests were Culture Secretary, Matt Hancock and Jeremy Corbyn. Hancock suggested the amendments made by the House of Lords last week on Leveson and press regulation could be the beginning of the end for democracy. Hancock was then asked about pay at the BBC and his remarks that men are being paid too much at the broadcaster. When Peston suggested this may just be an operation of the market the BBC operates in, Hancock rejected this by saying the BBC has a ‘special responsibility’ to act on equal pay due to the licence fee. Hancock went on to say he will be having discussions with the Director General of the BBC in the next few weeks about pay for stars. Like Lewis and Thornberry on Marr, Hancock was asked about John Worboys and said it is a positive step that the Ministry of Justice will be considering this case after questions were raised over the process.

Corbyn on Trump
Jeremy Corbyn let Peston know he was not disappointed by Donald Trump cancelling his visit to the UK but took a more measured view than Thornberry by saying he will eventually come. He faced questions on the Labour Party’s position on Brexit, where Corbyn made it clear the Party is not calling for a second referendum on the terms of the UK’s Brexit deal but instead a meaningful vote in Parliament. Peston noted that Corbyn was speaking in the present tense so he was not ruling out changing this position later. The Labour leader took issue with remarks Nicola Sturgeon (and some of his backbenchers) have been making by calling for the UK to join the single market, as for him, leaving the EU means leaving the single market.

Other points of note from Sunday’s shows were Chuka Umunna on Sunday with Niall Paterson, claiming the remarks made by Corbyn were wrong. More disagreement in the Labour Party could be seen when Barry Gardiner told Sunday Politics that he would not have used the same language John McDonnell used to describe Esther McVey after a video emerged of him quoting an activist who said she should be ‘lynched’.

UKIP Chairman, Paul Oakden also told the BBC that party leader Henry Bolton would have to make some tough decisions to make.

Check out our Canvas from Sunday’s political shows and learn how to make your own here.


Politics on Sunday – 7 January 2018

Did you miss Theresa May’s big interview from Sunday’s Andrew Marr show?

Andrew Marr was the only Sunday political show host to return from their festive break this week and his show featured a lengthy interview with Theresa May. With a cabinet reshuffle pending and issues surrounding the NHS, train fares, Brexit and foxhunting all in the news, it was a chance to see where May’s mind is.

A key moment of the conversation came when Marr challenged May over the state of the NHS. Marr chose to highlight the case of a pensioner in Essex who died after she waited close to four hours after calling the emergency services for chest pains she was experiencing. Marr, who suffered a stroke five years ago, said that if he had to wait a similar amount of time he would not be interviewing the PM as he would be dead. May responded by defending the NHS but saying there is room for improvement.

May defended the rise in rail fares by saying that investment in improvements and infrastructure is needed due to the increased use of the railways. The East Coast line that Andrew Adonis criticised in his resignation from the National Infrastructure Commission was raised by Marr, he wanted to know whether the taxpayer will get the money owed by the companies involved. May responded to this questioning by saying Virgin and Stagecoach are paying money to the Government.

Brexit did not take up a large part of the interview and when it was mentioned, May was clear with what she expected to happen. She expects an agreement on the transition by the end of March and Parliament to get its vote on the final deal by the end of the year. The PM has gone back on a manifesto promise to hold a vote on the Hunting Act (foxhunting), the reasoning she gave for this being the public have sent a clear message they are not in favour of it.

May also had to deal with questions regarding Donald Trump and Toby Young. May said she views Trump as making the decisions in the best interest of the United States, and confirmed Trump will be coming to this country. May revealed she was not aware of the remarks Toby Young had made in the past until recently and she was not impressed by them. May said she believes Young is qualified to do the job.

Check out the dedicated Canvas of political coverage by clicking here or on the image below.

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politics on sunday

7 PR New Year’s Resolutions

Morning too dark? Feeling bloated? Groggy head? Welcome to 2018! Today is the first day back in the office for a lot of the country so now is the perfect time to make your professional New Year’s resolutions. And because it’s your first day back, we’ve done all the hard work for you.

7 New Year’s Resolutions for the public relations professional:

1. Make new friends…
2018 is a brand new year and you’ve got the chance to make new friends and find new ways of reaching your audience. If you’re stuck in a cycle of the same old influencers for your outreach, now is the time to reach newbies – there’s always more relevant influencers than you think. And if you’re struggling to find those people, you obviously aren’t using the Vuelio Influencer Database.

2. …and stay in touch with old friends
Making new friends doesn’t mean you have to forgot your old friends. Good relationships need nurturing, give your influencers a little bit of TLC in 2018 – wish those journalists, broadcasters and bloggers ‘Happy New Year’ and make it clear you’re available when they need you.

3. Adopt a healthy balanced diet
Instagram is great! It’s a great way to reach millennials and spread brand awareness. But is it great for links and tangible ROI? That’s fine, it’s what we use Twitter for! But is your entire target market on Twitter? That’s why we use magazines, most of your audience read them – but your client asked you to do something new and innovative… so an experiential event is in order!

Don’t use one channel to reach your audience, take advantage of all the routes that now exist in a healthy, balanced way.

4. Lose the flab
You’re a professional storyteller, not a salesperson. You don’t need to communicate your product or service by describing it as the most amazing, incredible idea since sliced bread! Be innovative and use your creativity – that’s why you went into PR in the first place.

5. Be more organised
Not sure who is talking to which stakeholder? How’s that line of enquiry going? Did someone get back to that member of the public? No one likes to be caught out and a little organisation can go a long way. Vuelio Stakeholder Management can track what’s happening with all stakeholder interactions in your organisation so you know what’s been said, when.

6. Stop being boring
Another PowerPoint? Is that really the best way to tell your company, colleagues and the board how awesome you are? Investors don’t want to sit through endless slides of static clippings, and let’s be honest – neither do you! 2018 is the year that visually attractive, interactive displays are used to share content and media coverage – check out this Canvas from the Vuelio Blog Awards to see what we mean, then find out how to make your own Canvas here.

7. Don’t be lazy
It can’t be said enough in these Resolutions. You’re here because you’re creative – so be creative! The year of 2017 is over, leave the concepts and ideas that made it great behind you, and focus on 2018. It may take some time to find the next big thing, but the UK PR industry is incredible – so that next idea could come from anyone, including you.

Politics on Sunday – 17 December 2017

Did you miss the political coverage from Sunday’s political programmes and news?

After last week’s dramatic vote on Brexit, attention has turned to Labour’s vision of post-Brexit Britain. Corbyn has stayed relatively quiet on this front recently, capitalising on divisions in the Tory party and largely letting them unravel themselves.

But on Sunday, Diane Abbott, Tom Watson and Richard Burgon all appeared to back different approaches – Abbott claiming that Labour doesn’t support a second referendum, Watson ruling nothing out and Burgon saying the party could see a role for the European Court of Justice after the Brexit transition period.

Divisions were also clear to see between Conservative MPs Nadine Dorris and Ken Clarke – the former is an outspoken critic of rebel Tory MPs, while Clarke is an outspoken critic of Brexit. He dismissed the idea that voting in favour of Dominic Grieve’s amendment had made a Corbyn-led Government any more likely.

Check out the dedicated Canvas of political coverage by clicking here or on the image below. Want to make your own canvas? Find out how

politics on sunday

PR master

7 tips to become a PR Jedi Master

Sick of hearing that public relations is the ‘dark side’? Chances are you’re already a PR Jedi but we’re here to guide you to the next level so you can become a Master of the light side. 

*And don’t worry, no ‘The Last Jedi’ spoilers.*

A Jedi is selfless, doesn’t show emotion and stays in control for the good of others. A Jedi never uses their lightsaber to attack.

The dark side is about emotion over control, reacting with your heart rather than your head and attacking for your own needs. Which may sound like some industries, but not the PR industry.

It’s difficult to see in what way a PR pro isn’t already a Jedi; they manage reputations on behalf of others, always attempting to stay calm in order to maintain control in any situation. Their output is not determined by emotional responses but carefully considered to remain professional. And if the pen is mightier than the lightsaber, a PR uses theirs in defence of the business or brand they represent – and never to attack others.

Congratulations young Padawan – you’ve already attained Jedi status. But now it’s time to go one step further; become a Master with these simple tips:

1. Be patient
It takes time and hard work to become a Master, no one gets there overnight. It may feel like you’re brimming with incredible ideas that senior staff – the Masters – don’t understand the significance of. Be patient, they have the full picture and the final say; keep working hard and understand your current place in the order, and you’ll get there.

2. Control your emotion
A PR pro knows they need to remain clearheaded to be an effective communicator, and while ‘there’s no such thing as bad publicity’ may work for some, it’s better not to get into petty squabbles with irate customers or cheeky competitors. Keep your cool to emerge victorious.

3. Gather all the facts
If an emotional reaction is instinctive and immediate, the opposite is considered and in possession of all the facts. Sometimes, not taking action seems like a mistake but caution is a PR’s ally when the story is generally told by others (your influencers).

4. Learn how to defend yourself
Jedi do not attack others but they definitely defend themselves. Firefighting is a bigger or smaller part of a PR pro’s job depending on the nature of the business being represented, but the need to defence can arise for any PR at any time. If something unexpected happens you need to know how to manage it, using all your Jedi powers.

5. Complete the story
A dark lord acts and moves on, not stopping to consider the outcome of their actions (or whether the rebel alliance are now forming a counter attack). A Jedi Master takes time to assess what’s been before and tells that story to the Jedi Council so they can plan what’s next. Use Vuelio Monitoring, Reporting and Canvas to make sure you can see the full picture of your work and easily deliver it to your own Jedi Council (the board).

6. Do or do not. There is no try.
Don’t spend forever planning and thinking about something. Maybe you’ve got the perfect campaign pitch, you’re desperate to start using video or you want to build relationships with the biggest bloggers in the business. A PR Master follows through on their plans, and doesn’t let the fear of failure take over. After all, as our friend Yoda says: ‘Fear is the path to the dark side…fear leads to anger…anger leads to hate…hate leads to suffering.’

7. Use the force


Good luck young Padawan.

How to create an award-winning campaign

What do fly-tipping, comedians and man’s best friend have in common?

They all featured in Battersea Dogs & Cats Home’s award-winning public affairs campaign to toughen animal cruelty sentences.

In our exclusive webinar, we speak to Michael Webb, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, about the work that went into the award-winning ‘Five-Year Sentences for Animal Cruelty’ campaign and how the charity made it a success.

Watch the webinar and learn:

  • How to influence government policy
  • How to make charitable messages resonate with the public
  • What it takes to create an award-winning campaign


How to create an Award-Winning Campaign


Politics on Sunday – 11 December 2017

Missed any of the political coverage from the weekend?

It’s been another busy week in politics, with the first phase of the Brexit deal squared off after last minute negotiations. Brexit secretary David Davis and his counterpart Kier Starmer both appeared on the Andrew Marr show, with Davis saying that he would be seeking an ‘overarching trade deal’ that he described as a ‘Canada plus plus plus’ model.

In the wake of Donald Trump’s intervention in Jerusalem, the Israeli ambassador to the UK, Mark Regev, appeared on Paterson, arguing that it was a ‘just decision’ that would bring peace to the region.

Meanwhile Shadow Attorney General Shami Chakrabarti told Paterson she was ‘disappointed’ with Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson, who said in an interview with the Daily Mail that anyone who fought with the so-called Islamic State should be killed.

Check out our dedicated Canvas of political coverage by clicking here or on the image below. Want to make your own canvas? Learn more


political programmes Sunday 11 December

Public relations santa

Are you on PR Santa’s Naughty or Nice list?

As we approach the end of the year, have you been a good PR professional or will Father Christmas be filling your social media stocking with emoji coal?

There are certain PR bad habits that are easy to fall into, and now is the perfect time to identify whether you’re guilty of anything from the naughty list. After all, Christmas is just around the corner and it’s better to get into good habits now, before they have to become New Year’s resolutions.

PR Santa’s Naughty List:

  1. Mr Mass Emails
    Mr Mass Emails doesn’t have time to build relationships and he knows if he blasts enough contacts someone might run his story. This is lazy PR and only contributes to the bad reputation the industry can have among journalists. There’s a reason the Vuelio Media Database lists detailed biographies of influencers and what they’re actually after – use them.
  2. Mrs Follow Up
    There’s nothing wrong with talking to a journalist about a story or campaign you’re working on, but wait until they’ve reacted to your initial press release. Mrs Follow Up is straight on the phone to check her email has been received while attempting to push the journalist to publish. Of course, if the right relationships were in place, this wouldn’t be necessary.
  3. Miss Single Metric
    How are you measuring your, or your client’s, success? Miss Single Metric only choose one thing, sometimes it’s ‘reach’ and sometimes it’s AVE – either way she doesn’t give anyone the full picture because she believes that if the big numbers look good, then all the stakeholders will be happy. Vuelio Media Analysis allows you to present a multitude of measurements so you can prove your success how it matters most; to the people that care.
  4. Miss But Other Bloggers Work For Free
    Bloggers and social media influencers aren’t like journalists; for the professionals, this is their livelihood and they don’t get paid unless you pay them. Sure, some will work for free, but if you’re trying to work with the best, expect to pay. And don’t argue if they suggest you cough up – these guys are trying to make a living and deserve to be recompensed.
  5. Mr I Missed That Crisis
    If your monitoring isn’t up to scratch, across all channels, how are you supposed to manage crises and fire fight before the story gets out of control? Mr I Missed That Crisis is old school and only monitors print. As he doesn’t have a social media monitoring plan, he didn’t realise his brand was fast approaching headline news for all the wrong reasons.

PR Santa’s Nice List:

  1. Mrs I Make Time For You
    Journalists, editors, bloggers, clients and management are all made to feel just a little bit special by Mrs I Make Time For You. She knows that relationships, both internal and external, take time to build but she also knows that every second is worth it.
  2. Mr Deadline
    PR is busy, fast-paced and soon is never soon enough. Mr Deadline knows how to prioritise the deadlines of all his stakeholders using Vuelio Stakeholder Management. So, if it’s a media enquiry about a big story or a member of the public needing to be contacted, Mr Deadline knows which member of the team is dealing with it and when – all in one place.
  3. Miss Collaboration
    Miss Collaboration works with influencers. She knows which ones are best able to reach her audience and she even has budget to get them on board. But she doesn’t stop there – Miss Collaboration gets creative ideas from the influencers to ensure each iteration of the campaign is unique. She also pushes the bloggers to work hard and provide analytical data, which she can use to prove the campaign’s success.
  4. Miss Presentation
    Miss Presentation used to put PowerPoint presentations together after a campaign, and sometimes managed to fit more than four tweets on each slide. These were the dark days. Now, Miss Presentation uses Vuelio Canvas to gather all the relevant tweets, Facebook posts, Instagram pics, news stories, graphs and charts, so she can present everything beautifully – on one page and with one, shareable link.
  5. Mrs Shares
    Mrs Shares loves reading the PR Club post on the Vuelio Blog, and shares it on Twitter.


What bad habits are you going to drop this year, and what do you think PR pros should champion for 2018? Let us know in the comments below.