Politics Without The Boring Bits

Politics Without The Boring Bits

By The Times

Join Matt Chorley as he guides you through what really matters in British politics. Formerly the Red Box podcast, he brings together the best interviews, smartest analysis and funniest panel discussions from his Times Radio show, Politics Without The Boring Bits.


Listen live on DAB, smart speaker or app 10am-1pm Monday to Friday. If you like what you hear, then read more at http://www.thetimes.co.uk/


Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.


Episodes

Why Politics Is Broken

Public trust and confidence in government and the people who govern us is at a record low. Polling expert Sir John Curtice tells Matt what's behind the worrying decline, and a raft of big thinkers explain what can be done to fix it.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss Rishi Sunak growing up without Sky TV, a young, inexperienced parliament, and whether climbing walls should be in the office.The Columnists (02:55)Why Politics Is Broken (22:59) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/06/2446m 4s

The Secret Life Of A Minister

As dozens of politicians prepare to enter high office for the first time, Matt speaks to former top civil servants Sir Alex Allan and Alun Evans, alongside former ministers Dame Margaret Beckett and Sir Alan Duncan, to find out what pitfalls they need to avoid when they're given the keys to government.Plus: The Times' Political Editor Steve Swinford explains what we learnt from Rishi Sunak's Conservative manifesto launch. Conservative Manifesto (03:17)The Secret Life Of A Minister (09:03) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/06/2433m 16s

The Exit Interviews: Brandon Lewis

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics. Conservative Brandon Lewis reflects on his time in Parliament, explains why he thinks Rishi Sunak is 'managerial', and why he hosted a radio show with Eric Pickles.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and James Mariott discuss the march of the right in European elections, and Labour's tangle over plans for VAT on private schools. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/06/241h

Dominic Sandbrook's Favourite Elections

Times Columnist and The Rest Is History co-host Dominic Sandbrook joins Matt to talk about how this election campaign compares to others throughout the post-war period, and how our current crop of politicians will be remembered in the history books.Plus: Former Number 10 adviser Cleo Watson tells Matt about her latest political 'bonkbuster', Cleavage, and 'Liz Truss' reads out some of the naughtiest bits.Cleo Watson: (03:30)Dominic Sandbrook: (12:30) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/06/2440m 52s

Focus Group: Donald Trump Of The UK

It's the Times Radio Focus Group, where Matt steps outside the Westminster bubble to hear the opinions of ordinary voters.This month it's a group who all voted for the Conservatives in 2019 but are now thinking of backing Reform UK. They tell Matt and James Johnson of J.L. Partners that Nigel Farage is the "Donald Trump of the UK" and their advice to Rishi Sunak is to "pack your suitcase". Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Tom McTague discuss whether lying is new in politics.Columnists (02.43)Focus Group (21:22) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/06/2446m 37s

The Debate Unpacked: Absolute Garbage

Matt is joined by Tim Shipman to unpack the action from Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer's first head-to-head debate of the campaign. Starmer talks up his father's toolmaking career while Sunak accuses Labour of planning a £2,000 tax on working households.Plus: Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether there's more to the Lib Dems than meets the eye, misogyny in Young Farmers groups and whether Robert can make it as a London tour guide.Columnists (03:28)The Debate Unpacked (23:41) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/06/2451m 5s

The Rest Is Rory Stewart

Would former Tory minister Rory Stewart make another foray into politics? The podcaster, author and ex-diplomat tells Matt how he'd fix Westminster, why he'd much rather be PM than host a podcast, and what keeps him up at night.Plus: Comedian Al Murray takes us back to 2015, when he ran against Nigel Farage in Thanet South. Al Murray vs Nigel Farage: (5:10)The Big Thing - Rory Stewart: (8:50) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/06/2435m 21s

The Exit Interviews: Robert Halfon

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Former minister Robert Halfon tells Matt why he thinks all MPs should have round-the-clock personal security, and which Lord of the Rings character Rishi Sunak resembles.Plus: Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss whether the Conservatives can benefit from the culture wars, how an international organised crime gang stole millions from the British taxpayer, and whether the next prime minister should take an oath of office.Columnist Panel (04:18)The Exit Interview (23:41) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/06/2454m 37s

Election First Impressions

As the election campaign kicks off in earnest, comedians Lewis Macleod, Nerine Skinner and Rory Bremner join Matt for their best political impressions, and listeners send in their own.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and India Knight discuss Jeremy Corbyn running as an independent, Rishi Sunak's shelved smoking bill, and politicians using football to appear more relatable.The Columnists: (03:00)The Big Thing: (23:10) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/05/2449m 1s

The Farage-Free Election

Nigel Farage's decision not to stand for Reform UK is the first major story of the election campaign. Manveen Rana and Trevor Philips from The Times discuss how that might change Conservative fortunes.Plus: What happened the last time Britain went to the polls in July? And two seasoned campaigners tell some of their worst war stories from the battle bus. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/05/2431m 32s

PMQs: Second Half of the Year?

The last PMQs before the Whitsun recess is overshadowed by the speculation of a snap general election being called. Matt is joined by political journalists Kevin Maguire, Andrew Pierce, Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit to unpack all the action from the Commons.Plus: In the wake of Conservative MP Craig Mackinlay returning to Parliament after having his arms and legs amputated as a result of sepsis, Matt speaks to the founder and chief executive of the Sepsis Trust.PMQs: (01:00)Best of the rest: (31:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/05/2446m 51s

Inside Keir Starmer's Brain

Who is Morgan McSweeney and why is he so important to the Starmer team? Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire and Tom McTague discussing the role of the Labour leader's chief strategist.Plus, as Gareth Southgate reveals who makes his squad for this summer's Euros he inevitably faces a backlash for leaving out certain players. It's not an easy gig being England manager - but is it harder than being Prime Minister? Matt hears out both sides of the arguments for who has the harder job. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/05/2437m 37s

The Exit Interviews: Sir Bob Neil

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative Sir Bob Neil reflects on the challenges of the job by saying he wouldn't recommend it to his younger self, why he feels it was good Liz Truss' time in office was so short, and his hopes for the future of the Tory party.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Iain Martin discuss whether the neverending group of public inquiries are proving value-for-money, whether our politicians are taking defence spending seriously enough and whether Jeremy Corbyn will run against Labour in the next election.Columnists (04:02)The Exit Interviews (26:36) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/05/2451m 37s

Secrets Of The Whips Office

How do you maintain discipline in a government that's on the ropes after a long period in office, with a prime minister behind in the polls and beset by defections?Former Tory MP and whip Gyles Brandreth charted the downfall of the Major government in his indiscreet diaries, and joins Matt to discuss the striking similarities between then and now.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Mariott discuss whether the nation is ready for what is shaping up to be a long election campaign, if tech bros make bad philosophers, and if TV shows work on stage.Columnists (03:04)Gyles Brandreth (24:50) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/05/2450m 15s

How To Hold The Line

Heading into an election campaign, politicians can be asked to explain their party's position on absolutely anything - but it's not always easy to remember exactly what that is. Matt is joined by a panel of former spin doctors to find out how MPs are given the lines to take, and what happens when they forget them.Plus: Manveen Rana and Matt Deegan discuss whether Keir Starmer's six pledges have made Labour's policy positions clear, whether the covid inquiry is worth £300k per day, and why radio's popularity is so enduring.Columnist Panel (03:59)  How To Hold The Line (24:45) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/05/2450m 25s

PMQs: Goodnight Sweetheart

Never mind prisons running out of space or rainbow lanyards - PMQs gets derailed by Nicholas Lyndhurst. Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit to unpack all the action from the Commons.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss what Rishi Sunak should do about Nigel Farage, living next door to celebrities, and whether linen clothes, the Northern Lights, and strawberry jam are overrated.The Columnists: (02:32)PMQs: (24:22) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/05/241h 4m

Why Is Food Still So Expensive?

As Rishi Sunak hosts farmers at Number 10 to offer his support to British agriculture, the sector is struggling with ever higher costs and extreme weather. Food Minister Mark Spencer explains why the wet winter could lead to food prices going up again.Plus: Punch and Judy are cleaning up their act, but will that bring an end to "Punch and Judy politics"? The Politics Of Punch And Judy Politics (04:53)Why Is Food Still So Expensive? (13:03) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/05/2435m 47s

The Exit Interviews: Edward Timpson

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative Edward Timpson remembers arriving in Westminster after a by-election circus where he was characterised as a Tory toff, his achievements as a minister, and he explains why he never went into the family business.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss whether other potential defectors will be put off following the example of Natalie Elphicke, the link between obesity and sick-not culture, and whether we're too quick to blame technology for our own failings. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/05/241h 2m

The Prime Minister That Never Was

It's been 30 years since the sudden death of Labour leader John Smith, a man many expected would go on to be prime minister. Matt hears from some of the people who knew him best, including the recollections of Tony Blair, Margaret Beckett and Neil Kinnock.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Dominic Cumming's idea for a new political party, James' trip to a pro-Palestinian protest, and the ethics behind the hit show Baby Reindeer.Columnists (02:48)The Prime Minister That Never Was (23:19) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/05/2448m 58s

Focus Group: It's Like He's Evil

It's the Times Radio Focus Group, where Matt steps outside the Westminster bubble to hear the opinions of ordinary voters. This month it's a group who all voted for the Conservatives in 2019 but now want to vote for Labour or haven't made their mind up. They tell Matt and James Johnson of J.L. Partners that Rishi Sunak's trainers look "stupid" and Keir Starmer makes their "skin crawl". PLUS: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss whether Keir Starmer made a mistake when he welcomed the defecting MP Natalie Elphicke, and whether Matthew's manifesto for the next government will work.Columnists (03:33)Focus Group (22:29) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/05/2449m 37s

PMQs: Dover And Out

Matt Chorley and Patrick Maguire pause and unpack the action from the Commons chamber, as Tory MP for Dover Natalie Elphicke defects to Labour moments before PMQs.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss never-ending Tory plots, whether the police do enough to tackle stalking, and whether cycling can be cool.Columnists: (01:24) PMQs Unpacked: (23:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/05/241h 6m

Did Liz Truss Really Screw Your Mortgage?

Mortgage costs went up after Liz Truss' mini-budget in 2022, and are yet to come down. As new analysis of the local election results suggests that support for the Conservatives dropped more sharply in areas where there are more mortgage holders, Matt tries to get to the bottom of who is really to blame.PLUS: As the Liberal Democrats table another motion of no-confidence in the government to try and trigger an election, Matt asks The Times' Tom Peck - what's the point? No-confidence (08:31)Did Liz Truss Really Screw Your Mortgage? (14:52) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/05/2440m 58s

The Exit Interview: Craig Whittaker

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics. Conservative MP Craig Whittaker tells Matt about being deputy chief whip in Liz Truss's government, what it's been like having stalkers, and the ‘rot’ inside the Tory party.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the return of the 'coalition of chaos' and whether student protests are effective.The Columnists: (01:50)The Big Thing: (20:22) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/05/2455m 34s

Losing Is Becoming A Habit

After a difficult set of election results for the Conservatives, including a by-election defeat in Blackpool South, Matt looks at what they mean for the parties and for Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer as elections expert John Curtice says that losing is the government's "habit".Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss why neither of them voted, whether they sympathise with Boris Johnson who forgot his ID at the polling booth, and what it means for politics that young people are becoming more religious. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/05/2436m 34s

Hello From The Other Side: Thatcher's Rise To Power

In half a century just three opposition leaders have become prime minister. 45 years after Margaret Thatcher arrived in Downing Street, Matt hears from the people who knew her best - including Conservative colleagues Ken Clarke, Jonathan Aitken, and David Howell, aide turned author Michael Dobbs, her biographer Charles Moore, and her daughter Carol Thatcher.Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss the SNP's leadership struggles, is noise in the Commons a good thing, and whether you should trust attractive politicians. The Columnists: (01:00)The Big Thing: (22:27) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/05/2448m 4s

PMQs: Stop Banging The Furniture

Tim Shipman and Kait Borsay join Matt Chorley to pause and unpack the action from the Commons chamber as Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak clash over pensions and how to fund them, and one Tory gets a ticking-off from the Speaker.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the violence on American University campuses, whether sports stars make good politicians and the policing of domestic violence. Columnists (02:30)PMQs Unpacked (23:05) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/05/241h 6m

Inside The Plot To Bring Down Sunak

For months a group of Tory plotters have been saying that the local elections will be pivotal to their efforts to remove Rishi Sunak from office. So as the moment of truth nears, can the plot succeed, or are the plotters themselves divided?Plus: After an MSP accidentally (and briefly) enters the race to replace Humza Yousaf, we look at the shotest ever leadership campaigns.Short Leadership Campaigns: (05:06)The Big Thing: (12:25) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/04/2436m 55s

The Exit Interviews: Caroline Lucas

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Caroline Lucas - the only Green MP - tells Matt about her reasons for standing down and what's wrong with Westminster - including MPs cowering in the toilet to hide from their party whips.Plus: As Humza Yousaf resigns, Times Scottish Political Editor Kieran Andrews tells us where the SNP goes next. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/04/2456m 9s

Three-Way Trump-Off

The impressionists are back - Jon Culshaw, Rory Bremner and Nerine Skinner join Matt to talk about their favourite political impressions, before engaging in a 'three-way Trump-off'.Plus: Andrew Neil gives his take on the future of Humza Yousaf and the SNP, and Gyles Brandreth discusses Keir Starmer opening up about his childhood.Andrew Neil (03:15)The Columnists (12:00)The Impressionists (30:30) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/04/2455m 43s

Could The Tories Disappear?

Exclusive polling for the podcast shows two in 10 voters - including one in 10 of those who voted Tory in 2019 - would like the Conservative party to disappear completely, in favour of another right-wing party.How bad do things look for the Tories, and could they be facing a Canada-style electoral wipeout? Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss political nicknames, whether politicians should answer more questions with "I don't know", and why Mr Bates vs The Post Office didn't make any money.The Columnists (01:57)The Big Thing (22:10) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/04/2446m 20s

Deputy PMQs: Pint-Sized Loser

It's Deputy PMQs wile Rishi Sunak is in Germany, with Oliver Dowden facing questions from Angela Rayner. Tim Shipman and Calum Macdonald join Matt Chorley to pause and unpack the action from the Commons as the deputies trade blows over council tax, the Renter's Reform Bill and second homes. Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether we are seeing the end of the news anchor, AI in recruitment and why saying ‘back in your day’ in the office could be unlawful. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/04/241h 5m

Keir Starmer's Flagging

Keir Starmer has urged his Labour party colleagues to fly the flag with enthusiasm on St George's Day. But does everyone in Labour agree with him, and how much does patriotism matter in politics? Plus: While voters in Pennsylvania head to the polls for the state's 2024 primary election, what did Donald Trump say on the stand at the first day of the Stormy Daniels hush money trial? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/04/2439m 49s

The Exit Interviews: Mike Freer

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from their time at Westminster.Conservative MP and minister Mike Freer talks about how threats and violence led to his decision to stand down, gossiping with the late Queen Elizabeth, and helping Boris Johnson get dressed.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves react to Rishi Sunak insisting that flights to Rwanda will take off in the summer, and the row over the policing of pro-Palestinian marches in London. Columnists (03:50)The Exit Interviews: Mike Freer (18:31) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/04/2444m 23s

The Brexit Interview: Tim Shipman

Brexit was the greatest conundrum visited on the British political class in the last 80 years, according to Sunday Times Chief Political Commentator Tim Shipman.He sits down with Matt to discuss his latest book examining the years following the EU referendum, charting Theresa May's turbulent time in office and eventual downfall - and explains why it often resembled a political version of Game of Thrones.Now Way Out is available to buy at Times Bookshop and Times+ members can enjoy a 10% discount. Plus, you can enjoy great offers and recommendations from our literary critics. Explore thousands of great reads by going to timesbookshop.co.uk now.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/04/2433m 36s

Why Tories Prefer Dark Chocolate

When it comes to chocolate, why are Tories pro-dark and Labour supporters pro-milk? Matt looks at exclusive YouGov polling and dives into the politics of chocolate at a time when cocoa prices are soaring.Plus: James Marriott and Miranda Green discuss Rishi Sunak's "moral mission" to reform welfare, why young adults are being infantilised, and why Liz Truss broke with Royal protocol.Columnists: (02:45)The Big Thing: (25:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/04/2452m 3s

The Tory MP, The 3am Call And The Drunk Dog

Mark Menzies MP is being investigated by the Conservative party following claims he misused campaign funds, making a late-night call to a 78-year-old aide because he had been locked up by "bad people". The Fylde MP, who has lost the Tory whip, denies the claims.Matt discusses the remarkable details with Billy Kenber, the Times journalist who broke the story, Conservative MP John Hayes, and Times columnists Matthew Parris and Manveen Rana. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/04/2440m 20s

PMQs: Lettuce vs Lawyers

For the first time in a month, Tim Shipman joins Matt Chorley to pause and unpack the action from the Commons chamber as Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak attack each other's predecessors and tax plans.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether Rishi Sunak's good week could create some momentum for the Conservatives, meeting unfriendly politicians and whether musicians should blame the audience for a bad show.Columnists (02:47)PMQs Unpacked (25:26)  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/04/241h 7m

10 Minutes To Save Liz Truss

Liz Truss is back with her new book '10 Years To Save The West', where she recounts her brief time in Number 10. Matt brings you the best bits courtesy of impressionist Nerine Skinner and discusses the Truss legacy with former adviser Kirsty Buchanan, biographers Harry Cole and James Heale, and Truss backer Mark Littlewood.Plus: What risk does the CRINK alliance - that's China, Russia, Iran and North Korea - pose to the world order?How To Win An Election (03:44)10 Minutes To Save Liz Truss (20:22) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/04/2448m 4s

The Exit Interviews: Henry Smith

As the 100th MP announces they are leaving the Commons at the election, Matt continues his series of interviews finding out what they've learned and why they're going.Conservative MP Henry Smith talks about his disillusionment with the Conservative Party, abuse on social media, and why he's not going to persuade his children to follow him into politics.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the role Britain should play in the latest escalation in the Middle East, why employment law disputes drag on too long, and whether political adverts could be making their way onto a streaming service near you.The Exit Interview (21:45) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/04/2445m 39s

How Parties Waste Money In Elections

How much do parties spend on "big data", and how much do they still rely on old-fashioned leaflets through the door?Matt finds out how they're planning to spend record amounts this election year, and why some past campaign expenses included 'pest control' and 'emergency chair removal'.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Reform UK's woes, teenagers using social media, and supermarket orchids.What We Learned This Week (00:58) Columnists (03:15)How Parties Spend (21:26) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/04/2445m 0s

When Were The Good Old Days?

Politicians always tell us the future looks bright, but a new YouGov survey shows that most people are wistful for the good old days. Exactly when you think that was depends on your age. Matt speaks to guests including Historian Dan Snow, who feels nostalgic for the 1990s.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matt Charlton discuss Rishi Sunak's five pledges, whether artists should be asked to help promote social initiatives, and whether it's ethical for journalists to wait outside politicians' homes. Columnists (02:05)When Were The Good Old Days? (21:56) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/04/2447m 50s

Classic PMQs Unpacked: He Was The Future Once

Matt Chorley, Patrick Maguire and Andrew Gimson give the "Unpacked" treatment to a classic PMQs, with Tony Blair and David Cameron going head-to-head in December 2005 for Cameron's debut as Conservative leader. Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether children are being failed by gender care in the UK, if athletes should be awarded prize money at the Olympics, and pothole fishing.Columnists: (04:24)Classic PMQs Unpacked: (23:23) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/04/2448m 46s

Why Politics Isn't A Family Affair

Is it possible to have a happy family life and be a Member of Parliament? Matt speaks to MPs and their family members to find out about the pressures of life at Westminster, and whether more needs to be done to modernise.Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to prepare for a TV debate. How To Win An Election (03:50)Why Politics Isn't A Family Affair (16:20) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/04/2441m 29s

The Exit Interviews: Paul Scully

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative MP and former minister Paul Scully explains why he's sick of the Westminster 'psychodrama', his proudest moment working for victims of the Post Office scandal, and discusses the impact that politics can have on family life.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss the persistent questions over Angela Rayner's tax affairs, the Westminster 'honey trap' sexting scandal, and why Keir Starmer could end up with the same share of the vote as Jeremy Corbyn.The Columnists (03:50)The Exit Interviews (26:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/04/2449m 40s

Border Politics

Patrick Maguire is joined by John Elledge to discuss the borders that explain world politics - from London's Ulez to the edge of space. PLUS: Columnists India Knight and James Heale discuss whether the public will appreciate the latest National Insurance cut, what happened when James went to Nigel Farage's 60th, and whether the Liz Truss story will get its own Netflix series.Columnists (00:41)The Borders That Explain World Politics (20:53) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/04/2447m 3s

The Handover of Power

If polls are to be believed, the UK could be governed by a new political party before the end of the year - one that hasn't been in power for 14 years. What lessons can we learn from the last changing of the guard, when David Cameron's coalition entered Downing Street?Patrick speaks to Conservative and Liberal Democrat advisers who were there in 2010, and historian Phil Tinline looks at the potential lessons for Labour.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matt Frei discuss the shifting diplomatic sands over Israeli military action in Gaza, and whether Nato is still fit for purpose as it marks its 75th anniversary.Columnists (00:38)The Handover of Power (19:22) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/04/2442m 28s

Classic PMQs Unpacked: Just Another Relaunch

Patrick Maguire and Tim Shipman give the "Unpacked" treatment to a classic PMQs, with Tony Blair and William Hague going head-to-head in July 2000 over membership of the Euro and Labour's record on crime.PLUS: Pollster Robert Hayward picks out his key seats to watch at the upcoming local elections.Local Elections Lowdown (00:40)Classic PMQs Unpacked (14:28) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/04/2442m 30s

Should The Left Leave Labour?

As prominent Jeremy Corbyn allies and hundreds of councillors quit the Labour, Patrick Maguire asks how Keir Starmer pushed them to the fringes and whether the left has an electoral future outside of the party. Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein answer your questions. How To Win An Election (00:55)Should The Left Leave Labour? (09:34)  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/04/2437m 35s

Focus Group: Caretaker Of The Untruths

It's the monthly Times Radio Focus Group, and this time we head to the blue wall to find out why former Conservative voters have switched their support to the Liberal Democrats.Pollster James Johnson of J.L. Partners joins Matt to find out how much they really know about Ed Davey, who reminds them of 'cringy car salesman', and which politician is the 'caretaker of the untruths'?Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss Rishi Sunak's 'worst hospital pass', the power of politics to change society, and whether they want to watch a documentary about Theresa May. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/03/2445m 49s

Classic PMQs Unpacked: Weak, Weak, Weak

Matt Chorley and Patrick Maguire give the "Unpacked" treatment to a classic PMQs, with John Major and Tony Blair going head-to-head in January 1997, challenging each other over the leadership of their respective parties.Plus: Columnists Robert Crompton and Jane Merrick discuss a potential Labour government's nightmare in-tray, whether school bullies prosper, and why Alan Titchmarsh had his trousers censored in North Korea.(Columnists 03:55)Classic PMQs (26:50) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/03/2458m 39s

Tim Martin: Brexit, Boris and Sticky Carpets

Matt's off to the pub... to meet Wetherspoons boss Sir Tim Martin and talk about Brexit, Boris Johnson and whether the lunchtime pint is alive and well.Then Matt hears how Steve Bray, Stop Brexit Man, has been silenced. Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to write a manifesto.How To Win Taster (01:03)Steve Bray silenced (06:30)Tim Martin (11:20) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/03/2435m 3s

The Exit Interviews: Robin Walker

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative MP Robin Walker tells Matt why growing up with an MP in the family didn't prepare him for life in Parliament, why being Brexit minister for Theresa May was such a difficult job, and joining the queue to call for Boris Johnson to resign.PLUS: Columnists Libby Purves and Sir Trevor Phillips discuss China's cyber-threat, why both parties have tied themselves in knots over key policies, and why Libby's column has upset people in Scotland.Columnist Panel (03:09)The Exit Interviews (22:58)  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/03/2449m 20s

The MPs Who Don't Exist

Our new exclusive polling shows that both Labour and the Tories have some well-known frontbench spokespeople; the bad news is that some of them don't exist. Matt explores why fake politicians can poll better than real ones.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether anyone cares if politicians have done drugs, why it's good to rub people the wrong way, and what makes political theatre worth watching.Columnists: (02:50)The Big Thing: (23:23) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/03/2449m 11s

It's Not Just The Economy, Stupid

Matt sits down with US political scientist Lynn Vavreck, author of 'The Message Matters', to find out whether the Clinton-era cliche - 'It's the economy, stupid' - really holds true.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss the Tory mood after a poll for The Times had the party at its lowest level of support since Liz Truss' mini-budget, banging tables at the 1922 committee, and whether shampoo is a scam.Columnists (03:01)It's Not Just The Economy, Stupid (21:31) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/03/2444m 33s

PMQs Unpacked: Geoff Norcott Rates The Jokes

It's the last PMQs before MPs head off for an Easter break, and comedian Geoff Norcott joins Matt Chorley, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the action from the Commons chamber. Rishi Sunak hails the latest inflation figures, while Keir Starmer describes the prime minister's Rwanda plan as a "gimmick".Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss why Labour keeps talking about Margaret Thatcher, whether Gen Z peers are a welcome addition to the House of Lords, and whether the right to roam is as straightforward as it sounds.Columnists (06:20)PMQs Unpacked (25:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/03/241h 5m

What's The One Thing Sunak Could Do?

With his party behind in the polls and some asking whether he'll survive until the autumn, what options does Rishi Sunak have to turn things around? Matt asks former leader Michael Howard and a panel of expert Tory watchers. Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss who could take over as next leader of the party.How To Win (01:21)What's The One Thing Sunak Could Do? (06:09) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/03/2429m 7s

The Exit Interviews: William Wragg

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.This week, Conservative MP William Wragg tells Matt what it's like being a serial backbench troublemaker, how government whips behave like the mafia, and why he compares Boris Johnson to Faust.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss whether Penny Mordaunt could lead the Conservative Party and whether the SNP should campaign for a 'Tory-free Scotland'.Columnists (04:49)The Exit Interviews (26:42) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/03/2451m 34s

Does The Feelgood Factor Matter?

What makes the nation feel good about itself - is it the weather, sporting success or a royal wedding? And what difference does it make to how the nation votes? Matt takes a look back through history and the polls with Elinor Goodman, Steve Richards and pollster Kelly Beaver.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Miranda Green discuss Rishi Sunak ruling out a May election, whether heft and height matter in politics, and the value of cheap flights.The Columnists: (03:00)The Big Thing: (22:15) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/03/2448m 24s

Could Cameron Join the GOATs?

Gordon Brown tried to form a "government of all the talents", giving ministerial jobs to figures from outside politics. Matt speaks to two of the original GOATs, and asks whether Keir Starmer could even keep on David Cameron as foreign secretary.PLUS: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss the government's new definition of extremism and whether £5,000 is too much to spend on a handbag.Columnist Panel (02:56)Could Cameron Join The Goats (24:20) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/03/2447m 54s

PMQs: A Racist’s Refund

Rishi Sunak struggles to deflect questions about a Tory donor's racist comments, and accuses of Keir Starmer of double standards. But have government communications descended into the kind of 'inept catastrophe' we saw during the Boris Johnson years?Matt Chorley is joined by Tim Shipman, Hugo Rifkind and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges from the Commons chamber.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the NHS puberty blocker ban, state school pupils making it in the arts, and whether Keir Starmer was right to open up about his family.Columnists (03:30)PMQs Unpacked (24:35) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/03/241h 7m

Too Easy To Sack Your MP?

It's been a decade since the introduction of recall, meaning MPs who break the rules can be kicked out of the Commons. As another recall petition opens in Blackpool South, Matt asks whether it's become too easy to remove them from the job.Plus:  A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss the impact of Lee Anderson's move to Reform UK.How To Win An Election (03:28)Total Recall (08:11) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/03/2433m 31s

The Exit Interviews: Mark Drakeford

Former Conservative deputy chairman Lee Anderson has defected to Reform UK, giving the party its first MP. Matt discusses the significance of the move with columnists Trevor Phillips and Libby Purves, and former minister Paul Scully. Plus: In the latest Exit Interview, outgoing First Minister of Wales Mark Drakeford explains why he is standing down and why he had a difficult relationship with successive Tory prime ministers.Lee Anderson joins Reform (03:13)The Exit Interview (16:30) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/03/2449m 4s

The Secrets Of Political Advertising

In the coming months you're going to see a lot more political adverts across TV, radio, and social media. But how much do we know about what really works, and what doesn't?Matt is joined by Mark Lucas, a British ad man who has made films in 80 countries, and David Brookman, professor of political science at the University of California, Berkeley.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Theresa May's decision not to stand at the next election, JK Rowling being reported to the police, and whether James can survive without a mobile phone. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/03/2451m 44s

Rachel Reeves' First Budget

If the polls are right, Rachel Reeves could be the next chancellor. But after a Budget that confirmed money is tight (and stole some of her flagship ideas), what will she be able to do in office? Matt speaks to former advisers to Keir Starmer and Alistair Darling, and Times Radio's Patrick Maguire.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss what the Budget means for the Tories, how much trouble Science Secretary Michelle Donelan is in, and how far is too far when it comes to running with your dogColumnist Panel (06:01)Rachel Reeves' First Budget (25:31) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/03/2450m 51s

The Budget: Losing A Few Pounds

Jeremy Hunt has delivered what is probably his last Budget before the general election, and as well as offering tax cuts he found time to refer to Peter Mandelson's suggestion that Keir Starmer 'shed a few pounds'.Times columnist Patrick Maguire joins Matt to look at the chancellor's offer to the electorate and to consider Labour's response.Plus: PMQs Unpacked seeks Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer trade blows over law and order.The Budget (00:50)PMQs Unpacked (15:25) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/03/2440m 15s

The Only Poll That Counts

Politicians often tell journalists "the only poll that counts is the one on election day". Professor Jane Green from the University of Oxford tells Matt why we should trust opinion polls as she takes over as head of the British Polling Council.Plus: Rishi Sunak and his wife Akshata Murty have been arguing about who stacks the dishwasher, and listen to a taster of the latest episode of How To Win An Election.How To Win An Election (01:05)Domestic Chores in the Sunak household (06:25)Jane Green (13:31) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/03/2438m 41s

The Exit Interviews: Stephen Hammond

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative MP Stephen Hammond explains why he wouldn't recommend the job to a friend, why he was kicked out of the party over Brexit, and why he had to help Boris Johnson give him the sack.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss whether the government will get any credit for cutting taxes in this week's budget, the problem of self-diagnosing neurodivergence, and what to expect from George Galloway as he returns to the Commons once again. Columnists (04:26)The Exit Interviews (24:45) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/03/2455m 25s

Inside The Downing St Handover

What really goes on behind the famous black door after an election, as one government makes way for another? Matt hears about recently-released documents lifting the lid on the transfer of power in 1997, and speaks to some of the people who were there.Plus: Columnists India Knight, James Marriott and Patrick Maguire discuss the return of George Galloway to public life, influencers releasing books, and whether we should introduce a value-for-money star rating for theatres.Columnists (02:48)Inside The Downing St Handover (22:41) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/03/2447m 29s

Focus Group: Time For Reform?

Three out of 10 Tory voters now say they're leaning toward Reform UK. Is there anything Rishi Sunak can do to bring them back? Pollster James Johnson of J.L. Partners joins Matt for the monthly Times Radio Focus Group.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss whether Rishi Sunak is right about mob rule in the UK, the culture of policing, and whether it's right for theatres to exclude non-black people.Columnists (02:45)The Big Thing (22:37) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/02/2448m 46s

PMQs: Tin-Foil Hat Brigade

Keir Starmer claims the Tories have become the 'political wing of the flat-earth society' for promoting conspiracies; Sunak says Starmer is just sniping from the sidelines. Matt Chorley, Tim Shipman, Ed Vaizey and Lara Spirit pause and unpack all the action from Westminster.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss where protests should be permitted, life lessons for Gen Z, and whether or not they'd have any 'tweakments'. Columnists: (04:00)PMQs: (23:40)  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/02/241h 9m

50 Years Of Labour Victories, But Mostly Defeats

This week in 1974 Britain went to the polls in an election that saw the Conservatives lose, but Labour fail to drum up enough enthusiasm to win a majority. Matt asks whether the next election could produce a similar result by speaking to Ann Taylor, who fought her first campaign that year, and whose career mirrors the ups and downs of the Labour Party itself.Plus:  A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to win deal with Liz Truss. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/02/2434m 39s

The Exit Interviews: Nickie Aiken

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to find out about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative MP Nickie Aitken explains why she's standing down after five years, how much Liz Truss added to her mortgage, and what it's like being the MP for MPs.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Tom McTague discuss Lee Anderson, how Nick Clegg became 'The Foreign Secretary of Facebook', and why Rishi Sunak has revived Gordon Brown's regional cabinet meetings.Columnists (04:30)The Exit Interviews (23:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/02/2453m 43s

Your Best Political Impressions

After discovering the voice of the self-service checkouts at Tesco sounds like Rishi Sunak, Matt is joined by comedians Jon Culshaw, Debra Stephenson and Rory Bremner for their best political impressions, and to rate listener's attempts. Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether protests should be banned outside MPs offices, are faux flowers naff, and why the North isn't as cool as it used to be. Columnists: (03:17)The Big Thing: (23:30) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/02/2451m 26s

Can Lindsay Hoyle Survive?

Matt is joined by columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris to weigh up the Commons speaker's chances of survival as MPs continue to call for him to go.They also discuss Matthew's recent visit to Ukraine, where he met young people terrified about being called to the front lines.Plus: Fraud is already the most common crime in England and Wales, and new technology is making it hard to spot a scam. Matt finds out how the criminals operate, and how to protect yourself and your money. He also tries his hand at scamming Times Red Box Editor Lara Spirit.Can Lindsay Hoyle Survive? (03:26)How To Stop The Scammers (22:43)  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/02/2447m 11s

PMQs: What Was The Point In That?

Keir Starmer focuses on the Post Office Horizon scandal ahead of the Commons vote on Gaza. But have the listeners come up with better questions for the prime minister?Matt Chorley, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack all the action from Westminster.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss who would want to run a public body, what NFU boss Minette Batters really thinks of politicians, and are we getting bored of by-elections?Columnists (02:20)PMQs Unpacked (17:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/02/241h 1m

The Neverending Backstory

As a new biography of Keir Starmer tells us more about the Labour leader's childhood, Matt takes a look at the importance of a backstory - does finding out more about a politician's past make a difference to how we view them now?Then comedian Joe Lycett wades into the sewage scandal for his new TV documentary, and says he’d do a better job than Rishi Sunak if he was drunk.Plus:  A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to win during a recession.How To Win An Election (01:18)Joe Lycett (05:29)Focus Group (10:23) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/02/2442m 38s

The Exit Interviews: Dehenna Davison

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Conservative MP Dehenna Davison tells Matt why starting life in Westminster in her mid-20s was a steep learning curve, how suffering with chronic migraines affected her work and why she admires Liz Truss. Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss the government's move to ban mobile phones in English schools, Alexei Navalny's courage, and whether the next election could be decided in the pub.Columnists (02:09)The Exit Interviews (16:10) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/02/2442m 12s

What Do The By-Elections Mean?

In the wake of the by-elections in Kingswood and Wellingborough, Patrick asks whether a Labour general election victory is nailed on, if Rishi Sunak can turn things around, and how serious a threat Reform UK poses to the Tories.He speaks to Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party James Daly, Labour frontbencher Liz Kendall, Reform Party Leader Richard Tice, and polling expert Professor Sir John Curtice. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/02/2431m 2s

Sturgeon's Successor

It's a year since Nicola Sturgeon's surprise resignation as First Minister rocked Scottish politics and her successor Humza Yousaf has had a difficult time filling her shoes.Joined by former First Minister Alex Salmond and the SNP's former leader in Westminster Ian Blackford, Patrick asks if Yousaf has managed to escape Sturgeon's shadow. Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss why David Cameron has been irritating Republicans in America, whether Westminster should ban the sale of alcohol, and why John Clees is a delight on Christmas Day. Sturgeon's Successor (23:04) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/02/2449m 4s

What's The Point Of PMQs?

As Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer take a break from Prime Minister's Questions during recess, Patrick asks what their weekly joust teaches us, and whether it ever truly changes the political weather. He speaks to Tom Peck from The Times and Times Radio's Jane Garvey to both deride and defend PMQs, and two former party leaders about how to make an impact from the Chamber. Plus: Columnists Robert Crampton and Hadley Freeman on how the war in Gaza is reigniting the left's antisemitism problems, the relationship test trending on TikTok, and the great washing-up bowl debate.What's The Point Of PMQs (23:42) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/02/2447m 40s

Why Are Young Men Turning Right?

There's a new divide in British politics: young men are becoming more right-wing, just as young women turn left. Patrick asks what's causing this growing political gender gap, the impact it could have on the general election and how MPs should respond to it. Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Danny Finkelstein and Polly Mackenzie answer listener's questions. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/02/2431m 32s

Why Is Keir Starmer Love Bombing Joe Biden?

Patick Maguire is back looking after the podcast this week as Matt is away for half term. Today he looks at Keir Starmer's relationship with Joe Biden to ask whether it is wise for the leader of the opposition to put all of his eggs in a Democrat basket.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss if Rishi Sunak should be worried about the crumbling rural wall, whether state schools are failing our brightest children, and how old is too old to run a country? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/02/2449m 48s

Do We Expect Too Much Of Our MPs?

With constituents asking their MP to deal with everything from arguments about hedges to parking tickets, are politicians are struggling to focus on the other part of their job - passing better laws? Matt speaks to Charles Walker and a range of other MPs about the rising levels of casework.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss President Biden's memory issues, Labour's climate U-turn, and Kemi Badenoch's 'star power'.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/02/2449m 54s

Quitting The Cabinet For Not Being Up To The Job

On Throwback Thursdays Matt speaks to the politicians of the past to find out lessons for the present.Estelle Morris was Education Secretary under Tony Blair but resigned in 2002 because she felt she wasn't up to the job. The former teacher describes swapping the classroom for the Commons, why it was bittersweet being elected for the first time during Labour's general election defeat in 1992, and the moment she knew she had to go.Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Holehouse discuss Labour's u-turn on its £28 billion pledge and Rishi Sunak's defence of making a trans joke at PMQs.Columnist Panel: (03:30)Throwback Thursdays (25:05) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/02/2444m 48s

PMQs: Of All The Weeks

Rishi Sunak attacks Keir Starmer for flip-flopping, but turns the proceedings sour with a scripted jibe about trans rights. Matt is joined by Caroline Wheeler, Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the angry exchanges from PMQs.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Hadley Freeman discuss Joe Biden's latest blunders, mindfulness in schools, and what Kemi Badenoch has in commons with Taylor Swift. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/02/241h 17m

Focus Group: None Of The Above

New polling for Times Radio shows that voters aren't enthusiastic about either Rishi Sunak or Keir Starmer. We hear from ordinary voters from across England to find out why. Matt is joined by Tom Lubbock from JL Partners to discuss the findings.Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Danny Finkelstein and Polly Mackenzie discuss the latest Tory faction; Liz Truss and the Popular Conservatives.How To Win An Election (03:30)Focus Group (10:23) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/02/2434m 32s

The Exit Interviews: Steve Brine

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics. Former Conservative minister Steve Brine tells Matt that the threats and abuse MPs face is getting worse, what happened when Labour mocked the Tories with a bus after the 2001 election, and why he thinks Liz Truss should keep quiet. Plus: Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester talk about The Times' Health Commission inquiry into the crisis facing the health and social care system, whether children should have access to social media, and a new documentary about Rishi Sunak.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/02/2456m 19s

Barmy Barometers

Can lipstick, packed lunches and pants tell us about the health of the economy? Matt is joined by The Times' Science Editor Tom Whipple to test the theories and judge whether the times we're living in are good or bad. Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether the Tories latest attack ad comparing Keir Starmer to JFK is a success, whether private schools mean it when they go woke and which MPs could make it as a telly presenter.Columnist Panel: (02:50)Barmy Barometers (19:26) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/02/2447m 34s

Europe's Turn To The Right

A wave of upheaval is happening across Europe, with hard right or Eurosceptic parties gaining traction in countries from France, to Italy, Hungary and the Czech Republic. Matt climbs aboard Chorley Airways to find out how the political landscape is changing.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss leadership lessons from Tony Blair, why being an MP is becoming increasingly dangerous, and what happens when politicians name-check members of the public.Columnist Panel (01:52)Europe's Turn To The Right (24:25) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/02/2451m 2s

PMQs: Poor Phil

Keir Starmer has met a supermarket worker called Phil who is struggling with his mortgage. Rishi Sunak says Phil will pay more in taxes under Labour. But where is Phil?Matt is joined by Times Policy Editor Oliver Wright and Red Box Editor Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges at PMQs.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and James Kirkup discuss Nicola Sturgeon in front of the Covid inquiry, why the government should care about our teeth, and why wild weeing has to stop.Columnist Panel (04:32)PMQs Unpacked (24:20) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/01/241h 4m

What Is A Conservative?

As Rishi Sunak, Liz Truss and countless others argue over what is and isn't real conservatism, we ask what the different tribes stand for, and is that the same as what voters want? Matt speaks to two former ministers from different Tory traditions, Sir John Hayes and Dominic Grieve, plus pollster Scarlett Maguire, and Reform leader Richard Tice. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/01/2436m 5s

The Exit Interviews: Harriet Harman

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from their time in politics.Harriet Harman has been an MP for four decades and held key roles in the Labour Party and in government. A long-time campaigner for women, she tells Matt why she's embarrassed Labour is still yet to elect a female leader, why Starmer shouldn't make decisions in an all-male room, and why she once hid from Margaret Thatcher in a toilet.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Dominic Lawson discuss the government's plan to ban disposable vapes, whether Trump admires Putin and what Matt stands to gain from following Rishi Sunak's 36 hour-fast diet.Columnist Panel (04:13)The Exit Interviews: Harriet Harman (25:25) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/01/241h 5m

Take Back Control (Of Words)

In America the Democrats are attempting to reclaim the word 'Freedom' from Republicans in the debate over abortion rights. So how do you use language to seize the political narrative from your opponents? Matt speaks to US political scientist Rachel Bitecofer, Keir Starmer’s former Deputy Chief of Staff Chris Ward, and Craig Oliver, former head of communications for David Cameron.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss the senselessness of the Nottingham attacks, why people aren't getting married anymore, and the 'groupthink' psychology of The Traitors.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/01/2444m 42s

Anti-Tory Tactics

Is tactical voting about to go mainstream? Matt speaks to the organiser of an US-style primary who wants to give voters the chance to choose one candidate to stand against the Conservatives in their area.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss the details of the plot to oust Rishi Sunak led by his former adviser, whether it matters that rich people are getting stingier, and whether salty tea is as good as an American scientist will have you believe.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/01/2450m 33s

PMQs: Complete S***t show

After former cabinet minister Simon Clarke calls on Rishi Sunak to resign, Keir Starmer gets away with swearing about Tory in-fighting and Rishi Sunak calls him a "human weathervane".Matt pauses and unpacks the action from Prime Minister's Questions with Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit, and reads out some texts from Conservative MPs.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the backlash against Simon Clarke, Britain's disappearing public toilets, and why Robert really likes dressing up.Columnists (6:15)PMQs Unpacked (23:00) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/01/241h 5m

Reasons To Be Cheerful

From climate change to war to global poverty, the world seems like it's in a fragile state. Danish political scientist and climate contrarian Bjørn Lomborg argues things aren't as bad as they seem - he sits down with Matt to explain why. Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelsteon discuss the significance of local elections in England 100 days from now.How to Win an Election Taster (3:22) Reasons To Be Cheerful (7:56) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/01/2427m 10s

The Exit Interviews: Robert Goodwill

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from their time in politics.Sir Robert Goodwill, an MP for two decades, reveals the uncomfortable conversations he's had as a party whip, which Prime Minister sacked him most graciously, and how a lasagna swung his choice in the Tory leadership contest in 2005.Plus: Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss Keir Starmer's version of the "Big Society", whether the government is out of step with the public on tax and spend, and how we should remember Lenin, 100 years after his death. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/01/2450m 40s

Death of a Census?

The Census provides a snapshot of the state of the nation - should it survive? Matt visits the cupboard where Emily Wilding Davison hid in Parliament during the 1911 census, talks to a genealogist about his proud family history of criminals, and hears from someone who puts 'Jedi' down as their religion. Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Carol Lewis discuss why new build homes are so shoddy, whether actors should stop being critical of politicians, and how to give away 25 million euros. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/01/2450m 18s

Happy Birthday, Schools!

The 1944 Education Act introduced free secondary education for all pupils, but only came about thanks to a meeting with Winston Churchill leaning back in bed wearing a night cap.Matt looks at the impact of the reforms and how schools have changed since with Michael Barber, Joan Bakewell, Britain's oldest teacher and Shadow Education Secretary Bridget Phillipson.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell react to Rishi Sunak's warning to the House of Lords not to block the Rwanda bill, and ITV's Anushka Asthana explains what it was like filming with Keir Starmer for three months. Columnist Panel (03:10)Happy Birthday, Schools! (22:10) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/01/2450m 7s

PMQs: Al Murray Rates The Jokes

It's PMQs Unpacked, and Matt and Tim Shipman are joined by comedian Al Murray to rate the jokes as Keir Starmer calls the government's Rwanda plan a "farce" and Rishi Sunak is told off for using props.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton compare notes on the resignation of Lee Anderson, and why does Robert think cyclists are smug? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/01/241h 9m

Is The UK Ready For Trump The Sequel?

Donald Trump kicked off his bid for the White House with a record-breaking win in Iowa, making him the likely Republican nominee in November's US election. Matt asks what his return might mean for the special relationship, and how Sunak and Starmer should prepare.Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Danny Finkelstein and Polly Mackenzie discuss how to win a by-election, and whether it matters if you don't.How to Win an Election Taster (02:54)Is The UK Ready For Trump The Sequel? (06:53) Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/01/2433m 57s

The Exit Interviews: Charles Walker

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from their time in politics.Today, outspoken Conservative MP Charles Walker - who famously said of his party "I've had enough of talentless people" - joins Matt to discuss nearly two decades in politics. He looks back on the Brexit wars, why he staged protest with a carton of milk, and explains why he's leaving the Commons.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss Keir Starmer watering down another pledge, whether being a backbencher is underrated and if Harold Macmillan should have a permanent statue.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/01/241h

Political Antiques Roadshow

From Gladstone’s despatch box to a packet of crisps with Nick Clegg's face on it, what is your political memorabilia worth? Matt is joined by Antiques Roadshow's first host, Bruce Parker, Labour's Jess Philips, and an auctioneer with a gavel, to discuss the value of political mementos.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether MPs should be recalled over the conflict in the Red Sea, why TV ads should stop using West Country accents, and is the UK being riddled with anxiety, doubt and negativity actually a good thing? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/01/2445m 27s

Focus Group: The Guy Just Makes Me Cringe

In the first Times Radio Focus Group of 2024, we hear from 2019 Conservative voters who now say they've switched to Labour. Rishi Sunak is out of touch and makes them cringe, but Keir Starmer lacks the 'X factor' and reminds them of Marvin the Paranoid Android. James Johnson of J.L. Partners joins Matt to discuss the results.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss whether the latest Tory MPs to quit politics did so out of principle or to land a lucrative new job, whether they regret not writing about the post office scandal, and whether it's acceptable to email jokes to your colleagues. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/01/2452m 12s

PMQs: New Year, New Nonsense

It's the first PMQs of the new year, with Rishi Sunak announcing a plan to overturn wrongful convictions in the Post Office scandal and Keir Starmer accusing him of flip-flopping over the Rwanda policy. Matt is joined by Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges from the Commons chamber. Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether age matters in politics, why no one is talking about Covid being back, and why you should keep eating bread. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/01/241h

Did Sturgeon Kill Independence?

It's nearly a year since Nicola Sturgeon resigned, and Humza Yousaf has set out his stall for the general election - with independence looking an increasingly distant prospect. Matt asks if the SNP dream is dead (for now) with polling guru Sir John Curtice and the Minister for Independence at Holyrood.Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Danny Finkelstein and Polly Mackenzie discuss Rishi Sunak's latest election strategy.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/01/2448m 19s

The Exit Interviews: Chloe Smith

Matt sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from their time in politics.Chloe Smith was just 27 when she was elected at a by-election triggered at the height of the expenses scandal. She looks back on a dramatic decade in politics as one of the longest-serving ministers in government, and explains why she's leaving the Commons to do something completely different.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the political power of drama including Mr Bates vs the Post Office and Cathy Come Home, whether the government or Labour know how to cut school absences, and does online activism work? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/01/2452m 51s

The TV Debates Debate

Keir Starmer has said 'bring it on' to TV election debates, firing the starting gun on months of arguments between parties and broadcasters. Matt goes behind the scenes with a panel of experts who have worked on debates, both behind and in front of the cameras.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether the Labour leader is playing with fire by saying the public are "right to be anti-Westminster", whether anti-woke comedy is funny and why independent bookshops are having a resurgence. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/01/2448m 13s

Let Rishi Be Rishi

The prime minister has left Westminster to meet 'real people' and give the voters a sense of the authentic Rishi Sunak. Will it be a success like John Major's soap-box, or a failure like 'Not Flash, Just Gordon'? Matt is joined by a panel of former advisers to discuss the perils of meeting the public.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss Keir Starmer's election optimism, nostalgia at the World Darts Championship, and the UK’s most widespread miscarriage of justice. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/01/2449m 16s

The TikTok Election?

There may be no date set for the general election, but campaigning has already begun on our social media feeds. Matt hears what kind of adverts the parties are buying, what it says about their election strategies, and how digital campaigning has changed since 2019.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether any of the parties can afford to promise tax cuts, whether Reform UK's threat to the Tories is being overhyped, and whether King Charles should take up smoking. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/01/2436m 49s

The Exit Interviews: Mhairi Black

Matt Chorley sits down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics.Mhairi Black was elected as an SNP MP at the age of 20 and is quitting before reaching 30; she talks about the weird world of Westminster, the prospects of independence and how she feels about Nicola Sturgeon. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/01/2445m 45s

What Election Year Is It?

This week we're bringing you the very best of the podcast you might have missed this year.Heading into an election year in 2024, which election in history will it most closely resemble? Will it be a 1997-style landslide? Could the Tories pull off a surprise win like John Major in 1992? Or could it be such a tight result we have to go back to the polls, like in 1974?Live at the Cheltenham Literature Festival in October, Matt was joined by polling guru Professor John Curtice, Times Radio's Ayesha Hazarika, Red Box Editor Lara Spirit, and Times Radio's senior political correspondent Patrick Maguire. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/01/2450m 21s

Lineker - Football vs Politics

This week we're bringing you the very best of the podcast you might have missed this year.Matt spoke to Gary Lineker about exclusive polling for Times Radio showing which job the public thinks is harder - being prime minister, or being a professional footballer. He also explains why he thinks politicians should be paid more, before Emmerdale actor turned farmer Kelvin Fletcher and TV chef Clodagh McKenna make the case for their professions. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/12/2331m 47s

How To Make A Party Political Broadcast

This week we're bringing you the very best of the podcast you might have missed this year.Party political broadcasts have been around for nearly 100 years, featuring everything from men sitting woodenly behind desks to yogic flying.How are they made, do they change anyone’s vote and why are some of them so odd? Matt was joined by Tory advertising guru Maurice Saatchi, Labour filmmaker Mark Lucas, cross-party producer Nick Frost and Times TV critic Carol Midgley. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/12/2336m 27s

The Museum Of Political Fiascos

This week we're bringing you the very best of the podcast you might have missed this year.Welcome to the grand opening of The Museum of Political Fiascos, where artefacts old and new are on display showcasing the most embarrassing moments in British politics. Matt and Patrick Maguire tour the exhibits, taking in objects like Liz Truss' jenga lectern, Boris Johnson's Brexit bus and the 'Ed Stone'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/12/2326m 12s

The Art Of The Political Lunch

This week we're bringing you the very best of the podcast you might have missed this year.Very few people in Westminster have had as many lunches as The Sunday Times chief political commentator Tim Shipman.Tim sat down with Matt for three courses (and drinks) to explain how he gets the scoop over the soup. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/12/2336m 5s

Matt & Mariella's Selection Box

Matt is joined by Mariella Frostrup for a special Christmas day edition of the coffee break. They crack open a drink, exchange gifts and look back at their highlights of the year - including when they both took a DNA test which revealed Matt is more Irish than Mariella. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/12/2319m 39s

The Political Editors: Steven Swinford

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.The final episode features The Times' current Political Editor Steven Swinford, who has been in the job for a turbulent three years, straddling three prime ministers and at least 42 ministerial resignations. He tells Matt about covering partygate, Tories squaring up to each other, a serene Liz Truss as her premiership exploded, and sacking the chancellor via tweet. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2326m 15s

The Political Editors: Francis Elliott

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.In episode six, Francis Elliott, who became The Times' Political Editor in 2013 and covered an extraordinary period that saw the end of the coalition, the slow downfall of Theresa May, and how Boris Johnson tried to get first Brexit and then Covid done. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2326m 23s

The Political Editors: Roland Watson

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.After covering the US for the Times in the aftermath of 9/11 - and interviewing President Bush in the White House - Roland Watson returned to the "goldfish bowl" of Westminster, becoming the paper's political editor in time for the 2010 election. In the fifth episode, he tells Matt about Gordon Brown's prickly relationship with the press, making contacts in the coalition, and how David Cameron sowed the seeds of Brexit. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2325m 30s

The Political Editors: Philip Webster

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.The fourth episode features, Philip Webster, political editor of the Times for 18 years and a colossus of the Blair and Brown eras who survived nine editors at the paper. He tells Matt about writing the story that killed Tony Blair's dreams of joining the Euro, getting stuck on Margaret Thatcher's battle bus, and what happened when he was locked up in Africa with Neil Kinnock. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2324m 15s

The Political Editors: Sir Peter Riddell

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.In the third episode, Westminster veteran Sir Peter Riddell tells Matt about his time charting the dramatic end to the Thatcher era, underestimating John Major, Labour coming back from the wilderness, and how the job of covering politics has changed over the years. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2323m 32s

The Political Editors: Julian Haviland

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.Julian Haviland became political editor of the Times in 1981, but his career in journalism began in the 1950s and covered every prime minister from Alec Douglas-Home to Margaret Thatcher. He tells Matt about his recollections of a smug Jim Callaghan, the decent but flawed Harold Wilson, and Thatcher having a stiff drink before her weekly audience with Queen Elizabeth.He also reveals that the Queen was horrified by police conduct at the Battle of Orgreave during the miners' strike, a story he confirmed but was unable to run at the time. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2324m 35s

The Political Editors: Fred Emery

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Over the festive period we're re-releasing the entire series.First up is Fred Emery, who became political editor in 1977 after a series of foreign postings including covering the Vietnam War and Watergate. He tells Matt about getting the scoop that President Nixon was about to resign, the fall of the Callaghan government and what it was like to interview Margaret Thatcher.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2325m 30s

Keirnocchio: When You Wish Upon A Starmer

'Tis the season and Matt has a new pantomime. This is the story of Keirnocchio, a wooden MP who desperately wants to become a real boy politician. When you wish upon a Starmer your dreams come true, and even if it means changing your mind, your poll lead will grow faster than your nose. Plus: Some of our favourite Times columnists join a festive focus group and debate the best Christmas song, and tell us their Christmas day traditions. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/12/2339m 27s

Politics Without The Boring Quiz 2023

It's the 8th annual Politics Without The Boring Quiz, a test of who has been paying closest attention to the most extraordinary year in Westminster...since the last one.Politicians Nickie Aiken and Wes Streeting go up against Times Radio presenters Hugo Rifkind and Ed Vaizey and The Times journalists Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit in front of a live audience in London. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/12/2347m 7s

Titchmarsh on Starmer

Gardener, broadcaster and presenter of ITV’s Love Your Garden, Alan Titchmarsh, tells Matt why he dislikes fake grass, is "appalled by the very existence of cancel culture", and why he was "heartened" interviewing Keir Starmer.Plus: Some of our favourite Times columnists join a festive focus group - today they reveal what they thought of Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer's year. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/12/2336m 4s

What The Voters Thought This Year

Every month former Number 10 pollster James Johnson joins Matt for the Times Radio Focus Group. They look at why the parties find focus groups so useful, and how the views of crucial swing voters have changed as we head into an election year.Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to write jokes for politicians and how to avoid becoming the punchline.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/12/2339m 1s

Five Essential Election Lessons

From inaccurate polls to soundbites, from going early to biscuits being thrown on the campaign trail - what lessons can Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer learn from electoral history? Matt is joined by Lara Spirit and Jack Kessler to delve into the archives. Plus: Some of our favourite Times columnists join a festive focus group - today they reveal their winners and losers of 2023. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/12/2339m 33s

100 Years Of Political Spin

The British Film Institute has compiled a collection of political broadcasts spanning more than 100 years, from polling day with the Clangers to a Conservative film warning that votes for Labour are stepping stones to a communist state. Patrick Russell from the BFI national archive joins Matt to pick out his highlights.Plus: Columnists Gaby Hinsliff and James Marriott discuss the significance of Rishi Sunak meeting right-wing leaders in Europe this weekend, whether Martin Lewis is right to call for an end to Christmas presents for teachers and what happens when politicians mix with children. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/12/2348m 38s

Is Rishi Sunak 'Tetchy'?

Matt is joined by Matthew Parris and Manveen Rana to discuss claims that Rishi Sunak is a bit thin-skinned, whether a Labour councillor has been blacklisted because of his sexy satanic novels, and what happened when Matthew jumped into the Thames to rescue a dog.Plus: Matt speaks to David Halpern, Founding Director of the Behavioural Insights Team - better known as the 'Nudge Unit' - about the role of behavioural science during the Covid pandemic. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/12/2348m 28s

PMQs Unpacked: Political Tittle-Tattle

In the final Prime Minister's Questions of the year, the insults are flying: Rishi Sunak accuses Keir Starmer of engaging in "political tittle-tattle", while Starmer brands Sunak the donkey of the Tories' nativity. Matt is joined by Ayesha Hazarika, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges from the Commons chamber.Plus: Columnists Robert Crampton and Alice Thomson discuss at what age people start to feel like adults, how to avoid arguments about politics over Christmas, and Robert's biceps.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/12/231h 3m

Where Have Boris Johnson's Voters Gone?

Four years on from Boris Johnson's 2019 General Election victory, Matt goes 'polling in the deep' with a panel of experts to find out how the British public's views have changed and how they're likely to vote when they go back to the polls.PLUS: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win An Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to build a war chest and what to do with it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/12/2337m 27s

Rishi Sunak's Nightmare Before Christmas

While Rishi Sunak gives evidence to the Covid inquiry, at Westminster his MPs are debating whether to back his Rwanda policy. Can he find a way out of his nightmare before Christmas, and save his premiership? Matt is joined by three wise experts to look at the options.Plus: Tom McTague, Libby Purves and Calum Macdonald discuss the state of the Covid inquiry, David Cameron's row with Humza Yousaf and whether Keir Starmer can take the countryside.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/12/2349m 7s

Ian Hislop's Wild Year

From Rishi Sunak being fined for not wearing a seatbelt, to David Cameron's surprise return to the cabinet, to Nigel Farage's trip to the jungle, 2023 has been a wild ride in news and politics. Private Eye editor and Have I Got News For You team captain Ian Hislop joins Matt to sprint through the best, worst and weirdest moments of the past year.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and India Knight discuss the Conservative Party using a rude meme, whether it's okay to make fun of vegans, and help James improve his flexibility. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/12/2349m 39s

Rishi Sunak's Worst Week

Rishi Sunak faces resignations and rebellions over his immigration policy, with questions being asked about his survival as prime minister. Will his emergency press conference be enough to persuade his critics to back him? Matt is joined by The Times' Political Editor Steven Swinford and Politics Professor Philip Cowley to gauge the scale of unrest within the Conservative Party.Plus: Times Radio's Calum MacDonald explains what we learned from Boris Johnson's second day of evidence at the Covid inquiry. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/12/2328m 35s

The Trial of Boris Johnson

Boris Johnson is on oath to tell the truth at the Covid inquiry, as he explains what worked and what didn't as the British state struggled to respond to the deadly virus.Matt is joined by Times Radio's Calum MacDonald to break down the key moments including his disappearing Whatsapp messages, the role of Dominic Cummings, and why there was so much swearing in Number 10.Plus: It's PMQs Unpacked, with Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer clashing over Rwanda and Starmer sharing more dad jokes.Matt is joined by Lara Spirit and Tim Shipman (just about) to pause and analyse the action. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/12/2355m 23s

Local Journalism In Crisis

As editors of regional newspapers challenge the BBC for threatening their future, Matt details why local journalism has been in such steep decline over the last decade. He asks culture minister Sir John Whittingdale what the government can do to help, and looks at new ways local reporters are funding their journalism. Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win An Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein discuss how to deal with the legacy of a former leader. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/12/2345m 55s

Labour's First Prime Minister

It's 100 years since the election of December 1923, which led to the formation of Britain's first Labour government under Ramsay MacDonald.How did the illegitimate son of a crofter come to lead a cabinet of socialist 'wild men', and has history judged him fairly? Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire, author David Torrance and Ramsay MacDonald's granddaughter Iona Kielhorn.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Tom McTague discuss the chances of Nigel Farage making a political comeback, why Keir Starmer praised Thatcher's 'drive', and what do we mean by success? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/12/2344m 58s

And Finally... With Trevor McDonald

Broadcasting legend Trevor McDonald is arguably the most recognisable face (and voice) in British news broadcasting history. He talks to Matt about his 60-year career including interviewing Saddam Hussein, Colonel Gaddafi, and securing the first interview with Nelson Mandela after his release from prison.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Omid Scobie's penchant for publicity, whether reality really is stranger than fiction, how much is too much to spend on biscuits, and how to become a Freeman of London. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/12/2348m 50s

From Child Refugee To Top Lawyer

The headlines are dominated by statistics about who is coming to the UK and why; but what is it like to come to Britain as a child refugee, without your parents or the ability to speak English, and make a success of life in the UK? Somali born Hashi Mohamed arrived in North London aged 9. He tells Matt about his journey to becoming a top barrister and author, why people from poor backgrounds face the same obstacles he did, and why he is put off from a career in politics.Plus: Columnists Jenni Russell and Matthew Parris discuss the legacy of Henry Kissinger, whether mental health sickness leave has led to a spike of skivers, and whether we should mourn cuts to Newsnight. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/11/2344m 6s

PMQs Unpacked: Dad Joke Delivery

The dad jokes are flowing at Prime Minister's Questions, as Keir Starmer accuses Rishi Sunak of 'losing his marbles' after falling out with the Greek prime minister.Matt is joined by Giles Coren, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges from the Commons chamber.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton talk about bringing funerals back into fashion, Robert's experience on the march against anti-semitism, and whether there really is a shortage of British ballet dancers. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/11/231h 7m

The Art Of Political Sketch Writing

Matt is joined by parliamentary sketch writers old and new to discuss the art of the political sketch. Hear first hand from the people whose job is to poke fun at politicians, which MPs are the ones to watch, and what topics are off limit.Plus: A taster of the latest episode of How to Win An Election, where political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein chat about how to see off rebels within your own party. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/11/2340m 56s

Is Farage A Tory Threat?

As ministers try to plot a new path to cut record migration numbers, Reform UK - formerly the Brexit Party - hopes to win over disillusioned Conservative voters. Patrick Maguire is joined by Iain Martin and John Stevens to discuss the threat to the Tories, and whether Labour was right to mock Rishi Sunak's use of a hammer.PLUS: In Patrick's political counter-factual series "What If", Labour's Lord Adonis and Lib Dem Baroness Featherstone remember the 2010 coalition talks and discuss what might have happened if Nick Clegg's party had rejected the Conservative offer. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/11/2331m 10s

A Winter Of Political Discontent?

As temperatures drop around the UK, Patrick Maguire and historian Phil Tinline look at how political problems can turn into a crisis during the winter months - from the industrial action and coal shortages of the 1970s to modern-day demands to help households pay their energy bills.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Keir Starmer's taste in classical music, whether people really care about politicians swearing, why we're still obsessed with posh people, and is it too early to put up your Christmas decorations? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/11/2344m 46s

How Conspiracies Poisoned Politics

Conspiracy theories aren't new, bu they're becoming harder for politicians to ignore. Patrick Maguire explores how they've crept into mainstream discourse, and how they're dominating the Republican primaries in the US.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed debate how to solve the crisis in the asylum system and what to expect from the new "minister for common sense". Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/11/2345m 3s

PMQs Unpacked: All About The Money

On the day of the chancellor's Autumn Statement, Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer clash in the Commons over Sunak's missing pledge and Labour's record in Wales. Patrick Maguire is joined by Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the action.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton play our election slogan quiz, share train horror stories, and learn why Robert is 'team Farage'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/11/2348m 58s

What's Left For The Tory Right?

Rishi Sunak has been under pressure from MPs on the right of his party since the cabinet reshuffle, which saw Suella Braverman replaced by David Cameron. But what options do his critics really have, and will they go as far as a leadership challenge? Patrick Maguire is joined by two seasoned Tory-watchers to explain what could happen next.Plus: Matt Chorley presents the first part of the latest episode of How to Win an Election, featuring political masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/11/2341m 55s

Are Tax Cuts The Answer?

Rishi Sunak says the time has come to cut taxes, but how much are we really paying? Patrick Maguire asks how much they pay in Europe and America, and what, if anything, the Chancellor can do about them in this week's Autumn Statement.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss David Cameron's introduction into the House of Lords, revelations from the Covid inquiry, and the prime minister's latest five-point plan.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/11/2346m 58s

The Best of Enemies: Thatcher & Major

As a cabinet minister under both Maragret Thatcher and John Major, Norman Fowler is perfectly placed to chronicle the rise and fall of the two prime ministers. He tells Matt about his shock at being promoted by Thatcher, his battle to draw public attention to the dangers of Aids, and why he never forgave her for talking down 'Majorism'.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Helen Lewis discuss whether the Tories have lost their heads over Rwanda, whether Labour has a woman problem and whether £20 is too much to pay for biscuits Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/11/2349m 58s

Focus Group: Meek Sunak and Slimy Starmer

It's bad news for both Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer in the latest Times Radio Focus group, with voters taking a dim view of David Cameron's return and Suella Braverman's departure - and it's not much better news for the Labour leader. James Johnson of J.L. Partners joins Matt to discuss the results.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris look at the fallout from the Rwanda ruling and the Gaza ceasfire vote, and find out why a disco ball is essential in a chicken hotel. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/11/2348m 21s

PMQs Unpacked: Rwanda Rejected

On the day that the Supreme Court ruled the government's Rwanda plan is unlawful, Rishi Sunak goes head-to-head with Keir Starmer over immigration and national security. Matt is joined by Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause the action and unpack the exchanges.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the progress Sunak is making on his five pledges, whether it matters what a minister's spouse does for a living, and Robert is forced to defend his assertion that the Northern Lights are "pants". Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/11/231h 1m

The World vs Cameron

What does the rest of the world make of David Cameron's return to frontline politics? Climb aboard Chorley Airlines for a whistle-stop tour from Jerusalem to Brussels to Berlin. Matt is also joined by two people who came up against Cameron on opposite sides of the Brexit debate - former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond and former Brexit Secretary David Davis. Plus: A taster of the third episode of How To Win An Election, the new podcast which sees electoral masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein join Matt to find out how to pull of a shock cabinet reshuffle. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/11/2344m 38s

Cameron the Comeback Kid

As David Cameron's return to government stuns Westminster, Matt asks if he's the future once again - with guests including the former prime minister's biographer and his former deputy chief of staff.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss the future of the Suella Braverman, the power of protest and why some in society are blind to antisemitism. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/11/2346m 55s

Jonathan Aitken: Ruin And Redemption

Jonathan Aitken's career in politics began 60 years ago as a speech writer for Alex Douglas-Home and saw him rise to the cabinet under John Major. It all came crashing down when he was convicted of perjury and sent to prison, where he then rediscovered his religion.He talks to Matt about faith, prison reform, and why politicians lose their moral compass.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and India Knight discuss the possibility of Nigel Farage entering the I'm a Celebrity jungle, how happy we are as a nation, and whether Shakespeare is as good as James thinks he is. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/11/2346m 17s

Has Nadine Lost The Plot?

Nadine Dorries' new book "The Plot" claims Boris Johnson was ousted by a cabal called "The Movement" that has been controlling the Tory leadership for two decades. Matt puts those claims to the test by speaking to Patrick Maguire - who read the book cover to cover, Danny Finkelstein - an alleged member of "The Movement", and Stephen Greenhalgh - an ally of Boris Johnson. Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss Suella Braverman's claim that the Met police is biased towards pro-Palestinian activists, what Rishi Sunak should do about her and whether buying a Lordship at auction is worth the money.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/11/2348m 8s

Spads vs Civil Servants?

Has the relationship between the civil service and politicians and their advisers been permanently damaged? Matt speaks to Lord McDonald, permanent secretary at the Foreign Office until 2020, former civil servant Jill Rutter, and Hugh Bennett, former special adviser to Boris Johnson and Liz Truss. Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss Rishi Sunak's lack of political energy, British women's binge drinking habits, and why politicians are bunking off work more than ever before.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/11/2336m 22s

The Other King's Speech

As the government sets out its plans for the year ahead in the King's Speech, Matt is joined by impressionist Jon Culshaw to imagine some alternative measures King Charles could have announced.Plus: A taster of the second episode of How To Win An Election, the new podcast which sees electoral masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein join Matt to find out how to write an election-winning policy. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/11/2329m 26s

The Politics of Vegetables

British horticulture is at a crisis point, with millions of pounds worth of crops rotting in the ground every year. Matt asks how our politicians can help the industry flourish and speaks to some green-fingered politicos.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester look at what's in and what's out of the King's Speech, why more kids than ever are missing from school, and James Marriott talks about his strange evening watching philosopher Jordan Peterson speak at the O2 in London. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/11/2345m 34s

When Musk Met Sunak

Matt's been to see 'gently spoken nerd' Elon Musk meeting with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and finds it's all a bit strange. He talks to Culture Secretary Lucy Frazer about whether the interview was a good idea, and talks to a former Twitter employee who was sacked by Musk.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss a future where no one has a job, James' opinion that we all have too many opinions, and M&S apologising after an online backlash. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/11/2340m 2s

Lessons From A Dying Government

What can Rishi Sunak learn from the final days of the Major government, when the prime minister was behind in the polls with a party mired in sleaze and infighting? Matt talks to Howell James, John Major's political secretary in the lead up to the 1997 election.PLUS: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss whether the prime minister's's AI summit can help him escape his domestic political troubles, whether King Charles should have apologised to Kenya for colonial-era abuses, and whether height matters in politics.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/11/2345m 17s

Covid Inquiry Unpacked

This week at the Covid inquiry we've learned a lot about the way Boris Johnson's government worked - and didn't - during the pandemic. Matt is joined by the Sunday Times' George Arbuthnott and the Specator's Isabel Hardman to unpack the most important, and the most expletive-laden, exchanges.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether MPs should be selected using US-style open primaries, and why Robert is determined not to retire. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/11/2348m 37s

Starmer Defies Ceasefire Calls

Keir Starmer has been explaining why he has rejected calls for a ceasefire in Gaza, and claims the Labour Party is united. Will his speech settle tensions within the ranks? Matt speaks to Times Radio senior political correspondent Patrick Maguire and a councillor who calls Starmer's speech 'tone deaf'.Plus: We introduce the first episode of How To Win An Election, as electoral masterminds Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie and Daniel Finkelstein join Matt to discuss when Rishi Sunak will call the next General Election. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/10/2336m 18s

Can AI Swing The Election?

As politicians from around the globe prepare to touch down in England for Rishi Sunak's AI summit, Matt asks the experts what risks this new technology poses for next year's campaign and elections around the world.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss Keir Stamer allowing his MPs to undermine his position on a ceasefire in the Middle East, the blockbuster week ahead in the covid inquiry and the accents replacing cockney and RP.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/10/2348m 7s

How To Rebuild Parliament

80 years ago, Winston Churchill announced a plan to rebuild the Palace of Westminster after the Commons chamber was hit during the last major raid of the blitz. Patrick Maguire in for Matt Chorley looks at the building's history from the Great Fire of London to the present day, and speaks to the chairman of Parliament's Restoration and Renewal programme Nigel Evans.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Isabel Hardman discuss the power of the individual backbencher, play a round of Hansard Hoedown, and ask how to write a good sex scene. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/10/2348m 52s

Why Can't Politicians Fix Our Prisons?

The crisis facing prisons in England and Wales is nothing new - in fact, governments of every stripe have been trying to fix it for decades. Patrick Maguire asks why they've failed, and what can be done to improve criminal justice in the future.Plus Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss Israel's fallout with the United Nations, whether we should be scared of the AI future and Rachel Reeves plagiarising Wikipedia in her new book. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/10/2346m 34s

PMQs Unpacked: Eff Off

Fresh from Labour's recent by-election victories, Keir Starmer tells Rishi Sunak that voters want him to eff off while they clash over mortgages and rent costs. Patrick Maguire, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the action from Westminster. Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton chat about bankers bonuses, the division of labour in their households and why you should be writing a letter to winter...  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/10/231h 2m

Rishi's Report Card

Its one year since Rishi Sunak was voted into number 10 so how is he faring when it comes to the policies that really matter? Patrick and a faculty of experts from The Times track his progress and grade his homework.Plus: The Daily Mirror's John Stevens and the Spectator's Katy Balls discuss why the Tories are losing voters to both their left and right, and why Brexiteer Steve Baker regrets that the referendum passed without a supermajority. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/10/2339m 46s

More Money, More Politics

With the government set to raise the spending cap for the next general election, Patrick Maguire asks if more money leads to worse politics. He talks to two donors about why they give money to the parties, and takes a look at how the billions of dollars being spent in the US have affected American political culture.Plus: Columnists Jenni Russell and Paul Mason discuss Labour's response to the Israel-Gaza conflict, a new zero tolerance approach to shoplifting, and whether celebrity endorsements in politics make any difference. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/10/2346m 43s

Introducing: How To Win An Election

Introducing: How To Win An Election.As the next General Election approaches, Matt Chorley is joined by three of the sharpest, funniest and best-connected strategists who know a thing or two about winning (and losing).Peter Mandelson was Labour’s director of communications for Neil Kinnock in 1987 and 1992; New Labour’s architect and later cabinet minister in 1997, 2001 and 2005; and Gordon Brown’s right-hand man in 2010.Daniel Finkelstein advised the SDP’s David Owen in 1987, worked for John Major in the run-up to 1987; for William Hague ahead of 2001; and advised David Cameron before 2010 and 2015.Polly Mackenzie was a Lib Dem policy expert, working for Charles Kennedy in their record-breaking 2005 election; for Nick Clegg in 2010, and after five coalition years in No 10, was there for the 2015 wipeout too.How To Win An Election will be your guide through the twists and turns of a tumultuous campaign every Tuesday. Follow the podcast now to never miss an episode.https://podfollow.com/how-to-win-an-election Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/10/2313m 58s

Rishi Sunak's By-Election Blow

Do Labour's by-election wins add up to a political earthquake, and a sure sign that the Conservatives are destined to lose the next election? Or are they what you'd expect from a party that's been in power for 13 years facing difficult circumstances in both seats. Matt is joined by an expert panel including polling expert Professor John Curtice, Times Radio's Patrick Maguire and shadow cabinet minister Nick Thomas-Symonds.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Heale discuss Joe Biden's defence of democracy, one year since Liz Truss left No 10, and could the next election really be as late as 2025? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/10/2344m 52s

Secrets Of A Political Cartoonist

Matt is joined by Times and Sunday Times cartoonists Peter Brookes and Morten Morland at the Cheltenham Literature Festival to discuss the art of mocking politicians, and why mocked politicians still want to buy their work. Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matt Deegan talk about the importance of language when reporting on conflict, and how to get over news fatigue. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/10/2342m 5s

PMQs Unpacked: Speaking With One Voice

Against the backdrop of the escalating conflict in the Middle East, the prime minister and Labour leader debate the global response and the impact on the streets of Britain. Matt is joined by Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the action.PLUS: Robert Crampton and John Stevens discuss whether Westminster has a drinking problem, Robert's 30-year-old jokes, and whether there's any point in learning German. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/10/231h 4m

The Changing Face of War

As the world faces another major conflict, Matt takes a look at the history and changing nature of warfare since 1945 with former director of the CIA General David Petraeus and historian Andrew Roberts.Plus: Columnists Tom McTague and Jane Merrick discuss British influence in the Middle East, whether Sir Patrick Vallance's Covid-19 diaries should be kept private, and the tree-felling that brought down a Conservative council. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/10/2347m 29s

Faith In Politics?

Should politicians do God, and does religion still matter in politics? Matt discusses the role of faith in public life and the Israel-Gaza conflict with the broadcaster Edward Stourton.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester on whether it's right to go to a protest alongside bad actors, covid's ghost children, and why the Austrian "Beer Party", which started as a joke, has surged to third in the Viennese polls.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/10/2347m 21s

What Election Year Is It?

Which election in history could 2024 most closely resemble? Will it be a 1997-style landslide? Could the Tories pull off a surprise win like John Major in 1992? Or could it be such a tight result we have to go back to the polls, like in 1974?Live at the Cheltenham Literature Festival, Matt is joined by polling guru Professor John Curtice, Times Radio's Ayesha Hazarika, Red Box Editor Lara Spirit, and Times Radio's senior political correspondent Patrick Maguire. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/10/2351m 14s

Focus Group: Stop Being So Weak

Has Keir Starmer sealed the deal with undecided voters? In the latest Times Radio Focus Group, Matt and James Johnson from JL Partners find that while Rishi Sunak's attempt to become the change candidate hasn't landed so far, Starmer is still seen as 'weak' and 'vanilla'.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Holehouse discuss disinformation and the Israel-Hamas war, what the Captain Tom donation story says about Britain, and how to get rid of bedbugs. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/10/2343m 52s

Planes, Trains and Toilet Doors

Forget the Westminster bubble, some of history's most important political events happened not in the corridors of power but in car parks, village halls and seaside resorts. In a taster of his new book 'Planes, Trains and Toilet Doors', Matt visits the 50 places that changed British politics from John Major's dentist room to Harold Wilson's 'Scilly' season holidays. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/10/2331m 49s

Can A Conference Speech Win An Election?

As Keir Starmer makes his final pitch to the public ahead of the next general election, Matt looks back at the pre-election conference speeches of previous Labour leaders with Tony Blair's former speechwriter Phil Collins and former Ed Miliband adviser Ayesha Hazarika.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstien and Miranda Green on ministers calling pro-Palestinian protesters in London to stay at home, and who emerges victorious from this year's party conference season.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/10/2350m 37s

Angela Rayner's Venom

Labour's deputy leader Angela Rayner and shadow health secretary Wes Streeting have a round of cocktails with Matt and discuss Angela's favourite drink ('venom'), what to do about children vaping, and what music Keir Starmer should walk on stage to ahead of his conference speech.Matt also takes a look at the changing perceptions of Starmer through the Times Radio Focus Group archives.Plus: Columnists Patrick Maguire and Rachel Sylvester on Labour's plans for the economy, the spread of deepfakes, and the party's response to the terror attacks on Israel. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/10/2339m 18s

Iron Daughter: Carol Thatcher

After Labour's decisive win in the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election, Keir Starmer channelled Michael Caine and claimed the party had 'blown the doors off'. But does the result mean he's now on the way to Number 10? Matt talks to polling guru Sir John Curtice and Times Radio's Patrick Maguire.Plus: Help, my mum's running the country! Matt speaks to Carol Thatcher to find out what life is really like for family members living behind the famous black door. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/10/2339m 15s

Secrets Of Churchill's Office

The old War Office in Whitehall, once used by Winston Churchill as the nerve centre of Britain's war effort, has been hidden from public view for more than a century. Matt is given a guided tour of the historic building, which has been converted into a hotel, to uncover its secrets.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss the relationship between the West and Ukraine, Boris Johnson-themed pastries, and when a politician's spouse should step into the limelight. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/10/2344m 48s

What Comes After Sunak?

Rishi Sunak has made his first party conference speech as leader, but polls suggest it could be his last; so who comes next? JL Partners' Scarlett Maguire and Sam Lister from the Daily Express look at the frontrunners in the next Tory leadership race.Plus: Matt catches cabinet ministers Mel Stride and Michael Gove on their way out of the conference hall for their take on the Prime Minister's speech.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/10/2329m 12s

100 Years Of Tory Turmoil

This year marks a century since the 1922 committee of Conservative backbenchers came into being. Why do the men and women in grey suits still wield so much power, and why aren't they called the 1923 committee?Matt also talks to Levelling Up Secretary Michael Gove about HS2, benefits, and bendy bananas. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/10/2355m 46s

Focus Group: Snog, Marry, Avoid

It's a special conference edition of the Times Radio Focus Group; Matt and James Johnson from JL Partners hear from a group of 2019 Conservative voters who say they no longer support the party. What can Rishi Sunak do to win them back, and would they rather snog, marry or avoid Sunak, Starmer and Davey?Plus: Columnists Iain Martin and Rachel Sylvester discuss Liz Truss's appearance at the Tory conference, whether school pupils should be banned from using mobile phones, and has multiculturalism failed in Britain? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/10/2343m 4s

30 Years Since Back To Basics

30 years ago John Major made a speech pledging to get Britain, and his government, ‘back to basics' - but the scandals just kept coming. Matt speaks to Howell James, Major’s former political secretary, and political journalists Phil Webster and Elinor Goodman.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and India Knight discuss the 'war on motorists', whether Rishi Sunak or Suella Braverman has it right on multiculturalism, the benefits of listening to the radio, and the art of a good conversation. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/09/2348m 18s

Your Starter For Ten

How often do politics and quizzing collide? There's a rich history of politicians trying and failing to answer simple questions, and the British public struggling to grapple with political trivia. Matt is joined by comedian Lucy Porter and Jenny Ryan, aka The Vixen from The Chase.Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss whether Labour has flip-flopped when it comes to private schools, where GB News draws the line on freedom of speech, and modern phone etiquette. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/09/2346m 32s

Take A Chance On Ed?

It's the podcast everyone has been waiting for... join Matt and Patrick Maguire as they bring you Ed Davey Unpacked: pausing and analysing the action from Bournemouth and the Liberal Democrat Leader's conference speech.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss what Rishi Sunak should do about inheritance tax, their worst train story, and why Robert should give fishing another go. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/09/2336m 46s

Crazy Golf, Crazy Davey

It’s Liberal Democrat conference in Bournemouth, and Matt plays crazy golf with party leader Ed Davey. How many houses does he want to build, why won’t he talk about Brexit, and who will get a hole-in-one?Plus Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Miranda Green debate whether there's any point of the Lib Dems and whether Rishi Sunak is truly a long-term thinker. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/09/2348m 24s

How To Party At Party Conferences

As party conference season kicks off, Matt speaks to those who have seen it all - from karaoke, to babysitting drunk ministers, to skinny dipping.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the ballooning costs of HS2, Taylor Swift's political power, and ask what is the point of the Liberal Democrats? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/09/2346m 58s

The Not Quite Prime Ministers

History is written by (and often about) the winners, but the lives and careers of Britain's political losers can be just as telling. Leaders of the Opposition was a long-running feature on Matt's Times Radio show, and now author and historian Nigel Fletcher has written the book explaining what they can tell us about modern politics.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott on Rishi Sunak's plans for a British baccalaureate, why we need more expertise in public debate, and how to stop yourself being digitally re-animated once you're dead. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/09/2348m 46s

Why Are We In Love With The Big State?

The British Social Attitudes Survey has been running for 40 years, and its latest findings show that we expect the state to do more than ever before. Matt is joined by Gillian Prior from the National Centre for Social Research to chart the journey from Thatcherite Britain to post-Covid big state spending.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss whether Rishi Sunak's message on net zero will win over voters, and the King's surprisingly warm reception in France. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/09/2341m 26s

Cutting The Green Crap?

With Parliament in recess and no PMQs, Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire and Kate McCann to answer questions from the listeners on Rishi Sunak's net zero promises, political speeches and culture wars.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the art of ageing well, taking a midlife gap year and Rishi Sunak’s love of Britney Spears... Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/09/2341m 39s

Make Slogans Great Again

As we learn Labour's slogan for party conference season, Matt is joined by columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Jane Merrick to discuss the best and the worst - from 'build back better' to 'straight talking honest politics'.Plus: It's not just the UK dealing with the consequences of people leaving their home country for safety or economic security. How are other nations dealing with this rising tide of migration? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/09/2348m 49s

How To Look Like A Prime Minister

Keir Starmer may be ahead in the polls, but nearly half of voters say they still don't think he looks like a prime minister in waiting. Matt hears advice on how to look the part from experts from the worlds of fashion and photography, and Thatcher's biographer Charles Moore explains how the Iron Lady changed her voice.Plus Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Robert Colvile on what Russell Brand is like in person, why Robert is obsessed with a Labour Party video from 1997, and what has happened to the Conservative Party after 13 years in government. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/09/2349m 59s

WTF did WFH do to UK?

Matt is working from home today...a rare occasion for him but not for millions of people . Stanford economist and world leading expert in remote working Nick Bloom explains the impact changing work patterns will have on the railways, golf courses and why it could lead to a total rewiring of the state.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether the 20s are better than the 60s, if they would get in a self-driving car, and Theresa May's cookbook collection. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/09/2345m 16s

Can Starmer Stop The Boats?

Keir Starmer says he'll tackle the problem of small boats crossing the channel with his plan to "smash the gangs". Will the policy work, can he park his tanks on the Tory lawn, and does anyone remember Labour's migration mugs?Plus Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss back seat driving by former prime ministers, peers blocking the government's housebuilding plan, and the weirdest political world records. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/09/2348m 45s

PMQs Unpacked: Cock Up After Cock Up

It's the last PMQs before the party conferences, with Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer trading blows over the government's string of recent woes and Starmer dubbing Sunak 'inaction man'. Matt, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause, unpack and analyse the action from Westminster.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss what to do about the rising popularity of the drug Ketamine, whether Britons want to ban too many things, and the popularity of Dorset's Tank Museum. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/09/231h 4m

Would You Like A Referendum On That?

Are referendums the sign of a healthy democracy, or as Thatcher said a "device of dictators and demagogues"? Matt finds out about their increasing use around the world to decide everything from pension reform to using nuclear power.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Miranda Green discuss how political narratives are built from uncertain data, and whether it's a problem that Keir Starmer is less popular than the Labour Party. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/09/2346m 49s

Can Labour Beat The Tories On Defence?

Defence and security is one of the areas where the Conservatives are still more trusted than Labour by the public. With big questions looming over Ukraine, defence spending and the threat from China, can they overtake them?Matt speaks to Shadow Defence Secretary John Healey, former Chief of the General Staff Lord Dannatt, and Elisabeth Braw from the American Enterprise Institute.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss whether the government will increase benefits in line with inflation, whether to ban student loans for those with low grades, and how residents in the New Forest are teaming up to deter criminals. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/09/2350m 6s

The Museum of Political Fiascos

Welcome to the grand opening of The Museum of Political Fiascos, where artefacts old and new are on display showcasing the most embarrassing moments in British politics. Matt and Patrick Maguire tour the exhibits, taking in objects like Liz Truss' jenga lectern, Boris Johnson's Brexit bus and the 'Ed Stone'.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether there's enough glamour in public service, students needing lessons in small-talk and why it's hard to buy a novel in a Foyles bookshop. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/09/2346m 36s

Focus Group: It Gets Worse For Sunak

The focus group is back, with swing voters from around England giving us their unvarnished view of politics. It's bad for Rishi Sunak, with even former Tory supporters sounding more negative (one calls him a 'weasel'). But they're still not sure Labour would do a better job, and think Keir Starmer is 'duplicitous'. Matt is joined by James Johnson from JL Partners to discuss the results.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss Britain's role on the global stage ahead of the G20 in India, whether Brits are more workshy than the French, and what would you put in the Museum of Political Fiascos? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/09/2344m 52s

PMQs Unpacked: Concrete Chaos

It's the first PMQs clash between Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer since Parliament returned from the summer break, and the exchanges are dominated by crumbling concrete in schools. Matt, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit are back to pause, unpack and analyse the action from the Commons chamber.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss meeting politicians in real life, whether weight-loss drugs are the answer, and Keir Starmer's rural appeal. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/09/231h 10m

Blair To The Future

Keir Starmer has met with his brand new shadow cabinet for the first time, but does his top team now have more Blairites than Tony Blair ever did? Matt is joined by New Labour architect Lord Mandelson, former Starmer aide Chris Ward and Times Radio's Patrick Maguire.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and John Stevens discuss the government's defence over collapsing schools, Gillian Keegan swearing and what has happened to Liz Truss' lectern. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/09/2345m 16s

What's Worrying Rishi Sunak?

With MPs back after the summer recess, Matt and Times Radio Political Editor Kate McCann bring you their guide to the five things Rishi Sunak should be worrying about between now and the general election.Plus: Kwasi Kwarteng joins Matt to reflect on a year since he was appointed as Liz Truss's chancellor, and columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the Labour reshuffle, crumbling concrete in schools, and advice for Sue Gray on her first day in Keir Starmer's office. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/09/2350m 6s

The Rest is Dominic Sandbrook

Brand new Times columnist and Rest is History star Dominic Sandbrook tells Matt why the King's first year on the throne has been a surprising success, why Tony Blair isn't in his top 10 prime ministers, and why he really doesn't like archeology.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss India getting Covid (again), what Rishi Sunak will be served when he goes to Balmoral, and why James hates video games. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/09/2346m 46s

The Political Editors: How Reporting Changed

From sending stories by mail to sacking ministers by tweet, 'The Political Editors' series showed how the news, and the creators of news, changed over the last half a century. In this final episode, Matt reflects on the evolution of political journalism, and how you might get your news in the future. Plus: Columnists Jane Merrick and Matthew Bell chat about the cabinet reshuffle, hazardous sushi, and Keir Starmer's celebrity lookalikes.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/08/2346m 31s

The Political Editors: Steven Swinford

The Times' current Political Editor Steven Swinford has been in the job for a turbulent three years, straddling three prime ministers and at least 42 ministerial resignations. He tells Matt about covering partygate, Tories squaring up to each other, a serene Liz Truss as her premiership exploded, and sacking the chancellor via tweet.The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton on whether Britain is still a Christian country, Alice changing her mind about Britain's strictest headteacher, and building the perfect shed. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/08/2344m 51s

The Political Editors: Francis Elliott

Francis Elliott became The Times' Political Editor in 2013, covering an extraordinary period that saw the end of the coalition, the slow downfall of Theresa May, and how Boris Johnson tried to get first Brexit and then Covid done.The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Miranda Green discuss new polling showing Labour ahead on immigration, whether the NHS is still our national religion, and why a reshuffle is unlikely to change anything for Rishi Sunak. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/08/2346m 6s

How To Write A Great Political Speech

Sixty years ago Martin Luther King gave his famous "I Have a Dream" speech, which went onto shape modern America. Hugo Rifkind asks a panel of former Downing Street speechwriters what makes King's speech so good, and what lessons Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer can learn from the great orators of political history.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Zoe Strimpel on Theresa May's new book, the rights and wrongs of preaching "virtues" and what to wear at a music festival.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/08/2345m 34s

The Political Editors: Roland Watson

After covering the US for the Times in the aftermath of 9/11 - and interviewing President Bush in the White House - Roland Watson returned to the "goldfish bowl" of Westminster, becoming the paper's political editor in time for the 2010 election. He tells Matt about Gordon Brown's prickly relationship with the press, making contacts in the coalition, and how David Cameron sowed the seeds of Brexit.The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Plus: Columnists India Knight and Gaby Hinsliff discuss Donald Trump's historic mugshot, who does and doesn't suffer from impostor syndrome, and Matt attempts to answer some GCSE maths questions. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/08/2344m 24s

The Political Editors: Philip Webster

Philip Webster was political editor at the Times for 18 years, a colossus of the Blair and Brown eras who survived nine editors at the paper. He tells Matt about writing the story that killed Tony Blair's dreams of joining the Euro, getting stuck on Margaret Thatcher's battle bus, and what happened when he was locked up in Africa with Neil Kinnock.The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Holehouse discuss what the death of Yevgeny Prigozhin means for Russia, the Conservative MPs rounding on the immovable Nadine Dorries, and which portraits ministers are hanging on their office walls. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/08/2342m 26s

The Political Editors: Sir Peter Riddell

Westminster veteran Sir Peter Riddell tells Matt about his time charting the dramatic end to the Thatcher era, underestimating John Major, Labour coming back from the wilderness, and how the job of covering politics has changed over the years.The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times. Plus: Columnists Robert Crampton and Hadley Freeman discuss Andy Burnham giving an honest answer about wanting to be Labour leader, turning potholes into a golf course, and why some meal deals should be eaten in the bathroom. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/08/2343m 32s

The Political Editors: Julian Haviland

Julian Haviland became political editor of the Times in 1981, but his career in journalism began in the 1950s and covered every prime minister from Alec Douglas-Home to Margaret Thatcher. He tells Matt about his recollections of a smug Jim Callaghan, the decent but flawed Harold Wilson, and Thatcher having a stiff drink before her weekly audience with Queen Elizabeth.He also reveals that the Queen was horrified by police conduct at the Battle of Orgreave during the miners' strike, a story he confirmed but was unable to run at the time.The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Jenni Russell discuss whether shoplifting has effectively been decriminalised, whether the Conservative party is choosing the right people to fight the next election, and whether Rishi Sunak has a future as an artist. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/08/2342m 17s

The Political Editors: Fred Emery

The Political Editors is half a century of politics told by the people who wrote the first draft of history for the Times.First up is Fred Emery, who became political editor in 1977 after a series of foreign postings including covering the Vietnam War and Watergate. He tells Matt about getting the scoop that President Nixon was about to resign, the fall of the Callaghan government and what it was like to interview Margaret Thatcher.Plus: Columnists Robert Colvile and Libby Purves discuss what the Lucy Letby case says about large institutions, whether older people really have it too good, and which European country has the best Parliament building?. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/08/2341m 46s

Has Political Correctness Saved Comedy?

Has political correctness come to bury comedy, or to save it? Patrick Maguire speaks to David Stubbs, who believes 'wokeness' has been good rather than bad, and takes a tour through the changing face of British comedy.Plus: Columnists Laura Freeman and Ailbhe Rea discuss why Labour is spending so much time talking about class, the decline of the chat show, and how to stage a heist. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/08/2343m 20s

How To Stage A Coup

Military coups are "back" according to the UN, with Niger the latest African nation to have its government overthrown. Patrick asks why they're on the rise, and discusses the most consequential and surprising coups to have ever happened. The Times' Catherine Philp recounts what it was like to report on the 1997 coup in Cambodia with bullets flying overhead. Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell look ahead to Rishi Sunak's September reset, whether the UK's economic success can be measured by the number of its millionaires, and why politicians are incapable of looking normal while watching football. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/08/2346m 55s

PMQs: Patrick Maguire Questions

It's Wednesday, but with the House of Commons in recess we bring you the other PMQs - Patrick Maguire Questions. Patrick is joined by Red Box Editor Lara Spirit and political commentator Isabel Hardman to answer listeners' questions, including what happens if Labour doesn't win the next election, can Nadine Dorries be forced to stand down as an MP, and where did all the Corbynites go?Plus: Columnists Robert Crampton and Phil Tinline discuss whether there are political rewards for falling inflation, the origins of US deep state conspiracy theories, and whether some people still sneer at women's football. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/08/2347m 27s

What Does Tony Blair Want?

It's 16 years since Tony Blair walked away from frontline politics, forced to step down by a party that had fallen out of love with him. But with Keir Starmer keen to hug the three-time election winner close, could he and his Institute for Global Change have a big influence over British politics in the future?Plus: Columnists Robert Colvile and Helen Lewis discuss the implications of Donald Trump's indictment in Georgia, Labour's contortions over congestion charging, and why Parliament is still crumbling. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/08/2347m 10s

How To Perfect A Political Denial

Twenty five years after Bill Clinton infamously denied having an affair with Monica Lewinsky, Patrick speaks to Damian Whitworth, who remembers the chaos that gripped US politics while he was covering the story of The Times. Boris Johnson's former Director of Communications Guto Harri, Andrew Gimson and Isabel Hardman analyse the best and worst denials made by UK politicians.Plus: Anoosh Chakelian from the New Statesman and former Number 10 advisor Jimmy Mcloughlin discuss the government's latest policy week, whether schools should teach more sociology or more languages, and whether the government should appoint a toilet czar - or even a 'Lenin of the loos'.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/08/2347m 13s

Why So Many MPs Are Calling It Quits

This Saturday we're bringing you an extra episode from another Times podcast - Stories of Our Times - one remarkable story, told in depth, each day.With an election just around the corner, politicians are quitting Westminster in their droves, many of them under 40. Is the job broken – or are they just jumping before they're pushed? We meet the leavers and reluctant remainers.Luke Jones speaks to The Sunday Times columnist Charlotte Ivers.Clips: Times Radio, ITV News, Global. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/08/2328m 15s

Spinning Like Sunak

How do politicians keep fit? Rishi Sunak spends his holidays going to Taylor Swift-themed spin classes; Keir Starmer prefers to kick around a football. Former health minister Lord Bethell and Tanni Grey-Thompson, Paralympian and crossbench peer, tell Patrick Maguire how to stay healthy in Westminster.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Labour's cautious approach to Lee Anderson, youthful cynicism and whether impressions are a dying art form. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/08/2344m 5s

How To Fix Parliament

Is Parliament broken, and how can we fix it? Chair of the Committees on Standards and Privileges Chris Bryant joins Patrick Maguire to discuss his experience of abuse in the Commons, whether MP's behaviour is now worse than it's ever been and why MPs should be allowed to call their colleagues 'liars'.Plus: Columnists Patrick Kidd and Dorothy Byrne discuss travelling for an operation, Nicola Sturgeon's ‘personal and revealing’ memoir and whether your employer should pay for your lunch? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/08/2345m 51s

Why August Isn't Silly Season

It's a journalistic cliché that very little happens in politics while MPs are on holiday during the Parliamentary recess. But is it fair to describe August as 'silly season'? Historian Phil Tinline joins Patrick Maguire to debunk this myth and look at the biggest political moments of summers gone by.Plus: columnists Alice Thomson and Carol Midgely discuss toxic masculinity, Matt Hancock's TikToks, and whether Beyond Meat is past its best. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/08/2348m 5s

Is Britain Skint?

A decade of low economic growth has seen Britain fall behind it's wealthy counterparts, and nations like Poland and South Korea are set to become richer than the UK within the decade. How has Britain become so poor, and what can be done about it? Patrick asks the experts, and speaks to a former MP in the American deep-south to find out.Plus John Stevens and Jane Merrick discuss whether boilers are the new front in green politics, the Greenpeace activist standing for Labour and the rules of etiquette on the beach Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/08/2344m 10s

How To Lose An Unloseable Election

Keir Starmer is firmly ahead in the polls, but nothing in politics is ever certain. So, how do you lose an election that seems unloseable? Patrick Maguire looks at Hilary Clinton's defeat to Donald Trump with Corey Dukes, former state director for Hillary Clinton's campaign in Pennsylvania, and the Australian Labor Party's shock loss in 2019 with Ryan Liddell, former Chief of Staff to Bill Shorten.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss Liz Truss' honours resignation list, disappointing A-level results, and whether Elon Musk or Mark Zuckerberg would win a boxing match. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/08/2340m 56s

The Art Of The Political Lunch

Very few people in Westminster have had as many lunches as The Sunday Times' Chief political commentator Tim Shipman.So for the final day of food week, he settles his bet for a big lunch by joining Matt at Hawksmoor in Borough Market, to discuss wining and dining ministers, how he is getting on with his book, and the senior politician who had a cheesy doggie bag.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriot chat about cheering up, beans and what it takes to be a professional beer taster  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/08/2358m 27s

Confessions Of The Chequers Chef

What is it like to cook for world leaders, celebrities, and even the Queen? Graham Howarth is the Head Chef at Chequers - the PM's country retreat. He tells Matt Chorley about being left speechless when the Queen came for dinner, and the prime minister who fancied themselves as a cook.Plus: Columnists Giles Coren and Abbie Moulton discuss going vegan, new food trends, and why burrata is overrated. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/08/2341m 56s

The Art of Political Drinking

Join Matt for a pint in Westminster's Red Lion pub. He talks to Gordon Brown's former spin doctor Charlie Whelan about how he inadvertently killed Tony Blair's dream of Britain joining the Euro with a spritzer in his hand, while Ben Wright talks us through which prime minister loved a drink the best.Plus: Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton eat some insects and discuss the plastic bag tax, wild camping in Dartmoor, and debate brown sauce vs ketchup. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/08/2344m 34s

Shopping Under The Nanny State

After Rishi Sunak delayed the ban on buy-one-get-one-free deals on fatty foods for two years, Matt takes stock of how much the nanny state is policing what we put in our shopping baskets and debates whether more government regulation could help solve the obesity crisis. Plus: Jane Merrick and Matthew Bell discuss the politics of milk, tougher sentencing for shoplifters and how cooking with your spouse can make or break your relationship. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/08/2346m 37s

Cooking In The Commons

Food week begins with the history of Bellamy's, a restaurant that's been serving politicians' portions for 250 years. Charles Walker is the MP in charge of all the bars and restaurants in parliament and he tells Matt that Keir Starmer is wrong to criticise the salads on offer, and why a shortage of chefs has led to some eateries closing. Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Iain Martin discuss green politics becoming the new dividing line, whether life coaches can solve the problem of long-term unemployment and which is better: tea or coffee.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/07/2341m 52s

How To Start A New Political Party

More than one hundred new political parties have already been registered this year, but what does it take to create one that goes the distance? Kate McCann is in for Matt, and speaks to former First Minister Alex Salmond, the Rubbish Party's Sally Cogley, and Maia Thomas, spokesperson for the Transform party, to find out.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss 'global boiling', politicians on holidays, whether films should be shorter, and delighting in others' relationship woes. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/07/2343m 10s

Focus Group: Attack Of The Clones

A group of people from across England who voted for the Conservatives at the 2019 election, but now say they plan to vote for Labour give their verdict on Rishi Sunak, who they describe as a "clone", and Keir Starmer, who they think is "smug". Matt is joined by James Johnson of J.L. Partners to find out why they're switching, and what might bring them back. Plus: Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss whether MPs should be banned from drinking in parliament if they behave badly, if it matters that the government's plan to move civil servants out of London isn't working, and compare their worst travel experiences to Prue Leith's on the Caledonian Sleeper. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/07/2342m 45s

How To Punish Politicians

Matt is joined by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards Daniel Greenberg, the man in charge of investigating politicians behaviour. He discusses whether MPs' conduct is getting worse or not, and the possible punishments he could hand down to those that break the rules.And with no PMQs Unpacked this week, Times Radio's very own 'PM', Patrick Maguire, faces questions from callers about ULEZ, troubles for the SNP and how to get an MP to answer a straight question.Plus: Columnists Robert Crampton and Dorothy Byrne discuss the head of Natwest quitting over Nigel Farage's row with Coutts, Rishi Sunak's latest attack tweets and the return of the famous music magazine NME.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/07/2343m 17s

Are The Greens Missing Their Moment?

With the climate at the top of the news agenda, why isn't the Green Party doing better? Matt asks Siân Berry if she can hold the party's only parliamentary seat, and finds out how green politicians in Europe have fared in government. Plus: Columnists Katy Balls and Kieran Andrews discuss whether Sunak, Starmer and Yousaf are leading or following, SNP attacks on the Labour Party, and Gregg Wallace's satirical look at eating human meat. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/07/2343m 20s

When Will Sunak Call An Election?

Should Rishi Sunak go early like Boris Johnson, or cling on until the bitter end like John Major? Matt considers the merits of an early or a late general election with pollsters Beth Mann and Peter Kellner, and the former Number 10 adviser Tim Smith.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Steve Richards discuss Michael Gove's plan to build more houses, tactical voting and the Lib Dems, and why people like to watch politics on the stage. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/07/2340m 33s

What Do The By-Elections Mean?

After the Conservatives suffered two by-election defeats but were spared the embarrassment of a whitewash, Matt explores what it means for Sunak and Starmer's fortunes with polling expert John Curtice, Red Box Editor Patrick Maguire, Conservative Minister Claire Coutinho, Labour's Thangam Debbonaire and Lib Dem leader Ed Davey.Plus: Columnists James Heale and Eleni Courea discuss political expectation management, lobbying via WhatsApp, and why teenagers are getting their news from TikTok. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/07/2357m 30s

MPs On Holiday: What Not To Do

As MPs leave Westminster for the summer recess, Matt brings you his guide to the dos and don'ts of taking some time away from politics. He talks about Harold Wilson's knees, David Cameron's sunburn and the sea being closed with Claire Irvin from the Times and Sunday Times, and former Number 10 adviser Giles Kenningham.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss whether the Tories can pin Just Stop Oil on Labour, how the giant panda has become one of China’s diplomatic tools, and why world leaders are getting shorter. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/07/2340m 56s

PMQs Unpacked: The A Team Is Back

The deputies have gone, and Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer are back at PMQs for their last outing before the summer recess. Matt pauses and unpacks the action from the Commons with Tim Shipman and Stig Abell, as the leaders clash over NHS waiting times and spending.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Carol Lewis discuss inflation, Nigel Farage's bank account, and anti-social youths in Cornwall. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/07/231h 6m

How Do You Fix The Met Police?

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Sir Mark Rowley joins Matt to talk about his plan to overhaul Britain's largest force, warning it will be a 'bumpy journey', and Matt heads out with with two officers to find out what an afternoon answering 999 calls is really like.Plus: Columnists Tim Montgomerie and Jane Merrick discuss whether the government can stop the small boats, Tony Blair and Keir Starmer, and whether you should rewild your garden. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/07/2348m 11s

Death & Taxes

When George Osborne promised to scrap inheritance tax on the family home in 2007, it was credited with deterring Gordon Brown from holding a snap election. Could the government afford to abolish it entirely, and is any kind of tax cut really on the cards? Matt speaks to former cabinet minister John Redwood, and former Labour adviser Lord Wood.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss "rip-off" university degrees, Labour's tangle over the benefits cap, and whether we should let seagulls steal our chips. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/07/2344m 28s

Radio, Religion And Brass Bands

Matt looks at a boom in hyper-local community radio, including the station bringing you the sounds of a hedge for eight hours.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Gaby Hinsliff are joined in the studio by a live brass band as they discuss whether Britain has lost its religion, whether the Conservatives can win the next election, and what locals make of Boris Johnson's swimming pool plans. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/07/2350m 6s

Is Your Council Going Bust?

If your town hall isn't already in trouble, it could be soon. Local authorities around the country are taking drastic action to balance the books, with many now paying the bills for failed business ventures too. Matt is joined by Tim Minogue, editor of Private Eye's Rotten Boroughs column, Kirsty Weakley from the Local Government Chronicle, and journalists covering some of the worst-affected areas.Plus: Columnists Matthew Parris and Matthew Bell ask whether Labour really will get tough over ethics, whether Rishi Sunak is being written off too soon, and whether Keir Starmer needs a voice coach. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/07/2344m 20s

DPMQs Unpacked: A Teachable Moment

It's Deputy PMQs, and Matt and Tim Shipman are joined by a deputy head teacher to help them pause and unpack the action as Oliver Dowden and Angela Rayner trade blows over housing policy and child poverty.Plus: Columnists Janice Turner and John Stevenson discuss Rishi Sunak's hog roast for Tory MPs, the return of Liz Truss, and Keir Starmer's love of the flute. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/07/231h 4m

Finkelstein & Zeffman: Crazy Politics, Crazy Golf

As Henry Zeffman leaves the Times, he joins Daniel Finkelstein and Matt one last time. They discuss what politics will look like in 2030, how journalists protect their sources, and what happened when they went to play crazy golf. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/07/2346m 46s

Can The Tories Hold The Red Wall?

It's been four years since the term 'Red Wall' entered the political lexicon. Matt is joined by the man who coined the phrase, analyst James Kanagasooriam, as well as former Tory chairman Jake Berry and Labour's Jenny Chapman, who lost her seat in 2019. Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Patrick Maguire discuss Joe Biden's UK trip, the prospect of a Labour reshuffle, and why we should be a bit less precious about the loss of railway ticket offices. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/07/2348m 23s

Boris Johnson, One Year On

It's been a year since Boris Johnson resigned outside Downing Street, telling the nation: "Them's the breaks." Matt is joined by impressionist Jon Culshaw and columnists James Marriott and Gaby Hinsliff to discuss exclusive new polling about the former prime minister and whether people want him back.Plus: Decisions, decisions, decisions. We convene a panel of experts to discuss the difficult trade-offs in politics when deciding who gets what, and who misses out. With the chair of the UK Statistics Authority Sir Robert Chote, Professor Paul Dolan from the LSE, former minister Dame Margaret Hodge and Tracey Brown from Sense About Science. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/07/2346m 27s

Could The Tories Lose Four By-Elections?

In two weeks' time Rishi Sunak faces major by-election tests in the seats vacated by Boris Johnson, Nigel Adams and David Warburton, and the suspension of former whip Chris Pincher means there could be at least one more on the way. Matt speaks to Times journalists on the ground to find out where the Conservatives have a chance of holding on.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss oracy lessons with Keir Starmer, whether Bishops should sit in the House of Lords, and where they sit in the great hanging basket debate. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/07/2343m 59s

DPMQs Unpacked: Game, Set and Match

Deputies Oliver Dowden and Angela Rayner stand in at PMQs and clash over mortgage rates and problems in the rental market. Matt pauses and unpacks the action with the help of Tim Shipman and tennis coach Mark Petchey, who joins us live from Wimbledon.Plus Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether Rishi Sunak's low attendance record at PMQs is a problem, whether Robert will be downloading Mark Zuckerberg's new Twitter alternative, and how to solve the rental crisis. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/07/2358m 31s

Sunak's 5 Pledges, 6 Months On

Six months ago today, Rishi Sunak laid out five key pledges that he said would build a better future for the country. Matt and a panel of experts from The Times deliver their verdict on the progress he has made so far and whether or not he is on course to achieve those promises.Plus: For the penultimate time, columnists Danny Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss whether the Tory Party is struggling to renew itself under Rishi Sunak, whether the number of MPs in parliament should be halved but their salaries doubled, and whether anything interesting ever happens at the liaison committee. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/07/2344m 31s

The Exit Interviews: Ian Blackford

Ian Blackford joined the SNP aged 16, going on to lead the party in Westminster during a period of high political drama. In the latest episode of our series reflecting on the careers of MPs leaving Parliament at the next election, he tells Matt about his regrets over negative campaigning against Charles Kennedy, what he thinks about Nicola Sturgeon and Alex Salmond, and how he came to be known as the 'humble crofter'.Plus Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester discuss whether there's anything to celebrate as the NHS turns 75 this week and why Labour and the Lib Dems are targeting middle aged women at the next election Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/07/2341m 37s

Behind The Scenes At Parliament TV

It's been a century since the broadcasters first asked to record what goes on in Parliament, although cameras didn't make it into the Commons chamber until 1989. Matt goes behind the scenes to see how it all works, and to hear about some of the speeches and debates that have defined political history.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether more politicians should take a long-term view, what India takes to a barbecue, and whether Britain is becoming too obsessed with America. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/06/2347m 29s

Margaret McDonagh

Baroness McDonagh, Labour's first female general secretary, was a key figure in the paty and was instrumental in Tony Blair's election victories in 1997 and 2001Following her recent death, Matt revisits an interview she gave in 2017 when she talked about designing the pledge card to keep politicians on message, her trip to the cinema with John Prescott, and what happened when she realised the party had won a landslide.Plus Columnists Patrick Maguire and Matthew Parris discuss whether the government's Rwanda plan is finished, claims that Boris Johnson's allies waged war on the Privileges Committee, and whether Angela Rayner and Lisa Nandy will keep their current shadow cabinet jobs. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/06/2342m 59s

PMQs Unpacked: We've Got The X-Factor

As Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer trade blows over housing statistics, Matt pauses and unpacks the action with the help of Peter Dickson, the voice of the X Factor and Britain's Got Talent.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the degree marking fiasco, the death of the "good chap" system and whether Elton John is brilliant or terrible. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/06/2349m 19s

Focus Group: Martin Lewis For PM

Swing voters from across England give their verdict on Rishi Sunak, Keir Starmer and explain why they'd rather have consumer expert Martin Lewis at Number 10. The good news for the prime minister is they've heard of his five pledges, the bad news is they don't think he can deliver on them - and are in a mood for change. Matt is joined by James Johnson of J.L. Partners to analyse their verdict.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss whether Conservatives should ever intervene to make things cheaper, why there hasn't been a Labour reshuffle, and whether the Tory path to victory is now improbably narrow. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/06/2343m 30s

The Exit Interviews: Ben Bradshaw

Sir Ben Bradshaw spent almost a decade as a junior minister before reaching the cabinet under Gordon Brown. In the latest episode of our series talking to MPs leaving Parliament at the next election, he tells Matt about forming a 'council of elders' to advise the current shadow cabinet on how to be in government, and the importance of doing yoga in the office.Plus columnists Jane Merrick and Matt Bell discuss public sector pay, Prince William's plan to tackle homelessness, and we see what happens when you take apart an e-cigarette. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/06/2346m 26s

Falklands, Robin Day and Peppa Pig

As defence secretary when the Falklands were invaded, John Nott had to check the globe in his office and was horrified to see how far away the islands were.He talks to Matt about the conflict that defined Margaret Thatcher's legacy, and why he walked out of a TV interview when Robin Day called him a 'here-today, gone-tomorrow politician'. He also reveals his connection to the Peppa Pig song.PLUS: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether they feel reassured when Rishi Sunak says "I'm totally, 100% on it", and why James is worried about righteous anger from centrist populists. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/06/2339m 31s

Keir Starmer Does The Quiz

Labour Leader Keir Starmer joins Matt in the studio to discuss help for homeowners, travelling by helicopter, whether Tony Blair should be in the Lords - and he has a go at the quiz, Can You Get To Number 10.Plus: We look at exclusive new polling by YouGov showing the Conservatives may have lost the countryside, and columnists Carol Lewis and Matthew Bell discuss house prices and things they'd ban in restaurants. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/06/2349m 42s

PMQs Unpacked: Jane & Fi Take On Rishi & Keir

As Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer argue over whether there's a "Tory mortgage penalty", Matt is joined by special guests Jane Garvey and Fi Glover to pause and unpack the exchanges from Prime Minister's Questions.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton on whether homeowners should expect the state to help with mortgages, why we look down on people who want to get into politics, and why Robert is a cinnamon roll... and proud of it. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/06/2352m 33s

The Johnson Defence

Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss what we we learned from the MPs defending Boris Johnson during the debate over the Privileges Committee report, and why is Keir Starmer planning to fill the Lords with new Labour peers?Plus: Does Britain care about freedom? New research by US Pollster Frank Luntz shows how important freedom is to the UK public, and how political parties can use the concept to win their votes. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/06/2340m 44s

The Exit Interviews: Gary Streeter

Sir Gary Streeter started out in the SDP, defected to the Tories, was an aide to John Major after his general election defeat and was sacked by Iain Duncan Smith after telling him he was 'unelectable'.He joins Matt for the latest episode of the Exit Interviews - our series talking to MPs leaving Parliament at the next election.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and Iain Martin enter the 'no Boris zone' to discuss Labour's green energy promises, the SNP slumping in the polls, and has a mathematician invented a new swear word? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/06/2344m 8s

Blackadder Goes Fortieth

This week in 1983 one of the great political schemers, Edmund Blackadder hit TV screens for the first time. Matt chart's the politics of the classic sitcom, from the power plays to the by-elections, speaking to Tony Robinson, who played Baldrick, and Miriam Margolyes who was a regular on the show. Plus Columnists India Knight and James Heale discuss whether partygate would have blown over had Boris Johnson fessed up at the very start and whether today's softer work culture is destroying ambition. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/06/2345m 4s

What Next For Boris Johnson?

After the Privileges Committee finds that Boris Johnson misled the Commons, Matt considers his future career options with Times sketchwriter Quentin Letts, biographer Andrew Gimson, the Spectator's Katy Balls and Johnson supporter David Campbell Bannerman.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris on the former prime minister's relationship with the truth, the migrant boat disaster in Greece, and should we take more responsibility for being scammed?  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/06/2359m 34s

PMQs Unpacked: Peer Pressure

Keir Starmer takes aim at Rishi Sunak over Boris Johnson's resignation honours list, while Sunak attacks Labour for picking peers like Tom Watson.Matt, Tim Shipman, Isabel Hardman and Patrick Maguire pause and unpack the exchanges from the House of Commons.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether being in the Lords is all it's cracked up to be, whether abortion laws are fit for purpose and as a council moves to ban ice-cream vans, Robert tells his best ice cream joke.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/06/231h 1m

Boris vs Rishi

Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman are back to discuss the battle over Boris Johnson's honours list, why the former prime minister annoys Rishi Sunak so much, and whether there's any chance of Labour winning all four by-elections on the horizon.Plus: As the Covid inquiry public hearings get underway, Matt looks at the big questions to be answered with a line-up of experts from the Times and the Sunday Times. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/06/2345m 9s

The Exit Interviews: Margaret Hodge

Labour veteran Dame Margaret Hodge sits down for The Exit Interviews, our new series featuring MPs leaving Parliament at the next election.She talks to Matt about her 30-year career in the Commons including being neighbours with Tony Blair, her battles with the BNP, and what she really said to Jeremy Corbyn when she confronted him over antisemitism.Plus: Columnists Iain Martin and Libby Purves discuss whether Keir Starmer is the luckiest man in politics after a weekend of Conservative and SNP chaos, and will Boris Johnson shut up and go away? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/06/2344m 46s

Donald or Ron or Nikki or Mike or Tim or Chris or Doug vs Joe

Former US President Donald Trump has been criminally charged for the second time in three months, but is still the favourite to secure the Republican nomination in the race for the White House. Can any of the other candidates stop him? Matt speaks to Trump's former Press Secretary Sean Spicer.Plus, columnists India Knight and James Marriott talk about how to have a barbecue in a heatwave, why India hates emails, and should we leave beaches covered in seaweed? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/06/2348m 53s

Escaping Hitler and Stalin

Daniel Finkelstein, Times columnist and friend of the podcast, tells the story of his parents' remarkable journey from the Soviet Gulags and the Nazi concentration camps of World War II to safety in north London.Matt joins him at the Wiener Holocaust Library, home to his grandfather's archive documenting the Nazi rise to power, to discuss his book Hitler, Stalin, Mum & Dad: A Family Memoir of Miraculous Survival.Plus Manveen Rana and Matt Frei discuss what Rishi Sunak achieved on his trip to Washington, what Caroline Lucas achieved as the only Green MP, and London Mayor Sadiq Khan explains what it's like throwing a pitch at a baseball game. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/06/2352m 21s

DPMQs Unpacked: Dire Punchlines

With Rishi Sunak away in America, deputy prime minister Oliver Dowden faces off against Labour's number two, Angela Rayner. Matt, Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the exchanges as the two trade blows over the Covid inquiry, and Rayner tells Dowden his punchlines are 'dire'.PLUS: Columnists Hadley Freeman and Oliver Kamm discuss weight loss drugs, Oxfam's controversial new advert, and Libby Purves reviews the actors reconstructing Prince Harry's courtroom evidence. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/06/2358m 33s

Mr Sunak Goes to Washington

Rishi Sunak is off to meet Joe Biden at the White House for the first time and will hope to make a big impression (or at least get the President to pronounce his name correctly). Matt discusses the the diplomatic dos and don'ts in Washington D.C. with a former ambassador and hears from advisers who learned the hard way what happens when a trip goes wrong.Plus Columnists Quentin Letts and Henry Zeffman discuss how to solve a problem like Ed Milliband, and whether George Eustice was right when he told Matt that Sunak shares David Cameron's ability to think on his feet in front of the media. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/06/2345m 33s

The Exit Interviews: George Eustice

Matt is back with the first episode in a new series, The Exit Interviews, sitting down with MPs leaving Parliament at the next election to talk about their highs and lows, their best and worst bosses, and the lessons they've learned from politics. Former cabinet secretary George Eustice worked on his family farm, stood for election for UKIP and went on to be press secretary to David Cameron. He talks about Brexit, trade deals, and why Liz Truss didn't listen to him.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester, Libby Purves and Paul Johnson discuss Rishi Sunak's speech about channel migrants, whether universities should have a legal duty of care for students, and how fair is our system of taxes? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/06/2345m 33s

How (Not) to Write a Manifesto

Patrick Maguire is in for Matt, looking at Labour's 1983 manifesto - 'the longest suicide note in history' - 40 years on, with historian Phil Tinline. He also finds out how to write a modern manifesto with two people with first-hand experience, Ayesha Hazarika and Robert Colvile.PLUS: Timandra Harkness and Jimmy McLoughlin discuss Boris Johnson's WhatsApps, whether MPs who are under police investigation should be barred from Parliament, and whether AI is an existential threat. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/06/2343m 46s

Down Under Take Over

Whether it's a love of Kylie, cricket or beer, Australia and Britain have plenty in common when it comes to popular culture - and politics, with a new wave of strategists from down under stirring things up in Westminster.Patrick Maguire in for Matt Chorley speaks to Senator James McGrath, who worked on Boris Johnson's mayoral campaign, John McTernan, who worked for Labor Prime Minister Julia Gillard, and Kathy Lette, Australian-British author and comedy writer.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss Boris Johnson's WhatsApps, a campaign against the 'death tax', free speech tsars and why Spain doesn't want to go to the polls in the middle of the summer. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/06/2342m 24s

Running The Numbers For Thatcher

It was the leadership contest that finally ended Margaret Thatcher's premiership - even though she won in the first round. The year was 1990, when the veteran prime minister took on her challenger Michael Heseltine but failed to deliver the knockout blow.Patrick Maguire in for Matt Chorley speaks to Conservative peer and pollster Lord Hayward, who marked the books for the first ballot and knew how widespread disenchantment with the Iron Lady had become.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss a warning from one of the "godfathers" of AI, whether police should attend mental health cases, and why khaki is the new black - and what it's got to do with President Zelensky. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/05/2327m 58s

Should Johnson's WhatsApps Stay Secret?

While Matt is away, Patrick Maguire is joined by columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Miranda Green to discuss whether the government should hand Boris Johnson's private messages to the Covid inquiry, whether the PM's country house Chequers could be turned into Camp David, and whether Labour can sell plans to borrow billions to the voters at the next election.Plus: Patrick's been to meet Great British Bake Off star Dame Prue Leith to discuss her campaign to legalise assisted dying following the death of her brother. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/05/2341m 49s

How Call of Duty Became Britain's Post-Brexit Battleground

Matt is away for the bank holiday, but in the meantime we have another guest episode from the team at Stories of Our Times - one remarkable story, told in depth, each day.Microsoft has found itself in a bitter war of words with both its gaming rival Sony and the UK authorities over a multi-billion dollar takeover bid of games developer Activision Blizzard. After the UK’s competition watchdog blocked the deal, what does it say for Britain’s post-Brexit business strategy?Jenny Kleeman speaks to Times Technology Business Editor Katie Prescott. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/05/2327m 35s

Sex, Lies And Boris Johnson

Cleo Watson has gone from being deputy chief of staff for Boris Johnson to writing a satirical 'bonkbuster' set in and around Westminster, Downing Street and Chequers.Matt talks to her about life inside Number 10, partygate, working for Barack Obama and Dominic Cummings - and we get Mariella Frostrup to read out some of the novel's raciest moments.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Gaby Hinsliff talk about sending more northerners to the House of Lords, Boris Johnson's new house in the country, and Britain's favourite railway station. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/05/2347m 56s

Focus Group: I Haven't Heard Of Him

Undecided voters from across England make up this month's Times Radio Focus Group. They give their verdict on record levels of net migration, and their damning assessment of Rishi Sunak and Sir Keir Starmer (provided they'd even heard of the Labour leader).Matt is joined by James Johnson of J.L. Partners to analyse their answers.Plus Manveen Rana and Matthew Bell discuss Labour talking tough on immigration, the Times investigation into online fraud, and whether the Chelsea Flower Show is a festival of smugness. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/05/2343m 7s

PMQs Unpacked: You Owe Me Dinner

Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer battle it out over migration, inflation and apprenticeships. Matt, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the exchanges, and Tim makes a bet on Boris Johnson's name cropping up. Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether students are getting a raw deal, Robert's trip to Iraq with the late author Martin Amis, and why Alice has started keeping bees.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/05/231h 3m

What Is The Point of the Points-Based System

After more than a decade of Conservative promises, targets and legislation to cut the rate of net migration, official figures are expected to show it has more than doubled from pre-Brexit levels. Matt discusses the impact of migration with guests including Madeleine Sumption, David Goodhart and James Kirkup.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss whether Dominic Raab says stupid things, Rishi Sunak's headache over what to do about Suella Braverman and the latest 'anti-woke' faction in the Tory party. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/05/2341m 14s

Can Starmer Win Without Scotland?

After years of decline north of the border, can a win for Labour in Scotland clear the path for Keir Starmer to secure a majority and get the keys to No 10?Matt talks to Scottish Labour Leader Anas Sarwar, Times Scottish Political Editor Kieran Andrews and pollster Emily Gray from Ipsos Scotland.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss whether Labour's promises have cut through with the voters, the London theatre holding a 'black only' night and Giles Coren explains what it's like to go on a speed awareness course. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/05/2339m 48s

Photographing Five Prime Ministers

For more than a decade Andrew Parsons was the official Downing Street photographer - chronicling life at No 10 with every prime minister from David Cameron to Rishi Sunak. He talks to Matt about capturing everything from David Cameron pre-emptively writing his resignation letter in 2015, to THAT lock down breaking birthday party in the Cabinet room.Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss the changing makeup of the modern family, the surprising number of prime ministers who lost a father at an early age, and which is better - the arts or science? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/05/2341m 45s

The Biggest Threat to the West

Sir Richard Dearlove began his career in the intelligence services at the height of the Cold War, and went on to become 'C' - the head of MI6. He tells Matt what he thinks will happen to Putin, Trump, and why China is the biggest threat to the West today.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss Rishi Sunak backing away from his pledge on migration, whether Nigel Farage should be in the House of Lords, and which politicians sell the most Toby Jugs. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/05/2342m 8s

DPMQs Unpacked: Olive v Ange

It's Deputy Prime Minister's questions with new DPM Oliver Dowden facing Angela Rayner for the first time. Matt, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the exchanges as Rayner accuses the Tories of being on a "conveyor belt of crisis", while Dowden compares her and Keir Starmer to This Morning's Holly and Phil.Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss Keir Starmer's pledge to bring house prices down, why men are at fault for the falling birthrate, and they taste Tom Hanks' favourite drink. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/05/2355m 50s

Stuck In The Middle With You

Exclusive YouGov polling for Times Radio shows that plenty of Labour voters - and even more Liberal Democrats - would like to see a coalition between the two parties after the next election.Matt discusses the history of Lib Dem 'equidistance' with former advisers to Paddy Ashdown and party leader Sir Ed Davey.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss whether the next Tory leadership contest is underway, Keir Starmer's relationship with Labour's council leaders and votes for 16-year-olds. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/05/2348m 45s

Turkey's Turning Point

Turks are at a historic turning point - choosing between two radically different visions for the future of their country.With the battle for the presidency almost certain to go to a second round and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan facing his biggest challenge for two decades, Matt and a panel of experts explain what it means for democracy around the world.Plus: Columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester on whether religion in politics can translate from the US to the UK, and Labour's plan to make working from home a legal right.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/05/2337m 55s

Is It 1974 All Over Again?

A Conservative prime minister, soaring inflation, strikes bringing the country to a standstill - and Britain hosting the Eurovision Song Contest. Welcome to 1974.Matt looks at what happened when Ted Heath asked 'who governs Britain', and considers whether Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer could end up following the path of Heath and Wilson. Plus: Columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether Zelensky should speak at Eurovision, Keir Starmer abandoning his autobiography, and who is Millennial Millie? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/05/2344m 41s

How To Interview A Politician

Rob Burley has had a ringside seat at some of the biggest political TV grillings for more than a quarter of a century, working with interviewers including Andrew Neil, Jeremy Paxman and Andrew Marr.He joins Matt to discuss his book, 'Why is This Lying Bastard Lying to Me?', and the secret to getting a politician to give a straight answer.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed discuss why more young people than ever are living with their parents, whether we've reached peak coalition speculation, and how a member of the Wurzels is marking Somerset Day. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/05/2345m 32s

PMQs Unpacked: Zippy's Rainbow Coalition

The star of children's TV show Rainbow joins Matt, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges at PMQs. As Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer go head-to-head across the despatch box, does Starmer sound a bit like Zippy? Plus Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton on John Major's call for fewer prisoners, how seriously the NHS takes dementia and why the Japanese are taking training courses to learn how to smile. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/05/231h 1m

Why Are Tory Voters Switching To Labour?

Matt discusses exclusive YouGov polling examining the reasons why 2019 Conservative voters are switching to Labour. Are they really embracing Keir Starmer's party, or just temporarily repelled by the Tories?Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss speculation about a hung parliament, how Labour should handle questions about forming a coalition, and whether the police were too heavy-handed at the Coronation. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/05/2347m 23s

Battle Of The Political Bands

Forget the Coronation concert - Matt pits politicians singing and playing instruments against one another, and discusses the state of live music in the UK with guests including Wheatus frontman Brendan B. Brown.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss whether the spirit of volunteering can be revived, did the Conservatives get a free pass after their local election losses, and should you bet on Penny Mordaunt as next Tory leader? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/05/2335m 54s

What Do The Local Elections Mean?

Millions have had their say in elections across England, but what do the results tell us about the chances of Rishi Sunak or Keir Starmer ending up in Downing Street?Matt presents the best analysis from Times journalists Henry Zeffman, Daniel Finkelstein and Lara Spirit, and interviews key figures from the poitical parties.Plus Columnists India Knight and James Mariott on whether the Tories can win without building houses, which mango chutney to put in your Coronation chicken, and whether James could be Taylor Swift's dream man. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/05/2348m 40s

Penny Mordaunt: How To Carry A Sword

Matt talks to Lord President of the Privy Council Penny Mordaunt about her role in the Coronation, where she'll carry the four-foot sword of state in the King's procession. He also heads to the Tower of London to hear about the history of the Crown Jewels.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris on the future of the Commonwealth under the new King, how Turkish elections could change the face of Europe, and whether Dundee cake should be a protected food. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/05/2343m 20s

PMQs Unpacked: They're Going To Need a Bigger Note

Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer trade blows over housing and the infamous 'no money left' note at the last Prime Minister's Questions before the local elections. Matt is joined by Tim Shipman and Ayesha Hazarika to pause and unpack the action from the Commons chamber.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Iain Martin discuss managing election expectations, Joanna Cherry being 'no-platformed' and policing eco-protestors. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/05/231h 1m

Sue Gray, Simon Case And Surviving Politics

With calls for cabinet secretary Simon Case to resign and Sue Gray to be blocked from joining Keir Starmer's team, Matt discusses their fate with columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman.Plus: Journalist Rafael Behr thrived on the drama of politics, until he suffered a heart attack - he discusses his new book 'Politics: A Survivor's Guide'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/05/2343m 52s

The Swing Voters Who’ll Decide The Next Election

This week millions of voters will go to the polls as more than 8,000 council seats in England are contested in the local elections – the most significant gauge of public opinion before Rishi Sunak faces Keir Starmer at a general election. Behind the scenes, politicians and pollsters are trying to work out exactly who they need to win over, and how they can do it without losing their core supporters.In this guest episode from the Stories of Our Times team, Manveen Rana speaks to Red Box reporter Lara Spirit and former YouGov president Peter Kellner. - Find out whether there are elections in your area: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-am-a/voter/your-election-information- New photo ID requirements to vote: https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-am-a/voter/voter-id/accepted-forms-photo-id Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/05/2329m 39s

Rock Against Racism

45 years ago, tens of thousands of people marched through London for the Rock Against Racism concert featuring some of the biggest names in music at the time. Matt speaks to organiser Roger Huddle, singer-songwriter Tom Robinson, and Billy Bragg who was in the crowd.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and Jenni Russell discuss the resignation of BBC chairman Richard Sharp, gambling reforms targetted at young people and the return of Grange Hill. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/04/2344m 24s

Focus Group: He's A Snake

Undecided voters in Scotland who previously backed the SNP give their verdict in the Times Radio Focus Group. Humza Yousaf is 'unremarkable', but which party leader is a snake?Matt is joined by James Johnson of JL Partners to discuss the panel's views on the Scottish government, independence and party leaders on both sides of the border.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matt Charlton discuss plans to tackle problem gambling, why Britons like their neighbours more than in other other nations, and whether baked beans have been unfairly maligned. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/04/2345m 19s

PMQs Unpacked: Zippy and George

While Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer clash over the cost of living, Matt Chorley and Tim Shipman pause and unpack the exchanges - and do a passable impression of Rainbow's Zippy and George.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss police numbers, divorce and the Royals, and losing your job because you keep swearing. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/04/2355m 43s

Corbyn Won In 2017. No He Didn't.

Matt talks to American academic and author Noam Chomsky about the conflict in Ukraine, the end of the world - and who won the 2017 general election.Plus: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss Danny's prediction about Oliver Dowden coming true, why ministers aren't as good as they used to be, and whether celebrity endorsements help win elections. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/04/2346m 17s

Sir Softy or Keir Hard-y

Keir Starmer keeps talking about his record as Director of Public Prosecutions, arguing it shows he was tough on crime - but the Conservatives think it proves he's actually 'Sir Softie'. Matt finds out what a DPP does, and looks at Starmer's successes and his failures in the job. Plus columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester on Diane Abbott sparking a new anti-semitism row in the Labour party,  Sir Michael Morpurgo's call to stop "nitpicking" classic books, and Matt and Rachel apologise to our Welsh listeners . Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/04/2344m 4s

Are You Having a Laugh?

Which party's supporters can take a joke, and which have a sense of humour failure? Matt looks at the league table of humourlessness with Private Eye editor Ian Hislop and comedians Geoff Norcott and Tiff Stevenson.Plus columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss Dominic Raab's resignation, the 'Oasis album' made by AI, and journalist Tom McTague explains the political power of 'Deano'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/04/2342m 22s

Testing The Schools Minister

Nick Gibb is one of Britain's longest-serving ministers, in office (almost) continuously since the Conservatives came to power in 2010. Matt quizzes him about subjects including strikes, Ofsted, mobile phones in classrooms and appearing in an episode of the Simpsons.Plus columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Paris discuss whether Rishi Sunak has caved in to his backbenchers, what happens if the Poles return to Poland, and whether any of the MPs running the London marathon can beat Matthew's record. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/04/2345m 15s

PMQs Unpacked: Arise, Sir Softy

Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer trade personal attacks over crime at Prime Minister's Questions, as Sunak dubs Starmer 'Sir Softy'. Matt is joined by Tim Shipman, Lucy Fisher and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the action.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss disruptive protests, how to live well, Michael Gove's cigarette shed, and what's the first cassette tape they ever bought? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/04/2359m 6s

Is Rishi Too Rich?

Matt is joined by Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman to discuss whether Rishi Sunak's wealth is a problem after it was revealed he's being investigated by the ethics watchdog, and whether Peter Mandelson was right to tell us there's a 50-50 chance of a hung parliament.Plus: As the government announces plans to get machetes and 'zombie knives' off the streets, Matt takes a look at the wider issue of knife crime. He speaks to to Conservative MP Anna Firth, whose predecessor Sir David Amess was stabbed to death in 2021, and to two parents who both lost their children to knife crime. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/04/2347m 42s

The Reagan Question

In the 1980 presidential election, Ronald Reagan asked "Are you better off than you were four years ago?"With the economy likely to define the next general election here in the UK, Matt looks at who will win the voters' trust with former cabinet minister Peter Mandelson, Paul Johnson from the IFS, YouGov's Lukas Paleckis, and former Treasury adviser Poppy Trowbridge.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the cost of harm in maternity care and the new name for the Brecon Beacons, before thinking of a number with maths legend Johnny Ball. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/04/2345m 22s

The Death of TV Satire?

With Have I Got News For You one of the last satirical comedy shows still standing, Patrick Maguire asks why satire on our screens seems to be dying a slow death.He speaks to John O'Farrell, former writer on Spitting Image and HIGNFY, Matt Forde, co-writer of Spitting Image the Musical, and TV critic Siobhan Synnot.Plus columnists India Knight and James Marriott on the nurses' strikes, whether we are living too much in the virtual world, and how many Tories does it take to fill a pothole? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/04/2351m 32s

When to Hold a General Election

When it comes to holding a general election, timing is everything. With Rishi Sunak reportedly hoping to pull off a surprise win late in 2024, Patrick Maguire is joined by historian Phil Tinline and former advisers Ayesha Hazarika and Giles Kenningham to discuss when to go early, and when to go late.Plus columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Syed on Liz Truss' speech to a US think-tank, why a former Tory party chair has said Suella Braverman's rhetoric is racist, and Kirstie Allsop's call to cut stamp duty for the elderly. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/04/2353m 50s

Difficult Days For Humza Yousaf

Is Humza Yousaf done before he even gets started? Patrick Maguire looks at the SNP leader's chances after two weeks in office and a series of revelations about the party's finances. He speaks to Times columnist Alex Massie - who thinks it's all over - and the journalist Ruth Wishart, who thinks he can recover.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the junior doctors' leader going on holiday, Alice defends the Dalai Lama, and can the high street be saved? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/04/2335m 33s

Does Negative Campaigning Work?

Patrick Maguire discusses political advertising - does going negative deliver, or do we all suffer when the parties get down in the gutter? He speaks to Steve Parker, former Head of Strategy at M&C Saatchi, author Ali Goldsworthy and campaigner Peter Tatchell.Plus columnists Henry Zeffman and Oliver Kamm discuss Keir Starmer's aggressive new approach, whether the Conservatives can win on the economy, and Joe Biden's visit to Belfast. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/04/2349m 50s

Good Friday Agreement 25 Years On: Inside the Negotiations

Carole Walker, sitting in for Matt Chorley, speaks to key figures that drafted the deal including Mark Durkan, assistant to SDLP leader John Hume, and Irish diplomat David Donoghue. Journalist Denis Murray joins the discussion too as he relives what it was like to report on the historic event.Plus Lord Howard and Lord Forsyth discuss Margaret Thatcher's legacy, 10 years after her death. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/04/2337m 26s

Focus Group: Hugh Grant vs. Desperate Dan

Matt is joined by James Johnson of JL Partners who leads a panel of undecided voters giving their verdict on the government, Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer.Find out who their ideal Prime Minister would be and who reminds them of Hugh Grant and Desperate Dan.Plus columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss the Conservative MP who offered to lobby for gambling investors, sewage, farming and Matthew being awarded Freedom of the City of London. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/04/2343m 55s

The Battle for Waterlooville

Suella Braverman faces losing her seat in a reselection battle with Flick Drummond. Matt speaks to journalist Michael Crick and local councillors Caroline Brook and Roger Bird about who will come out on top. Plus columnists Janice Turner and Robert Crampton on same-sex spaces, and whether they know their journalistic jargon. And two Stevenage women take the Stevenage Woman test. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/04/2340m 14s

Killing Thatcher

Matt revisits the last night of the Conservative party conference in 1984 when the IRA bombed the Grand Hotel in Brighton in an attempt to kill Margaret Thatcher. Author Rory Carroll explains how the attack was carried out and journalist Philip Webster remembers what it was like reporting at the scene.Columnists Danny Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss Starmer's lack of vision, the ramifications of Trump's indictment and the legacy of Nigel Lawson, who died aged 91. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/04/2344m 49s

Clever Things to Say About Polling

Matt shares the five things you need to know about British politics right now by looking at what's happening behind the headline polls with opinion experts Robert Hayward and Tanya Abraham. Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves on what Sanna Marin's defeat in Finland shows about young, liberal, female leaders. The government's plan to tackle grooming gangs and why theatres are a hotbed of bad behaviour. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/04/2339m 58s

The Day The Times Was Bombed

From the first camera to take aerial pictures over Everest to documents from the day the paper's offices were bombed during World War Two, the Times archives are home to decades of photography, cuttings and artefacts.Matt takes a look at historic items including a handwritten letter from Winston Churchill and Henry Zeffman's Brexit flowchart.Plus James Marriott and Lara Spirit attempt to list all the announcements the government tried to sneak out before recess, and what it's like to be the first ever Generation Z government minister. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/03/2340m 55s

VAT's Life

It's 50 years since Value Added Tax was introduced, and it's been a political football ever since. Matt discusses Jaffa Cakes, the pasty tax and the omnishambles budget with experts, campaigners and the former boss of Greggs.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matt Dathan discuss food fraud, when to get a heat pump and why there are so many parking apps. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/03/2344m 0s

PMQs Unpacked: Thugs and Scum

It's Deputy Prime Minister's questions with Dominic Raab and Angela Rayner standing in for Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer.Matt, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the exchanges as Rayner compares Raab to a thug, and Raab reminds her she once labelled Tories 'scum'.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss the damage caused by gambling, being nasty about former party leaders, before Matt takes a test set by his old shorthand teacher. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/03/2356m 58s

'Putin of The Labour Party'

As Jeremy Corbyn is barred from standing as a Labour MP, Momentum founder Jon Lansman accuses Keir Starmer of behaving like 'Putin of the Labour Party'.Matt is also joined by veteran MP Dame Margaret Hodge and Times Red Box Editor Patrick Maguire to discuss Corbyn's future, and what's left of the Labour left.Plus columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman on what Humza Yousaf's election means for Scottish independence, the power of protest, and whether fans of Rishi Sunak are Rishologists or Sunaketeers. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/03/2344m 24s

Oh, Doctor Beeching!

On this day 60 years ago Dr Richard Beeching wielded the axe, closing thousands of miles of railway and thousands of stations. Matt talks to the music mogul Pete Waterman, who lost his job on the railways thanks to the cuts, author Charles Loft, and campaigners who want lines around the country to be reopened.Plus columnists Libby Purves and Tom McTague discuss Keir Starmer comparing himself to a football manager, claims that Suella Braverman is a 'sock puppet', and the risks of raising the state pension age. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/03/2340m 15s

Secrets of the Red Box

Matt Chorley delves into the history of the iconic Red Box, the symbol of power given to every cabinet minister and prime minister.We find out what's in them, hear from the man behind the company that makes them, and what they meant to David Cameron, Ed Balls and George Osborne.Plus: Columnists James Marriott and India Knight discuss Nicola Sturgeon’s farewell speech, how good is artificial intelligence at impersonating a prime minister, and an elaborate practical joke in the Tory MP WhatsApp group. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/03/2345m 21s

Focus Group: Tories Turning the Tide?

Swing voters from across England say they prefer Rishi Sunak to Keir Starmer as prime minister in the latest Times Radio Focus Group.Matt is joined by James Johnson of JL Partners to discuss their views on the party leaders, the Budget, and whether Boris Johnson is a 'liar liar pants on fire'.Plus columnists Manveen Rana and Matthew Parris discuss Johnson's partygate evidence, Rishi Sunak's decision to publish his tax return, and Keir Starmer's habit of making big promises. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/03/2342m 10s

PMQs Unpacked: Get Out of Westminster

Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. Rishi Sunak claims Labour is 'soft on crime, soft on criminals', while Keir Starmer says the prime minister is out of touch and needs 'to get out of Westminster'.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss when you should get the state pension, whether Louise Casey should run the Metropolitan Police, and Boris Johnson's grilling over 'partygate'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/03/2354m 20s

Food Fight

Matt speaks to Leon co-founder Henry Dimbleby, who has just resigned as the government's 'food tsar'. He explains why he's quit, what's wrong with our supply chains and why it's so difficult to persuade the Government to change Britain's diet.Plus columnists Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman on Boris Johnson's Partygate defence, and whether Nicola Sturgeon's social media warning echoes Tony Blair's 'feral beasts' speech. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/03/2343m 0s

D-Day for Boris Johnson

Will the inquiry into whether Boris Johnson misled Parliament over Partygate finish his political career - or open the door for his return?Matt is joined by Times Political Editor Steve Swinford to bring you the definitive guide to the Committee, the key evidence for the prosecution and defence, and what it all means for Johnson's future.Plus: Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss cropped photos of Suella Braverman in Rwanda, paying to see a GP in Ireland, and whether the John Lewis model can survive. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/03/2342m 3s

David Owen: Labour, Limehouse and “hubris syndrome”

David Owen became foreign secretary aged just 38, before going on to break away from Labour as one of the ‘Gang of Four’ and lead the SDP.He talks to Matt about this defining moment in British political history, the legacy of the party today and whether prime ministers suffer from 'hubris syndrome'.Plus columnists India Knight and James Marriott rate MPs on their TikTok skills and discuss politicians doing silly things for charity. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/03/231h 2m

Get Off The Golf Course

Matt looks at the government's new plan to get seven million adults back into a job. He speaks to Work and Pensions Secretary Mel Stride, who says he's not trying to stop people playing golf, while listeners share their reasons for leaving the employment market.Plus: Columnists Manveen Rana and Matt Charlton discuss the death of the midlife crisis, when Britpop turned on Tony Blair, and Jeremy Hunt's Brexit pubs guarantee. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/03/2344m 52s

We're Going On A Jeremy Hunt

It's Budget day, and we've been on a Jeremy Hunt - talking to people around the country called Jeremy who all look after the finances of a local club, society or association.Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire for PMQs Unpacked, pausing and unpacking the action from the Commons chamber as Keir Starmer accuses Rishi Sunak of stoking a culture war.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton talk about bunking off school, when interviews go wrong, and how Robert was transformed into Harry Styles. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/03/2354m 3s

3 Dads Walking

Matt is joined by three men whose daughters took their own lives to talk about their campaign for suicide prevention to become part of the school curriculum.Andy Airey, Mike Palmer and Tim Owen are known as the '3 Dads Walking' because they've raised more than £1m for charity through a series of walks in memory of their daughters Sophie, Beth and Emily. Plus: Brand new columnist pairing Daniel Finkelstein and Henry Zeffman discuss the latest polling on small boats, Theresa May writing a book, and are people on the left more miserable than people on the right? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/03/2344m 37s

Chorley's Budget Airline

Ahead of this week's budget Matt jets around the G7 to speak to a raft of international correspondents who lay out the economic problems they're facing, and the policy solutions they're implementing. The Times' Economics Editor Mehreen Khan rounds things off by previewing what's to come in Jeremy Hunt's statement on Wednesday.Plus columnists Libby Purves and Rachel Sylvester on the resolution of the Gary Lineker saga, the loss of alcopops from the inflation shopping basket and Mark Drakeford's moving speech following the sudden death of his wife. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/03/2334m 43s

Strong Message Here

From Ron Burgundy to Jeremy Corbyn's 'strong message here', Matt looks at what happens when the TV autocue goes wrong. He speaks to Lauri Plesco, the woman who has operated the teleprompter for almost every US president since Jimmy Carter.Plus columnists Katy Balls and Jimmy McLoughlin discuss Rishi Sunak's day trip to Paris, whether the prime minister is on a roll, and whether lawyers really are all lefties. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/03/2343m 19s

Happy Birthday, Sir Humphrey

It's 170 years since Gladstone commissioned the Northcote-Trevelyan review, which gave birth to the impartial civil service. Why has the system survived, and is it now under threat? Matt speaks to former cabinet secretary Lord Butler, who ran Whitehall under Thatcher, Major and Blair, and to the co-creator of 'Yes Minister' Jonathan Lynn, who reveals which modern minister is heir to Jim Hacker.Plus columnists Jane Merrick and Tom McTague on the government simultaneously stopping small boats and welcoming foreign workers, whether weight-loss drugs can help cut the benefits bill, and why so many school students have private tutors. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/03/2342m 20s

PMQs Unpacked: Back To School

Matt is joined by Tim Shipman, Lara Spirit and the politics students of Vyners School to pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. Keir Starmer says the government's illegal migration bill won't deter channel crossings, while Rishi Sunak calls Starmer 'just another lefty lawyer'.Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss Gary Lineker, making flashing a criminal offence, and how to get children reading with author Anthony Horowitz. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/03/2359m 25s

Rishi, parlez-vous français?

Ahead of Rishi Sunak's trip to France for the first Anglo-French summit in five years, Matt discusses the state of relations between Paris and London. He's joined by the former ambassador to the UK Sylvie Bermann, and a French teacher gives the prime minister tips for his conversation with Emmanuel Macron.Plus columnists Iain Martin and Dorothy Byrne discuss the government's plan to stop small boats crossing the channel, Sue Gray's new job, and why the UK has become more socially liberal in such a short space of time. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/03/2338m 54s

The Next Spymaster

Sir Jeremy Fleming, the director of the intelligence agency GCHQ, is stepping down after nearly six years in the role. Matt speaks to two of his predecessors, Sir David Omand and Sir Francis Richards, about what it takes to run the UK's intelligence, cyber and security agency.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and John Stevens on Boris Johnson putting his dad forward for a knighthood, why Keir Starmer is dodging questions over Sue Gray, and what Jeremy Hunt has in store in the budget . Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/03/2342m 26s

'I Haven't Felt Happy Since Brexit'

The Northern Ireland Minister and self-styled Brexit hardman Steve Baker sits down with Matt and Times Political Editor Steve Swinford for a frank discussion about the severe depression and anxiety he has suffered since the EU referendum.He also discusses Rishi Sunak's Brexit deal, being the admin on every Whatsapp group in Westminster, and says it's fanciful to think Boris Johnson could return to Downing Street. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/03/2348m 20s

Frank Field

In 2021 Frank Field, now Lord Field, was told he had weeks to live. 18 months on he tells Matt he's published his memoirs and is 'just happily waiting for the end'. He talks about his faith, his clashes with Gordon Brown, his relationship with Margaret Thatcher and his advice to Jeremy Corbyn.Plus: Columnists India Knight and Jimmy McLoughlin discuss doing government business on Whatsapp, politicians keeping their hands in their pocket and vaccinating chickens. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/03/2344m 5s

PMQs Unpacked: Do Widzenia, Pet

Matt is joined by Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. Keir Starmer claims that the average family in Britain will be poorer than in Poland by 2030, and Rishi Sunak says the Labour leader should stop making unfunded spending commitments.Plus: Columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss Matt Hancock's Whatsapp messages, docking child benefit for missing school and whether vaping is safe for young people. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/03/2356m 56s

Final Finkelvitch

Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch have been the cleverest duo on the podcast for nearly three years. Today Matt and Danny say goodbye to David, who is leaving The Times, with an hour long special in which they discuss the Brexit deal, trust in politicians and listener questions for the 'Cerberus of Columnists'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/02/2340m 41s

Remembering Betty Boothroyd

Betty Boothroyd, the first female speaker of the House of Commons, has died aged 93. Matt is joined by current speaker Sir Lindsey Hoyle to reflect on her no-nonsense style, humour and charm.And Nigeria decides: After Africa's most populous country went to the polls over the weekend to choose a new president, we hear how the election is unfolding and what's at stake.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and Giles Coren discuss the Brexit deal, Keir Starmer's economic plan and what are Anglo-Saxon shore forts? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/02/2341m 14s

Floella Benjamin

Matt hosted this year's Parliamentary Book Awards, where he sat down with winner and children's TV legend Floella Benjamin.Columnists Manveen Rana and Katy Balls discuss the surprising number of people who want to be Tory MPs, the public's continued support for Ukraine, and Therese Coffey's suggestion that we eat more turnips.Plus: Matt heads to Turnips restaurant in London's Borough Market to find out more about the environment secretary's favourite seasonal vegetable. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/02/2344m 54s

Focus Group: Labour Switchers

The Times Radio focus group returns, this time with a group who voted Conservative in 2019 but say they currently plan to back Labour. Matt is joined by James Johnson from J.L Partners to discuss his findings, which aren't all good news for Keir Starmer - one voter calls him a 'wooden turncoat'.Plus columnists James Marriott and Jane Merrick on the government's plan to reduce the backlog for asylum claims, Keir Starmer's five 'national missions' and ITV's Mark Pougatch remembers football commentator John Motson. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/02/2345m 37s

PMQs Unpacked: Deal Me In

Matt is joined by Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit to pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. Rishi Sunak says he'll keep fighting until he gets a new Brexit deal for Northern Ireland, while Keir Starmer asks if he'll let MPs vote on his plan.Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether Digital ID cards are inevitable, why there's a tomato shortage, and Robert showcases his impression of William Hague. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/02/2359m 30s

Got To Have Faith

After SNP leadership candidate Kate Forbes faces questions about her views on gay marriage, Matt discusses the role of faith in politics with columnists Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch, while former Lib Dem leader Tim Farron says she should be honest about her religious beliefs.Plus: Over the last six months, employees at 60 British businesses have been taking part in an experiment - can they move to a four-day working week without losing any pay? Now the results are in, Matt speaks to some of the firms who took part to find out whether it could be replicated across the country. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/02/2359m 40s

How to Talk to Putin

Baroness Ashton was the first - and last - Briton to lead European foreign policy, with an in-tray including Iran's nuclear programme, natural disasters and talks in Ukraine during the 2014 pro-democracy protests.She tells Matt what it was like to sit across the table from Putin, and whether she became a lightning rod for critics of the EU at home.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and Camilla Long compare rewriting Roald Dahl's books to tearing down a museum, and discuss whether we should bother listening to economic forecasts. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/02/2343m 43s

Do Protests Work?

Twenty years on from the march against the Iraq War, Patrick Maguire is joined by historian Phil Tinline to ask whether protests ever actually work. They hear from some of the people who have organised the UK's biggest recent marches, including the ban on fox hunting, tuition fees and Brexit, to reflect on how effective their protests really were. Plus the New Statesman's Rachel Cunliffe and former Number 10 adviser Jimmy McLoughlin discuss whether women are routinely subjected to victim blaming after Lancashire Police released the health information of missing person Nicola Bulley, why Liz Truss is staging her comeback, and the state of Britain's courts. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/02/2344m 21s

Life After Sturgeon

Patrick Maguire get's the latest polling on Nicola Sturgeon’s possible successor with Dr Emily Gray from Ipsos and explores the wider implication of her resignation on the UK political landscape. Expert analysis comes from former deputy leader for the SNP Jim Sillars, Scottish Political Editor Kieran Andrews and Katy Balls from The Spectator.  Plus columnists Manveen Rana and James Marriott discuss whether modern politicians have gone soft, whether cancel-culture is taking over book publishing and the reaction to Lancashire police releasing personal information about missing mother Nicola Bulley.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/02/2352m 1s

Sturgeon Resigns

Patrick Maguire presents highlights from the reaction to Nicola Sturgeon's resignation as First Minister live on Times Radio. The Conservatives' Ruth Davidson, Labour's Shadow Scotland Secretary Ian Murray, SNP MP Angus Macneil and pollster Sir John Curtice all speak on a dramatic morning in British politics.Plus Alex Massie and Matt Chorley reflect on her achievements and shortcomings. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/02/2343m 6s

Gay Marriage: 10 Years On

A decade after the Commons voted to introduce civil marriage for same-sex couples, Patrick Maguire looks back at a moment of change for the country and the Conservative Party with former MP Matthew Parris, former culture secretary Dame Maria Miller and former equalities minister Baroness Featherstone.Columnists Robert Colvile and Dorothy Byrne consider whether the Brexit summit at Ditchley Park was an innocent meeting of minds or remainer skulduggery.Plus Patrick is joined by historian Andrew Lownie to imagine what might have happened if Edward VIII hadn't abdicated. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/02/2348m 48s

Can Sunak Shake Off Sleaze?

New polling for the Times shows that 70% of voters think the Conservatives give the impression of being sleazy and disreputable - up from 51% in April 2021. Patrick Maguire asks what Rishi Sunak can do to turn the page on propriety before the next election, with former independent MP Martin Bell and former Downing Street chief of staff Lord Barwell.Plus columnists Libby Purves and Martha Gill on whether government credit cards are a scandal or not and the guestlist for King Charles' coronation. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/02/2342m 44s

Letters That Changed Britain

What do Queen Victoria, Arthur Conan Doyle, Charles Dickens and an anonymous prostitute have in common? They all wrote letters to The Times that rewrote history.Matt is joined by Letters Editor Andrew Riley and Archive Editor Rose Wild to dip into the notable notes that changed Britain.Plus Manveen Rana and Jimmy McLoughlin discuss tax, Turkey and avoiding parking fines. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/02/2343m 39s

Wacaday with Wes Streeting

Matt talks to shadow health secretary Wes Streeting about NHS pay, Labour's relationship with the unions and his experience as a gay Anglican - before he plays our own version of the word association game 'Mallet's Mallet'.Plus columnists James Marriott and India Knight discuss amateur detectives disrupting the search for Nicola Bulley, the rules of modern etiquette and the new Conservative deputy chairman's support for the death penalty. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/02/2342m 37s

PMQs Unpacked: Zelensky's in Town

Matt is joined by Patrick Maguire to pause and unpack the exchanges between Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer at Prime Minister's Questions. With Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Westminster to address Parliament, both leaders talk tough on Putin.Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton on policing porn, whether MPs should be awarded a medal after leaving office, and how to pronounce 'Türkiye'. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
08/02/2348m 41s

Has Sturgeon SNPeaked?

Scotland's first minister Nicola Sturgeon is under pressure following the row over her gender reforms and a drop in the polls.But is she in serious trouble, or will the dominant force in Scottish politics continue to confound her critics?Matt hears from former Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson, the SNP's Emma Roddick, politics professor John Curtice and Times columnist Alex Massie.Plus Finkelvitch: Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch are back to discuss Rishi Sunak's cabinet reshuffle, Liz Truss's lack of apology and their collection of political badges.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
07/02/2343m 3s

Is Truss Right or Wrong, Wrong, Wrong?

Liz Truss is back to make the case for her tax-cutting agenda. Does she have a point, and is anyone listening? Matt is joined by journalist Katy Balls, pollster Patrick English and economists Paul Johnson and Mark Littlewood.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss Boris Johnson, petrol prices and the death of satirist Kit Hesketh-Harvey. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/02/2338m 22s

Neil Kinnock: 92 or 97?

All week, people in politics have been asking whether the next general election is going to be a similar result to 1992 - when Labour were expected to win but lost, or like 1997 when Labour won in a landslide victory. Who better to ask than former Labour leader Neil Kinnock?In a wide-ranging chat, Neil talks about the challenge of facing Margaret Thatcher at PMQs, sharing funny tweets with Keir Starmer, how he feels about the trans-debate given his grandson has transitioned, and what Labour need to do to win the next election. Plus columnist Iain Martin and former head of Channel 4 News Dorothy Byrne on the rumoured comebacks of Boris Johnson and Liz Truss, Iain's defence of Brexit and commemorating political moments with blue plaques. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/02/231h 4m

Rishi Sunak's 100 Days

The Prime Minister has been in office for 100 days, a big achievement by recent standards. Matt has some exclusive polling from YouGov showing what the public thinks of his performance so far, and discusses the scale of the electoral task ahead of him.Plus columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss whether false modesty is worse than bragging, the Times investigation into the practices of British Gas debt collectors, and what to do with jade vaginal eggs. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
02/02/2343m 14s

PMQs Unpacked: Rank Pathetic!

Matt Chorley, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. Rishi Sunak accuses Keir Starmer of siding with 'extremist protestors and union bosses', but the Labour leader says that's 'rank pathetic'.Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss whether Therese Coffey will clean up the environment, fines for wood burning stoves and the bird charity removed from Twitter for posting about woodcocks. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
01/02/2356m 37s

Brexit Q&A

Three years after the UK left the European Union, Matt hosts a panel of experts from The Times to answer questions sent in by readers. Plus columnists Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch discuss whether Rishi Sunak is the new John Major, and whether he's heading for an election like 1992 or 1997. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
31/01/2347m 1s

Sorry, Not Sorry

Why do politicians find it so hard to say sorry? After Nadhim Zahawi declined to apologise following his sacking by the Prime Minister, Matt discusses the art of the political apology with US author Marjorie Ingall and The Times' Matthew Parris.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester, Libby Purves and Paul Johnson discuss the government's NHS blueprint, whether we need to change the way we think about old age, and what happens to young people after a recession. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/01/2346m 24s

Is Parliamentary Oratory Dead?

Patrick Maguire sits in for Matt Chorley and tests his theory that speeches in the House of Commons aren't as good as they used to be. He looks back at some famous moments in the chamber with speechwriter Jessica Cunniffe and historian Nigel Jones, while Times sketchwriter Quentin Letts defends the modern MP.Plus columnists Matthew Syed and Manveen Rana debate the survival of Nadhim Zahawi, the politics of Rod Stewart, and Matthew's battle with biscuits. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/01/2344m 35s

Focus Group: Sunak's Pledges and Starmer's Face

The Times Radio Focus Group meets for the first time in 2023. James Johnson from J.L Partners leads a group of swing voters from across the country as they give their views on Rishi Sunak, Keir Starmer and Nadhim Zahawi.Plus columnists India Knight and James Marriott discuss a crackdown on laughing gas, and will artificial intelligence will make creativity redundant? Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
26/01/2340m 44s

PMQs Unpacked: A Job Too Big?

Matt Chorley, Tim Shipman and Lara Spirit pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. This week, Keir Starmer asks Rishi Sunak if being prime minister is too big a job for him, and Sunak accuses him of playing 'petty politics' over Nadhim Zahawi's tax affairs.Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss same sex marriages, Robert's trip to meet voters in Blyth Valley, and whether toddlers are getting more precocious. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
25/01/2357m 10s

The Cost of Dying

One in four terminally ill people of working age find themselves in poverty. For them and their families, the agony of grief is compounded by financial worries.Matt hears from people pushed to bankruptcy by their illness, and discusses the Marie Curie charity campaign to give them the state pension.Plus Finkelvitch: Columnists Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch ask whether it's time to sack Nadhim Zahawi, failures in the probation service, and political fantasists. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
24/01/2357m 26s

Sunak's Away Day

As Rishi Sunak gets ready for a cabinet trip to Chequers and Keir Starmer plans an outing for his team, Matt asks if a political away day is a good way to build morale - or whether it's all flip charts, trust exercises and sitting on the floor.David Davis talks about his trip to Chequers with Theresa May, William Hague reflects on taking Tory MPs to a hotel in casual dress, and we hear about the Lib Dem away day that was visited by a six foot man dressed as a bee.Plus Times columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss the prime minister and propriety, whether technology is making us unhappy and Nicola Sturgeon asking why 16-year-olds can't drink in a pub. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/01/2342m 21s

How To Make A Party Political Broadcast

Party political broadcasts have been around for nearly 100 years, featuring everything from men sitting woodenly behind desks to yogic flying.How are they made, do they change anyone’s vote and why are some of them so odd? Matt is joined by Tory advertising guru Maurice Saatchi, Labour filmmaker Mark Lucas, cross-party producer Nick Frost and Times TV critic Carol Midgley.Plus columnists Katy Balls and Jimmy McLoughlin discuss whether Sunak is standing up to his party over tax cuts, why Starmer is at Davos, and why Andy Murray isn’t allowed to go to the toilet. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/01/2354m 12s

Generation Game

Nice to see the polls, to see the polls nice? Matt looks at exclusive polling showing that while the Conservatives are losing young voters, they have lost twice as many older voters who make up their base. He speaks to YouGov's Patrick English, Onward director Seb Payne and academic Dr Will Jennings, before a Tory council leader and peer play our version of the conveyer belt game.Plus Times Columnists James Marriott and Jenni Russell ask whether food has reached peak snobbery, the departure of New Zealand's Jacinda Ardern, and whether it's worth reporting a stolen bike. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/01/2342m 44s

PMQs Unpacked: Lethal Chaos

Matt is joined by Tim Shipman to pause and unpack the exchanges at Prime Minister's Questions. This week, Keir Starmer challenges Rishi Sunak on the 'lethal chaos' in the NHS, while Sunak says Starmer is in the pocket of the unions. Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton on the dangers of bringing cake to the office, misogyny in the Metropolitan Police and beyond, and why it's tough to be a dad. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
18/01/2359m 1s

Britain's Litter Problem

Matt takes to the streets to find out about Britain's litter problem. He speaks to a listener who's found everything from sex toys to a sawn-off shotgun, a plogger - a jogger who picks up litter - and the leader of The Rubbish Party.Plus Finkelvitch: Columnists David Aaronovitch and Daniel Finkelstein contemplate our changing attitude to the police, whether Rishi Sunak's latest climbdown is a sign of strength or weakness, and if adverts showing Keir Starmer in Mick Lynch's pocket are effective. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
17/01/2347m 17s

Bring Back Boris

The Conservative Democratic Organisation is a new group calling for Tory party members to have a greater say in how the party is run, and who it elects as leader. Matt speaks to one of its key players, Lord Greenhalgh, who says Boris Johnson is "electoral gold dust" and will be back in Number 10 by the end of the year. Former MP Matthew Parris says the plan risks blowing up the party altogether.Red Box Reporter Lara Spirit has been back in the archives to learn about the general election of 1835 and the birth of the manifesto.Plus Times columnist Rachel Sylvester and IFS Director Paul Johnson discuss the launch of the Times Health Commission, and whether high street shops are making a comeback. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/01/2352m 29s

Lineker: Football vs Politics

Matt talks to Gary Lineker about exclusive polling for Times Radio showing which job the public thinks is harder - being prime minister, or being a professional footballer. He also explains why he thinks politicians should be paid more, before Emmerdale actor turned farmer Kelvin Fletcher and TV chef Clodagh McKenna make the case for their professions.Plus columnists Matthew Syed and Katy Balls discuss the hardest jobs they've ever had, the risks of shutting down Andrew Bridgen, and reports that Boris Johnson is looking for a safe seat. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/01/2349m 38s

James Graham

Talk about making a drama out of a political crisis. If there's one man who's turned the defining moments of our age into hits on stage and screen, it's James Graham.The writer behind This House, Brexit: The Uncivil War, Quiz and Best of Enemies talks to Matt about using drama to create a public square for opposing political views, and why he won't be writing an epic operetta about Liz Truss.Plus India Knight and James Marriott on the Americanisation of British journalism podcasts and their plans for retirement. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/01/2341m 44s

PMQs Unpacked: From Clapping to Sacking

Matt and Tim Shipman are back to pause and unpack the exchanges at the first PMQs of 2023, which sees Keir Starmer accuse Rishi Sunak of going from 'clapping nurses to sacking them' and MPs condemning comments by Andrew Bridgen.Plus columnists Robert Crampton and Manveen Rana discuss whether we're getting used to strikes, if it's OK to wear slippers to work, and a new technology that can create a realistic avatar of a dead person. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
11/01/231h

Doctor, Doctor, Shall I Pay You Now?

After Ken Clarke told us better-off patients may have to start paying for GP appointments, Matt looks at the case for reforming general practice and hears about other healthcare systems around the world.Plus columnists Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch on exclusive polling for the programme showing that just eight per cent of people would be "delighted" by a Conservative victory, and why politicians are keeping silent about Prince Harry. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
10/01/2344m 10s

Ken Clarke and Paying for the NHS

Matt's back, and he's joined by political big beast Ken Clarke to discuss a career spanning more than 50 years in the Commons and some of the biggest jobs in government. The former health secretary thinks the well-off may have to start paying to see a GP. Columnists Rachel Sylvester and Libby Purves discuss whether the Duke of Sussex should be removed from the line of succession, and whether Labour can think the unthinkable on the NHS.Plus, Times Red Box Reporter Lara Spirit is counting down every election since the 1832 Great Reform Act. This week, it's Earl Grey vs the Duke of Wellington. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
09/01/2354m 34s

Smaller Parties Win Elections Too

How can the smaller political parties win in 2023 when the electoral system is stacked against them and they are struggling for the public's attention?Patrick Maguire sitting in for Matt talks to YouGov's Tanya Abraham, The Times' Political Reporter Geri Scott and the Green Party Deputy Leader Zack Polanski, before taking a look at the electoral map around the UK.Plus: Columnists Melanie Reid and Robert Colvile discuss how to be a ghostwriter and whether Liz Truss is about to make a comeback. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
06/01/2345m 45s

Can The Lib Dems Cut Through?

The Liberal Democrats are stuck at a distant third in the opinion polls, with a leader many people still haven't heard of. Do a series of by-election wins mean they could once again be a serious electoral force?Patrick Maguire sitting in for Matt, is joined by the Lib Dem deputy leader Daisy Cooper, YouGov's Tanya Abraham and journalist Nick Tyrone. He also speaks to historian and author John Campbell about the origins of the party and what it can learn from the past. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
05/01/2347m 16s

Peter Mandelson

Patrick Maguire in for Matt Chorley talks to the architect of New Labour, the former cabinet minister Lord Mandelson. They discuss Keir Starmer "sorting out the extremists" within the party, the challenge still facing him to get Labour into power and the need to avoid political gimmicks. Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton ask what's the point of politicians making new year relaunch speeches, whether all children should study maths until 18 and if it's okay for former prisoners to earn lots of money from their notoriety. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
04/01/2340m 43s

Have the Tories Run Out of Steam?

Are the Conservatives heading for a period out of office, or can they confound expectations before the next General Election?Sitting in for Matt, Patrick Maguire speaks to Tory-watchers Henry Hill, Salma Shah and pollster Patrick English. They're joined by former cabinet minister David Davis, who thinks Sunak is in with a chance but says "God help us" if Boris Johnson returns.Plus: Finkelvitch is back, with columnists Daniel Finkelstein and David Aaronovitch discussing the similarity between rail strikes and the bakers' strikes of the 1970s and how Labour will cope with increased scrutiny and a sometimes hostile press. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
03/01/2346m 33s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 11

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode, Harriet Harman, Ed Miliband, Jeremy Corbyn and Keir Starmer Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/12/2229m 20s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 10

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode, Margaret Beckett, William Hague, Iain Duncan-Smith and Michael Howard Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
30/12/2222m 51s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 9

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode, Robert Carr, Michael Foot, Neil Kinnock and John Smith Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/12/2220m 36s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 8

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode, Herbert Morrison, Arthur Greenwood, Hugh Gaitskell, George Brown Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/12/2226m 28s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 7

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode,  George Lansbury, James Maxton, Hastings Lees-Smith and Frederick Pethick-Lawrence. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
29/12/2228m 18s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 6

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this week.In this episode Sir Edward Carson, William Adamson, Sir Donald Maclean and Arthur Henderson. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/12/2224m 17s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 5

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode, Sir William Harcourt, John Spencer, George Robinson, Henry Petty-Fitzmaurice and Joseph Chamberlain. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/12/2223m 27s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 4

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this weekIn this episode its Spencer Cavendish, Sir Stafford Northcote, Sir Michael Hicks Beach and the First Earl of Kimberley John Wodehouse. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
28/12/2220m 41s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 3

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this week. On this episode you'll hear about Granville Leveson-Gower, James Harris,  Lord Cairns and Charles Gordon-Lennox. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/12/2220m 9s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 2

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast.In this episode you'll hear about John Spencer, Lord George Bentinck, Charles Manners, Marquess of Granby and John Charles Herries.  Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/12/2224m 55s

Leader of the Opposition: Episode 1

Last year, to mark 300 years since Robert Walpole became Prime Minister, Matt Chorley learnt about every PM through history each week. This year, Nigel Fletcher from the Centre for Opposition Studies has gone through every Leader of the Opposition and as a festive treat you'll be able to listen to each episode on the podcast this week.In the first episode it's Charles James Fox, George Ponsonby, George Tierney and Henry Petty. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
27/12/2233m 12s

Politics Without the Boring Quiz 2022

Matt Chorley is joined by a live audience for Politics Without the Boring Quiz, a test of how much the teams can remember from the most exciting, exhausting, febrile and funny political year since the last one.The politicians: Angela Rayner and Dehenna DavisonTimes Radio: Mariella Frostrup and Hugo RifkindThe Times: Patrick Maguire and Lara Spirit Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
23/12/2248m 53s

Chorls Dickens Presents: A Christmas Carol

Matt is Chorls Dickens, telling the story of Eber-Rishi Scrooge as he is visited by the spirit of his former business partner Jacob Rees-Marley, and the ghosts of prime ministers past, present and future. Will Scrooge learn from his mistakes, and plan a new year relaunch?Plus the latest installment of the Times Radio Columnists Festive Focus Group, led by former Number 10 pollster James Johnson, sees the group fight over the best Christmas film. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
22/12/2231m 44s

What is the Funnest Part of the UK?

In the final Disunited Kingdom of 2022, Matt Chorley puts some of our favourite journalists from around the UK to the test with a quiz of the fun local stories they have submitted throughout the year.Plus the latest installment of the Times Radio Columnists Festive Focus Group, led by former Number 10 pollster James Johnson. The group nominates their biggest winners and losers of the year. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
21/12/2236m 26s

Baroness Prue Leith?

Prue Leith is already a successful chef, author, dame and queen of the Bake Off tent, but she has her sights on another title: a peerage. She speaks to Matt Chorley about why she'd like to join the House of Lords, why Finland is so good at teaching children about food, and her upcoming one-woman show.Plus the second installment of the Times Radio Columnists Festive Focus Group, led by former Number 10 pollster James Johnson. Matt's regular panelists look back on the year for the Labour Party. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
20/12/2228m 20s

Political Thrillers

Plenty of former MPs, advisers and political journalists have tried their hand at writing fiction, and they often turn to the drama and skulduggery of Westminster for inspiration. So what makes a good political novel? Matt Chorley speaks to Conservative peer and House of Cards author Michael Dobbs, who says if he wrote a sequel he would introduce new, younger characters.Plus the first installment of the Times Radio Columnists Festive Focus Group, led by former Number 10 pollster James Johnson. Matt's regular panellists look back on a dramatic year for the Conservative Party. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
19/12/2236m 43s

PMQs Unpacked: The 1972 Edition

Matt Chorley and Patrick Maguire analyse the dramatic scenes at Westminster 50 years ago, when a protest by MPs against rising unemployment caused uproar and led to the Commons being suspended.The events of the day are recreated by actor and impressionist Kieran Hodgson, before Matt speaks to a minister in Edward Heath’s government about his memories of the time. Plus Times columnist Melanie Reid and Daily Mirror political editor John Stevens talk about Conservative MPs calling for ministers to negotiate with nurses, the Scottish Government raising taxes, and why we should stop moaning about snow. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
16/12/2248m 34s

Focus Group: The Last One of 2022

The Times Radio focus group meets for the last time this year. Matt Chorley is joined by James Johnson from J.L. Partners to see what floating voters make of Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer, and whether they've heard of Jeremy Hunt.Plus columnists Manveen Rana and James Marriott discuss how much they'd be willing to pay to hear Boris Johnson give a speech, whether farmers will vote Conservative, and James explains what happened when he went on a terrible stag do. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
15/12/2244m 3s

PMQs Unpacked: Nightmare before Christmas?

Matt Chorley and Tim Shipman pause the action and analyse the exchanges at the last Prime Minister's Questions of 2022, with Keir Starmer accusing Rishi Sunak of going into hibernation over the NHS and Sunak claiming the strikes were Labour's 'nightmare before Christmas'. Plus columnists Alice Thomson and Robert Crampton discuss a major incident in the channel as a migrant boat capsizes, whether Starmer is secretly ruthless or not, and what Andrew Bridgen has been getting up to in Parliament.   Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
14/12/2255m 12s

Ed Balls All at Sea

Finding themselves on a week-long Times cruise from New York to Southampton, Matt Chorley talks to former cabinet minister Ed Balls about the chances of him returning to politics, his next big challenge and the risk of Keir Starmer becoming complacent in the same way Labour did ahead of the 1992 General Election.Plus columnists Rachel Sylvester and David Aaronovitch ask whether union leader Mick Lynch has gone overboard in his latest round of media interviews, the motivation behind Priti Patel's new group calling for Tory party democracy, and whether Wes Streeting is the next leader of the Labour Party. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
13/12/2243m 12s

Joe Lycett MP?

After giving evidence to the House of Lords, taking on David Beckham over human rights and becoming an unlikely cheerleader for Liz Truss, Joe Lycett is now a fully-fledged political comedian. He speaks to Matt Chorley about his year of political stunts, and what he has planned for 2023.Plus columnists Libby Purves and Jenni Russell on strikes, ministers in open-plan offices, whether we should all pay more tax and JK Rowling. Hosted on Acast. See acast.com/privacy for more information.
12/12/2249m 14s