Unite, Britain’s biggest trade union, is urging other unions to join forces to stage a 24-hour general strike in what it privately admits would be an “explicitly political” attack against the government.
Leaders from across the movement will discuss the idea of a general strike later this month at a meeting of the Trades Union Congress’s general council, with members divided over how to respond to the government’s attempts to curb public spending.
Insider say that the preparatory discussions are “incredibly sensitive”. But Unite, which has 1.5m members, has put forward a paper urging the TUC to “prepare for such mass industrial action”.
The document, seen by the Financial Times, suggests that more public sector cuts could “bring public opinion to the boil” and open up a chance for the unions to “give decisive leadership”.
I wouldn’t be surprised if our story from this morning will have wider pick-up in Read more
Talking to a senior Liberal Democrat the other day, talk turned to which of their MPs are at risk at the next election. This person reckoned the party could feasibly hold on to between 43 and 50 seats, which would be a major triumph given the meltdown many have been predicting for the last few months.
One seat this person insisted was safe was that of Danny Alexander. Why, I asked – because Inverness voters like having a political heavyweight (before you criticise, he is a member of the quad) as their MP? To a certain extent, they replied. Because the voters there are died-in-the-wool Lib Dems? Not especially, they said. Why then? Because Inverness has done very well out of Danny Alexander.
On several occasions since Alexander became Treasury chief secretary, there have been small but significant giveaways that help, among other places, Inverness in particular. Read more