It will take a leader of extraordinary charisma to deliver a Labour victory

There’s a hard truth for anyone who stands on the left side of the political divide, a truth demonstrated again in recent days. Put starkly, the left usually loses. In the UK, Labour has governed for just 30 of the last 85 years. Of the eight men who have been president of the French fifth republic, only two have been socialists. In the postwar tally of US presidents, Republicans outnumber Democrats.

There’s a faultline running through Labour. Can it ever be healed?

Whatever happens next Thursday, an act of reconciliation will be necessary. Not between the winning and losing parties, but within one of them – bridging a divide that separates their supporters, both former and current, from each other. This gulf is not so much ideological as it is cultural or even tribal. The divide I have in mind is among the millions of people who either used to, or still do, identify themselves with Labour.

When all politicians are seen as liars, it’s Boris Johnson’s big lie that cuts through

A moment from the 2016 campaign came back to me this week. Not the EU referendum, though that decision hovers over every aspect of this election, but rather the US presidential contest that same year. I was in Cleveland, Ohio, speaking to a proud member of Bikers4Trump, all in leather save for the stars and stripes bandana. What exactly was it about Donald Trump that appealed? “He’s honest,” came the reply.

Zero chance of a Labour majority? Maybe. But Corbyn doesn’t need one

I have never trusted opinion polls less than I do now. Part of that is bitter experience, after polls proved their fallibility in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Part of it is a more specific lesson taught by the US presidential election three years ago, when Hillary Clinton learned to her cost that a hefty national poll lead means nothing in a contest that is settled one state at a time. This logic applies in spades to a UK election, which is not won nationally but seat by seat by seat.

If Trump survives impeachment, it’s clear who he’ll have to thank

Donald Trump has spat out so many insults and broken so many taboos that it’s hard for any single remark to linger long in the memory. Nevertheless one line from his 2016 election campaign has endured, partly because it was a jaw-dropper and partly because it offered an early glimpse of what would later be revealed as a deep truth about both his candidacy and his presidency – and even our current world.

If Trump survives impeachment, it’s clear who he’ll have to thank

Donald Trump has spat out so many insults and broken so many taboos that it’s hard for any single remark to linger long in the memory. Nevertheless one line from his 2016 election campaign has endured, partly because it was a jaw-dropper and partly because it offered an early glimpse of what would later be revealed as a deep truth about both his candidacy and his presidency – and even our current world.

Many Jews want Boris Johnson out. But how can we vote for Jeremy Corbyn?

For most progressive-minded, remain-leaning folk, is it even a dilemma? I’m not sure. To them the logic must seem simple and straightforward: they want to eject a cruel and useless government and stop Brexit, and that means denying Boris Johnson a majority and replacing him with Jeremy Corbyn, who will end austerity and hold a second referendum. Job done.