Coffee House Shots

40 Episodes
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By: The Spectator

Instant political analysis from the Spectator's top team of writers, including Fraser Nelson, James Forsyth, Isabel Hardman, Katy Balls and many others.

Isabel Hardman's Sunday Roundup - 02/10/22
Yesterday at 3:55 PM

Isabel Hardman presents the highlights from Sunday morning's political shows as the Conservative party conference enters the spotlight. Featured in today's podcast are Liz Truss, Michael Gove, Jake Berry and Mel Stride. 


Did Gove just torpedo Truss?
Yesterday at 2:07 PM

Michael Gove this morning said that Liz Truss's plans to scrap the top 45 per cent tax rate are a 'display of the wrong values'. It comes as Jake Berry, the Tory party chairman, confirmed that MPs who vote against the budget would lose the Conservative whip. Has Gove just ruined Truss's conference?

James Heale speaks to Fraser Nelson and Katy Balls.

Produced by Max Jeffery.


Is Tory conference going to be a meltdown?
Last Saturday at 9:00 AM

Isabel Hardman, James Forsyth and Katy Balls discuss whether Liz Truss will be able to recover her authority after several opinion polls show the Conservative party trailing Labour by double digit margins. 


Has Truss u-turned on the OBR?
Last Friday at 12:35 PM

Despite rejecting the Office for Budget Responsibility's offer of a forecast to accompany last week's so-called fiscal event, this morning it appears that the government have u-turned. What can we expect from the OBR's statement ahead of the November budget? 

Also on the podcast, after last night's YouGov poll put Labour ahead by 33 points, how has the news been received by Conservative MPs? Will Truss row back on her economic plans?

Katy Balls speaks to Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth. 

Produced by Natasha Feroze and Oscar Edmondson.


Will Truss axe Kwarteng?
Last Thursday at 4:07 PM

Liz Truss broke her silence this morning and embarked on a pre-Tory conference media round of regional stations across the UK. In a brutal set of interviews, the Prime Minister faced questions on tax cutting the rich at the expense of the poor, fracking and bankers' bonuses. 

With the conference just three days away, what will be her next moves to take back control of her party, and win back the British public? Could Chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng be sacrificed to save her instead?

Katy Balls speaks to Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth.

Produced by N...


Why is the Bank of England buying gilts?
Last Wednesday at 4:07 PM

The Bank of England has today announced a major intervention into gilts to prevent a 'material risk' to financial stability as a result of government policy. How unprecedented is this move? Will Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng break their silence? Are we heading for another leadership election?

Kate Andrews speaks with Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth. 

Produced by Oscar Edmondson.


Is Starmer ready for No.10?
Last Tuesday at 4:05 PM

Keir Stamer took centre stage for his speech at the Labour party conference today. Unlike last year, there were several standing ovations and loud cheers from the audience. Was his speech one to remember in Labour's history? And has he secured his position as the man to lead Labour back into government?

James Heale speaks to Katy Ball and Isabel Hardman.

Produced by Natasha Feroze.


Is Labour on the cusp of victory?
09/26/2022

It's day two of Labour Conference and the party appear upbeat and confident of their chances at the next election. But are they being too reactionary in their narrative? What do they have to offer other than not being the Conservative party?

From Liverpool, James Heale speaks to Katy Balls and Isabel Hardman.

Produced by Oscar Edmondson. 


How worrying is the falling pound?
09/26/2022

Following Chancellor, Kwasi Kwarteng's 'mini' budget, the pound has fallen to a record low against the dollar, fueling speculation that the Bank of England will hike interest rates. How worrying are these figures?

'I think the pound falling is a bit of a distraction from the real problem' - James Forsyth

Katy Balls speaks to Kate Andrews and James Forsyth.

Produced by Natasha Feroze


Isabel Hardman's Sunday Roundup - 25/09/22
09/25/2022

Isabel Hardman rounds up the highlights from Sunday's political shows as the Labour party conference begins. Highlights this week come from Sir Keir Starmer, Andy Burnham, Kwasi Kwarteng and Mick Lynch. 


How will Labour react to the mini-budget?
09/24/2022

Kate Andrews speaks to James Forsyth and Katy Balls about how Labour will position themselves in response to Friday’s statement, as they prepare for their party conference in Liverpool.


Kwarteng's audacious budget
09/23/2022

Kwasi Kwarteng has today announced what has been dubbed as his mini-Budget, but looking at the scale of the package it is far from small. The Coffee House Shots team take us through what has been revealed. Who are the winners and who are the losers?

Katy Balls speaks to Fraser Nelson, James Forsyth and Kate Andrews. 

Produced by Oscar Edmondson. 


NI rise scrapped: how much further will Kwasi go?
09/22/2022

With hours to go till the Chancellor's fiscal statement, we've heard today that the National Insurance hike will be scrapped, as promised during Liz Truss's leadership campaign. This comes as the Bank of England increases the base rate to 2.25 per cent. How much further will Kwasi Kwarteng go, and just how willing is the Truss government to be unpopular? Katy Balls talks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman.

Produced by Cindy Yu.


What's behind Putin's mobilisation?
09/21/2022

Vladimir Putin warned the West that, if pushed, Russia would use a nuclear weapon. How seriously should we take his threat? And reports emerged overnight that Liz Truss will cut stamp duty to increase demand for housing. But will that help more people get onto the housing ladder? 

Katy Balls speaks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman.

Produced by Max Jeffery.


Why is Liz Truss ruling out a US trade deal?
09/20/2022

Liz Truss is in New York today on her first foreign visit as prime minister. On the flight across the Atlantic, Truss said that a trade deal with the United States was unlikely in the 'short to medium term'. Why has the PM, who was so vocal about a free trade agreement with the US in the 2019 election, changed her tune? 

Cindy Yu speaks to James Forsyth and Katy Balls. 

Produced by Cindy Yu and Max Jeffery.


How will Queen Elizabeth II be remembered?
09/19/2022

Today was the state funeral of Britain's longest reigning monarch Queen Elizabeth II. From Westminster, we evaluate the day's proceedings.

Also on the podcast, as the period of mourning ends and politics resumes, can Liz Truss hit the ground running? Will we get some clarity on how much her energy plan will cost?

Katy Balls speaks with Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth.

Produced by Oscar Edmondson.


Isabel Hardman's Sunday Roundup - 18/09/22
09/18/2022

Isabel Hardman rounds up the highlights from Sunday morning's political shows. Today's podcast features Admiral Sir Tony Radakin, Jacinda Ardern, Sheikh Hasina, John Kerry and The Right Reverend John Sentamu. 


How did the Queen change the world?
09/17/2022

Cindy Yu, James Forsyth and Fraser Nelson discuss the impression Queen Elizabeth II made during her 70 years as a head of state. 


Can the Met fix London's spiralling crime problem?
09/16/2022

Two police officers were stabbed this morning near Leicester Square in central London. What can new Metropolitan Police Commissioner Mark Rowley do to fix the capital's crime epidemic? And the pound today fell to a 37-year low against the dollar. What can the government do to give the markets confidence?

Max Jeffery speaks to Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth.

Produced by Max Jeffery.


Who will be at the Queen's funeral?
09/15/2022

Preparations are well under way for the Queen's funeral next week, but which world leaders will be in attendance? Will they all be able to behave themselves? 

Also on the podcast, as the new Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng works quietly in the background, is his idea to scrap caps on banker's bonuses a risk worth taking? 

Cindy Yu speaks with James Forsyth and Katy Balls. 

Produced by Cindy Yu and Oscar Edmondson. 


What will happen while the Queen lies in state?
09/14/2022

The Queen's coffin has been taken from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Hall. Mourners will pay their respects for the next four days before the funeral on Monday.

Also on the podcast, James Forsyth and Fraser Nelson discuss the latest news in the Ukraine conflict. 


What was the message behind King Charles's visit to Belfast?
09/13/2022

King Charles arrived in Belfast where he was met by the new Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, Chris Heaton-Harris. The King pledged to follow the 'shining example' set by his mother during her life of public service. Tonight, the Queen's body will be moved from Edinburgh to Buckingham Palace where her body will lie in state ahead of the funeral. 

Also on the podcast, is Ukraine's largest counteroffensive against Russia working? And how might Russia escalate?

Katy Balls talks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman.

Produced by Natasha Feroze.


King Charles III addresses parliament
09/12/2022

This morning, surrounded by the lead, oak and stone of Westminster Hall, King Charles III addressed parliament. Lindsay Hoyle, speaker of the Commons, introduced him, and said that he knew the new King would 'bear those responsibilities which fall to you'. King Charles said that he was resolved to follow his mother's 'selfless duty'. 

Katy Balls speaks to Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth about what comes next. 

Produced by Max Jeffery.


Isabel Hardman's Sunday Roundup - 11/09/22
09/11/2022

Isabel Hardman hosts the highlights from Sunday's political shows, with Anthony Albanese, Gordon Brown, Gabriel Gavin, Dr Mike Martin and David Cameron.


Queen Elizabeth II: coronation, reign and succession
09/10/2022

Freddy Gray, The Spectator's deputy editor, is joined by our former editor Charles Moore, and our political editor James Forsyth, to discuss the Queen's death. What was her coronation like? Should unionists be concerned? How important was the Queen's faith to her? What do we miss about the Queen?


Queen Elizabeth II, our remarkable monarch
09/08/2022

Fraser Nelson, James Forsyth and Katy Balls pay tribute to and reflect upon the life and reign of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. 


How much will Truss's energy plan cost?
09/08/2022

Today Liz Truss has announced in parliament an energy price cap to tackle rising bills. As of October, the average household energy bill will be frozen at £2,500 for the next two years. How effective will this be? And how have her free market allies reacted to her use of price controls? 

James Forsyth and Katy Balls discuss. 


Have Labour underestimated Truss?
09/07/2022

It's Liz Truss's first full day as prime minister and, backed by a fully assembled cabinet, she has conducted her first Prime Minister's Questions with Labour leader Keir Starmer. Who came out on top? 

Cindy Yu speaks to James Forsyth and Katy Balls. 

Produced by Cindy Yu and Oscar Edmondson. 


Truss's cabinet: Who's in? Who's out?
09/06/2022

Liz Truss has appointed her cabinet. Allies of Rishi Sunak are out, and the former foreign secretary's closest allies are in. What does this mean for her government? Katy Balls speaks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman.


Was it a fond farewall for Boris Johnson?
09/06/2022

Boris Johnson finally departed Downing Street early this morning, but left the door slightly ajar on the prospect of a comeback. What will this mean for Liz Truss? 

Also on the podcast, as Truss makes her way to Balmoral to meet with the Queen, what will the rest of the day look like for the new prime minister? 

Isabel Hardman speaks to James Forsyth and Katy Balls. 

Produced by Max Jeffery and Oscar Edmondson.


Liz Truss wins. What next?
09/05/2022

Liz Truss has won the Conservative leadership race, and will become Britain's prime minister tomorrow. In a speech in Westminster this morning, after finding out the result, Truss paid tribute to Boris Johnson, promised to 'govern as a conservative' and said she would 'deliver, deliver, deliver'. What should we expect from the first days of the Truss premiership? 

Katy Balls speaks to Fraser Nelson and James Forsyth.

Produced by Max Jeffery.


Isabel Hardman's Sunday Roundup - 04/09/22
09/04/2022

Isabel Hardman is back with the highlights from the Sunday interviews. Featured today are clips from Liz Truss, Nicola Sturgeon, Rishi Sunak, Emily Thornberry and Lord Edward Lister. 


Will the next PM be a good one?
09/03/2022

James Forsyth speaks to Anthony Seldon, historian and biographer, about how the incoming PM can make their mark before the next general election.  


Can Boris get himself off the hook from partygate?
09/02/2022

Boris Johnson has released legal advice that he received from Lord Pannick about the Commons investigation into partygate, where the lawyer said the investigation in its current form would be 'unlawful' if it were taking place in the courts. Can Boris really get off the hook? 

Max Jeffery speaks to James Forsyth and James Heale. 

Produced by Max Jeffery.


Can Boris leave a nuclear legacy?
09/01/2022

Despite a relatively quiet summer from the government, Boris Johnson has waded finally waded into the energy crisis, announcing £700 million of funding for Sizewell C, the nuclear plant. On the podcast, Cindy Yu talks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman about what's behind this development (and whether it could be anything to do with Johnson trying to establish some kind of legacy, in the last days of his premiership). Isabel sums up his energy contribution as: 'To a certain extent it's him saying: if you look backwards or forwards, it's not my fault'.

Produced by Cindy Yu.


Is Labour in trouble again with the rail strikes?
08/31/2022

Today rail union leaders announced another round of strikes, this time to coincide with the Labour party conference. Is there a message here that they are trying to send to Kier Starmer? Should we expect similar disruption during the Conservative Party Conference? 

Also on the podcast, after the death of the last leader of the Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev, who was instrumental in ending the Cold War, how well do we understand future geopolitical threats? 

Cindy Yu speaks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman. 

Produced by Cindy Yu and Oscar Edmondson. 

Get tick...


Will Boris be back?
08/30/2022

Boris Johnson is on his farewell tour but is remaining coy about the possibility of a political comeback. What problems will this throw up for the next prime minister? Will Boris be friend or foe? 

Also on the podcast, after Liz Truss pulled out of her BBC interview with Nick Robinson, is she trying to avoid scrutiny of her plan to tackle the cost of living? 

Katy Balls speaks to James Forsyth and Isabel Hardman. 

Produced by Max Jeffery and Oscar Edmondson. 


Is the NHS beyond repair?
08/27/2022

Kate Andrews and Isabel Hardman discuss the challenges facing the NHS and whether the incoming government will be able to tackle these burdens when it takes office. 

Produced by Matt Taylor.


How high will energy prices go?
08/26/2022

Today Ofgem announced that household energy bills will climb to an average of £3,549 a year, starting in October. Have the government prepared Brits for how bad the crisis could get? How do Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak plan to reach those that need help the most urgently? 

Also on the podcast, there are reports that Liz Truss plans to trigger Article 16, suspending parts of the Northern Ireland Protocol. Is now a good time for a trade war? 

Max Jeffery speaks to Katy Balls and Kate Andrews.

Produced by Max Jeffery and Oscar Edmondson.


Is Rishi heading for political Siberia?
08/25/2022

Rishi Sunak has today confirmed that he will stay on as an MP if he loses the leadership contest, and that he will also vote for a Liz Truss budget. Will this help the Tory party heal? Also, Rishi Sunak told The Spectator that scientists had too much power during lockdown. What has their response been? 

Max Jeffery speaks to Katy Balls and Kate Andrews. 

Produced by Max Jeffery and Oscar Edmondson.