Andy McSmith

Andy McSmith is a senior reporter at The Independent. He has vast experience in political journalism and has also appeared on documentaries for BBC Radio 4.

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Andy McSmith's Diary: No Fry in that night as comic pulls out of Labour event

Stephen Fry has pulled out of a big Labour Party fundraising event because he doesn’t like the way the party treated one of his friends.

Jeremy Paxman signs off for the final time

Jeremy Paxman's final Newsnight - TV review

He was box office. BBC's news will be duller without him

Andy McSmith's Diary: Impeach Tony Blair? It’s only 208 years since the last time

Sir Peter Tapsell, the venerable Tory MP, opened Prime Minister’s Questions by suggesting that the Commons “commence the procedures of impeachment” against Tony Blair for “allegedly misleading the House” over the Iraq war, 11 years ago.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Michael Gove invokes Jimmy Carter over Cummings (and goings)

Contempt would appear to be the strongest emotion coursing through the veins of Michael Gove’s former political adviser, Dominic Cummings – contempt for politicians such as Nick Clegg, whom he once described as “self-obsessed, sanctimonious and so dishonest”, and contempt for the Whitehall village  and almost all its inhabitants, apart from Gove, of course.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Lord Browne tries to refuel ministers bored by boards

Attempts to get the civil services to be more business-like have hit a snag: the new-style board meetings that are meant to drive efficiency are so boring that even junior ministers with an eye on promotion have been avoiding them.

Siegfried Sassoon was sent to Craiglockhart Hospital to be treated for ‘shell shock’ following his protest

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: ‘Mad Jack’ takes on the War Office

Siegfried Sassoon was decorated for his courage. Then, dramatically, he refused to fight. Andy McSmith on an extraordinary episode of wilful defiance

Andy McSmith's Diary: Tory tea-tree salesman is a shining example of longevity

David Tredinnick, MP for Bosworth, is not the smartest Conservative there ever was. In the 1990s, he is reported to have lost £750,000 as a Lloyds underwriter, but he is open to ideas about healing the sick. He is the first, I believe, to draw Parliament’s attention to tea tree oil.

Andy McSmith's Sketch: Give way road safety, here comes the racy Godfrey Bloom

With time on his hands, because his public falling out with Nigel Farage has made him an ex-MEP, Godfrey Bloom has taken up cudgels on behalf of motorists who want to drive at speed in built-up areas.

Andy McSmith's Diary: Are Labour’s leaders its worst enemies?

Ed Miliband does not look like a potential prime minister to the public, the former Home Secretary Charles Clarke bluntly let on today. Mr Clarke, who has a book to promote, also thinks that it will be “very difficult” for Labour to win next year’s general election outright.

Andy McSmith's Sketch: Theresa May gives a lesson in six ways not to answer the same question

The serious moment soon passed as MPs reverted to doing what they do best – baiting each other

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