Steve Richards

Established as one of the most influential political commentators in the country, Steve Richards became The Independent’s chief political commentator in 2000 having been political editor of the New Statesman. He presents Radio 4’s Week in Westminster.

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When he finally stood down in Luxembourg last year, he had spent 18 years in power, making him one of the longest-serving democratically elected leaders in the world

Nothing Cameron could have done would have changed outcome in Europe

And a referendum won’t make the issue go away

Dolly Parton has confirmed she will play Glastonbury 2014

David Blunkett and Ed Miliband could learn a lot from Dolly Parton

In politics the inexperienced rise to the top, and it shows

Tony Blair meeting troops in the port of Umm Qasr, Iraq in May, 2003

Of course Blair won’t say Iraq was a mistake

In following Bush he was only continuing the same strategy that got him elected

Education Secretary Michael Gove

Trojan Horse squabble masks a major flaw in Tory policy – how can we shrink the state and maintain standards?

If Gove seeks uniform standards he needs to establish a structure that provides them

Commons Speaker John Bercow has written to the three main party leaders in a bid to improve PMQs

The public thinks MPs are on another planet – so why stop John Bercow trying to bring them back to earth?

He is the first Speaker in the modern era to be a substantial reformer, and some of the traditionalists are uneasy

David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband laugh while listening to German Chancellor Angela Merkel's address to both Houses of Parliament

What now for Cameron, Miliband and Clegg? After a poor election, each party leader has an acute identity crisis to face

Cameron’s party will not tolerate a repeat of his Blair-like attempt at a public identity

Local election results 2014: Hatred of elected politicians has led to this outcome

Sometimes a small volcano erupts in politics and there is little the main parties can do about it.

Nigel Farage in Essex yesterday; Ukip gained about 150 seats in the local elections

The real surprise is that Ukip did not do better

Now we can discern the haziest outlines of the next 12 months

Ukip leader Nigel Farage looked increasingly uncomfortable as he was grilled on LBC

Faragemania simply cannot last - these European elections will be the crest of his power

An ideological vacuum gives space for populist to rise and appeal across the spectrum

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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living