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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Adam Afriyie has a personal fortune of between £50m and £100m

Why fixed terms parliaments are a nightmare for leaders and a gift for rebel MPs

Our Chief Political Commentator says that Conservative MPs can plot and stir because the next election is still years away

Image issued by HS2 of the Birmingham and Fazeley viaduct, part of the new proposed route for the HS2 high speed rail scheme

HS2 shows that investment is not such a dirty word after all. But how did the Coalition get here?

When the Coalition first came to power, nothing much happened on high-speed rail. So this sudden burst of energy is welcome, even if the impact remains years away

Cameron's speech on Europe makes it less likely he will be Prime Minister after the next election

His position on Europe means that another coalition with the Lib Dems is impossible. Given the likelihood of another hung parliament, that spells danger for him

Cameron's 'historic' speech proves he's the latest leader to lose control of his party over Europe

It's so out of character for Cameron to take an interest in putting his case to the public, that we must wonder what this sudden bout of speechifying signals

Let’s see the top civil servants on television

Jeremy Heywood is now with his third successive PM. He and other officials should be held to account

Nothing in British politics is harder than welfare reform. The dogfight over it is a distraction

Nuanced arguments, such as those of David Miliband, gain less traction than they deserve as the goal of delivering fair, affordable welfare seems as distant as ever

Forward, say Cameron and Clegg. But to where?

Their confidence belies the fact they are the most trapped governing leaders since those that tried to rule in the late 1970s

David Cameron and Nick Clegg with nine-year-old Josh Wood in Cheshunt in September

Review of UK politics in 2012: It was the Seventies all over again

'At least Cameron wasn't booed, as Osborne was at the Games'

Left: Andrew Mitchell. Right: Nobody matching the description of the off-duty police officer, who claimed to have witnessed the outburst, appears to be present in this CCTV still

Damned and cast out prematurely. No wonder Mitchell is angry

Sometimes in these storms spin doctors can make mistakes - Mitchell's apology, in staged public circumstances, seemed an implicit acceptance of guilt

Day In a Page

Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter: The man who could have been champion of the world - and the Bob Dylan song that immortalised him

The man who could have been champion of the world

Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter and the Bob Dylan song that immortalised him
Didn’t she do well?

Didn’t she do well?

Miranda Hart lined up for ‘Generation Game’ revival
The Middle East we must confront in the future will be a Mafiastan ruled by money

The Middle East we must confront in the future will be a Mafiastan ruled by money

In Iraq, mafiosi already run almost the entire oil output of the south of the country
Before they were famous

Before they were famous

Can you guess the celebrity from these British Pathe News clips?
Martin Freeman’s casting in Fargo is genius

Martin Freeman’s casting in Fargo is a stroke of genius

Series is brimming with characters and stories all its own
How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe: Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC

How I brokered a peace deal with Robert Mugabe

Roy Agyemang reveals the delicate diplomacy needed to get Zimbabwe’s President to sit down with the BBC
Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'

British Muslims's Happy video attacked as 'sinful'

The four-minute clip by Honesty Policy has had more than 300,000 hits on YouTube
Church of England-raised Michael Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith

Michael Williams: Do as I do, not as I pray

Church of England-raised Williams describes the unexpected joys in learning about his family's Jewish faith
A History of the First World War in 100 moments: A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife

A History of the First World War in 100 moments

A visit to the Front Line by the Prime Minister's wife
Comedian Jenny Collier: 'Sexism I experienced on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

Jenny Collier: 'Sexism on stand-up circuit should be extinct'

The comedian's appearance at a show on the eve of International Women's Day was cancelled because they had "too many women" on the bill
Cannes Film Festival: Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or

Cannes Film Festival

Ken Loach and Mike Leigh to fight it out for the Palme d'Or
The concept album makes surprise top ten return with neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson

The concept album makes surprise top ten return

Neolithic opus from Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson is unexpected success
Lichen is the surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus, thanks to our love of Scandinavian and Indian cuisines

Lichen is surprise new ingredient on fine-dining menus

Emily Jupp discovers how it can give a unique, smoky flavour to our cooking
10 best baking books

10 best baking books

Planning a spot of baking this bank holiday weekend? From old favourites to new releases, here’s ten cookbooks for you
Jury still out on Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini

Jury still out on Pellegrini

Draw with Sunderland raises questions over Manchester City manager's ability to motivate and unify his players