Will the Red Wall revolt split the right?

Mar 14, 05:30 PM

On the podcast this week: is Rishi ready for a Red Wall rebellion? 

Lee Anderson’s defection to Reform is an indication of the final collapse of the Tories’ 2019 electoral coalition and the new split in the right, writes Katy Balls in her cover story. For the first time in many years the Tories are polling below 25 per cent. Reform is at 15 per cent. The hope in Reform now is that Anderson attracts so much publicity from the right and the left that he will bring the party name recognition and electoral cut-through. Leader of Reform UK Richard Tice joins Katy on the podcast to discuss. (02:23)

Then: Will and Lara take us through some of their favourite pieces from the magazine, including Lloyd Evans’ Life column and Sean Thomas’ description of taking ayahuasca at Pablo Escobar’s cocaine and occasional execution palace. 

Next: is the Church of England about to apologise for Christianity? 

Our own William Moore writes this week about the C of E’s latest apology, which – if given – he says is tantamount to apologising for Christianity itself. This comes after the Oversight Group suggested the C of E gives £1 billion in reparations to atone for its historic links to the slave trade and instances of ‘deliberate actions to destroy diverse African religious belief systems.’ The Reverend Dr Jamie Franklin, host of the Irreverend podcast, joins Will to discuss. (21:19) 

And finally: 'Operation Kenova: Northern Ireland Stakeknife Legacy Investigation’ was precipitated by claims that the British Army had an agent at the heart of the IRA. ‘Stakeknife’ was head of the IRA’s Internal Security Unit and was responsible for questioning, torturing and executing people the IRA suspected of being British agents. He was a British agent, passing on information to his controllers in the British Army. Now the Boutcher report has found that Stakeknife might have instigated more deaths than lives he saved during his time embedded in the terrorist organisation. Alasdair Palmer writes about it for our magazine and argues that infiltrators such as Stakeknife must have licence to do whatever necessary when fighting terrorism. Alasdair joins the podcast alongside Douglas Murray, The Spectator’s associate editor and author of the award-winning Bloody Sunday: Truth, lies and the Saville Inquiry. (34:21)

Hosted by Lara Prendergast and William Moore. 

Produced by Oscar Edmondson. 

We are always looking to improve the podcast, please send any feedback to: podcast@spectator.co.uk