Ashcroft In America podcast: my interview with Robby Mook

Robby Mook was Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign manager, securing more votes than for any other candidate in presidential election history other than Barack Obama. I caught up with him at his new perch at Harvard University to talk about Russian interference, fake news, what Hillary was like as a candidate, the prospects for a second Trump term and what Democrats need to do to prevent it.

Listen to PodCast …

The People and President Trump: One year on

Last week I wrote about how American voters – particularly the ones who supported Donald Trump last November – thought he was doing a year after they elected him to the White House. (You can hear them in their own words in the latest Ashcroft In America podcast). My new polling on how Americans see their President and some of the controversies that surround him completes the picture.

Despite the perpetual furore that surrounds President Trump, the vast majority of those who voted for him remain happy with their decision. Those who chose him positively, rather than as the lesser of two evils, are especially sure they made the right choice. On the other side of the equation, so are those who voted for Hillary Clinton. Not surprisingly, then, the country remains sharply divided as to the merits of its leader – a division that could hardly be missed when we asked our 13,500 respondents what word or phrase first came to mind when they thought of him.

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Untold story: the parents who lost all four sons in the First World War

First published in the Telegraph Magazine on Saturday 11 November 2017.

In 1914, four brothers went to fight in the First World War. None came home. Here, to mark Armistice Day, 
Michael Ashcroft tells the heartbreaking story of the gallantry and sacrifice of one Scottish family.

On a grey March evening nearly 100 years ago, close to a sunken road in the Somme valley, Acting Lieutenant Colonel William Herbert Anderson – or Bertie, as he was affectionately known to his family and friends – led his men the only way he knew how: from the front. (more…)

Brexit poll: Voters think EU aims to punish Britain

Voters are losing confidence that the government will be able to secure a good Brexit deal for Britain, according to my latest survey. The poll, conducted this week, also finds that most think the EU’s objective is to punish Britain and stop other countries leaving, and that Remain and Leave voters have different priorities for the UK’s post-Brexit relationship with EU countries.

With talks once again underway in Brussels, my research shows that both Remain and Leave voters are less sure about the prospect of a good outcome than they were before the general election. In March, before the election was called, I asked voters to say how confident they were that Theresa May and her team would be able to negotiate a good deal on a scale from zero (no confidence at all) to 100 (total confidence).

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Why those corners of a foreign field are forever immaculate

First published in the Daily Mail on 08 November 2017

Under a warm, late-afternoon sun, I gently placed my wreath at the base of Captain Arthur Henderson’s gravestone at the immaculately kept Cojeul British Cemetery in northern France.

As the proud custodian of Captain Henderson’s medal group, which I bought at auction for my collection of war medals, I had long wanted to pay my respects to this noble soldier. (more…)

One year after Trump’s election, his voters still see him as a hero

First published in on 07 November 2017

“I think he’s doing good. I think he’s what we needed to shake things up in this country.” “The stock market’s liking it. He’s doing well for my 401K.” “He’s trying. Nothing’s going to happen overnight, but he’s sure as hell trying.” The experts and commentators will have plenty to say about the year since Donald Trump was elected, but these remarks from voters who backed the president last November may well say a lot more about where he stands politically than the headline numbers, some of which put his approval ratings at a record low. (more…)

A statement by Lord Ashcroft

The so-called ‘Paradise Papers’

The BBC has suggested that I may have ignored rules in connection with the Punta Gorda Trust.  (Please note the deliberate inclusion by Panorama of the word ‘may’.)  In fact, I can state unequivocally that I have not ignored rules, and that I do not control the Punta Gorda Trust, and never have done.  Throughout the Trust’s existence, I have never known the identity of any of the Trustees, let alone had any dealings with them.  At no point has it been suggested directly to me, or through others, that I have taken any inappropriate action.  No professional Trustee has ever resigned because of anything I may have done. (more…)

Ashcroft In America podcast – election anniversary edition

A year on from Donald Trump’s election, the Ashcroft In America team returned to find out how real voters think the President is doing so far.

Listen to PodCast …

The Bravest of the Brave

First published in Airsoft Action Magazine on 19 October 2017.

My interest in bravery dates back more than 60 years to when I was a small boy. My late father, Eric, was a modest man but, when I was about ten, he finally agreed to tell me about his own role in the Second World War.

After war broke out in September 1939, he was one of the first young men to enlist, joining the South Lancashire Regiment. However, he did not see action until the summer of 1944, when he arrived on Sword Beach as part of the D-Day landings. (more…)

Time to shoot down these unfair myths

First published in the Daily Mail on 16 October 2017

Ask anyone what first comes to mind when they think of someone who has just left the Armed Forces and you will rightly hear some very positive things: leadership, discipline, comradeship, selflessness, loyalty, even heroism. (more…)

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