Leadership candidate: Joan Burton. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

‘The leader’s role in election victories and defeats is greatly exaggerated,” says Archie Brown. “In a very, very tight contest the relative popularit(...)

 Winston Churchill contemplated acting against Ireland to remove the German legation from Dublin and asked for advice on how it could be done. Photograph: PA Wire

Winston Churchill was disproportionately obsessed with the possibilities of security leaks from Ireland in the run-up to D-Day, a conference heard yes(...)

Photograph of Tony Benn taken in 2003. The veteran politician died at home on Friday March 14th, 2014, at the age of 88. Photograph: Matthew Fearn/PA Wire

Tony Benn, who has died aged 88, was a pivotal figure in British left-wing politics in the second half of the 20th century. A national institut(...)