Sky News is launching a new weekly political podcast, the broadcaster has announced, hosted by the news publisher’s political editor Beth Rigby, Labour MP Jess Phillips, and former leader of the Scottish Conservatives Ruth Davidson.
The podcast series, titled Electoral Dysfunction, is set to launch on the first of March and will cover all the latest news from Westminster for the week, as well as analysis from the co-hosts on politicians’ policies and their predictions on who’s likely to come out on top.
“This is a huge political year as we gear up for what could be the most seismic UK election in a generation,” said Rigby. “But voters aren't feeling it, with people across the country telling me politics isn't working.”
"Each week, across different issues, I'll be asking why - and looking for solutions through frank conversations with two of the most compelling, engaging and honest women who have worked in politics.”
Davidson also said that the podcast will offer a behind-the-scenes look into the lives of politicians and break down how decisions get made, as well as discussing how to make politics better, from the perspective of three women in politics. Sky News’ executive chairman David Rhodes added that while there are no shortages of voices in Westminster, there is a shortage of voices from people like Phillips, Rigby, and Davidson.
“People hate it when politicians treat them like idiots - parroting a party line that nobody really believes,” said Davidson. “We promise never to do that. Jess and I may often disagree, but we won't do it simply for disagreement's sake - and we're just as likely to take our own side to task.”
“I spend a lot of the time on the doorstep and what I get back is that trust in politics is at an all-time low - they don't believe we'll deliver what we say, and I don't blame them,” said Phillips. “We want to unpick that by taking listeners behind the curtain to talk about the disconnect and bring listeners' lives back into this, talking about the things that actually matter to them.”
Other podcasts that have launched ahead of the election period include The Times’ How To Win An Election podcast with political experts - Peter Mandelson, Polly Mackenzie, and Daniel Finklestein - and host, journalist and stand-up comedian Matt Chorley.