January 15, 2020 - 11:37am

Last night was the final opportunity for six Democratic hopefuls to make their presidential pitches before the first primary in Iowa on 3 February. While most of the mainstream media focus was on a spat in the progressive wing of the party, a more interesting battle line was drawn elsewhere on the debate stage. When asked about whether he would support Donald Trump’s new North American trade deal, UMSCA, Tom Steyer announced that he would not because “if climate is your number one priority, you can’t sign a deal even if it’s marginally better for working people”.

That might be an easy call to make for someone who’s net worth is in excess of $1.5 billion, but it does point to one of this century’s most difficult political questions: if being green starts making life harder for the working class, which do you prioritise?

Today’s announcement of a government rescue package for the British regional airline FlyBe is another example of the same tension. It is a crucial part of regional transport infrastructure, connecting otherwise ‘left behind’ parts of the country, which the government sees as central to their mandate; but on the other hand… it’s a failing airline. The Independent has already come out against the rescue — showing how the new Left is already making a difficult choice.