modernisers

Modernising Modernisers

First published on the Huffington Post September 2015; updated 24 September 2016

The result of the Labour leadership election was hurtful – to pretend otherwise would be untrue. I think the candidate that I supported did a brilliant job – tough though her task was. As Jeremy Corbyn said, Liz Kendall ‘absolutely stands up for what she believes in’. Yvette Cooper came out and changed government policy on refugees. Andy Burnham showed he was one of the nicest guys in politics. Congratulations are due to Jeremy Corbyn and his team.

It is horrid losing elections. Internal ones are often more painful. While May’s general election result was hard to take, losing within the party for which you have worked your whole adult life is more personal, especially when your very motive for doing so has been brought so firmly into question. (more…)

The week the mods got organised

First published on Progressonline

They said it couldn’t be done, that moderate Labour supporters could never be persuaded to pay £25 for a vote in the leadership election. But this week, from a standing start, Saving Labour – and all those who fell in behind – galvanised the moderate wing of the Labour party and recruited a historic number of Labour voters to the party fold. 183,000 people used the party’s fledgling Registered Supporters scheme to get a vote in the forthcoming leadership election. Reports suggest that between 34 and 40 per cent are those wanting a credible opposition. More than anyone could have hoped for if the number got into six figures. And that was well before reports of 40,000 duplications – much more likely to be Jeremy Corbyn voters – were deducted from that number. (more…)

Labour’s moderates need a single unity candidate by 5pm tonight

Angell1

First published on Times Redbox

Politics is often guilty of ramping up the rhetoric beyond reality. But not this time. The existential crisis, for that’s what it is, that now grips Labour can only be solved by the parliamentary party showing a level of unity and purpose that is proportionate to the scale of the challenge.

Let’s take a step back and see how we’ve got here. Jeremy Corbyn had never enjoyed the genuine support of more than a couple of dozen of his fellow members of parliament.

The rest who ensured he was on the ballot paper last summer have already expressed buyer’s remorse, if not all as bluntly as Margaret Beckett. (more…)

Time for a new tune

First published on LabourList

Nostalgia is to modernising politics, what rust is to iron. Corrosive.

Modernisers in the Labour Party have been dealt a heavy blow. Our candidate Liz Kendall did us proud but the result shows the challenge we face to win over our fellow party members if we want to be able to put our case directly to the British public. (more…)

Modernising modernisers

PROJXXXX_Mag_October_22.09.15_FrontCover_RGB_SFirst published in Progress magazine and on the Huffington Post

The result of the Labour leadership election was hurtful – to pretend otherwise would be untrue. I think the candidate that I supported did a brilliant job – tough though her task was. As Jeremy Corbyn said, Liz Kendall ‘absolutely stands up for what she believes in’. Yvette Cooper came out and changed government policy on refugees. Andy Burnham showed he was one of the nicest guys in politics. Congratulations are due to Jeremy Corbyn and his team.

It is horrid losing elections. Internal ones are often more painful. While May’s general election result was hard to take, losing within the party for which you have worked your whole adult life is more personal, especially when your very motive for doing so has been brought so firmly into question. (more…)