The Latest Labour Hypocrite To Strut Centre Stage.
I had intended to post on this hero of the working class, whatever that "community" might be, if it even still exists and the man's inevitable progress to wealth few can ever achieve. Especially when the main vehicle for this grasping bunch of hypocrites is the tax payer funded trough.
However I came across this demolishing of Burnham piece I couldn't come close to matching. Read it after which is revealed it's origin.
The Westminster groupthink, which recently had Ed Miliband walking into Downing Street, has a new favourite: Andy Burnham.
Labour MPs talking among themselves and to journalists, journalists talking to each other in Westminster bars and on the conveyor belt of rolling news comment slots, then bouncing off MPs and vocal activists on Twitter – this is the echo chamber that got the result of the general election so badly wrong and has now reconvened to similar effect for the Labour leadership race.
Andy Burnham certainly has support in the PLP, almost half by some accounts, and an active briefing operation shaping journalists’ perceptions. If the leadership election was to be decided among MPs, journalists and Twittervists, he justifiably would be a runaway favourite.
But party members are also involved. Over 220,000 of them. And they do not even vaguely resemble any of the participants in the Westminster groupthink bubble.
Instead, Labour’s members are like the general public.
According to internal party estimates, over 95% do not attend a single party meeting in a year, deliver a leaflet or knock a door. They are not consumed with the minutiae of politics or deeply tribal.
They’ve just made a choice to join Labour, as many people join clubs and societies without any sense that this membership defines their life.
Under Labour’s new leadership election rules, it’s one member one vote. With a membership that reflects the public, the same priorities which so recently decided the general election will similarly shape this race.
Economic competence and the preference for prime minister will be the key criteria against which contenders are to be judged and on both counts Andy Burnham’s candidature is critically flawed.
Over the weekend, Burnham made some tentative moves in the right direction on the economy. He conceded that the deficit should not have risen faster than growth in the late 2000s, under the last Labour government.
But after two shattering election defeats, a few circumspect words are not enough, particularly given the chief secretary to the Treasury in 2007 and 2008 – the cabinet minister responsible for public spending – was one Andy Burnham.
What might just have worked in 2010, will not in 2015. To tackle the deeply entrenched public perception of Labour’s proclivity to over-spend and his personal credibility problem, Andy Burnham needed to go much, much further.
Over the course of a relatively long leadership race, his inadequate efforts on the economy will be mercilessly picked apart in media interviews. It’s what Andrew Neil lives for. Kirsty Wark must be praying for another chance to monster him.
The other candidates’ campaigns will brief about Burnham’s weaknesses on the economy and zero in on his vulnerability to Tory attack as the man who spent all of the money, in Liam Byrne’s infamous note.
The impact on Andy Burnham’s support among party members will be comparable to that of the Tartan scare on Ed Miliband’s support among the public.
On leadership, the critical measure for Labour’s contenders will be who is most competitive with David Cameron on preference for prime minister.
Ed Miliband trailed Cameron by double digits and it proved an insurmountable barrier at the election. Labour cannot repeat the same mistake.
Polling is yet to be conducted on this question (the few polls so far have just been on the choice between candidates with the overwhelming majority of people too unfamiliar with the contenders to express a preference) but Andy Burnham has already been defined with the public.
He, and Yvette Cooper, have been in the public eye for over a decade, as cabinet ministers in the last Labour government and then shadow cabinet members under Ed Miliband.
When voters see both Burnham and Cooper, they see faces associated with Labour’s defeats at the hands of David Cameron in 2010 and 2015.
Burnham in particular was the health secretary when the travesty of Mid Staffs occurred. Once again, other candidates’ teams will ensure his vulnerability to Tory attack as the man on whose watch Mid Staffs happened, will be front and centre, in media coverage of the campaign.
When the polls are conducted, if Andy ‘Mid Staffs’ Burnham, doesn’t trail David Cameron (or Boris Johnson or George Osborne) on preference for prime minister, by double digits, it will be a miracle.
Andy Burnham is currently setting the pace for the the campaign. His team are briefing out a succession of prominent supporters from the PLP each week and will continue to generate momentum and decent media coverage.
But over summer, the campaign will move on from being a PLP popularity contest to focus on the substantive differences between the candidates. At this point, the decision on his candidacy will crystallise into two simple questions.
Do party members think that Andy Burnham, chief secretary to the Treasury in the Labour government on the eve of the crash, is best placed to overcome the Conservative onslaught and convince voters that Labour can now be trusted on the economy?
And do party members believe that Andy Burnham, secretary of state for health at the time of Mid Staffs, is the candidate most able to cut through Tory attacks and persuade voters that he, rather than David Cameron, or whoever replaces him, should be prime minister of Britain?
The answers are painfully obvious, perhaps more so to party members than the Westminster village."
How damning is that? Source taken from the very heart of this rump of a floundering Party. Labour-uncut.
As for a lighter note,