Previously Labour’s position was that it would oppose an attempt by Alex Salmond’s SNP to hold a referendum in 2010 on freeing Scotland from Westminster rule. Now their position is that it will all come down to “timescale” and “wording”. Some of them are even saying they will vote against a referendum bill. The Labour Group came out of a meeting today looking sullen and refused to answer direct questions. They have u-turned again. Guido will give a copy of the best book on how to win a referendum – “White Elephant – How the North East Said No“ – to anyone who can explain, definitively the Labour Party’s position on a Scottish referendum in less than 50 words. Answers in the comments please.
A co-conspirator emails:
Seen today in Portcullis House: Assistant Commissioner John Yates. Wonder what he’s doing here…?
The final sentence visible concludes, in bold type, that most importantly: “… it is vital that we show that at this time of uncertainty we show that we are on people’s side”. You see that is the thing with New Labour politicians, what they care most about is covering their arse. Not that they would think to introduce an emergency growth package as Bush has done in the U.S., or cut taxes to boost growth like they have elsewhere in Europe. No, the most important thing is that they push their disingenuous spin slogan that they are “on people’s side”. That should do it…
Asked if the Prime Minister was happy, the PMS said that the Prime Minister, as he had said himself before, believed that he had the best job in the world and he was focusing on meeting the priorities of the British people; that’s what we were doing today and what we would be doing for the days and weeks ahead.
“No” in other words…
Compass was a strategic part of the “coalition of the willing” to unseat Blair, so Lawson should accept some of the responsibility for saddling Labour with Brown. The month after Brown took office Lawson wrote a piece for the Guardian gushing like a school girl:
The skilfully engineered bounce witnessed in the first days of Gordon Brown’s premiership could be turned into something more: a political earthquake. The time is ripe not just for a better Labour government but for a shift in the centre of gravity of politics decisively to the left. Brown could be the first Labour leader since Clement Attlee to recast British society – not by taking small steps but giant leaps. This is why. Once in every generation a political revolution takes place in which thinking and behaviour shifts not just by degrees but qualitatively. It happened in 1945 under Labour, as the experience of the war and the economic depression before it heralded the centralised welfare state.
The place was filled to gills with hacks and Guido had to push a few out of the way to make it to the drinks (sorry Emily). Admittedly Guido left early and the only MP Guido spotted was Charles Clarke. Perhaps the PM or the Blairs will drop in later, or perhaps not…
Still looking for examples of Janet Daley’s stunning insights into Gordon Brown from last year. Send any gems you have found to Guido.Fawkes@Order-Order.com…
Incidentally the Telegraph today repeats the mistake that the Tories have not taken a seat from Labour in a by-election for “30 years”, a mistake also made by the Sunday Times yesterday. That error was compounded by the article claiming Margaret Thatcher’s constituency was Grantham. Mistakenly they refer back to the famous Ilford North by-election of 1978 which presaged the fall of Jim Callaghan’s government. In fact the Tories more recently gained Mitcham & Morden from Labour in a 1982 by-election, when Maggie was of course actually MP for Finchley.
“I think people could look at what he was saying a few weeks ago and believe at that time that his intentions were honourable. As for what he said this morning I think I leave you to draw your own conclusions from that… I think it is very unlikely… that Frank Field will support any proposals that are brought forward by the government.”
So the 10p tax debacle is all Frank Field’s fault…
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How to Win a Twitter Argument | Hopi Sen
Sign Petition Calling for Ruffley to Resign | Change.org
People’s PMQs Would Divide Politicians and Public | Dan Hodges
Morgan Hires Gay Rights Campaigner as SpAd | Telegraph
Don’t Underestimate Philip Hammond | Nick Wood
Labour Council Collaborates With Pro-Hamas Group | Breitbart
Qatar Sugar-Daddies of Islamist Financing | Left Foot Forward
New Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond has big ambitions in his first meeting with Benjamin Netanyahu today:
“I came to bring this conflict to an end.”
Christie Malry @fcablog
Ed Miliband does photo oops, not photo ops