Friday, May 16, 2014

Axelrod Can’t Even Spell Miliband

What Exactly is Axelrod Here to Win for Labour?

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Labour have focussed on what really matters in this morning’s papers; briefing out every single detail of David Axelrod’s movements and first meeting with the Shadow Cabinet to the Times, FT and Guardian. However it is unclear from the spoon-fed lines whether his warning that “people are working harder and getting nowhere” is about the British people or Labour themselves.

All this begs the question, what is Axelrod actually here to achieve? Do Labour want him to win the election or merely the odd news cycle? Is this a gimmick that gets them a bit of coverage, or is he actually here to restructure their sprawling organisational mess and install some much needed discipline? This morning it looks like it is much more about PR than anything else…

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Wee Dougie Not Letting Axelrod Out of His Sight

The Labour fan-boys will be pleased to know where they can spot their guru:

Given his hourly rate, would it not be more cost effective to send someone else to get his packed lunch?

Guido hears that it was actually Caxton Street branch near the St. Ermine’s Hotel and Axelrod was being escorted by Douglas Alexander and four others. Presumably they were worried he might try do a runner under the pretence of popping out for sandwich. “TAXI! …Heathrow please.” 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Wheels Coming Off Labour Axel …rod

Dan Hodges has more on the high speed separation of the wheels from Labour’s axel… rod:

“The election campaign is being managed by Spencer Livermore, who is trying to sell the whole package via classical New Labour hard marketing techniques. His colleague, Douglas Alexander, has reportedly been banished to Scotland as scapegoat for the disintegration of Labour’s Euro election campaign. Michael Dugher, one of the party’s most accomplished campaigners, has been shunted off into the murky world of political black ops, managing the party’s “SEAL” attack team. The rest of shadow cabinet have simply vanished without a trace. 

When David Axelrod, the former Obama strategist, arrives for his first meetings with his new employers today, he could be forgiven for thinking he just walked into a lunatic asylum. “Where’s that guy who hired me?”. “Douglas? He’s off polling the Gorbals”. But he won’t have walked into an asylum. He’ll have walked into Ed Miliband’s Labour Party.

How long before a Labour MP breaks cover to moan on the airwaves? Guido’s money is on before PMQs tomorrow…

Monday, May 12, 2014

Knives Out for Wee Dougie as Insiders Pray For Axe Swing

Labour insiders have confessed that they are “confused and worried” about where the party’s message is going after last week’s PEB and poster. “We’re all over the place” says one, adding “our messaging is not working”. Staffers are questioning why the party are spending over £300,000 on Axelrod when such terrible ideas can be signed off. “None of this adds up.” And where was the yank campaigning genius when it was all going wrong? Finishing writing a book. Axelrod’s arrival in the UK is imminent for a two day briefing on British politics. Something tellingly required if you are from Chicago, compared to, say,  Australia. Only the Labour Party could end up paying for the pleasure of teaching their own guru rather than the other way round.

The finger of blame for last week’s clusterf**k is being pointed at Labour’s election coordinator Douglas Alexander for his stubborn refusal to “take the fight to UKIP”, instead focussing on the LibDems. Guido hears a row has broken out with attack dog Michael Dugher, who wants to train Labour’s fire on the party with 29% in the EU polls rather than the one on 9%. Dugher, speaking with unmelted butter in his mouth, tells Guido “we are beautifully aligned”.

Meanwhile, as revealed in yesterday’s Sun, Alexander’s enemies are wondering out loud why he got the top election job after losing two campaigns in Scotland, coordinating Labour’s loss in 2010 and then running David Miliband’s doomed leadership campaign. “Presumably he must have won his seat selection vote once” whispers a catty colleague.

As if by magic, Alexander was booked into yesterday’s Sunday Politics, where he was pummelled with a blunt instrument. Not only did he try to suggest that claims the Tories deliberately targeted disabled people were “factual” but also having a naked Nick Clegg eaten by a giant cat is not negative campaigning. His defence of the VAT poster fell apart pretty quickly too:

Alexander crumbled at the suggestion the VAT hike really has added £450 a year to average shopping basket. For that to be true the average family would have to be spending £21,600 a year on items that are 20% VATable. However average take home pay is less than £20,000 and an average family spends a large percentage of their income on zero rated food, travel, housing or low rated energy. It is inconceivable, even with welfare top ups, that an “average” family could spend £21,600 on 20% VATable goods. When Alexander was presented with this yesterday he moved the goalposts, suggesting that the cost would be over the course of the last Parliament. Which is not what his colleagues were saying:

You could forgive Axelrod for getting straight back on the plane and never coming back.

UPDATE: An sharp eared reader points out that at 3.19 in the above video Dougie himself says the £450 refers to a year before later attempting to say that it was “not an annualised figure”. Eek.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Read Guido’s Column in the Sun on Sunday Online

In today’s Sun on Sunday column Guido exclusively reveals that the Conservatives have received their largest donation ever under Cameron. Find out who cleared their debts exclusively in The Sun.

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Don’t miss out on all the latest gossip, including:

  • Labour infighting over Dougie Alexander’s strategy of attacking LibDems rather than UKIP – “confused and worried”, “We’re all over the place… Our messaging is not working.”
  • Dubious expense claiming to the end – Tim Yeo’s claim rejected, Charlie Kennedy’s too
  • Where was David Axelrod this week?
  • Ed Miliband is a fan of the old “mass debater” pun

Just 70p in the shops or just £1 a month to subscribe online

Friday, May 9, 2014

Quote of the Day

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Black and White Bun Fight

The reaction to Labour’s comedy PEB has been almost unanimously negative, yet the LibDems have felt compelled to hit back with some rapid rebuttal:

Guido hears there were some division internally about the Labour ad spot. Did Axelrod sign that off then?

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Pfizer’s Fixers
Axelrod Hamstrings Another Labour Attack Opportunity

Pfizer are turning out to be just about as well-connected as you would expect a major multinational pharmaceutical corporation to be. They are well in with Downing Street having paid No. 10 director of external relations Gabby Bertin £25,000 when she worked with Adam Werrity at Liam Fox’s struck off Atlantic Bridge ‘charity’. Dave’s pollster Mark Textor also used to work for Pfizer ten years ago.

Normally Labour would make a fuss about this, so why so quiet? Perhaps because Miliband strategist David Axelrod’s old firm AKPD ran attack ads for Big Pharma in the States, a coalition that included the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, whose chairman is Pfizer CEO Ian Read. Lining the pockets of advisers from both parties can’t hurt when you need their support for your takeover…

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Saturday Seven Up

With parliament returning this week 120,523 visitors visited 359,481 times viewing 642,185 pages. The top stories in order of popularity were:

You’re either in front of Guido, or behind…

Seen Elsewhere

Apple’s Tim Cook: iGay | Techno Guido
Insurgent Parties Plunge Labour Into Crisis | Alex Wickham
Mind-Bending Politics of Drugs | Mark Wallace
PC Worries Prevent Police Protecting Young Girls | Jill Kirby
Miliband Should Win Rochester | Martin Kettle
Thatcher Minister Sir John Nott ‘Voted for UKIP’ | Times
Time to Listen to Drugs Experts | Guardian
Drug Laws Don’t Work | Times
Our Moral Duty to Cut Taxes | David Cameron
Greens Ahead of LibDems | Guardian
Channel 4 to Spoof UKIP Election Win | Guardian


VOTER-RECALL
Find out more about PLMR


David Cameron drug policy reformer and leadership contender in 2005…

“Politicians attempt to appeal to the lowest common denominator by posturing with tough policies and calling for crackdown after crackdown. Drugs policy has been failing for decades.”



“Digger” Murdoch says:

Is it just me, or is Nigel Farage just a top hat and a monocle away from being a Batman villain?


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