“If you want a politician who thinks that a good photo is the most important thing, then don’t vote for me,” says Ed.
Just days after begging for a certain photo-op.
There is no mention of Ed Miliband’s unscheduled ‘brush-by’ with President Obama in Mike Allen’s Playbook, the morning round up of anything going on in Washington that matters to anyone who is anybody in Washington. Sebastian Payne at the Post reports that Ed is scheduled to meet national security adviser Susan Rice this afternoon, officially the White House pointedly says there is “nothing to announce on the president’s schedule”. Presumably at this point Obama will drop in, if he doesn’t have a world war to avoid. Damian McBride, recounting the President’s five snubs of Gordon Brown and subsequent humiliating chat in a kitchen, has his fingers crossed:
“Team Miliband will have left nothing to chance before their man’s meeting at the White House today. For starters, they will have ensured he gets at least as much ceremony and time as David Cameron enjoyed in his first visit to President Bush as leader of the opposition. Aides will have their stopwatches out, ready to squash any suggestion that Mr Miliband was given less time than he was due…
The reality is that every presidential summit, visit, brush-by, drop-in, and walk-and-talk is nowadays so stage-managed that only someone as afflicted by bad luck as Gordon Brown could ever come a cropper. Provided Obama turns up and the White House doesn’t serve bacon sandwiches, today’s meeting will be the diplomatic equivalent of the speaking clock.”
Miliband’s intellectual henchman Stewart Wood was responsible for White House relations under Gordon Brown, surely he will ensure that this time there is no screw up. Interestingly McBride names Dougie Alexander as the source of the leak of the ‘five snubs’ story back in 2009. Which goes some way to explain the enmity between him and Michael Dugher, then Brown’s comms chief…
Co-conspirators point out, this excuse is hardly watertight.
As Yes, Minister puts it:
“It is possible to remove everything of significance from a file released under the 30-year rule by saying that it is complete except for:
a. A small number of secret documents.
b. A few documents which are part of still active files.
c. Some correspondence lost in the floods of 1967.
d. Some records which went astray in the move to London.
e. Other records which went astray when the Department was reorganized.
f. The normal withdrawal of papers whose publication could give grounds for an action for libel of breach of confidence or cause embarrassment to friendly governments.”
Appropriately, Sir Humprey’s quote is from an episode called Skeleton in the Cupboard.
“It’s really a deliberate misrepresentation to have the few Tory women MPs clustered around the Prime Minister so that they can be picked up by the TV cameras while the rest of the government benches are nearly exclusively men.”
- Harriet Harman, 8 July 2014
Now what sort of self-respecting, proud feminist would ever allow herself to be used in a wheeze such as that?
- Harriet Harman, 25 July 2007
Eurostar travel chaos struck this morning, as 382 passengers and four dogs were left stranded on a broken down train to Brussels in the middle of the 30 mile long Channel Tunnel. Among the passengers, who had to be evacuated, was newly-elected UKIP MEP and former People’s Army spokesperson Patrick O’Flynn. Normally Patrick spends his time struggling to get out of Europe, not the other way round…
It wouldn’t be a row without an unprompted contribution from Margaret, Lady Hodge, rent-a-quote extraordinaire. Today’s Morning Star reports:
‘Senior Labour MP Margaret Hodge condemned the “veil of secrecy” that has shrouded the Establishment for far too long. “Now the Establishment who thought they were always protected find actually they are subject to the same rigours of the law and that’s right”’
Could that be the very same Margaret Hodge who was forced to apologise for branding a sex abuse victim as ‘extremely disturbed’, and was accused of failing to act on child abuse claims as leader of Islington Council. As the BBC points out:
“Mrs Hodge led Islington Council from 1982 to 1992, when it emerged that children in the council’s care had been abused. She has been accused of failing to act, despite receiving warnings – an allegation she denies”
A veil of secrecy…
Miliband guru Lord Glasman has leapt to the defence of the Labour leader, dismissing criticisms made yesterday in the FT from Miliband guru Lord Glasman. Lord Glasman says that Lord Glasman was “wrong” to have criticised Miliband’s lack of direction, insisting that, despite what Lord Glasman said yesterday, “there isn’t a problem”:
“I think we’ve got the direction. I was really impressed with Ed’s speech yesterday about the Adonis report, which is excellent. All the policies are there. There’s also the local government taskforce coming. So, a sense of redistributing power, people participating … I’m saying there isn’t a problem… I was wrong.”
Poor Craig Oliver. Arriving at the Brussels summit with the PM and his entourage earlier today, Downing Street’s Director of Communications was hauled aside by security and stopped from going in, leaving him stranded at the door as Dave and the rest of his team strolled on through:
“Motherf**kers act like they forgot about Dre…”
One question has been buzzing around today:
One for Ed’s team to sniff out.
The latest round of Shadow Cabinet briefing would suggest Ed’s failing to cut through to his own team, let alone the country. They don’t appear to be listening to what he has to say. This was no more apparent than at last Friday’s Shadow Cabinet meeting in Wales. The pointless PR stunt was was held in a plane engine factory, but nobody could turn off the machinery, so they all had to shout at each other. When that didn’t work they had to get in microphones and loud speakers – yet that didn’t really work either. If Ed Miliband says something, but no one can actually understand what it was, did it really happen?
Ruffley Supporter Provokes Outcry | HuffPo
Mirror Readies Pennies for Hacking Payouts | Media Guido
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
Guido’s Column | Sun
Miliband Drawing Attention to His Mistakes is Madness | Lord Bell
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