Officially the Australian Labour Party are saying “nothing to do with us, guv” over Tom Watson crashing their election; though could there be another reason he’s down there, beyond his own ego? The rumour mill is in overdrive today with one theory doing the rounds – Watson is on a recruitment drive to find a new campaign coordinator or election boss for Labour in 2015. Blind-sided by the Tories hiring of Jim Messina, the hunt is very much on.
With two senior Obama campaign figures (Tom McMahon, the former head of the Democratic National Committee, and Joon Kim of New Partners consultants) trying to revive the struggling Kevin Rudd campaign, it could be a very useful fishing trip. Blue State Digital’s Matt McGregor, who ran rapid rebuttal against Romney, is also on the Rudd campaign and has already been hired by Labour, so who knows what will be discussed over some late night beers and karaoke. Lets hope the unions will be willing to open their cheque books…
UPDATE: Bruce Hawker who is head honcho on Rudd’s campaign is also a name touted for the Labour job.
As the Indy prepare to go out on strike at 4pm, the Lebedevs are not the most popular Russians in Kensington right now. Though the strike has been cut by one hour as a sign of goodwill for further negotiations, insiders at the paper are not holding their punches. The anger is aimed way above the editor:
“I think this strike is a vote of confidence for some sort of survival plan, for the editor and against the way people above him at senior management have gone about forcing people out of their jobs without even considering voluntary redundancies.
Others are more candid, accusing Evegeny of only seeing the Indy as “a seat at the top table… it gets you into Downing Street and to w**key parties”. There is particular anger at the way forced redundancies were put on staff before even asking anyone if they wanted to quit…
The Australian Labor Party distance themselves from Watson:
‘A Labor election campaign spokeswoman says that “the ALP is not paying for” Watson’s visit, nor will Labor be paying Watson during his stay. “We have not invited him,” the spokeswoman said.’
Paul Goodman has been chipping away at CCHQ and Downing Street over Tory membership numbers all month. They are hiding behind spurious reasons like the Party Board not signing off the release. ConservativeHome put their estimate at 130,000, yet it could be much worse? Douglas Carswell now suspects the reason that they are stalling is because membership has dropped below 100,000 for the first time in modern history. Nearly a quarter of a million members voted for Dave. What is the point of bringing in Obama’s field genius when you haven’t got anyone in the field?
UPDATE: Jon Ashworth has written a moderately amusing letter to Jim Messina pointing this out. Another happy reader…
As the news emerges that the ASA is investigating the Home Office’s ‘go home’ van after a few dozen complaints, Guido is sceptical on what grounds it broke any rules. As ASA say on their website:
All complaints of political bias in TV or radio advertising should be made to Ofcom. For reasons of freedom of speech, we do not have remit over non-broadcast ads where the purpose of the ad is to persuade voters in a local, national or international electoral referendum. Complaints about political advertising should be made directly to the party responsible for that advertising.
The true purpose of those ads is a moot point…
Meanwhile over at the Treasury, they seem quite chuffed with their new hunt a tax dodger tool:
HMRC’s Most Wanted gallery of tax fugitives has just had over 1 million views this morning. Can you help find them? http://t.co/y22Uk7WdHV
— HM Revenue & Customs (@HMRCgovuk) August 9, 2013
Which is odd given the gallery’s own public counter says otherwise:
You would have thought numbers would their strong point…