A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Monday, August 21, 2006

In her own words ...

It was good to see my local MP disclosing details of her daily routine in yesterday's Sunday Times: http://women.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,27870-2308369.html

Amongst Diane's more interesting revelations:

"generally people are very British and ignore me, which is good."

"I do have a mobile phone but it’s usually switched off. I don’t like being too contactable. I have never had a pager – the idea of being so easily reached by the Labour party is just too ghastly. The good thing about a BlackBerry is you can read a message and pretend that you haven’t seen it."

"Being a back-bench MP is like being a small entrepreneur. "

"Living in Hackney, you can have it [music] on very loud and nobody’s bothered."

"my son tells me I’m a Z-list celebrity; that keeps me in my place."

"Even when I’m retired and on the beach in Jamaica with a toy boy, I’ll still be going online to find out what’s happening."


Anonymous Andrea said...

Is it having a go at her? Apart the second item, I don't think you can take issues with her for the other things (unless maybe if you live next to her and don't like her music choices). It's actually good that no-one pays attention at her and her son is already spotting the reality.

3:03 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Not necessarily having a go, but amusing for those of us that know her.

3:08 pm, August 21, 2006

Anonymous Andrea said...

I suppose you're already ready for her reselection process that will start soon....

3:31 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

I don't think Diane is expecting me to vote for her, seeing as I didn't in either of the last 2 trigger ballots, but I doubt she is losing much sleep about it.

3:40 pm, August 21, 2006

Anonymous Andrea said...

Didn't she have a hard time to get reselected last time with some local branches voting against her in the trigger ballott? Do you think she'll have troubles this time?

4:02 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

It was more competitive in the run-up to 1997 when Oona King ran against her.

In the run up to 2005 Stoke Newington Central Ward voted against (I think unanimously) and if my memory is correct Cazenove (where I live) and New River were draws at the trigger meetings and thus abstained. I think she got 7 positive branches or affiliates.

Her position is weaker this time because of the issue of her son's education which split the left (Labour Left Briefing voted with the centre and right on the GC to censure her whilst Socialist Action voted against the censure motion).

But to be fair to her she has campaigned harder, generally been more visible and more friendly in the last couple of years than in the past. I must be going soft in my old age.

4:15 pm, August 21, 2006

Anonymous Andrea said...

thanks. I found an old Guardian article saying that the Co-Op party also voted against.
What has she done to the Newington Central Ward to get such response?!

On your last point, she's also more present in the Commons, her attendance record in up compared to last 2 terms. It seems she has waken up!

You know, considering the average age of Campaign Group MPs, she's one of the youngest ones there. They can't lose them or in a couple of years John McDonnell will chair just himself!

4:33 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Stoke Newington Central just happens to have a lot of sound people living in it - always has more people wanting to be delegates than there are places for it on the GC and lots of people involved at election time. I was branch Chair before I moved house.

The Co-Op vote got ruled out on a technicality (Hackney branch wanted to vote against Diane but were told they couldn't by London region of Co-Op).

4:50 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger A soft socialist said...

I also think that in terms of campaign group MPs these alright.

John McDonnell and Alan Simpson to me seem much worse.

6:32 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger A soft socialist said...

Sorry that should have said 'she is' not 'these'

6:32 pm, August 21, 2006

Anonymous Andrea said...

Alan Simpson is one of my favourite MPs!

7:09 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger A soft socialist said...

I suppose he gains some status amongst the left for the comment he made about Blair being authoritarian.

9:41 pm, August 21, 2006

Anonymous Andrea said...

He didn't need that comment to get my appreciation.
Btw, he has just finished to build his new Eco House (but the press is just interested in Cameron's wind turbine as if he's the only environment friendly MP on earth!)
He was also voted "the sexiest Nottinghamshire MP"! He defeated "none of them" in that poll.

9:47 pm, August 21, 2006

Blogger El Tom said...

Not a big fan of any of them, I must confess...

11:23 pm, August 21, 2006

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Luke Akehurst said...
I must be going soft in my old age.

So the ladies tell me!

5:11 am, August 22, 2006

Anonymous David Floyd said...

"Being a back-bench MP is like being a small entrepreneur. "

Surely this will be enough to get her censured by both LLB and Socialist Action

12:09 pm, August 22, 2006

Anonymous Duncan said...

People's opinions are weird. I've nothing against Diane Abbott - quite enjoy watching her on the telly! But Alan Simpson and John McDonnell are - along with Jeremy Corbyn - the best MPs in the ruddy place! And not JUST because they tend to agree with me about stuff...

12:55 pm, August 23, 2006


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