Former Barnsbury Ward member T Blair may take some consolation as he leaves office that, having condemned him on various issues over the years, Islington South & Finsbury CLP's GC last night passed the following motion, with only 2 dissenting votes:
"This GC notes that Tony Blair will shortly resign as Prime Minister after 10 years in office. This GC believes that the last 10 years left Britain a wealthier, happier and healthier place. This GC applauds, in particular, the introduction of the national minimum wage and now the raising to £5.35, the virtual abolition of long term unemployment and the lowest unemployment rate of the major economics in Europe; the writing-off of Britain's third world debt and trebling of the overseas aid budget; free entry to museums and galleries; the three-fold increase in NHS spending and resultant 85,000 more nurses and 32,000 more doctors; the 30,000 more teachers; devolution to Scotland and Wales and a mayor and assembly for London; introduction of civil partnerships, equalisation of the age of consent and repeal of section 28. Each was only possible with a Labour Government, and was achieved in the face of Tory opposition. This GC therefore thanks Tony Blair for his leadership of the Party and wishes him well for the future."
Blair always said he would know he had succeeded when he persuaded the Labour Party to love Peter Mandelson. He hasn't quite got there with Peter, but persuading the Islington South GC to praise his own record - however late in the day - ain't bad.