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.

Friday, June 29, 2007

Reshuffle bits & pieces

Excellent news that Jim Murphy - one of the most talented and politically clear-thinking ministers - has been promoted to Minister for Europe and that another bright and sound minister, Liam Byrne, is staying at Minister for Immigration.

Sad that Adam Ingram is stepping down as Armed Forces Minister - he is another of the veterans of Neil Kinnock's team in the '80s - his PPS from '88-'92 - who laid the foundations for Labour's electability.

Hilarious that the left are so worked up about Digby Jones - he's going to be promoting trade, not writing employment laws.

Churlish that Cruddas didn't take the job offered him - if he wants to change things then at some point he actually needs to be a Minister taking decisions.


Anonymous newshound said...

The rumours yesterday were that Cruddas had turned down a very different job - some kind of vice chair of the party - which isn't a serious job to offer him.

I think I'd want to see what it was he was offered before casting judgement. If he'd been offered something good and turned it down then it would be one thing, but if he basically got offered to hold hazza's handbag, then tbh, I think he did the right thing.

6:36 pm, June 29, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

I think it's even worse if he turned down Vice-Chair which was exactly the kind of party-building role he wanted the DL to be.

6:43 pm, June 29, 2007

Anonymous jdc said...

Where's Woolas gone? We're going to miss him.

7:14 pm, June 29, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Woolas? He'll turn up again soon enough.

Agree about Digby, Luke.

Have been incommunicado all day so don't know the Cruddas narrative ...

7:26 pm, June 29, 2007

Blogger el Tom said...

I've heard that there were meant to be four party chairs, which kind of makes each individual post a bit useless...

This, if it is true, represents an effort to co-opt the centre and soft left without giving anything back politically.

A bad deal, in my view.

8:03 pm, June 29, 2007

Blogger el Tom said...

Erm, 'deputy party chairs', just to correct the above.

What we have instead is the three cabinet ministers Cruddas beat still there, but not even a junior position in government for the man who beat them, and defined the agenda.

Gordon's loss, I reckon.

8:05 pm, June 29, 2007

Blogger grimupnorth said...

Absolutely,Tom. Hope cruddas continues to veer left. we are going to need concerted opposition.

1:00 pm, June 30, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cruddas was apparently offered the job of being one of the "ministers for the regions", and one of the vice-chairs.

The offer is described by a Cruddasite this morning as "too nebulous" to accept.

I'm inclined to agree - it sounds the sort of job that would have bound Cruddas to the new government without giving him a significant role in either policy or campaign strategy.

In short, not a serious recognition of the strength of Cruddas's performance in the deputy contest.

IMHO he was right to wait for Brown's first reshuffle.

1:56 pm, June 30, 2007

Blogger Dave Brinson said...

Any info on whether Digby Jones is going to join the Labour Party as he is now a member of the Labour government ?

3:19 pm, June 30, 2007

Anonymous Ravi said...

Luke imagine you has a sister and she started to hang out with a pimp. How would you feel?
If you are the person I think you are you would be worried about your sister. You would not want her to associate with this man am I right? Well this is the way I and many of the left feel about Digby "Billy Bunter" Jones. If you really want unity of the party this appointment will hurt all lot of us on the left. Surely even you don't hate us that much do you? May I assume if the PM offered Jones a position dealing with employment you might feel a little different? Certainly that is what I got from your comment on his appointment to his new trade brief.

3:46 pm, June 30, 2007

Anonymous Peter Kenyon said...

Dear Luke

If Jon Cruddas was offered a fictious post as a Vice-Chair of the Labour Party, and turned it down, I applaud him.

I blogged about GB outdoing his predecessor with party fiction a week ago here:


I have no problem with Party leaders wanting to be innovative. But GB can't go blathering on about earning trust and then behaving in a dictatorial fashion as Party Leader. We have just had ten years of that. I am not sure the Party really has much stomach for more of the same.

He needs some very savvy political advice. The sort that protects him from more 75p increases in the pension, or appointing Harriet Harman as Party Chair when she has just won an election as Deputy Leader, or proposing the abolition of contemporary motions at Conference.

6:58 pm, June 30, 2007

Anonymous Shambolic said...

ravi asks of Luke . . .
"Surely even you don't hate us that much do you?"

Oh yes he does, Ravi, Oh yes he does!

2:09 pm, July 01, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Ravi, correct, I wouldn't have been happy if he had been given a job dealing with employment law.

5:45 pm, July 01, 2007

Anonymous Ravi said...

Before I ask Luke a question on Jones, I feel as a scot I should make a mention the attack on Glasgow Airport and the failed London car bombing attempts. Regardless of what people (including myself) feel about the war and our foreign policy this attempt at mass murder must be condemmed by all. I am (as I am sure many of us are) against murderous barbarism whether it be commited by governments (foreign and our own) or by terrorism. The way the new government have handled this crisis is worthy of the highest praise and the bravery and efficiency of our emergency services makes me feel at ease. As "Wee 'Eck" says we should stand united.
Luke, you said,

"Ravi, correct, I wouldn't have been happy if he had been given a job dealing with employment law"

Can I ask why?

11:17 am, July 02, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Because I am a trade unionist and I doubt based on his previous remarks that he is that sympathetic to the trade union agenda on workplace rights.

12:30 pm, July 02, 2007

Anonymous Ravi said...

Luke surely the point is this man has the ear to the Secretary of State and the PM. I doubt a man of his stern views would not keep them bottled up for long even if his brief was only promoting British trade.
He is ofcourse entitled to make his point known, however as you have pointed out to us even you don't trust this man. His stance against the Labour Party and our values such as workplace rights and so on surely disqualify him from entering government.

2:05 pm, July 02, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ravi wrote ... "His [Digby Jones] stance against the Labour Party and our values such as workplace rights and so on surely disqualify him from entering government."

But surely, Blair's stance against the Labour Party and our values such as workplace rights and so on surely should have disqualified him from entering government?

2:33 pm, July 04, 2007

Anonymous Ravi said...

"Blair's stance against the Labour Party and our values such as workplace rights and so on surely should have disqualified him from entering government?"

Well you could say that anon, I could'nt possibly comment!!!!

3:38 pm, July 04, 2007


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