Leyton & Wanstead
I was quite surprised to see the Telegraph reporting that Labour Party Treasurer/Unite TGWU DGS/spouse of Harriet Harman Jack Dromey "is being lined up to fight a safe Labour seat in London at the next general election".
The paper says he "is "very likely" to be chosen as Labour's candidate for Leyton and Wanstead, according to senior party sources."
I know a bit about Leyton & Wanstead CLP because it's in the patch I represent on Labour's London Regional Board. It's a fiercely independent-minded CLP and won't take kindly to "senior party sources" thinking they can drop one of their own number into the vacancy created by Harry Cohen's retirement, or to any insinuation that the democratic process by which local members pick a candidate is being pre-empted. Nor can it be other than in seats selecting at the very last moment before a General Election.
From what I understand of what's going on, there are several strong local candidates running, notably Leytonstone Councillor Marie Pye, Cabinet Member for Communities & Housing on Waltham Forest Council, a formidable campaigner, and former Parliamentary Officer of the Disability Rights Commission.
I love the bit in the Telegraph article where it says "A senior Labour source said: "Leyton and Wanstead is perfect for Jack. It's in London so he and Harriet wouldn't even need to buy another house."" I would have thought the domestic arrangements of Jack and Harriet will be a fairly low-order priority criterion for Leyton & Wanstead members when picking a candidate.
Anyway, surely Harriet will, in the interests of consistency, be pushing for a safe-ish seat like this to have an All Women Shortlist?