Posts Tagged ‘Lab-SNP coalition’

Balls for chop in future Labour/SNP coalition deal

26/02/2015, 09:52:58 PM

Ed Ball’s will be the sacrifice that seals a coalition deal between Labour and the SNP, if senior members of Ed Miliband’s inner circle have their way.

As private debate within Labour circles intensifies on the terms of a potential deal with the SNP, Uncut has learned that some of Ed Miliband’s closest advisers are plotting to sack Ed Balls in a bid to secure Ed Miliband’s tenure in Number 10, in the event of a hung parliament where Labour is not the largest party.

Insiders familiar with these discussions over the past few weeks describe a scenario where Labour would have to “reset its economic standing with the public” and demonstrate to the SNP that it would not be “wedded to austerity-lite.”

For some of Ed Miliband’s closest and oldest advisers, removing Ed Balls would achieve both objectives as well as ridding them of a potentially truculent and obstructive Chancellor.

The animosity between Ed Miliband’s inner circle and Ed Balls is well known. Last year Uncut revealed how team Miliband had plotted to sack Ed Balls in the Autumn reshuffle only to be thwarted by the Labour leader’s weakness coming out of conference season. And just last week the Sunday Times reported on the depth of the recurring tensions between Miliband and Balls.

The recent bitter negotiations between the shadow Chancellor and Labour leader on how to fund Ed Miliband’s cherished cut in tuition fees, are said to have hardened views within Miliband’s circle.

Now this enmity is centre-stage in Labour’s developing psycho-drama over whether to strike a coalition deal with the SNP.

A sizeable section of the parliamentary party, not to mention Labour’s newly elected leader in Scotland, Jim Murphy, would be bitterly opposed to treating with the Scottish nationalists.

However, Murphy’s rage at any potential deal with the SNP only sweetens the prospect of a coalition agreement with the SNP for some of Ed Miliband’s advisers, as well as a section of MPs close to the unions, who would be pivotal to bolstering PM Miliband’s position within the parliamentary party.

As one disillusioned shadow cabinet adviser put it to Uncut, when describing the way the disparate coterie around Ed Miliband viewed a deal with the SNP,

“Half of them want to shaft Balls, half of them want to get Murphy and most of all, they all want to keep their jobs and not be out on their ears as failures. Most will say yes to a deal enthusiastically, no-one is going to say no.”

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A Labour-SNP coalition after May? Stranger things have happened (just).

29/03/2011, 01:00:25 PM

by Sunder Katwala

Could Labour and the Liberal Democrats govern together, despite their current animosities? It would be unwise to rule anything out about what is a very unpredictable electoral environment in 2015. But we might have a Lab-Lib government in five weeks rather than four years, once the Scottish elections take place on May 5.

Who governs Scotland may be the biggest unknown about May’s elections.

Labour, having performed extraordinarily well in Scotland in the British general election last May, remains favourite to top the poll, though SNP first minister, Alex Salmond, remains the dominant public figure in Scottish politics, and the latest polls are neck and neck.

If Labour can emerge ahead of the SNP in the PR election, it will have to decide whether to seek to govern alone or with coalition partners.

The favoured option of many Scottish MSPs and MPs is for a minority government, on the model of that run by Alex Salmond since 2007. A fixed term parliament makes this possible. And there are many MPs and MSPs who wish that Labour had governed alone when it was last in office. Introducing PR for local government has been particularly unpopular with several in the Labour tribe. (more…)

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