Posts Tagged ‘Sunday Times’

Are we really going to see the Second Coming of St Tony?

28/06/2021, 10:38:48 PM

by Kevin Meagher

Tony Blair always struck me as an unlikely convert to Catholicism. He is much too messianic. He would have made a great evangelical though, or even a cult leader. The Branch Tonyians, perhaps?

The idea of him returning to British domestic politics, descending from the skies as the clouds part to lead us once again in His Second Coming, is fantastically absurd.

Yet that is precisely what the Sunday Times reported yesterday.

‘Labour sources say Blairites have abandoned hope that Starmer can save the party and a small group is trying to convince Blair to return to the Commons.

‘The Labour peer, Andrew Adonis is at the heart of a network of Blairites who believe he is the only leader who could win a Labour majority…’


Its the kind of story the papers run on April 1 – a spoof with just enough in it to hoodwink readers that have overlooked the date.

Don’t get me wrong, Tony Blair had a good run, serving as prime minister for a decade, winning three thumping elections along the way, but he is now past tense. Seeking to disinter him from his political sarcophagus, like Dracula in a Hammer horror film, is proper death cultist stuff.

Granted, there is a very funny mood in Labourland this week ahead of the Batley and Spen by-election, where there is a strong prospect of the party losing the seat, and even some siren voices predicting it could crash to third place behind George Galloway.

People are jittery and there are clearly figures in the party like Adonis that do not believe Keir Starmer is on the path to winning ways, yet the suggestion that a better way forward is to bring back Blair – fourteen years after he quit as PM – is demented. A comical absurdity.

The serious point is that it is a silly distraction from the work of shaping a new political project that can succeed in radically different times to those that Blair – and Adonis – governed in.

And what of Mr. Blair, you ask?

The Sunday Times report added: ‘His spokeswoman said: “His view is that he is not considering doing this.”

So that’s not a no, then?

Kevin Meagher is associate editor of Uncut

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Late poll puts the cat among the pigeons

12/09/2010, 01:24:29 PM

Today’s Sunday Times poll has set pigeons among cats and tossed works into spanners. Navigating the Byzantine wiles of the electoral college, You Gov has picked perceived wisdom up by the lapels, given it a good shake, and dumped it in the recycling bin by predicting a wafer thin victory for Ed Miliband.

Although the full figures have not yet been released, the poll shows David Miliband ahead 36% to 32% on 1st preferences, with Ed overhauling him 51% to 49% when 2nd preferences, 3rd preferences and the result of the Doggets Coat & Badge are factored in.

Over at Political Betting, Mike Smithson has a more detailed breakdown of the figures, which indicate Ed M will sneak the ‘Members’ section 52% to 48%,  romp home amongst the ‘Trade Unionists’ 57% to 43%, but fall flat with ‘MPs and MEPs’, losing 44% -56% to David.

The response from the two camps has been predictable. “We are not complacent but confident” – David. “The Party is uniting behind us” – Ed.

Privately, however, there is growing concern amongst MPs and senior party activists that the disparity between Trade Union support for Ed and Parliamentary support for David raises  the spectre of a ‘nightmare scenario’ , in which one of the brothers wins with a mandate from only one of three sections of the college.


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