Sunday, 5 April 2020

Keir Starmer elected

Comfortably, in the very first round, with an impressive 56% of the votes.

I wonder, did members of the Shadow Cabinet start tweeting their resignations during Starmer's victory speech, or is that only a trick the right pull?

It is odd how all the talk of how the next leader "needs to be a woman" and how the party is "too Londoncentric" and too "elitist" we've just elected a male lawyer who was born in Southwark and represents a London constituency.  I won't even mention his hue - a whiter shade of pale - I don't expect miracles.  But I think he serves as something of a rebuke to the more radical / woke / open-minded (delete according to preference) part of the party.  You can be Labour and small-c conservative as well, and the preference of the party membership for older white blokes has been made abundantly clear, everytime we've been here.  How we respond to that, I'm not sure, but you can't just wish it away.

In spite of that carping, I think Starmer will be adequate.  I don't expect miracles from him, though if Covid 19 takes off proper, he might not need one.  The political and economic landscape in a couple of years time will be utterly, utterly different to just now.  History books will perhaps congratualte Corbyn on his strategic nous in passing on winning in 2019 - can you imagine what the press would be doing to a Labour government just now, trying to deal with Covid while still getting lost on their way to their ministerial offices and forgetting which side of the House they are meant to sit on?

It will be interesting to see how Starmer adjusts his position now he's got the prize - was all that somewhat leftish talk during the campaign just a tactic to stall RLB, and will he stomp right?  Or is there a genuine, if rather paternalistic, social conscience there?

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