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Will Keir Starmer last?

stj

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Elections are won by a majority but Labour appear to just pander to the whims of minorities.They also need to get rid of
hangers on like Eddie Izzard and Owen Jones who are not even MPs.
 
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takno

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Elections are won by a majority but Labour appear to just pander to the whims of minorities.They also need to get rid of
hangers on like Eddie Izzard and Owen Jones who are not even MPs.
Owen Jones is a bit of a chore, but at the end of the day he's just an ordinary member who is mostly famous because he's an alleged journalist. The Labour don't need to get rid of him because he's largely nothing to do with them.

Eddie Izzard has held an NEC seat, and been an extremely effective and fairly moderate force within the Labour party for 20 years, with opinions across a full range of issues. It's pretty insulting to suggest that Labour shouldn't have him in the organisation, or that by listening to him they are somehow pandering to minorities.
 

Gloster

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Elections are won by a majority but Labour appear to just pander to the whims of minorities.They also need to get rid of
hangers on like Eddie Izzard and Owen Jones who are not even MPs.
I think they have lost Owen Jones as he appears to have joined the Northern Independence Party, at least according to Wikipedia. The Northern Independence Party seems to be intended to try and persuade those who live in the uncultivated wasteland beyond High Barnet that Jeremy Corbyn’s policies are just what they want, if they weren’t so stupid (and spending all their time flying their ferrets or whatever it is they do once they get back from mining tripe).
 

tbtc

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I think that Starmer is playing the long game reasonably well - he's not falling into the (majority of the) traps that Johnson has been setting - I think that Starmer has been forced to play a long game given the large deficit he inherited from Corbyn - but people are impatient - a lot of Politics Twitter seem to think that instigating a tweet storm/ getting a hashtag trending will translate into Government resignations.

It could be worse - it could be Richard Burgon.

Burgon :lol:

Just shows how bereft the Corbyn left are that he's anyone's idea of an answer to anything, ever

My two penneth worth...

Labour is stuck between a rock and a hard place. If labour move right on culture to appease the red wall they'll lose their metropolitan support. If they tack left to appease their metropolitan support they'll lose more of the red wall seats. The lawyer's caution in Keir thus decides to do very little to avoid upsetting anyone.

To say Keir has been underwhelming is, well, an understatement. I don't see anyone in Labour doing any better though.

Labour have managed to lose Scotland, their support is down in Wales and they haven't won a majority in England since 2003. Until they have policies that connect with the mainstream, they'll continue to lose election after election.

I agree, but worth pointing out that even popular policies aren't enough - the vast majority of Kinnock's policies were more popular than Thatcher's but people trusted her to run the country - many of Corbyn's policies seemed to poll reasonably well in isolation but you need more - you need that "safe pair of hands" too (since people won't trust you to deliver them or won't think that you can actually deliver them) - this is something that lot of people didn't understand in 2019 (e.g. "free broadband" sounds lovely in isolation but people still preferred voting Tory)

Whatever happens though, the pandemic has definitely made life harder for Starmer to gain any sort of traction, as well as the whole thing being a classic "rally around the leader" period, which many questioning why the Tory support is so good in this mess don't seem to realise

Agreed - it's a very hard balance to get right, to be critical of the (obvious) Government failures without falling into the trap of being seen to be unpatriotic - you can't just bluster your way into demanding everyone resigns - you have to be careful.

It wouldn't take a lot for the media narrative to be "HOW DARE STARMER ASK QUESTIONS ABOUT XYZ DURING A NATIONAL EMERGENCY WHILST THOUSANDS ARE STILL IN HOSPITAL"

I occasionally see references by his support base about how Labour got more votes in the last 2 elections led by Corbyn than any other election since, but not including, Blair's 1997 landslide. What they don't of course grasp is they may have more votes in them, but the Tory share was higher, while they need to be more pragmatic in selling their policy beliefs, not instantly dismissing anyone who doesn't agree (which definitely won't convince them to change). That said this isn't limited to the left, as people have said similar about Trump in the last election.

I agree with this too - in a way there's no point in attracting a thousand more people to vote for you if your behaviour allows your direct opponents to gain two thousand more votes.

Corbyn did well with the "core" but he scared a lot more people into voting Tory (e.g. those pro-Royal/ pro-flags/ pro-Army people who trusted Blair but were frightened of Corbyn)

Owen Jones is a bit of a chore, but at the end of the day he's just an ordinary member who is mostly famous because he's an alleged journalist.

Owen Jones is a gift to the Tories - he's the perfect opponent for them, the poster boy for all the things that the right wing want to get their "base" angry about - if Owen Jones had any self-awareness he'd realise that he hurts the left a lot more than he helps it and keep a lot quieter

But he loves himself too much so he'll keep on providing a perfect example of "IS THIS WHAT YOU WANT" designed to enrage the Daily Mail readers - the Tories don't need to put Johnson on screen to make people vote blue, they just need to let Jones have plenty of publicity because they know that he represents so many things that are guaranteed to get the Tory voters motivated to make the trip to polling booths

Pity the NIP couldn't get their party registered in time for the upcoming elections.

The Sussex-based "Northern" cosplayers are probably having a lot of fun in their "aren't we clever" live action role play but their reaction to the fact that they failed with simple form filling wasn't gracious... blaming the "managerial class" for putting obstacles in your way (Despite the fact that even the Monster Raving Loonies managed to fill the forms in properly)
 

Bevan Price

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It will take more than one election for Labour to recover from the effects of Corbyn, and previously, Ed Milliband. Lisa Nandy might make a good leader, but I suspect that Hilary Benn or Stephen Kinnock might have slightly better chances of winning an election. Their problem is that there will still be too many far-lefties to stop them becoming Labour leader -- and short of something very strange happening, the public will never elect a government dominated by the far left.
 

johnnychips

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The trouble with Starmer over the past year is that his total demeanour has been ‘I agree with what you are doing Boris, but you should have done it a bit sooner or a bit differently’. Instead of calling out all the dodgy contracts, jobs for the boys, questionable science, he has generally played a quiet game. Now with the vaccination programme seemingly succeeding, why would you vote for him? Even with the ludicrous vaccine passport idea, he is just going ‘oh it’s a bit-unBritish’ instead of ripping it to pieces on how it could affect everybody.
 

Cowley

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The trouble with Starmer over the past year is that his total demeanour has been ‘I agree with what you are doing Boris, but you should have done it a bit sooner or a bit differently’. Instead of calling out all the dodgy contracts, jobs for the boys, questionable science, he has generally played a quiet game. Now with the vaccination programme seemingly succeeding, why would you vote for him? Even with the ludicrous vaccine passport idea, he is just going ‘oh it’s a bit-unBritish’ instead of ripping it to pieces on how it could affect everybody.

Yes I would have liked to have seen a bit more of him taking apart some of these issues too. It seems like an easy win to me because it’d be digging them out for what people dislike about the Tory Party.
 

AlterEgo

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Talking of Hartlepool, the only opinion poll we have (link) puts the Tories well ahead - 49% to Labour's 42%. If that poll is correct, it implies that the Brexit Party vote has collapsed almost entirely in the Conservatives' favour, despite Brexit no longer being a major issue. Not good news for Labour or Keir Starmer (or the LibDems for that matter, who are showing up at 1%).
Labour has a big image problem in as much as it’s seen by much of its former base, rightly or wrongly, to simply dislike Britain. The trend will continue and no lessons will be learned. The people of Hartlepool will vote for the Conservatives, unfortunately. I can’t see how the place can be saved from their clutches.
 

Busaholic

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Labour has a big image problem in as much as it’s seen by much of its former base, rightly or wrongly, to simply dislike Britain. The trend will continue and no lessons will be learned. The people of Hartlepool will vote for the Conservatives, unfortunately. I can’t see how the place can be saved from their clutches.
Has Hartlepool not learned from their hanging of that monkey?:)
 

Sad Sprinter

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I think they have lost Owen Jones as he appears to have joined the Northern Independence Party, at least according to Wikipedia. The Northern Independence Party seems to be intended to try and persuade those who live in the uncultivated wasteland beyond High Barnet that Jeremy Corbyn’s policies are just what they want, if they weren’t so stupid (and spending all their time flying their ferrets or whatever it is they do once they get back from mining tripe).
Does the NIP actually want full independence from the UK or from England and become the fifth nation of the UK?

Regardless, if Jones has joined it, he’ll probably put off a lot of ex-Labour voters in Hartlepool joining it. Giving the Tories a better chance.
 

birchesgreen

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The NIP seems to me like an in-joke someone started but too many people took it seriously and now its gained its own momentum as a strange movement with it's supporters becoming ever more fanatical as it becomes ever stranger.

Basically like how QAnon was allegedly started as a joke but the creator soon lost control of it's monster.
 

Typhoon

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In my opinion Starmer has done a very good impressio0n of the Invisible Man. Most people wouldn't recognise him if he walked by, and does he have any policies?
Recognition - I think that applies to most politicians with one or two (obvious) exceptions. Policies? No need for them just yet, no election in the offing. While Labour is largely policy-free, the debate (on Question Time, Marr, Peston etc) will be on the government.

It's one thing for her to have credibility (which I believe she does), but it's another thing entirely for the membership to see that and want her or someone like her in. Remember she came third in the last contest behind both Starmer and Long-Bailey.
I think she's in exactly the right job, shadowing one of the 'Great Offices of State', meaning she can be rolled out to speak for Labour on TV, radio, etc. Start to get some national recognition.
As few people care about foreign affairs, her performance on that subject won't matter; our worst Foreign Secretary in living memory became PM!

He's been dealt an unplayable hand in some ways - legacy of Corbyn, not being able to really attack the government or get much of a profile during Covid, and inheriting what is really two different parties held together by not much more than tradition. The really bold thing to do would be to strike a pack with the LibDems so each would stand aside in seats where the other party had a better chance of beating the Tories, although it's questionable whether the LibDems have that much credibility after their performance last time.
You are right. As others have written, his job is to steady the ship, toughen up his top team, sort out the wheat from the chaff and make Labour a realistic party of government, not to win the next election, that is probably beyond him, thanks to the Corbynites. Lib Dems - they are in a worse place than Labour, they really are irrelevant.

He probably needs to stay in place until at least the party conference and at least then he can try and sell himself, and/or allow the party to decide on certain policy positions (Proportional representation seems to be a more unifying policy in the Labour party so will be a good place to start).
Beyond that, his lawyer skills will be needed when the inquest comes into the government's performance during the cabinet. Now Boris is seen as the man who is letting us go to the pub or on holiday but once this is common place or if things go wrong in the autumn, then will be the time for Johnson to face the music. At the moment he is doing as he pleases (no action on another 'naughty Tory', non-disclosure of minister's outside interests)

And look how craven the media have been. I remember the days when politicians had to resign over minor things - but the news that Johnson had given a six figure sum of public money to the woman he'd been having a four year affair with (whilst his wife was getting cancer treatment) barely warranted a mention on page ninety four of most newspapers - it's going to be hard for any Leader Of The Opposition to cut through in those circumstances.
Meanwhile, barely a day goes by without criticism of Starmer in those click-bait items on MSN from an 'eminent Labour MP' only to find it is Burgon or someone even less competent.

The only thing that has cheered me up is reading parts of Alan Duncan's memoirs - 'The Wicked Witch of Witham', 'An unctuous freak', 'Her social skills are sub-zero', 'Sarah Palin on crack', 'A cheap nationalist with faux manners and an ego the size of a planet', 'He is a lonely, selfish. ill-disciplined, shambolic, shameless clot'.
 

edwin_m

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The only thing that has cheered me up is reading parts of Alan Duncan's memoirs - 'The Wicked Witch of Witham', 'An unctuous freak', 'Her social skills are sub-zero', 'Sarah Palin on crack', 'A cheap nationalist with faux manners and an ego the size of a planet', 'He is a lonely, selfish. ill-disciplined, shambolic, shameless clot'.
For the avoidance of doubt, I think he said those about various fellow Tories, not about Starmer.
 

Purple Orange

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People have short memories. Only a few months ago, the scenario was very different. In that time we have had the hope of the vaccine programme come through and people are feeling hopeful again. That will always translate to a win for the government, but there is a long way to go still. Johnson requires no more set backs and it is unlikely there will not be circumstances that hit the Tories in the polls.
 

brad465

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People have short memories. Only a few months ago, the scenario was very different. In that time we have had the hope of the vaccine programme come through and people are feeling hopeful again. That will always translate to a win for the government, but there is a long way to go still. Johnson requires no more set backs and it is unlikely there will not be circumstances that hit the Tories in the polls.
I doubt there'll be circumstances that hit them prior to May, but there are plenty of things related to Brexit that will hit them if issues in question are clearly problematic and/or Labour come up with effective alternatives (like closer alignment, but not full re-joining). We're already seeing Northern Ireland issues, and while Starmer himself isn't talking Brexit (although he needs to soon), his shadow cabinet bring it up often in Parliament (particularly Rachel Reeves).

Momentum recently put Proportional Representation as the 2nd most important policy Labour need to adopt/pledge (the first was a £15ph minimum wage, but I don't see anything materialising there), while there is an increasing desire for it within the party overall. Therefore if Starmer allows discussion on this and it ultimately becomes party policy for the next election, I expect it'll secure his position for longer, but he'll need to survive until the party conference first, when I suspect such a policy will get discussed most.
 

SuperNova

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The trouble with Starmer over the past year is that his total demeanour has been ‘I agree with what you are doing Boris, but you should have done it a bit sooner or a bit differently’. Instead of calling out all the dodgy contracts, jobs for the boys, questionable science, he has generally played a quiet game. Now with the vaccination programme seemingly succeeding, why would you vote for him? Even with the ludicrous vaccine passport idea, he is just going ‘oh it’s a bit-unBritish’ instead of ripping it to pieces on how it could affect everybody.
He's done this at every PMQ's going and pretty much won every PMQ's going. They call him Captain Hindsight but he's actually been Captain Foresight for the past 9 months. Problem is perception dealing with a once in a century event - you have to appear to be working together for the good of the nation. It's such a fine line to draw. Then you've got people trying to pull Labour in all sorts of directions, wanting it to be their niche party. It's laughable really and not how politics works.
Momentum recently put Proportional Representation as the 2nd most important policy Labour need to adopt/pledge (the first was a £15ph minimum wage, but I don't see anything materialising there), while there is an increasing desire for it within the party overall. Therefore if Starmer allows discussion on this and it ultimately becomes party policy for the next election, I expect it'll secure his position for longer, but he'll need to survive until the party conference first, when I suspect such a policy will get discussed most.

Momentum have waning influence on Labour. Proportional Representation as has been pledged is utterly bonkers and would likely destroy the labour party into a bunch of nonsensical small parties, further enabling the Tories. The only forms of PR that's workable in a constituency parliament is single transferable vote/supplementary vote, which would be doable.
 

Purple Orange

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Momentum have waning influence on Labour. Proportional Representation as has been pledged is utterly bonkers and would likely destroy the labour party into a bunch of nonsensical small parties, further enabling the Tories. The only forms of PR that's workable in a constituency parliament is single transferable vote/supplementary vote, which would be doable.

No I disagree with your assertion that PR does not work- it’s the best method of voting in operation as far as I can see and it works well where it is implemented. If we had PR today our parliament would be a majority centre left. The right wing parties can’t generate enough of the vote share to make a majority, but our current system allows 80 seat majorities to be won with less than half the vote.

Labour actually got 31% of the vote and hold 32% of seats, therefore it can be argued the Labour voice is as loud as the electorate wanted it to be.

The Lib Dems should have a much bigger voice in Parliament, with at least 10% of seats, while the SNP are too loud.

The Greens and the Brexit party should have about 10 seats each.



Concerning Momentum, yes, they have waning influence.
 

brad465

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Momentum have waning influence on Labour. Proportional Representation as has been pledged is utterly bonkers and would likely destroy the labour party into a bunch of nonsensical small parties, further enabling the Tories. The only forms of PR that's workable in a constituency parliament is single transferable vote/supplementary vote, which would be doable.
By the same logic the Tories could very easily split as well, as evidenced by UKIP's rise in the middle of the last decade, where as well as many (but not all) votes coming from Tory supporters, 2 MPs defected to them from the Tories, the Daily Express endorsed UKIP in 2015, while their Eurosceptic stance arguably influenced Cameron to the point of the referendum happening. Then the Brexit Party's "sugar rush" in 2019 saw a number of Tories temporarily vote for the former.

Also should the Labour party split up, it would be far less likely to happen before PR is introduced, where Labour will have got into at least coalition power before PR stands a chance of becoming reality, and should they split up, I expect the factions will realise they need each other to get somewhere and will at least work together enough to govern in coalition.
 

Purple Orange

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By the same logic the Tories could very easily split as well, as evidenced by UKIP's rise in the middle of the last decade, where as well as many (but not all) votes coming from Tory supporters, 2 MPs defected to them from the Tories, the Daily Express endorsed UKIP in 2015, while their Eurosceptic stance arguably influenced Cameron to the point of the referendum happening. Then the Brexit Party's "sugar rush" in 2019 saw a number of Tories temporarily vote for the former.

Also should the Labour party split up, it would be far less likely to happen before PR is introduced, where Labour will have got into at least coalition power before PR stands a chance of becoming reality, and should they split up, I expect the factions will realise they need each other to get somewhere and will at least work together enough to govern in coalition.

A splitting of factions may be a good thing. No doubt there will always be a Labour Party and a Tory party, but they are indeed a coalition themselves. Under PR, the right wing of the Tory party and the left wing of the Labour Party may find better bedfellows elsewhere. The left wing of the Tory party, right wing of Labour and the Lib Dems might find better common ground together. Indeed we had seen that in the last parliament.

Another factor to contend is, what if Scottish independence became so strong that Scottish Labour and the Scottish Tories found reason to split from their English counterparts? The SNP lose their raison d’etre and need a new focus within Scotland.
 

Butts

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Today's Politicians of all hues are a mere shadow of their forbearers.

I'm talking about the generation who lived and in many cases fought through WW2, hoping for a better society at the end of it.

When I was growing up both Labour and Conservative Cabinet Ministers were Household Names and commanded respect albeit perhaps undeservedly in some cases. Today most of them are anonymous identikit apparatchik's who have gone to the same schools and Universities and come out a slightly different colour at the end of the production line.

Professional Politicians....yuk <D
 

Purple Orange

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Today's Politicians of all hues are a mere shadow of their forbearers.

I'm talking about the generation who lived and in many cases fought through WW2, hoping for a better society at the end of it.

When I was growing up both Labour and Conservative Cabinet Ministers were Household Names and commanded respect albeit perhaps undeservedly in some cases. Today most of them are anonymous identikit apparatchik's who have gone to the same schools and Universities and come out a slightly different colour at the end of the production line.

Professional Politicians....yuk <D

I’m not sure we can say there was more diversity among our MPs at any point in time than there is now. Almost all male, white, upper class or at best upper middle class, majority privately educated, Oxbridge. Now that still describes most Tories, but there is a far greater mix today than there ever was. It’s not quite there yet, but it will. The last thing I’d like to see is a return to the attitudes many had during the 50s, 60s, 70s & 80s.
 

Butts

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I’m not sure we can say there was more diversity among our MPs at any point in time than there is now. Almost all male, white, upper class or at best upper middle class, majority privately educated, Oxbridge. Now that still describes most Tories, but there is a far greater mix today than there ever was. It’s not quite there yet, but it will. The last thing I’d like to see is a return to the attitudes many had during the 50s, 60s, 70s & 80s.

Black and White ones ? - Chancellor and Home Secretary two of the Great Offices of State.
 

Purple Orange

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Black and White ones ? - Chancellor and Home Secretary two of the Great Offices of State.

Two people from BAME backgrounds who have made a success does not make it a trend. There is still a diversity problem within Westminster.

This article gives a good overview of the current range of diversity in parliament. It is the most diverse parliament ever, but there is still a long way to go. Some parties have further to go than others.

 
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EssexGonzo

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Yes I would have liked to have seen a bit more of him taking apart some of these issues too. It seems like an easy win to me because it’d be digging them out for what people dislike about the Tory Party.

Exactly. He could quite easily ignore tackling the thorny and divisive topics of Brexit and Covid by focusing on the lies and corrupt behaviour. There are just so many examples of blatant lies and corruption. He could also begin to describe the arative around the Tory party beginning to dismantle our current society e.g. The NHS sell off, the planned demise of the BBC, selling of state capabilities to their mates. If I had a strategist and a speech writer I reckon I could put together a decent story here.

On top of that, the Tories have actually stolen some of Labour’s ground in respect of the Covid furlough scheme (i.e. “state handouts” as Tories would once have called it) and the first steps to renationalising the railways.

He also needs to actively call out the destructive ultra-left of the party. It’s the cabal that made Labour unelectable which is Loretta much a criminal offence for an opposition party. That boil needs lancing and the Trotskyites need to go and form their own revolution, comrade.

I sincerely hope that he’s playing a very long and clever game here but he needs to start making more of an impact to counter the “invisible” tag.
 

Typhoon

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Today's Politicians of all hues are a mere shadow of their forbearers.

I'm talking about the generation who lived and in many cases fought through WW2, hoping for a better society at the end of it.

When I was growing up both Labour and Conservative Cabinet Ministers were Household Names and commanded respect albeit perhaps undeservedly in some cases. Today most of them are anonymous identikit apparatchik's who have gone to the same schools and Universities and come out a slightly different colour at the end of the production line.

Professional Politicians....yuk <D
As someone who grew up in the '50s I think there is a lot in what you have written. They had a diversity of experiences. Ministers are likely to have served in one of the major conflicts or other (even if not in a fighting capacity) which meant that they mixed with those of a different social class so (some at least) developed a respect for those with whom they had very little interaction in peace time. Although there is not the same class divide now, there are far too many professional politicians; straight out of university into an internship, experience in some back-bencher's private office, maybe a spell in PR, then become a SpAd until they can be parachuted into a nice safe seat (that they will struggle to find on a map) by party HQ, provided they can repeat the current party mantra, of course. And this applies to both main parties. Their interaction with working people appears to be limited. I want an MP who has had a real job, who is prepared to speak up for their constituents.

I can remember an election meeting in which George Brown spoke in my school hall, open to all; no hiding in refrigeration units, Andrew Neil would have been the least of his worries, avoiding the questions would have been cat-called. Now they seem to be able to insist on no-one more hostile that Holly and Philip.

Mind you, maybe we forget there were some pretty useless ministers during the post war years (I seem to remember Labour had a few called 'Fred', the Tories had 'Reg's' and there was the SDPs invisible man.)

He's done this at every PMQ's going and pretty much won every PMQ's going. They call him Captain Hindsight but he's actually been Captain Foresight for the past 9 months.
Absolutely, if this contest was taking place in the ring, Johnson's seconds would have thrown in the towel long ago. Unfortunately. a certain section of the press calls Starmer out for even the slightest error (for which he apologised) while Johnson's untruths (eg Starmer's voting record on nurses pay, IRA accusation) are largely ignored. Even the irony of one minister (Andrew Stephenson) claiming that the Prime Minister is never wrong is hidden away at the bottom of page 34 (or somewhere similar).
 

LNW-GW Joint

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It's still a long time until the next general election.
Kier Starmer is (having to) play a long game, with Brexit and Covid dictating events for now.
I'd wait judgement on him for another year or so personally.

Scotland (maybe Wales and NI too) will pose big constitutional issues for all the main parties, which will play out in the next year or so.
The rise of the nationalists (or the decline of the mainstream parties if you like) is coming to a head, like it or not.
Losing Scotland from the union will not be a walk in the park, and will increase demand for independence from Wales.

I'm a lost Lib Dem with no interest in their current agenda now that Brexit is done, and I've no interest in Labour's lefty union battles either.
I'm afraid I might have to vote Tory in the Senedd election just to make sure the nationalists are kept in their corner, and hope that Boris, or his successor, moderates their Singapore-on-Thames mentality for something more collegiate and constructive with the unions that matter (UK and EU).
 
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