Liam Byrne to stand for Birmingham Mayor (but isn’t leaving the shad cab yet)

29th March, 2012 5:49 pm

As we suggested might happen a few weeks ago, Liam Byrne will tomorrow throw his hat into the ring to be Labour’s candidate for Mayor of Birmingham. However he’s not resigning from the shadow cabinet (yet) – he’ll only leave his role as shadow DWP minister if there’s a “Yes” vote in the Birmingham Mayoral referendum. A Labour source told us:

“Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, Liam Byrne will tomorrow formally announce his intention to become Labour Mayor of Birmingham.

“He has talked this over with Ed Miliband and agreed that if there was a yes vote in May, he would step down from the Shadow Cabinet to fight to become the first Labour mayor of Birmingham.”

News that Byrne is considering a run isn’t surprising. One Birmingham activist told us earlier this week that Byrne was “like Hamlet” agonising over the decision. We’re expecting a big announcement in the Birmingham Mail tomorrow. Whether or not he’s backed by any significant figures in Birmingham Labour Party (such as local MPs or council leader and candidate Albert Bore) could be key to the success of his candidacy.

20120329-174620.jpg

  • Amber Star

    Just go, Liam. You wore out your welcome when you left that stupid letter to David Laws.

    • Robert_Crosby

      I agree totally.  I don’t support the idea of elected mayors outside London in general – but I’m all for there being a vacancy in Birmingham if it means we can get Byrne out of the Shadow Cabinet.

      The sad thing is that Blairites think that LB is the kind of Labour politician that voters warm to.  How they come to that conclusion is beyond me.  He never looks sincere, we had the idiotic episode of the note – which the Tories and LDs won’t be able to use in the election campaign if he’s not in a Shadow post any longer) and I seem to remember that he was also caught using a mobile at the wheel.  The man is a disaster zone.

      • Kokopops

        I totally agree with the Bliarite comment –  Cameroons should also be included (‘Heir to Blair’ and all that). 

        However, I think Mayors for big cities like Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle are a good idea, as opposed to smaller cities like Doncaster or Hartlepool and I think it will allow those cities to grow in prominence, as long as they get a wide area of responsibilities.

        The sad thing is that although I hope (and think) Birmingham will vote ‘yes’, I don’t think Liam Byrne will be the LAbour candidate (as I think Sion Simon will sneak it, especially with Tom Watson supporting him), which would mean that Byrne will still be in the PLP.  Personally, the best thing would be Byrne to get the Labour candidacy and step down resulting in a by-election and then, for Birmingham’s sake, lose the election to a more independent-minded leftie like Lynne Jones, Salma Yacoob or Clare Short.

  • Mike Homfray

    So he’s going and this is the smokescreen which looks better than being sacked. Just about anyone else could do the job better. Preferably someone who knows about the subject such as Kate Green or Karen Buck

    • Kokopops

      I would love Kate Green or Karen Buck in the Shadow Cabinet and shadow DWP would be perfect for them.

  • GuyM

    Of course given you on the left screamed that Boris had to resign as an MP to “concentrate” being london mayor, you will of course be insisting any Labour MP elected as a mayor also resigns as an MP?

    • Kokopops

      Yes, the MP should resign, who is saying the opposite?

Latest

  • Comment Four things Labour’s moderates need to do before the next leadership election

    Four things Labour’s moderates need to do before the next leadership election

    Whatever the outcome of the Labour leadership election one thing is clear, we moderates in the party were smashed. This may have been easier to stomach if the candidate or campaign had been rubbish – they weren’t. They were actually quite good. But as Lynton Crosby says “you can’t fatten a pig on market day” and it is clear now the moderate wing of the party’s campaign infrastructure is sorely lacking. There are some noble reasons for this. But that […]

    Read more →
  • News How do you get a title? Cameron and Clegg dish out honours to their advisers

    How do you get a title? Cameron and Clegg dish out honours to their advisers

    How do you get a title these days? The latest batch dissolution honours and peerages seem to suggest something of a theme. Of the 82 handed out today, 30 have been given to people who have worked for senior Tory and Lib Dem politicians in some way, while 4 recipients are former Lib Dem MPs who were voted out this May. New titles have been handed to 20 people who are or have been senior advisers in the Government, while […]

    Read more →
  • Featured News Eight new Labour peers announced

    Eight new Labour peers announced

    Eight new Labour peers have been announced today, in the latest batch of dissolution peerages. The list includes Tessa Jowell, who is currently in the running to become Labour’s candidate for London Mayor, and former Chancellor Alistair Darling. The full list is: Rt Hon David Blunkett – former MP for Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough and former Cabinet Minister Rt Hon Alistair Darling – former MP for Edinburgh South West and former Cabinet Minister Rt Hon Peter Hain – former MP […]

    Read more →
  • Comment Labour needs to be a more welcoming and accessible grassroots movement for women and mothers

    Labour needs to be a more welcoming and accessible grassroots movement for women and mothers

    Jeremy Corbyn’s recent commitment to a 50% female shadow cabinet and working towards 50% of Labour M.P’s being female is yet another important and welcome policy aimed at tackling gender inequality from the Corbyn camp. But, the question of women’s representation within worker and political organisations is an issue that needs to be fleshed out with some practical suggestions around how we actually reach the target set out by Corbyn. And more importantly, how we ensure a more welcoming and […]

    Read more →
  • Comment Wales would pay the highest price for a Corbyn victory

    Wales would pay the highest price for a Corbyn victory

    Labour’s inevitable defeat under a Corbyn leadership is understandably fixated on 2020, yet at least a quarter of the country would be granted a test-drive on this express lane to extinction. As the only UK region with a Labour government, next May’s Welsh elections will be ground zero for Corbynmania’s logical endgame. Welsh Labour has an uphill task to begin with. Its leads in opinion polls have collapsed in recent years. Its handling of public services is frequently highlighted in […]

    Read more →
Share with your friends










Submit