Why tomorrow will be a big day for the Labour Party

13th February, 2013 8:56 am

It’s unusual for an opposition party to have four newsworthy events taking place on the same day – but that’s exactly the position the Labour Party is in tomorrow. Three significant speeches are being given (of which more below) and perhaps most interestingly, the timetable (and format) of the party’s selections in target seats will be confirmed by the powerful “Org Sub” of the NEC.

As opposition goes – tomorrow is a big day.

So what are we expecting?

First up is Jon Cruddas in East London. He’ll be speaking at the launch of IPPR’s “Condition of Britain” (a reference to GDH Cole perhaps?), which – whilst being separate from Labour’s policy review – promises to be hugely influential on Labour’s long term thinking in terms of social policy. It’s being billed as on a par with the pre-97 Social Justice Commission and as a positive Labour alternative to the (now pretty much defunct) Big Society.

Then just an hour later, Ed Miliband will be in Bedford making what has been billed as a major speech on the Economy. It’s unclear whether or not there will be a new headline policy (although early indications suggest there may not be), but it’ll be interesting for two reasons – by setting the tone for Labour’s response to next month’s budget, it’s an Economy speech being given by the Labour leader rather than the Shadow Chancellor (although Ed Balls will be there and will take part with a Q&A with Miliband afterwards). We’ll be reporting live from the speech in Bedford tomorrow.

Then it’s over to the Henry Jackson society where Jim Murphy will be making a speech on the importance of intervention – and learning the right lessons from Iraq and Afghanistan tens years on from the former. Expect him to make particular reference to the importance of knowing about the countries you’re intervening in – something which the current Defence Secretary has failed on…

Across the three speeches we will hopefully see clear and identifiable Labour visions of an alternative to the Coalition agenda. The important thing for the party will be to make sure that each speech contains at least one newsworthy item, and that the media takes note of the fact that the party are gearing up in terms of policy and that most vague of political terms “vision”, otherwise this will be considered an opportunity missed.

As for the Org Sub meeting, in addition to the timetable, which seats are being selected using All Woman Shortlists (AWS) will be of particular interest to both activists and potential candidates alike. This is especially true in a number of seats where former MPs are said to be pursuing the idea of reselection. In each case AWS would either massively improve or totally destroy any chance they have of returning to parliament. We’ll have all of the information from Org Sub tomorrow as soon as we an get ahold of it – but if the party were being sensible, they’d release it themselves as a sign of openness and transparency.

And if they’re worried about the list getting too much attention? Well – there should be plenty of newsworthy things happening at the same time if everything goes according to plan…

To report anything from the comment section, please e-mail [email protected]
  • Chilbaldi

    Awful picture of Ed Miliband for this article – it makees him look like an awkward teenager. Please change it!

    • kb32904

      Sorry, down arrowed you in error when aiming for the reply button.

      I agree and I have complained about the pics chosen previously. It’s bad enough when the right-wing papers deliberately choose naff pics but it comes to something when our own side do it too !

      • Chilbaldi

        What’s worse is that the Labour Party maybe paid someone to take that picture.

  • JoeDM

    How about Ed Miliband include an apology for the Labour’s 13 years of mismanagement of the NHS and the awful drop in care standards over that period.

    Over a coffee we were just discussing the care of our aged parents and a colleague refered to his local NHS geriatric wards as “the death camp”!!! Others nodded in agreement.

    • ColinAdkins

      Do you mean by comparison with the position they inherited? The NHS stands for National Health Service not National Hospital Service. Whilst wards are important most health care is delivered in the community.

    • Dave Postles

      Don’t you think that geriatric care has always been the cinderella service? In the recent past, geriatric hospitals have often been placed in former poor law workhouse accommodation. Sadly, people die in hospitals because there is nothing further which can be done for them – hence the LCP. My mother died aged 68 on a general ward because her life had run its course. I don’t turn round and castigate the NHS, but am grateful for the marvellous care which it provided to extend her life. The same hospital has been caring for my younger brother. No, we all want everything on the cheap, including food. It’s time for business to pay its taxes so that we can fund the care service which looks after its employees and customers.

      • Hugh

        Is there any evidence at all that what happened at Stafford (and elsewhere, it seems) was the result of inadequate funding? The events occurred after and in the midst of a massive increase in NHS funding. Sadly people also die in hospitals because of neglect, and when they do the NHS deserves to be castigated.

        • Dave Postles

          His statement was a generalised comment about the Labour government, about the NHS in general, and about geriatric services in general – generalised. He should re-examine the history of geriatric care services in this country before making generalised statements like that.

  • The subcommittee decisions on Scotland, East Midlands and Yorkshire targets have been delayed to 12th March meeting according to latest Ann Black’s NEC report. I guess it’s because the likely controversy will happen in these regions and they are taking more time to talk to CLPs to arrange the situation in the best possible way.

  • robertcp

    Labour has done well by being vague about its policies. That 10% might start falling if they start arguing for a lot of New Labour nonsense or, almost as bad, promise to spend money like it is going out of fashion.

    The job of the next Labour government will be to eliminate the deficit without causing too much damage to the economy and society. The second term will be the time for more radical and long-term policies.

  • Times and where to watch would have been helpful. Obvious TV media won’t show them.

  • AlanGiles

    “Jim Murphy will be making a speech on the importance of intervention ”
    Is this some sort of bizarre joke?. Has Labour learned nothing after the poison of Iraq and the ongoing horrors of Afghanistan?.
    Luckilly for you, none of the “big day” got widely reported on the BBC yesterday – horsemeat proved the hot topic on radio and on LBC the outrage of the Royal Family being upset by pictures of Princess Whatshername in a bikini with child.
    But seriously, we are in a dire financial mess at home. Think of the billions we have wasted in the past decade on being the worlds policeman. Do you seriously think the average man and woman dealing with trying to make a tight budget deal with ever rising food and fuel prices will be imptressed by Murphy being gung-ho (again)?
    To quote the words of Cole Porter* “Use your mentality, wake up to reality”
    (* Lyric to I’ve Got You Under My Skin)

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