“Lazy Labour” wasn’t an attack, says source close to Jim Murphy

7th March, 2013 11:07 am

Today there has been coverage  in several newspapers of Jim Murphy’s comments to the New Statesman on “Lazy Labour”. Some, including the Guardian and the Sun, have suggested this was an attack on the Labour Leader from the Shadow Defence Secretary.

Yet LabourList spoke to a source close to Murphy this morning, who denied that his comments were intended in such a way. They told us:

“To suggest this is some sort of attack is to misrepresent and misunderstand what Jim is saying. He’s arguing for year-round campaigning in order to win a national majority which includes taking votes from Tories. That’s how he increased the majority in his own seat and how we have the best chance of getting back in to government.”

Some journalists do seem to have conflated the quote about campaigning, and the quote about electoral strategy. Naughty, naughty…

  • AlanGiles

    Is there anybody in Labour who says something and sticks by it?. They hoist the flag up the flagpole and sees if anybody salutes, then if they don’t their remarks were “taken out of context” or “misunderstood”.

    It’s like Hammond on Welfare versus Defence. Quite a major topic, but it seems the crew of HMS One Nation, from Captain Ed Fearless down , isn’t prepared to either endorse or condone it, until they see which way public opinion is going.
    By trying to be all things to all men (and women) it ends up pleasing nobody, and just makes HM official opposition look indecisive and weak.
    Also, as I pointed out when Murphy’s remarks were printed on LL yesterday, until the Gospel According to St. Crudas is written, there are precious few policies to talk about.

    • John Ruddy

      Suggest you read Amber’s comments to understand it.

  • Amber_Star

    Labour in Scotland knows what Jim meant, even though it is uncomfortable to hear it when it is coming via the mainstream media. Polling for Holyrood 2011 put us on track for a really good showing. We took it for granted & put too little time & money into consolidating Labour’s polling with a strong campaign. The eventual manifesto was a clusterf*ck which gave activists nothing to campaign with & it was too late for a ‘values & loyalty’ appeal to our potential supporters. At the 11th hour, many of ‘our’ voters either switched horses or – more likely, given the low turn out – didn’t vote at all. Suffice to say, we got sorely beaten.

    Jim could quietly keep all of this ‘in house’ & hope that it filtered through to Labour activists outside Scotland by a sort of internal osmosis. Or he could ‘take one for the team’ by going public with it & enduring the brickbats. His efforts will be wasted & the controversy he created will be for nothing, if Labour’s team doesn’t follow up & get Movement for Change actually moving! The activist structure & regular voter contact needs to be in place long before there’s a manifesto or we’ll be unable to spread the word directly. And our policies will be misconstrued or have the wrong emphasis, if we leave it to the mainstream media.

  • Raging Leftie

    He’s is right, leaving it all to the last minute won’t work. Labour need to slowly and steadily gain the support of the defectors and swingers over the next couple of years. Showing that they are able to supply viable alternatives to Government policy over time will do more than empty promises on the election campaign.

  • Daniel Speight

    Yet LabourList spoke to a source close to Murphy this morning…

    An unnamed source is it Mark? Shame.

  • Monkey_Bach

    While my first priority is to oust the extremely poisonous Conservative Party from power it’s dyed-in-the-wool NuLab people, like Jim Murphy and others, who render it only just possible for me to hold my nose and vote Labour. It’s a bit like preferring benign cancer to malignant cancer because the former is often local, less aggressive, and metastasises more slowly and so takes longer to kill you in the long run.

    Devil and the deep blue sea stuff.

    Frying pan and the fire malarkey.

    (Cancer is still cancer though, benign or malignant.)


  • Brumanuensis

    The reason the Guardian construed it as an attack was because the article in question was written by Nicholas Watt, who appears to bear some sort of deeply-held grudge against Ed Miliband and Ed Balls.

    Nothing novel here, in short.

    • postageincluded

      Him and Wyatt are two cheeks. What blows out from between them comes from their boss. Not that they dislike flapping in his breeze.


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