Shadow Cabinet rankings – who is the runaway winner?

18th July, 2014 7:30 am

In the past we used to do a monthly “shadow cabinet rankings” to give LabourList readers an opportunity to have their say on who they were happy with and who they weren’t. The last time we did such a survey back in 2013, Andy Burnham was the runaway winner.

Today we’ve got the latest shadow cabinet rankings, and Burnham is – if anything – further ahead of his colleagues than he was before.

First though – a quick explanation of how the rankings work. We asked LabourList readers to say whether they have a positive, negative or neutral view of each member of the Shadow Cabinet. We then subtracted the negative score from the positive score to achieve a final score. Here’s how it looks:

1 Andy Burnham 78.30%
2 Yvette Cooper 45.40%
3 Hilary Benn 43.35%
4 Angela Eagle 43.11%
5 Sadiq Khan 41.80%
6 Jon Cruddas 41.57%
7 Chuka Umunna 39.55%
8 Gloria De Piero 35.74%
9 Rachel Reeves 34.08%
10 Maria Eagle 33.28%
11 Caroline Flint 28.66%
12 Harriet Harman 26.31%
13 Liz Kendall 26.16%
14 Mary Creagh 24.79%
15 Emily Thornberry 20.08%
16 Owen Smith 17.60%
17 Chris Leslie 15.31%
18 Vernon Coaker 15.22%
19 Emma Reynolds 13.20%
20 Jim Murphy 12.71%
21 Margaret Curran 12.36%
22 Michael Dugher 8.79%
23 Douglas Alexander 5.94%
24 Rosie Winterton 5.29%
25 Jon Trickett 2.31%
26 Ed Balls -3.82%
27 Tristram Hunt -7.32%
28 Ivan Lewis -8.72%

Andy Burnham’s final score was a frankly remarkable +78.3%. An overwhelming majority of LabourList readers have a positive view of the Shadow Health Secretary, who finds himself leading his nearest challenger – Yvette Cooper – by over 30 points. Cooper sits at the head of what we might call the peloton (it’s Tour de France season after all) with Hilary Benn, Angela Eagle, Sadiq Khan, Jon Cruddas and Chuka Umunna all within a few points of the Shadow Home Secretary. Interestingly the recent (taped) comments made by Cruddas don’t appear to have done him any harm with LabourList readers, and with the National Policy Forum this weekend, it’s interesting to see both him and Angela Eagle who have piloted the policy process make the top six.

Meanwhile, Gloria de Piero, Rachel Reeves and Maria Eagle complete the top ten. (Click on chart below to enlarge)

 

Shadow Cabinet rankings 2014

At the other end of the table, three members of the Shadow Cabinet have received negative overall scores – Ivan Lewis (-8.7%), Tristram Hunt (-7.3%) and Ed Balls (-3.8%) – meaning that more LabourList readers gave them negative votes than positive ones. Most of the attention when it comes to the bottom of the rankings is likely to be focused on Balls (who once sat near the top of the table – as high as second in one survey), but in many ways his negative rating is part of the cost of getting the job done for Balls in Labour’s current position. He’s sometimes the face of unpopular spending decisions (on cuts and public sector pay restraint) and is often cited (not always fairly) as a brake on ideas for a future Labour government. In such a climate, having only a slightly negative total isn’t as bad as it might be.

But whilst it’s interesting to look at who LabourList readers feel passionate about (whether positively or negatively) it’s also important to see how many of you gave each Shadow Cabinet member receive a “neutral” score. That can either denote someone who has a low public profile – or (worse?) someone who readers just don’t have an opinion on. Here’s the Shadow Cabinet ranked by those who got the most “neutral” votes.

1 Jon Trickett
2 Rosie Winterton
3 Emma Reynolds
4 Ivan Lewis
5 Owen Smith
6 Margaret Curran
7 Vernon Coaker
8 Michael Dugher
9 Chris Leslie
10 Liz Kendall
11 Mary Creagh
12 Emily Thornberry
13 Gloria De Piero
14 Maria Eagle
15 Jim Murphy
16 Angela Eagle
17 Hilary Benn
18 Douglas Alexander
19 Caroline Flint
20 Jon Cruddas
21 Rachel Reeves
22 Sadiq Khan
23 Harriet Harman
24 Tristram Hunt
25 Ed Balls
26 Yvette Cooper
27 Chuka Umunna
28 Andy Burnham

Most of those who LabourList readers feel least about are those in more behind the scenes roles (Trickett, Winterton, Dugher), “Nation” roles (Lewis, Smith and Curran) and those who are still relatively new to important roles (Reynolds and Coaker). It’s those last two in particular who I’d expect to appear on the radar of more LabourList readers more often in the months ahead. Defence and Housing will be important for Labour – and they’re both potentially big, talented figures in the party.

Meanwhile, it’s equally inreresting that Burnham – so popular as we’ve seen already – is also a known quantity as LabourList readers are concerned. He has the lowest “neutral” rating of all Shadow Cabinet members to add to his high positive and low negative ratings. There’s less good news for Balls and Hunt though – LabourList readers are unlikely to have neutral views about them, but as we’ve seen, the views they have are more negative than positive.

784 people voted in our weekly survey this week – thanks to everyone who took part. The Shadow Cabinet rankings will be appearing again in the weeks and months ahead.

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

    I voted negatively towards Ed Balls not because of his ability, but as he is pretty much anonymous these days. In the position of Shadow Chancellor (in many ways seen as Shadow DPM he should be more vociferous, more opinionated

    • treborc1

      That’s because his eyes are totally on being the leader, he thinks saying nothing will make it easier for him.

  • David Battley

    Oh dear: apparently the polled members didn’t get the script that has been proposed by some of the more strident voices in the comments section that all Blair-supporting politicians are yesterday’s men…?

    • Theoderic Braun

      If replacing worn and clapped out parts with brand new components isn’t an option you have to make do with and/or repurpose the least-worst of what bits and pieces are available to try to keep going.

    • Danny

      Ah yes, that Andy Burnham won so convincingly is certainly a triumph for Blairism. A man who has publicly distanced himself from Blair’s policies, is proud of his trade union links, appears to have integrity and ran his leadership campaign on a platform of “aspirational socialism”.

      Yvette Cooper in number two isn’t exactly a Blairite either.

      • i_bid

        Amazing how openly the resident Tories line-up to defend the Blairites, isn’t it?

        • David Battley

          I’m a resident Tory? I’d love to hear how you get there.

          • i_bid

            By reading your persistently right-wing comments? If you’re not a Tory, but a full-fledged Blairite, then I apologise – but you see, you’re often indistinguishable.

          • David Battley

            Examples would be nice, otherwise it’s just hot air.

          • i_bid

            Well I can’t be arsed dragging your entire posting history up, but from a quick scroll down I’ve spotted evidence of:

            One of the lesser-spotted Unconvinced by Nationalisation Britons; a deficit hawk; promoting the Laffer Curve; austerity in quotes; defence of Cameron’s appointment of Coulson etc.

            Very little in the way of evidence for your left-wing views?

          • David Battley

            Clearly I don’t have to justify my views to you, but for the record your feeble ad hominem argument has missed my promotion of the environment, education, social justice, work in the charity sector and specific work in Africa. Yes: I do believe that balance sheets need to balance; that money does not grow on trees; and that economics is not for “other people”. The fact that you can’t see the difference between me an Milton Friedman reflects on you, not me.

            Edit: and I notice your serial efforts to “out” everyone whose views are to the right of yours as Tory throughout this thread. I am sad for you.

          • rekrab

            Been on the spliffs again David, suffering from a bit of forgetfulness, never mind, you can always go and hug a hoodie.

          • MikeHomfray

            He will disappear in a couple of weeks as they all do, or re-appear under another name

          • David Battley

            Lol Mike. I’ve been here since just after the days of Derek (under the monikor Jobless Dave before logging in with Google, as I do now). Sadly for you, I’m going nowhere.

          • i_bid

            Social justice? Money doesn’t grow on trees mate, and books need to be balanced! Perhaps start promoting those views then rather the standard right-wing fair you’re usually found trotting out. Start by questioning other poster’s input, and we’ll start questioning yours.

          • David Battley

            Is that the royal “we”? Question whatever you want; when you’re ready to engage in grown up debate I’ll be waiting.

          • rekrab

            Say’s the young boy who still leaves with his mum!

            It’ll be pot luck if you have a debate in you Oooops!

          • David Battley

            It would frankly be pot luck to understand your ramblings, my ADHD Iron Bru-soaked friend.

          • Steve Stubbs

            That’s because he and his like have actually nothing of interest to say. So they sit there at their keyboards picking away at others trying to provoke a reaction to what they fondly imagine is funny, while all the time they just come across at pratts.

          • i_bid

            As opposed to trolling another party’s board all day (I’m definitely a Labour member, honest!!) and calling us all “numpties” like you did earlier? Give it up.

          • David Battley

            Edit: I’ve removed an initially hostile response as I’m not actually sure if you are referring to me with the “he” or i_bid. On balance I rather think i_bid, in which case I apologise for my initial response.

          • Steve Stubbs

            Yes I should have made that clear. I was referring to i-bid and his familiar friends. They seem to think by indulging in pointless baiting and trolling, they will deter people who come on here and who disagree with their personal view of life.

            For what it is worth, I notice most of them hid behind strange avatars, and don’t use their given names. I wonder why?

          • PoundInYourPocket

            So no mention of public ownership of the means of production, that inconvenient tenet of the labour party. Just the other stuff that all parties promote. You could just as well vote Labour/Liberal or Tory with those views.

          • David Battley

            Tenet of the Labour party? Are we back in the 1970s? You may want to reinstate clause 4, but I’d recommend keeping the party electable.

            “You could just as well vote Labour/Liberal or Tory with those views” – so you’re saying my views accord with mainstream, and therefore electable opinion? Am I supposed to apologise for that? It sounds more like you should see me as a sounding board for your ideas, not seeking to otherwise gag me.

            What I find most interesting is that such concerted efforts by the hard left of the party across this thread and elsewhere on LL to crowd out “contrary” opinion are going ahead. Such actions implicitly suggest that these people accept that they cannot the arguments on merit, and so are seeking an empty echo chamber to console themselves in.

            I must apologise in advance to all such people: you will fail in your efforts to intimidate me, and those like me.

          • PoundInYourPocket

            No attempt to intimidate, just a disagreement. And yes, I would like to see clause IV reinstated. The present clause IV is just waffle, the old clause IV had gravitas and meaning.

          • Dan

            So how exactly do you think social justice is going to be achieved if you want to make huge cuts to make the balance sheet balance? Do you think it’s possible to wave a magic wand and produce jobs, good wages and good public services out of thin air while spending no money?

            “Social justice” and “making the balance sheets balance” are quite simply contradictions in terms, unless perhaps you believe in MASSIVE tax increases.

          • David Battley

            Perhaps you can explain how social justice can be achieved if we send the country down the route of basket case economies? Yes being sensible with money limits the good you can do all at once, but maintaining a healthy economy allows you to take the progressive steps over time towards the society you want and ultimately helps more people. The goal needs the golden goose to survive.

            Take Argentina as an example: their approach to economics is far less rigorous than ours, and with a far more socialist priority. Do you think they have more or less inequality than Britain?

            Some facts: in 1974 Agentina’s GDP was 0.37x the UKs, in 1984 (the low point of Thatcher’s effects on GDP) it was 0.18x, and while this improved on Argentina’s never-never approach – in 1993 it was 0.24x – by 2001 reality caught up, and in 2009 (AFTER our GDP crash) it was 0.13x. Any questions?

  • Theoderic Braun

    Twigg and now Hunt were lousy choices to shadow education. (Especially the shouty and inexperienced Hunt.) Surely Labour must be able to drum up some half-decent man or woman to do the hob better than this pair of ineffective no-marks?

    • leslie48

      Tristram Hunt ( and the Labour party generally) have shockingly run from way behind on schooling and education for far, far too long. Indeed they have shot themselves in the foot by trying to be Tory lite, too neutral, too nuanced, too remote from parents, teachers and students. Jesus, this should be our natural constituency! Yet it was the Tories and the PM who discovered how seriously low their polling numbers were among the half-million teacher + ancillary staff voters.

      But the parental and massive teacher and university anger was there. Anger over poorly planned exam reforms, anger over Gove stopping all 6th formers doing repeat units last Jan., anger over rising costs as more parents now pay for 2+ kids at uni, anger about the ‘criminalisation’ this year of caring parents for taking kids off school for a few days holiday, anger over the cuts/ marketisation of universities and reductions in places at both graduate/post-grad level, fewer primary school places, over burdened primary teachers and leakage of newly trained teachers, pay/promotion/conditions crisis in all schooling because of Tory attacks, the academy/free school ‘gone wild’ sucking up funds from elsewhere;

      Labour’s utter failure to say what mess it all is because of their failure to stick up for the public services because they want to somehow meet a D/hate Mail agenda. Moreover Labour’s delay on how it would fund all this in the future and its solutions. Labour too little too late.

      • MikeHomfray

        Its a nightmare, isn’t it? The party is full of people who know something abiut education and we have had two spokespersons who have made a pigs ear of it. Stephen Twigg was just in the wrong job – but Hunt has no excuse as a former lecturer. Why not give the role to former headmaster Vernon Coaker, put Stephen Twigg in Defence, and get rid of Hunt altogether – no substance there at all

        • treborc1

          Twig in Defence, maybe but we do need somebody who has some idea’s in that massively important area . Hunt god who the hell thought he’d be a great MP’

          • leslie48

            You need a big hitter, a smart and articulate person at foreign office who can grapple with what is becoming a big area this last year or two as foreign problems mushroom in the face of increasing foreign aggression and the West perceived as too soft and too conciliatory with the bully boys as we were with Assad, Putin etc.,

          • treborc1

            It’s becoming massive and if Russia is found to be involved in the taking down of plane, I think we are weeks away from a really serious issues to another cold war.

          • DanFilson

            A big hitter for peace, reconciliation, negotiation, use of world agencies etc is a tough act. We tend to want someone who talks the UK up to a status implying a works role whereas we should seek someone who appreciates we are not so powerful and will achieve more working with others (NOT a Bushite USA) . Any seat on offer to Cathy Ashton?

          • leslie48

            Face reality and stop looking backwards to post Iraq issues. We were soft with Assad, we were to soft with Putin’s aggression in Ukraine, soft on defending Europe – and as Kings college expert said on Panorama this week war with ISIS of some sort is now inevitable.

          • Steve Stubbs

            Dear God please no. She has never been elected to anything in her life and it shows. Let her retire into the sunset clutching her obscenely large EU pension.

          • MikeHomfray

            She is respected across Europe as having done an excellent job

          • treborc1

            I do not pretend to know enough about who would be the best in dealing with Russia or the rest of the war mongers, but one person I know who should be sacked is that imbecile Blair ,

            Ashton what I saw of her would not be knowledgeable enough we need a truly big hitter from politics and since we are in the EU it maybe somebody from within the EU.

            If you look at politics today our politician in the Foreign office have been totally wet and gormless to be honest maybe we will need to look at the civil service for this one.

          • Redshift1

            Thing is, who are the people where education will be the absolutely first thing that determines their vote? Teachers (and other education professionals)! So really you want someone who’s going to be on a similar page at least in principle to the NUT and NASUWT (on a practical level they might clash a little because of money available but let’s at least keep them generally onside). That means opposing the creation of more free schools and academies, and it means trying to generally get rid. It means insisting on national bargaining and local authority control. It means only having qualified teachers (e.g. not nonsense like Teach First) I don’t think that’s too much to ask for frankly.

            Parents will obviously be interested in education too, but actually is there any of the above they are against? They will simply want their kids to have a good education, they won’t be quite as bothered about the way that is delivered.

            We are making our education policy way more complicated than it needs to be. Lots of people might have opinions on education, but these are the two groups where their vote will be actually determined by education policy.

          • treborc1

            100% right, but look at Miliband statements and look at Hunts, they are not singing from the same hymn sheet, they are not even in the same church.

            Hunt has stated Free schools will say, new ones in the pipe lines will be allowed and if somebody put up a great plan then they will be allowed, in other words the Tories have it right and I Hunt back it.

            While Miliband is whistling Dixie about what he would do his minister has just shot him down.

            And it’s not the only one either, Miliband needs to get hold of his ministers especially Ball’s and warn them back me or I will sack you.

          • leslie48

            Do you have kids? As the PR Tory strategists like Lynton Crosby deemed it counts – especially in ‘lower middle/’middle’ middle class marginals – every vote counts and these employees and professionals know it’s about their futures as well as their kids. Do not underestimate the growing anxiety of these professionals and the growing costs of secondary and university education. Even in private schools Gove was seen as close to a zealot by parents too.

          • rwendland

            Shortage of primary school places will be significantly influencing some parent voters too. Increasing numbers of parents are not getting kids into the local primary school. Some will realise the oodles of money spent on setting up secondary Free Schools is contributing to this problem.

          • Redshift1

            Well I think that’s my point really. We need to listen to teachers. Not only is that a good thing to do in terms of having a good education system, it is also electorally pragmatic.

            And yes I do have kids. 1 at primary school and 2 younger ones.

          • DanFilson

            It is interesting how easily the public are suborned into protecting selective education and particular grammar schools, when clearly they only benefit a minority of children. The sad fact is that the benefits of comprehensive education without exception have not been successfully sold, and the scope for differentiation within a school undersold. Children can still receive a challenging education that stretches them but without being sorted into sheep and goats at age 11. Can education be made as much a headline policy area as the NHS? Yes, but it needs the whole Labour leadership behind it, not just the Shadow Education Secretary, and no hiding place for closet Voluntary-aided or selective schooling fans.

          • Hugh

            You discount about 3% of the adult population – about a million and a half people, maybe, against half a million teachers – who put education as the most important issue in the country today when polled. And, if they’re representative of the public as a whole, the majority of them would support grammar schools.

            Added to that, teachers are in any case more likley to support Labour.

            Even allowing for some overlap and assuming all teachers love Christine Blower, hate acedmies etc (not entirely true) basically, no, having someone who agrees with the NUT is not necessarily the recipe for electoral success on education.

          • DanFilson

            Stephen Twigg in Defence? Rolled myself laughing at that one. Hunt is doing OK at Education but was up against Gove who had a clear agenda and was not to be derailed. Vernon Coaker is a potential excellent minister in government but lacks the sparkle required of a leafing Shadow Cabinet member. Showbiz is tough sometimes.

          • MikeHomfray

            Hunt is absolutely NOT doing OK. Stephen Twigg has a very strong knowledge of foreign affairs issues

          • treborc1

            He may lack the sparkle then again Wilson has no sparkle, Blair had loads of it but he had little ideology just a dream about being rich.

            We now more then ever need less sparkle and more ideology and basic down to the ground knowledge of what they are doing. I do not want sparkle what I want is for somebody to take on education and know the way forward and that I suspect means getting rid of free schools, all of them including these horrors of all religious education.

            Time to pump money into mainstream education not these ridiculous free schools.

          • PoundInYourPocket

            Wilson – no sparkle – I’m choking on my pipe !

          • ColinAdkins

            Mandelson. They never short-listed the local candidate.

        • Doug Smith

          “Stephen Twigg in Defence”

          Can’t imagine he’d carry the confidence of the military – he’s a swivel-eyed Blairite who probably fantasizes about launching a military strike against Iran.

          • Steve Stubbs

            He is a waste of space and rations. Move him to the Lords with all the others like him.

          • MikeHomfray

            Actually – you are wrong. Foreign affairs is his area of interest and he is very nuanced and moderate.

  • Doug Smith

    Andy Burnham so far ahead!

    Progress won’t like that. He’ll have to be demoted to prevent him from building momentum as a leadership candidate.

    • Danny

      And Tristram Hunt, a Progressite who some are secretly hoping will become their next David Miliband, is so poorly thought of. Such a shame.

      • treborc1

        God if that bloke become leader of labour it will be the end, I’ve never in my life seen a more Tory even within the Tories.

        My guess is the Progress lot will throw in a Thatcherite idea of maybe Reeves.

        • Boldee

          The end has already come for most of the old hard line Labour voters like me, I keep tabs on what is happening but I couldnt possibly vote for them at the moment and I cant see that changing any time soon sadly.

          I will be voting Green or Left Unity until such time that Labout are no longer followers of the neo-liberal agenda.

          • Redshift1

            “The end has already come for most of the old hard line Labour voters”

            There’s a lot of people like you disillusioned, but quantitatively speaking this isn’t really true. Most are prioritising kicking out this government and are sticking with Labour.

          • treborc1

            You mean as in 2010, I think you hope they are, but somehow I doubt it why the hell kick out the real thing, for a carbon copy.

          • Boldee

            Yea great kick out this government and replace it with pretty much the same thing, sure I doubt Labour would be as cruel but as I said they will still follow the neo-liberal financial agenda which represents corporations first the people never.

          • treborc1

            Left Unity worth a vote.

          • ColinAdkins

            From my knowledge of ultra-leftists Left Unity is a contradiction in terms. I guess you will be happy that you haven’t sold out without the hassle of persuading the Party and the broader electorate for more left wing policies.

          • Boldee

            Colin the Labour Party will never again be persuaded to drift back to the left and the electorate have all be conditioned to believe that socialism is bad and that selfishness is good, I wouldn’t waste my time and energy trying to change the Labour party however trying to influence the electorate to vote for a proper left wing party is something I would put time and energy into.

          • ColinAdkins

            That is the trouble with the working class they are suffering from a false consciousness. Maybe they do not want to experience any more socialist experiments but clearly they back the NHS which is based on the principle of shared risk.

          • Gerald Allen

            Boldee; What crystal ball are you gazing into that tells you that most of the old hard line Labour voters like yourself are not going to vote Labour. Most voters in the category that you describe that I come into contact with are straining at the leash to vote against this coalition government; the most reactionary government since the National government of Ramsay MacDonald in the 30s.
            While there are many reasons that any socialist or progressive person could think of not voting for the wishy washy, very mildly Social Democratic version of government that Milliband and Labour offer, surely the defeat of Cameron and his coalition must be the absolute priority. Anyone who can afford the luxury of a vote for the Greens or Left Unity should dwell on the 2000 U.S. presidential election, where the luxury of voting for Ralph Nader gave America and the world George. W. Bush and his neo-con fanatics and their disastrous economic and war policies.
            There is only one possible/plausible alternative to Cameron/Osborne/Clegg and their disastrous class warfare, and that is Labour, warts and all.

          • Boldee

            The same crystal ball that you are Gerald an anecdotal one, while your anecdotal old hard line Labour voters say they will vote Labour my anecdotal hard line Labour voters say they wont. You could just about squeeze a cigarette paper between Lab/Con/Lib so why would I vote for more of the same? I will be voting with a clear conscience, voting knowing I did it with conviction to my principles.

            The trouble with the working class Colin is they have been brainwashed to believe that socialism is bad when it has always been far better than what we have at present, quite frankly I find you comment a little offensive.

        • DanFilson

          “More Tory even within the Tories”? I had negative or neutral opinions about Tristram Hunt until I heard him speak recently, before a Labour audience admittedly, and I was impressed by the range of thought and the extent to which I agreed with both his diagnosis of what was wrong and proposals to put matters right. I suspect that if his first name was Joe rather thsn Tristram there might be less hostility at the outset and don’t see quite why he has such negative ratings. True he was up against Gove who was thoroughly irritating in his smugness and a hard act to counter.

          Ed Balls is no fool, could make a good Chancellor but is slightly hampered by limited chances to show his range of thought and values (as is, curiously, George Osborne, thankfully), and it possible that like John Prescott his language skills are not perfect. The first of these is in part because those closest to the Leader must try not to show any propensity to display leadership credentials as this would appear to be, and be, disloyal. He suffers from over-exposure in his role on the front bench; we see him so often he seems same-ish. New kids on the block have it easier.

          Caroline Flint needs to watch against appearing on Question Time too often, and to avoid stating the blindingly obvious.

          All this poll shows is that probably the Parliamentary Labour Party may be possibly better judges of who should be in the Shadow Cabinet than Party members at large, but I would not suggest we revert to the 1964 situation where Harold Wilson was stuck with putting into his first Cabinet those whom the relatively staid 1959-1964 PLP had favoured; that gave us Sir Frank Soskice as Home Secretary and a raft of Freds and party elders passed their best.

          • ColinAdkins

            People are allowed to criticise Hunt without being accused of snobbishness. You talk of Flint on QT. The one appearance of Hunt I saw was underwhelming. Then there was the Paxo duffing up.
            More importantly his policies lack any coherent direction and seem to be determined on the basis of avoiding being in the pocket of the Blob or the profession and educationalists to you and me.

          • Hugh

            “More importantly his policies lack any coherent direction”

            They’re not his policies, are they? They lack direction because Miliband is unwilling to commit to anything until he has to and instead prefers to have it both ways – criticising the government’s approach without definitely committing to do anything differently.

          • Danny

            Ah, it’s because his name isn’t Joe that people don’t like Hunt!

            And here was me thinking it might have had something to do with his barely concealed admiration for the Tories disastrous approach to education, his lack of any sort of experience in an education system that the majority of our children will go through, his cringe-inducing media performance and his contempt for strikers and unions.

            He struggled against Michael Gove? The man is a moron. The amount of ammunition he has provided should have given our Shadow Education Secretary a platform to destroy Gove and build themselves a decent profile in the process. The fact that Miliband has installed two appalling politicians and individuals in the role is the reason this never happened, not because Michael Gove is some sort of talent to be admired.

            Still, lecturer speaks well and impresses Mr Filson. Shocker. His professional role involves speaking at people, I’d expect him to be pretty polished. When he has to engage in conversation or debate, he crumbles embarrassingly.

            You can take the Right Honourable title and his appearance in Tatler away, he would still be correctly despised by a significant number of Labour supporters.

      • Doug Smith

        I’d put my money on Gloria De Piero. She’s hard-core Progress but they’ll gloss over that and say it’s because it’s time for a female leader.

        If ability mattered we wouldn’t have a PLP packed with Blairite non-entities. What matters to the elite is ideological conformity.

  • RWP

    Where is EdM on this list?

    • treborc1

      You cannot have the leader on the list in case he came bottom the Tories would have have it on posters. Labour list members see Miliband as well bottom.

  • Grouchy Oldgit

    I did the poll but had never heard of most of them.

  • MikeHomfray

    Andy Burnham is very popular with Labour party voters – if there was a hypothetical leadership contest I think he would win.

    • treborc1

      Well that’s what the said of David of course, most leadership contest will throw up a surprise now and again. Lets wait and see if labour wins the next election because if not, I think we are going to see the biggest battle in labour history as Progress throw everything behind getting another Blair clone elected, and the left will want Burnham this will show if Progress are now in charge.

      • Redshift1

        If the left and the unions united behind Burnham, he’d win hands down (Burnham is also very capable of capturing the more moderate kind of social democrat vote that are to the left of progress). Progress is not as big in the Labour Party as you think.

        • treborc1

          The Unions would run a million miles before ever getting behind anyone, they had fingers badly burned with Miliband.When Progress tells the leader to stop the Unions interfering with their choice of MPs, you know they are a power, Falkirk proved how weak Miliband was, and how strong Progress are..

          • MikeHomfray

            No, it didn’t – it was just a monumental cock-up.

    • Doug Smith

      If there’s any chance of Burnham winning they’ll implement an all-women candidature.

    • David Lewis

      He has always seemed to me a shallow opportunist who radiates insincerity almost as an art form.

      I’m always amazed that he gets away with it. Why he is not in hiding after his history in government is a continuing mystery to me too. Perhaps he is even more delusional than those who fete him but we will never know I suppose.

      • Theoderic Braun

        David Cameron?

        • David Lewis

          Are you still at school. A very funny joke. I am not a Cameron admirer

      • Danny

        “Why he is not in hiding after his history in government is a continuing mystery to me too.”

        I can only guess, but I’m presuming this is a reference to the fact that he was Health Secretary. You do realise this was a post he held for less than a year. Surely you’re not suggesting that things like the Mid Staffs crisis and similar events are the fault of a Health Secretary who held the post between June 2009 and May 2010?

        Andy Burnham appears to be one of the few current MPs with integrity. Ask members of the Justice for the 96 campaign if they think he is insincere. I’ll never forget a few years ago when he spoke at a Hillsborough memorial at Anfield. His approach to the lectern was greeted with boos, but by the end of the speech he was cheered. An Everton-fan who regularly tweets anti-Liverpool banter is considered one of the good guys of the Justice for the 96 campaign. He’s a rare politician who you could actually envisage not looking out of place if he joined you and your mates down the pub. The son of a receptionist and telephone engineer whose intelligence and hard work got him to Cambridge as opposed to his background and the boy’s network.

        I’d have him as leader tomorrow.

        • David Lewis

          So would I

          • Danny

            Why not devise a spreadsheet that tells us who the next leader of the Labour Party is going to be?

          • David Lewis

            Why? Does it matter?

    • Jack Fate

      I was very surprised at how poorly he fared in 2010 leadership election

      • MikeHomfray

        I wasn’t – I placed him 4th then, but I wouldn’t now – I think he has really grown in opposition. I have also had the pleasure of meeting him since. He’s a nice guy – no bullshit

        • treborc1

          Miliband is a nice guy as well, nice guys do not always make good leaders.

  • thinkov

    Such a lot of unheard people

  • Thickhead

    Why is Ed Miliband excluded from the survey? Someone frightened about a negative result? I fear this type of survey could work against the likes of Andy Burnham, whereby Miliband/Balls will view him as too much of a threat to their leadership.

    • Redshift1

      To be honest, even if he got a good results, it’d look bad if he was month after month beaten by Burnham or others.

      • treborc1

        You cannot have the leader in a pole for god sake, imagine if now he came bottom the Tories would be on that like Blair to money.

        PMQs would be a farce, what’s it like Mr Miliband to be bottom of your own parties polls it would be damaging.

  • swatnan

    I’m pleased to say I voted for Andy in the Leaderships as first choice, and Diane 2nd.
    I can spot a winner a mile off. And I know a dud when I see one. Andy still needs to work on getting to know ordinary folk a bit more otherwise he’s going to be lumbered with the label ‘ you’re just another career politician, out of Uni and into politics with no experience of real life’

    • ColinAdkins

      I had the misfortune of organising the MSF Union side against the Red Menace Team which included Andy, Balls, the Milibands, Purnell (BBC via MP), Richards (Ofcom), Collins (the Times), Allan (super annuated influence peddler) then advisors to New Labour. All arrogant, conceited and full of their own self-importance to the man – except Andy which is why I voted for him. By the way we won 1v0.

    • Steve Stubbs

      “I can spot a winner a mile off”

      Not if you voted for Diane.

      • swatnan

        Diane for Mayor!
        in the Leaderships she got my ‘sympathy vote’

  • Amazed Andy Burnham is at the top considering our poor response to the NHS issues.

    • Danny

      The right of the party are getting a little miffed….

      • Dan

        Yes. “Poor response” apparently means…actually having the balls to oppose the Tories’ policies properly, rather than just wanting cosmetic tweaks to be “credible”.

        • Danny

          Getting the NHS an exemption from the affront to democracy that TTIP is could end up being looked back upon as one of the greatest achievements of any potential 2015-2020 Labour Government.

          • Steve Stubbs

            Not going to happen. We are not even at the negotiating table. The EU represents us, no incentive for them to push for it.

      • Steve Stubbs

        No, I am getting a *lot* miffed.

        • i_bid

          Haha. Stop pretending you’re Labour.

          • Steve Stubbs

            Well sorry to disappoint you but I am a paid up member, paying the reduced rate for pensioners. Strange how many people on this forum will class someone as a non member or a tory or a UKIP troll if they don’t slavishly agree with their opinion.

          • i_bid

            Haha, you’ve just this moment changed your profile information. Just two hours ago it said “not a supporter of any party”. I imagine you play the “disgruntled member”, and “non-partisan independent thinker” when it suits.

          • rekrab

            Bingo I[bid! so he’s a paid up member of what could be anything?

            He likes a visit to Germany though!

          • Steve Stubbs

            You forgot to mention that I speak German, although not fluently, but can get by in it. Possibly because I was based in West Germany for three and a half years in the early ’70s, ensuring you don’t now speak Russian and have the right to say what you want, no matter how stupid it is. And yes, I carried a gun then.

          • rekrab

            I thank you for your services. What kind of gun did you carry?

          • Steve Stubbs

            Well simply that was because your post of about three hours ago reminded me I hadn’t updated my profile for some time. I still retain the right to be a free thinking party member and not slavishly follow any particular line or policy that I disagree with..

            Sorry also I can’t bring myself to slavishly follow some of the more vocal members here, but then I guess a lot of voters would also take that position. Like it or not, unless elected to government you can achieve almost nothing and the population at large consistently fail to take up the lefts kind offers of another DDR.

            I suppose that is what really gets up your nose about Blair. He actually won elections.

          • rekrab

            Blair didn’t win? the labour party won. What is it with your obsession for individuality?

          • PoundInYourPocket

            Blair f*cked the Labour Party. It is now the proverbial dead parrot. Yes – you win elections, but not for any purpose other than occupying office.

          • Steve Stubbs

            So what great improvements could Labour achieve without being in office then? You could sit there and write electoral suicide notes like Michael Foot, or discourse at length like Kinnock, but you don’t actually achieve anything.

          • PoundInYourPocket

            Of course, you have to be in power to make a difference and getting elected for a purpose is a fine balancing act. The easy way is just to position yourself 1 degree to the left of the Tories and cruise into office with Murdoch approval. But you won’t achieve much other than just delay the onset of the next Tory govt. The more difficult route is to hold left wing views and counter the Tory media. A much harder route to power but at least you can achieve something worthwhile once there.
            It all depends on where you think the public are, in my view the majority don’t realy soak up all that Daily Mail / Sun / Telegraph right wing bile.

          • Steve Stubbs

            At the same time if the left wing views are left enough, you will achieve diddly squat as you will not get elected into power. T he trick surely is to position somewhere between Murdoch and the far left, far enough from both so that you are at least electable with a change of pushing your agenda.

            The thing about the publlc is they buy the Mail and the Sun in significant numbers, unlike the Guardian and the Mirror, both of which seem to be getting into the circulation zone where their survival is becoming problematic. And then who will make the argument for the other side? Personally I think the public find both right wing and left wing bile a turn off. That’s why they don’t follow politics to the extent that those posting on forums like this do.

          • i_bid

            Righto mate.

            I dunno, I can content myself fairly easily by simply pulling up and comparing polling for, say, 1) a raft of nationalisations and 2) Blair, and see what’s popular with the public and what isn’t.

            We can soon see what’s discredited – and it ain’t us.

          • PoundInYourPocket

            As a socialist I preferred Thatcher to Blair, at least with the milk-snatcher the battle lines were clearly drawn on the map and the enemy was clearly delineated and in uniform. Blair blurred the lines such that left is now right and politics is pretty much meaningless.

          • leslie48

            Come on – below your usual intelligence. Out of office from 1979 to 1997 ( 18 Tory years) , more globalisation, a very right wing England , a Right wing press, a rejection of the hard Left…New Labour had to happen to attract the voters and win power ( landslide). Moreover you ignore many, many reforms and social-economic improvements in the UK which gave our people more of a social democracy.

          • PoundInYourPocket

            No – New Labour were to the right of the electorate in 97. I recognise the early achievements such as the min wage / investment in hospitals & schools and tax credits, but it kept shifting to the right which gave us the marketisation of health & education, warfare and the authoritairian state. I am Labour which is why I recognise the early achievements , but after that it was atrocious and damaged the labour brand, possiblly beyond use. There was no need for the war in Iraq or the rightward shift in policy as the public were not demanding either. Blair’s was a natural Tory hence his policy ideas and solutions were always Tory and not socialist.

          • leslie48

            Well things are rarely that simple but even if we took say the ‘city academies’ which were independent state schools they did begin to challenge the idea that some urban schools in disadvantaged areas could continue to produce results where less than 60 % of kids were unable to get GCSEs in Maths and English etc.,

            Within months of Labour losing the election we had the highest uni. fees in Europe and poverty has increased rapidly.

            But yes New Labour did begin to challenge the idea that say single mums should remain overly long on benefits and started help for child care; I have a feeling too that we in Labour did begin to challenge the romantic view that ‘all’ the jobless were ‘victims’; the latest jobless figures may and I say ‘may’ show the stick approach is working for ‘some’ people ( FT) in some situations. But I would hope we could be as tough on tax avoidance from the self-employed to the big businesses.

          • Steve Stubbs

            Party membership details available to the Forum owner if he would like to verify them.

  • Dan

    Happy to see Andy such a runaway favourite, and hopefully in line to win the leadership if Labour lose next year. Good to see that, despite the Progressites’ best efforts, people aren’t falling for Umunna, Reeves and Hunt and their cringeworthy sixth-formers-try-politics shtick,

  • swatnan

    Really surprised by Chuka’s poor showing. Bjut then’t seen him for a day or two have we?

  • keithveness

    Burnham is now popular overwhelmingly because of Hillsborough and his connection to the Liverpool campaign. He said sorry, admitted he was wrong and worked damned hard to put it right. A real grass-roots approach devoid of spin-doctoring. No wonder this struck a chord! Some people like Emily Thornberry don’t get the credit they deserve as they work a lot behind the scenes. I’m afraid Paxo got it right about Rachel Reeves when he wrote “snoring, boring”.

    • i_bid

      If only Reeves was simply boring; she’s quite frankly a danger to the public if some of her quotes are to be believed.

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