Ed M not the natural choice of shadow cabinet candidates

Analysis of the shadow cabinet candidates' Labour leader preferences reveals that Ed Miliband cannot rely on automatic support for his leadership. Of the 49 MPs standing for the shadow cabinet, 14 did not put down any preference for the Labour leader.

Analysis of the shadow cabinet candidates’ Labour leader preferences reveals that Ed Miliband cannot rely on automatic support for his leadership. Of the 49 MPs standing for the shadow cabinet, 14 did not put down any preference for the Labour leader.

David Miliband’s slight victory in the PLP (53% to 47%) is significantly magnified among shadow cabinet candidates. He gained 25 of their first preferences, compared to 12 for Ed Miliband, 9 for Ed Balls, 2 for Andy Burnham and 1 for Diane Abbott. The 14 candidates who didn’t express a preference for the new leader include Ben Bradshaw, Caroline Flint, Tom Harris, and Jim Murphy.

The older Miliband was also the choice of the New Labour establishment. Of the 14 ex-cabinet ministers competing for election, 7 picked Mili-D as first choice, with 4 (Hilary Benn, John Denham, Stephen Timms and Peter Hain) plumping for Mili-E.

Unless Ed M’s backers have a clean sweep in the shadow cabinet election, he will not have been the first choice pick for the majority of the shadow cabinet. While his brother’s decision to move to the backbenches reduces the likelihood of factionalism emerging, Ed Balls retains a powerful base of support amongst the 49 candidates – 18 put Balls ahead of Ed M.

In total, though, Mili-E did achieve 36 votes of varying preference from his potential shadow cabinet. And he can take solace from the fact that the sole candidate for Chief Whip – Rosie Winterton – pledged her first preference to him.

12 Responses to “Ed M not the natural choice of shadow cabinet candidates”

  1. Judy Smith

    RT @leftfootfwd: Ed M not the natural choice of shadow cabinet candidates //bit.ly/9y8jqO > no surprise – end of a B-B era that's all

  2. Dr. Shibley Rahman

    I (sort of) know what you’re getting at, but the fundamental issue is that David Miliband got substantial backing from Labour MPs. As Andrew Rawnsley alluded to last night on “This Week”, there was a sense early on in the leadership contest that David Miliband was a nature heir to both Brown and Blair.

    Nice article though.

    Dr Shibley Rahman
    (@shibleylondon)

  3. Hopi Sen

    The text is a little unclear. I don’t think any of the Shad candidates didn’t vote, so I assume you mean that some candiadtes didn’t put Ed M as their 2nd, 3rd or 4th choice candidate.

    In which case it isn’t that interesting, as a significant minority of both Ed and David supporters put in no transfers at all, presumably in expectaition they wouldn’t count.

    the first preferences are important, as they may well be used as some sort of guide to the mood of PLP.

  4. Mike

    Looking from the figures on the Labour party website, a good number of MPs who voted for David Miliband put Ed as their second. Which hardly indicates that they can’t work with him, even if he wasn’t their first choice.

  5. Chris

    This will only become a problem if things go tits up big time.

  6. John Ruddy

    I think its a little disengenuous to assume that if an MP didnt put a preference for Ed, he was a David supporter. I can think of two Shadow Cabinet nominees (who will definitely win places) who didnt vote for either. Ed Balls and Yvette Cooper.

  7. jim jepps

    The one candidate who voted for Diane Abbott is presumably Diane Abbott herself, no?

    It will be interesting to see what the final selection looks like, although I suspect Ed wont have any major rebellions on his hands any time soon..

  8. Mr. Sensible

    Even if people didn’t vote for Ed, hopefully, they will unite behind him.

  9. torieboy

    jim jepps
    The one candidate who voted for Diane Abbott is presumably Diane Abbott herself, no?
    YES, all publicity is good publicity, next year she will be doing strictly come dancing like ann widdecombe.

  10. Kevin leonard

    Personally I would love to see a shadow cabinet of diverse views. As for “Ed” I can’t see him lasting longer than 20 months in the job before the great and good realise they will never win an election with him at the helm, meanwhile the other Ed (balls and lots f them in private)waits for the whistle for the second half…

  11. steve

    RT @leftfootfwd: Ed M not the natural choice of shadow cabinet candidates //bit.ly/9y8jqO

  12. Alex Ross

    I like the way you say Ed’s solace is the only nominee for Chief Whip voted for Ed.

    You mean of course, the sole nominee who Ed placed there! Hardly a ‘solace’ when it’s you moving a supporter into an elected role and ensuring she is the only nominee!

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