Rumours of the Labour party's death within a decade have been greatly exaggerated
The Labour party is not long for this world. If we are to believe the Tory press today, (a risky move generally), the party of Keir Hardie may have only ten years left to live.
And apparently the diagnosis was made by one of the patient’s very own limbs: Ed Miliband’s policy chief, Jon Cruddas MP.
The Daily Mail pronounced the death sentence, ‘Ed’s aide: Labour could die in ten years‘, hot on the heals of the Telegraph‘s more evolutionary take, ‘Miliband aide: Labour could be extinct in a decade‘. As both stories report:
“Asked whether the Labour Party might ‘not exist’ within ten years, Mr Cruddas, a reknowned [sic] free-thinker, replied: ‘Yes, yes.‘
” ‘There is no safe ground for any orthodox parties and the stakes could be high potentially. They could just disintegrate in real time. And I include in that the party that I represent.‘ “
As you can see, Cruddas was speaking about the dangers to ‘any orthodox parties’, including Labour, as extreme parties of left and right spring up across Europe.
This certainly applies to the Conservative party and the Liberal Democrats as much as any other, as the threat from UKIP to David Cameron’s Tories in a number of seats demonstrates. So why the focus on Labour?
The Telegraph explains:
“The remarks are particularly noteworthy, given Mr Cruddas’ job description is often given as rebuilding the party in the wake of New Labour.”
Or as the Mail’s eerily similar but more candid story puts it:
“The remarks will embarrass Mr Miliband because Mr Cruddas is meant to be rebuilding the party in the wake of New Labour.”
Mystery solved? Regardless, with the two parties tied in the polls, it seems reports of the Labour party’s death have been greatly exaggerated.
Adam Barnett is a staff writer at Left Foot Forward. Follow him on TwitterLike this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.