Is due at about 4.40pm. The last YouGov poll of Labour members and trade unionists had the Miliband brothers neck and neck. Ed Miliband was marginally ahead – but they were within the margin of error of each other and it could easily go either way (especially since MPs second preferences are still largely unknown, though Left Foot Forward have since managed to get some info from MPs backing Abbott, Balls and Burnham).

The Westminster village seems to have decided that Ed Miliband will indeed win, and the betting markets have him as heavy odds on favourite. However, there isn’t any sign of firm information (Laura Kuenssberg tweeted earlier that even Labour’s general secretary wont be told the result by ERS until 3.30pm, and ERS themselves are unlikely to leak), so it should really still be regarded as too close to call.

Feel free to use this thread to discuss the result (but please, try to stick to the comments policy and lay off the posts greeting the new leader as either the coming of the messiah or the final nail in Labour’s coffin!)

UPDATE: The result is, as everyone will now know, Ed by a whisker. That was stressful!


334 Responses to “The new Labour leader annoucement”

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  1. JimJam

    You’re wrong about how the union vote is done. I think it used to be like that in the Eighties (and to make it worse unions “bought” how many members they wanted to affiliate), but the current system is like I and others described above.

    Look on the various tables linked from here to show how things went this time:

    ht tp://www2.labour.org.uk/results

    putting the t’s together.

  2. Roger,

    Ta for that.

  3. Red Eds Song at the next GE:

    “You won’t beat me I’m part of the union.. Till the day I die.. Till the day I die.. ”

    Without being partisan-It’s a step back 25 years for Labour!
    Hilarious!!

  4. Of course the Tories are going to exploit the TU angle. It is a potential weak spot if played right. As roger m points out the union turnout is very low, so if is seems that the labour supporters who are members of the unions that publicly backed Ed then voted for him then influence can be ‘implied’. And the members who did not vote aren’t going to be too offended by the implication of influence either, chances are they don’t vote labour, or don’t like their union bosses much.

    This is politics. For those who suggest that the Tories are meant to sit on the sidelines, quietly applauding, when there is a new leader to focus attention on, are either deluded, hypocritical or both.
    Less sanctimony please about our ‘beloved’ unions, and less moralising about party politics from those that spout class rhetoric at any opportunity!
    Please don’t pretend that the left wouldn’t do the same ;-)

  5. @ JimJam

    If I am not mistaken most unions ballet their members work out 1-5 and cast all their votes accordingly whereas the party members vote is per voter.
    ——————————————–
    You are mistaken. Union members = 1 member, 1 vote. 8-)

  6. wayne,

    You were right!

    They were exciting times :)

    Labour is set to move to the left it is true. Blue have also moved left lets not forget…. the only party moving right is the Liberal Democrats and look where that is getting them…

    Labour and Tories seemed to have twigged that the further left they go the higher their scores in the polls go! Even Caroline Lucas is getting elected on a red agenda… :)

    I’m excited :)

  7. It really doesn’t matter how the union vote is done nowadays. The fact is that most non-union people think that Unions are not worth joining (else they’d be in one). There are far more non-union than union workers and many more non-workers who are not in a union.

    Therefore the fact that Ed M won because of the Union vote (whatever the exact mechanism), will automatically alienate everyone not in a union.

  8. R.I.P New Labour

    Game on !

  9. @ Sue

    Blair and Mandleson cost him the contest and I hope they’re listening loud and clear.
    ————————————————
    I agree, they absolutely did. 8-)

  10. Amber
    “I agree, they absolutely did”

    Is that because they endorsed him, and they are both discredited now?

  11. @ Wayne

    You won’t beat me I’m part of the union..
    ———————————————–
    Tories are all desperate to fight old battles. The public could not be less interested. 8-)

  12. Hi Sue

    Yes, I liked his integrity too – I thought his refusal to back the London postal strike in the Newsnight debate without hearing the facts was one of the moments of the campaign. However, surely it would have been possible for him to have maintained his integrity while reaching out a little more to the trades unions; they are after all a rather important part of the Labour party. If you can’t talk nicely about them in some way without undermining your credibility I am not sure you should be standing to be the party’s leader

  13. Roger, thks for the correction, sorry amber?

  14. on a lighter note

    in the Swedish elections there is a write in section on the ballot paper. you can in fact vote for whoever you want, i think that if a write in wins they are obliged to take the job

    the winner of the write in vote this time was

    Donald duck with 122 votes, unfortunately he was at least 50,000 votes short of winning a seat

  15. The election of Ed reminds me so much of the failed Tory leaders elected post 1997. They were popular with their party members but the party members just couldn’t see how wrong they were for the voters at large.

    The Millibands are creepy, political nerds and just will not connect with ordinary voters no matter how hard Labour supporters try to fool themselves otherwise.

    Labour has also not had a real debate about it’s future direction post coalition. All we are getting really is more of the same that was rejected in 2010.

    I would imagine that in Downing Street there will be a lot of very releived people tonight.

  16. Richard,

    Jeremy Clarkson would probably win in this country?

  17. @ Pete B

    Is that because they endorsed him, and they are both discredited now?
    —————————————-
    Mandelson’s endorsement was too late; Tony’s was implied but not said until the 11th hour.

    They both knew David for years. If they intended supporting him, they should’ve said so – & said it loud & clear – within a week of his candidacy being announced. The debate about it would’ve been loud, early & open.

    Instead, the media made it look a tad sneaky & a bit desperate. It really distracted from David’s grassroots, Movement for Change campaign which was gathering publicity & momentum. They lost this contest for David. Their timing was woeful, IMO. 8-)

  18. Unions can have a bad image, but this can get me very, very angry.

    I am from Mining stock, and the stuff my Grandfather did and suffered is beyond the imagination of most working people today. Most people today enjoy better working conditions as a direct result of the Trade Union Movement.

    Yes, sometimes Union power was excessive and not good, but on the whole it has been a force for good. Most people who work in Unionised workplaces enjoy better pay and working conditions that non-unionised workplaces.

    I suspect much resentment to Union activity is actually jealousy of the workplace improvements Union people often enjoy.

    I think you could argue Unions could be part of DCs Big Society. I have been a Shop Steward, and it does involve spending a lot of time for the benefit of others.

  19. HardpressedTQY

    Hear! Hear! I’d have said that but was afraid of getting moderated again.

  20. pete B

    “It really doesn’t matter how the union vote is done nowadays. The fact is that most non-union people think that Unions are not worth joining (else they’d be in one). There are far more non-union than union workers and many more non-workers who are not in a union.”

    NO, most non union workers don’t join a union because it could cost them their job. i know because this has happened to me

  21. @Hardpressedtqy

    “The Millibands are creepy, political nerds and just will not connect with ordinary voters no matter how hard Labour supporters try to fool themselves otherwise.

    Labour has also not had a real debate about it’s future direction post coalition. All we are getting really is more of the same that was rejected in 2010.

    I would imagine that in Downing Street there will be a lot of very releived people tonight.”

    Wishful thinking methinks. It is simply too early to reach conclusions like this

  22. @ JimJam

    But I loved your point about Ed Balls v Vince Cable. I was speculating about the same thing a couple of days ago, with Éoin.

    Would Vince Cable be a waste of Ed’s considerable firepower? On reflection, I think it could be a waste. I think Ed’s blazing guns need to be directly fired at a Tory minister. Which one, is the question. What do you think? 8-)

  23. No polls yet? Or are they simply not interested in what impact the Lib Dem conf had? I suspect that’s the case

  24. Ashley,

    Just the one tonight. The fieldwork for it was pre-Labour announcement. I also thought the leader’s speech was to be a full and propoer one, not just an acceptance speech. The poll is due at 10pm

  25. @ Garry k
    I think you are missing the point. The unions are positive in many ways for their members. I certainly believe that and much of what they do is to be praised in respect of workers rights. But their image is weak, what people see/hear are the high profile strikes and walkouts which rarely attract much sympathy. Much like the left conflate the Tories of today with ‘Thatcherite nastiness’ of the 80s it is equally easy to conflate unions today with 80s militancy, Scargill, Hatton, etc. In politics such comparisons will be made, because whether it is right or not, each party knows the other side wouldn’t hesitate…..

  26. 28% of workers are in a union-72% are not.

    16% of Private Sector employees are union members-84% are not.

    60% of Public Sector employees are union members-40% are not.

    Unions are present in 87 % of public sector workplaces.

    Trades Union membership in UK is Public Sector Employeeship.

    EB was elected , not by his MPs, not by his Party members., but by unionised Public Sector employees.

    The Big Questions are -will they demand a pay back -and will EM oblige.

    We don’t need to ask what the payback will be.

  27. @ Sue Marsh

    Looking at the results and reading the commentary, it’s almost like Hillary v. Obama dejavu. Almost.

    @ Amber Star

    I find it interesting that your man Burnham voted for David Miliband as a second preference. How did his other supporters vote?

  28. Colin,

    Ed M might never get a chance to pay them pack. Union bosses are a savvy lot. The were dealt a hand and the picked the best card (for them) from it. Had they been dealt another 5 candidates EdM might never have got their backing. He’ll know that. they’ll know that. Maybe a tougher stance on EU/Immigration- let’s wait and see? Guarantees over Public Pay and Living Wage perhaps?

  29. @ SoCalLiberal

    I find it interesting that your man Burnham voted for David Miliband as a second preference. How did his other supporters vote?
    ——————————————————–
    Second preferences: 14 David M, 8 Ed M, 2 Ed B. The rest didn’t have a second preference. 8-)

  30. can we say that Labour has put the Iraq war behind it now?

  31. @ Garry K

    I don’t come from union stock but I had relatives who were union members. There’s a great line from the Simpsons when Mr. Burns, the 104 year old evil Republican billionaire, has a flashback to his boyhood days in the early 1900’s. His evil industrialist grandfather is allowing him to beat a union worker accused of stealing germs. After a young Mr. Burns beats him, the worker then says “you know one day us working people are going to get ours! We’re going to form a union and stand up against powerful interests in order to get our rights and a fair and honest shake! But then after we win, we’ll grow corrupt and lazy and then the Japanese will eat us alive!” Your comment reminds me of that moment.

    It’s funny to think about. No one in my immediate family is a union member. And my natural inclination is towards big business and management. Yet I think in every election, I’ve voted in favor of what the unions wanted.

  32. Balls v ?
    Hague is DM’s unless he won’t serve which I doubt.
    Gove – been there done it.
    Lansley leave to AB.
    Chancellor not possible as above too close to GB who is not rehabilitated yet.
    Home Office, maybe but don’t think he would like.
    Defence, yes, gives him to chance to defend GB and exploit differences between cons and LD’s.
    So Jim Jam says Balls for Shadow Defence but only if not Cable.
    But Lab want to be slightly nicer to Vince as they will need him after next GE if LD’s needed for Lab/LD coalition – even if not as a minister his endorsement would be needed I reckon; so maybe not so good to un leash Balls on him after all.

  33. JimJam,

    Michael Gove is a cracking politician and a likeable enough man. Keep Balls where he is, I doubt any other Labour MP could do as good a job.

  34. Latest YouGov/Sunday Times voting intention – CON 39%, LAB 38%, LDEM 15%

  35. Labour leaders tend to be more right-wing during their leadership than before (or even after) their leadership. Harold Wilson was the Bevanite candidate in 1963, but, of course, he didn’t exactly lead the party in a Bevanite fashion. Neil Kinnock was considered the more left-wing candidate in 1983 (as opposed to Roy Hattersley). Even Michael Foot compromised a fair bit during his leadership.

  36. @ Amber Star

    Interesting. One would have thought that his second preferences would have favored Ed.

    I think Ed Miliband is in a rather difficult position. His own caucus (fellow Labour MPs) did nto support him. The general voting base (non-union) didn’t support him either. I wonder how far he can go.

    Did Burnham finish 3rd or 4th in overall voting? He’s got a bright political career ahead of him….being both a northern working class dude and descended from royalty. :)

  37. All this about Ed not being elected by ” the MPs, nor by his party members” is just ridiculous. OK he didn’t carry the majority of those elements but he scored very well in them and carried the majority of the total number of voters.

    By the same token blues weren’t elected by large areas of the country but nevertheless got the largest number of votes cast.

    EM has won broad support across the party and is likely to carry the party with him imo.

  38. @ eoin/jim jam
    Who do you want to set against GO then?

  39. @ Eoin

    I think you’ve got to win the political prognosticator award. Most of your predictions have come true. You predicted Ed Miliband would win and you were right. Do you like to gamble? I’ve been right on most of my predictions (in U.S. elections) but as a matter of course, I don’t bet.

  40. YouGov approval minus 2. Con 39, Lab 38 Lib 15

    Nice start for Ed, better for the Libs, poor for the Tories.

  41. Hooded,

    GO is a competent tactician. You would need two against him. Even when our own party mocked him i pointed out that he was your best asset. He reminds me of a lion in a circus. Impassive, nonchalant in front of expectant crowds. Until the very end he keeps even his handler guessing.

    I think we need our best talent up against him. The public like their Chancellors honest and glum- obviously Gordon Brown would make the best Shadow Chancellor. They might put ed Balls against him for that reason.

    i would be happy with DM/AB/YC as chancellor…

  42. Mrs balls against GO.

  43. I think I would have to go with YC up against GO. I have a feeling he wouldn’t respond very well to being goaded by a woman ;-)

  44. SocCalLib,

    I must defer to Amber- she was the first onto Ed M’s scent :)

    I like to gamble yes but only during lent ironically…

  45. Islandradical – David set up movement for change. A way to re-engage communities in politics. He trained 1100 community leaders and at the rally the unions ALL marched in carrying their banners.

    Facts are what count in an argument.

  46. Eoin – the leader’s speech is on Tuesday, today was just the (rather shell-shocked) acceptance.

  47. @ Virgilio

    Who will be the next presidential nominee for the Socialists? Can Segolene Royal receive the nomination and mount a rematch against Sarkozy? And does Bertrand Delanoe still have a chance at winning? Or is Martine Aubry automatically the nominee as the elected leader of the party?

    My parents recently came home from a trip to France. They told me that there were towns in the south of France, that prosperous 15 years ago, were now comprised of shuttered storefronts and suffering from the depression.

  48. Sue,

    Ta for that. I think reds will go considerably in front after that speech. Why did I think it was today ? Hmm….. silly me.

  49. Hooded Man – I really want to get Yvette onto GO. She’s quite brilliant.

  50. so that’s 4 great minds thinking alike….. 3 for YC at 10.12. Sue you were a little slow @ 10.23pm :-)

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