Now, win the peace?

The Insider  |  28 February 2014

When Ray Collins agreed to lead the party reform process, he was, your insider is reliably told, the third person to be offered the job. The first two grandees declined, hinting that their skills were inadequate to the challenge of peacefully changing Labour’s structures. Quietly, they were avoiding a job that looked like it could …

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Rage against the machine

Robert Philpot  |  26 February 2014

The Collins reforms are welcome but machine politics may yet strike back When Ed Miliband launched his attempt to reform Labour’s relationship with the trade unions last July, he set himself a huge challenge: to put an end to the closed, machine politics that had been exposed in Falkirk. With this month’s special conference that …

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The trials that stop time in SW1

David Talbot  |  6 December 2013

Weeks of lurid details of sex, drug-fuelled parties, fraternal healings, ‘nightmare colleagues’ and continuing rumblings over allegations of vote-rigging – November was just another month in the Labour party. And yet Labour entered the final month of 2013 in robust shape. It is, as the Daily Telegraph’s Benedict Brogan so elegantly put it, the ‘strange …

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Get the party debate started

Editorial  |  3 December 2013

The special conference which will meet to debate Ed Miliband’s proposed party reforms in March is potentially the most significant gathering of the Labour party since it met in Wembley in January 1981 and adopted a series of measures which triggered the departure of four former cabinet ministers and the formation of the Social Democratic …

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Let the people of Falkirk decide

John Mann MP  |  18 November 2013

Falkirk Labour party has dominated the airwaves for several months. Even BBC Question Time is heading to the Scottish town with its BBC panel. Egged on by bloggers, David Cameron has repeatedly attempted to bash the Labour party and Ed Miliband around the head with the spectre of alleged union fixing, stitch-ups and lack of …

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Five weeks on

David Talbot  |  4 November 2013

If a week is a long time in politics, then the five weeks Ed Miliband’s energy pledge has dominated British politics represents a whole new time paradigm. He has, as Peter Kellner notes, won the battle – his task now is to win the war. He enters the fray on a sure footing. The government, …

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Ed Agonistes

The Insider  |  20 September 2013

From Syria to summer wrangling to the union link, Ed Miliband is struggling to keep Labour united, even at the cost of weakening himself. So this conference, you only have to look around the hall to understand the pressures he is under. Not long after Miliband’s election as leader, various Labour worthies began congratulating the …

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A new Labour party

Editorial  |  5 September 2013

Labour’s history of special conferences is not an entirely happy one. While the conference which formed the Labour Representation Committee in 1900 was one such – triggered by Thomas R Steels, a member of the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants, proposing in his union branch that the Trades Union Congress call a special conference to …

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We should know what we’re charged with

Jennie Formby  |  28 June 2013

Peter Mandelson writes as if he has had sight of the report of the so-called ‘investigation’ into the Falkirk constituency Labour party.  If so, he has the advantage over Unite. To date, Labour has repeatedly refused to provide us with a copy of a report which it is now using, via the usual methods, to …

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