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Question To Which The Answer Is (Likely To Be) No

John Rentoul

Paul Kenny 010 300x180 Question To Which The Answer Is (Likely To Be) NoPaul Kenny of the GMB (pictured) has put his finger on the problem. Ed Miliband’s plan boils down to asking trade union members if they want to be affiliated members of the Labour Party. That is, in Latin, a num question, a question expecting the answer no.

Photograph: Martin Argles for the Guardian

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  • Junius

    Ed Miliband was only rushed into this defining, bold and strong process of reform showing real leadership because of a crisis precipitated by the exquisitely-timed resignation of his erstwhile general election co-ordinator. Instead of accepting that his dastardly plot to insinuate his office manager into the safe seat of Falkirk had gone belly-up, manfully shrugging his shoulders, reflecting that one cannot win them all and retiring in good order to fight another day, said erstwhile general election co-ordinator flounced off in the sort of huff which an operatic prima donna would be hard-put to match.

    As a result, media attention focused on the travails of David Cameron, faced as he was with Bone’s Barmies’ alternative Queen’s Speech and a preposterous EU referendum Commons debate, promptly switched to the hapless Ed. Now it transpires that even that wheeze to give the public more say in a choice of Labour candidates will not come into effect until the London mayoral elections in 2016. So all Labour’s candidates in the 2015 general election will be card-carrying trade union members, even though only one in five of the electorate belong to that happy band of brothers (and sisters).

    That’s sent a very strong message to the country and shown ‘em all who’s boss, Ed. Oh yes indeedy.

  • reformist lickspittle

    Missing the point even more than our host usually does ;)

    Just one thing – much of what Ed is proposing now was previously suggested in the Refounding Labour discussions, amongst other places. It is completely mistaken to assume he just plucked this out of the air in response to Falkirk.

  • Hill244

    Allegations of “Charles Lynton” arrest in 1974 begin to re-emerge.

  • Pacificweather

    Why is a question expecting the answer no? Thousands of trade unionists opt in to the political levy. Do they think it goes to the Tories or th LibDems? Of course not.

  • Maori

    I wonder if the shareholders of the big companies want their companies giving lots of money to the Tory party?

    And before anyone says “institutional investors” meaning pensions, I mean those companies asking those investing in them rather than taking collective decisions on their behalf.

    If unions are expected to ask every member if they want to pay to politics, why not every owner of floated company too?


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