05 June 2009

Prescott launches a staggering attack on Labour’s campaign

John Prescott has said this about Labour’s election campaign:

But whilst I knew we were short of money I didn’t realise we also lacked the will to fight these elections. The people responsible for this non-campaign – and make no mistake there was no campaign - were Harriet Harman, Caroline Flint, Douglas Alexander and yes, our former Communities Secretary Hazel Blears.

I kept asking the party what was the strategy, what was our message, what was the campaign? I became so concerned I actually wrote to Harriet. Her reply was less than satisfactory. These apparently were the ‘messages.’

For the many v for the few
Grow your way out v cut your way out
On your side v on your own
Substantial leadership v insubstantial salesmanship

And that was it.

It seems the people responsible for our campaign were resigned to defeat and were prepared to use the excuse that we had no money.

Time after time, activists across the country told me there was no message, no campaign and no leadership from the party.

The grassroots and the candidates wanted to fight but we, the party, let them down. I’m sure many will quite rightly never forgive us for that.

So please let’s not blame this loss solely on the expenses crisis. Yes, it played a significant part but just as important was the dereliction of duty of those in charge to provide that campaign.

We have a deputy leader, a campaign coordinator, ministers responsible for Europe and local government. They should have all been driving the campaign forward, leading the party nationally and locally.

I’ve fought 11 General Elections and let me tell you, if we fight the next one like this campaign, we’ll be out for a generation.

Astonishing stuff.  Once the elections results come in this message will hit home.

Brown may well be leading a superficially united Cabinet.  Meanwhile his party is falling apart.

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