21 April 2010

Labour's message and the messenger


Before the ink has dried on the front page of the ‘new look’ Independent, Nick Clegg has already given his views on Brown’s message:

Brown systematically blocked, and personally blocked, political reform. I think he is a desperate politician and I just do not believe him. And do I think Labour delivered fairness? No. Do I think the Labour Party in its heart has a faith in civil liberties? No. Do I think they’ve delivered political reform? No. They are clutching at straws.

That, of course, is predictable stuff from Clegg as he attempts to maximise the Lib Dem vote.  However, it’s what Brown has to say that needs to be examined:

We have to show people we are in the business of the new politics and we have a plan for that as well as the economy.  I don't think people have yet focused on that. We're serious about change. That is my mission.

This is all very well, but Labour's message and its policies are not cutting through.  All Labour appear to be doing at present is making meaningless trips to visit its supporters that are poorly organised, where the odd heckler attracts all the headlines.

Meanwhile, Labour are all over the place on how they will deal with the Lib Dems.  Alan Johnson is saying yes to a coalition government, only to be followed by the tactless Ed Balls:

But, like the Prime Minister, he continually referred to “the Liberals” — a description known to infuriate Mr Clegg. Asked why he did not give them their full title of Liberal Democrats, Mr Balls replied: “Is that their name? They have been so many things.”

Alastair Campbell keeps banging on and on about the lack of focus on the policy agenda.  Perhaps, instead of relying on the Labour Party media monitoring unit, he should spend time going through the papers each morning.  He would then understand why it’s not happening.

To be frank, Labour’s media operation is a shambles.  What has happened to that Rolls Royce election winning machine?

Unless the party start to speak with one voice and they address the the overriding issue of Brown’s leadership, then they face having a discussion with each other on 7 May, rather than with Clegg & Co.

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