Saturday, May 21, 2011

Blue Labour?!

We'll be hearing more of this, but Ed Miliband's search for a distinctive Labour identity is finding some illumination in this new defining of a Labour identity. So-called as a response to Philip Blond's 'Red Toryism', Blue Labour seeks to re-engage Labour's heartlands with the party.

The Conservative Home website carried a lengthy article analysing the new ideas here.

Amongst other things they comment that "Blue Labour is fundamentally against the economic neo-liberal and socially liberal approach of Blairism. "

Labour MP and former education minister David Lammy, who is sympathetic, explains the idea here.

How does this fit in to likely AS questions? Really as an indication of where Ed Miliband is trying to take the Labour Party at the moment. Like David Cameron in 2005, he is confronted with the need to develop a fresh identity for an old party (Mao's delight in blank sheets of paper, which you could write completely new things on, comes to mind!) and 'Blue Labour' represents some of the current thinking in the party leadership. Of course it is untested on a wider public canvas as yet, and some Labourites are clearly hostile. But Miliband, the Brownite New Labour man elected leader with the votes of the trade unions, needs to do something to show where the post-Blairite party might be heading.

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