Has James Purnell just squared up to Ed Balls? There is an intriguing line in the work and pensions secretary’s conference speech that points to a much bigger strategic debate within the cabinet. As he explains what Labour is about, Mr Purnell lays into a “cartoon version of politics” based on creating “a dividing line with the Tories”. He goes on: “look after the policy and the politics will follow”.
Mr Balls, of course, is the king of dividing lines. Most of his policies as children’s secretary have been explicitly framed in terms of what the Tories are allegedly against. An excellent education for all, against a special education for the few…etc Read more