I wrote earlier today that Labour’s leadership candidates should be working hard to secure the support of a small handful of figures, including Alistair Darling.
As one of the few former ministers to survive 13 years in power – with barely a scratch – the former chancellor’s backing carries weight. Tonight he nominates David Miliband; and tomorrow the pair will be out campaigning in London against the coalition’s cuts to university places and the Future Jobs Fund. In other words, it’s more than just a tacit endorsement.
Here is the relevant letter:
Labour Party offices
78 Buccleuch Street
I am writing to let you know I will be nominating David Miliband as the next Leader of the Labour Party, and to explain my reasons for doing so. This is a crucial moment for our party so I wanted to write to you myself to set out my thinking. Read more
LabourList has the story that Ken Livingstone wants another run for London mayor; he’ll be up against Oona King – and maybe others* – for the Labour candidacy. Should make for an interesting contest. Here is a list of some of his backers. The election takes place in 2012, around the same time as the Olympic Games. Read more
Several major Labour figures are yet to step out and endorse any of the six leadership candidates: whose backing should make any difference to the contest?
Tony Blair: Only if he comes out for anyone other than David Miliband Read more
Of all the 23 select committees in Westminster, the Treasury one matters most; and not just for the FT. Its role is to hold to account Treasury ministers, banking chief executives and the governor of the Bank of England. That means it is essential that the body is chaired by a high-calibre individual.
Like many I had presumed until recently that Michael Fallon, who has served eight years as deputy chairman, would be the natural shoo-in to John McFall, the Scottish Labour MP who has just stepped down from his seat. Read more