rally

Jim Pickard

The Miliband team aren’t desperately happy that Ed’s decision not to attend tomorrow’s TUC rally has been construed in some quarters (see my last blog) as a U-turn. They are claiming that the event isn’t even a rally anyway.

Ed proudly supports the rights of people to voice concerns and lobby Parliament, they tell me. “But there is no rally, people won’t be marching, it’s not placards and braziers.”

They are half right (yes it’s only an event at Methodist Central Hall, Westminster) and half wrong (it is still a self-styled ‘rally’). 

Jim Pickard

I was in the room at Manchester’s TUC conference when Ed Miliband was asked if he would attend the anti-cuts TUC rally tomorrow in London. “I’ll attend the rally, definitely,” he replied. As I wrote at the time it was a significant moment, not least because David Miliband sounded much more ambivalent. Their different replies may have made a difference in terms of crucial votes from union members.

Now Polly Curtis at the Guardian is reporting that Mili-E will not be there tomorrow; instead he will have some private chats with union officials. It’s a striking U-turn.