02 August 2009

Could disaster for Labour be followed by an even greater disaster?

Not a very well phrased title for this post but the Telegraph has got me scared:

"Secret plan for Lord Mandelson to return to Commons in safe Labour seat"

If this story is to be believed (and that's a big "if"), Blairite MPs are hatching a plot for the Prince of Darkness himself to renounce his peerage and get the nomination to succeed Hilary Armstrong in the North-West Durham constituency and then make a bid for the Labour Party leadership after the election.

If this happened, I think it would be the end of the Labour Party. Full stop. Who the hell is going to vote for Mandelson? Tony Blair as a surrogate Tory made some sense in terms of electoral strategy when the real Tories were in disarray but now that they are back in business with Dave Cameron, Mandelson is largely surplus to requirements.

A Mandelson leadership would probably split the party, with the left going off to form a new party (Labour in all but name) with Mandelson left with a Blairite rump (Labour in nothing except the name). I think it would also mean a generation of Tory governments.

Which may be the real objective... because really, the Blairites were Tories all along.

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