Sunday 18 February 2018

Big test for new Labour leader

DAVID Miliband began the campaign for the British Labour leadership as the hot favourite. In the closing stages experts could see his younger brother Ed making up more and more ground.

In the end, the younger Miliband won the prize, though by a margin barely exceeding a single percentage point. Psychologists, professional and amateur, will revel for years to come in analysing and discussing the brothers' emotions. The bigger question is what the 40-year-old Ed Miliband makes of his new job. Gordon Brown has beaten his breast publicly over the party's recent supposed electoral disaster. It was nothing of the kind, but a perfectly respectable defeat for a party too long in power. Labour are not facing 18 years in the wilderness. And Miliband is clearly determined to prevent that.

He has openly declared his key strategy, to win back working-class voters. That makes sense, but it carries dangers for him as well as opportunities.

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