This year’s new Scottish Labour leader was unveiled yesterday as Richard Leonard aka “the other one.”
- Richard Leonard 3,281 77.3%
- Anas Sarwar 961 22.7%
- Leonard 9,150 51.8%
- Anas Sarwar 8,514 48.2%
- Leonard 12,469 56.7%
- Sarwar 9,516 43.3%
I’m amazed at how close it was after all the mud-slinging that has been going on. Somehow I can’t see the internal rifts in the party being healed, especially as the main swing was in affiliated members. If Jackie Baillie is to be believed Sarwar had the backing of th majority of elected members
Scottish Labour have a reputation for plotting and I can’t see that stopping any time soon.
Also less than 20k members voting? Either that’s a lower number of members or not many can be bothered to vote for their leader
So what has Richard “Real change” Leonard done in his first day?
After the “We will oppose the SNP and Tories” line (nice to see he remembered the Tories) the first reported action appeared to be a discusion to suspend Kezia Dugdale from the party over her surprise announcement to go on I’m a Celebrity.
Personally I don’t think it’s something she should do especially while Holyrood is in session. I can’t think of many situations where an employee is allowed to disappear for 3 weeks. As for the donating her salary to charity – hello – not working for 3 weeks and still expecting to draw wages?!
If politics is getting too much she should resign her seat and let the next on the list have it or do what everyone else does and do the job whilst counting down to your next holiday.
At the same time, the rapidness of the party considering suspending her when it appears that they knew for 5 weeks about the claims of sexual harrasssment against Alex Rowley feels like an imbalance in priorities.
For the record, I believe that no matter what the party, representatives should be suspended whilst any investigation takes place whether it is Police or internal, same as in businesses.
As for the snide, bitter attacks on Kezia Dugdale from both within the Labour party and it’s associated members of the press, well it’s not what you call inviting. Commenting on her age or her relationships is not necessary. This is the behaviour that puts women off politics.
The possibility of suspension being raised only lasted a few hours for it to be squashed by the party’s actual leader, Corbyn, which is generous on his part as it’s well know that Kezia is not his biggest fan.
So the question is does Leonard follow orders and add credence to the branch office narrative or does he carry on and look like he goes for the knee-jerk reaction?
All this could have been avoided by saying nowt..
Then his second PR faux pas.
There has been work ongoing this week to save engineering firm BiFab from going into administration, which would have risked 1,400 jobs. The Scottish Government set up talks with Seaway Heavy Lifting, SSE and JCE Offshore to set up a financial package to keep the company afloat allowing the contract for Beatrice Offshore Windfarm to be completed. In addition ScotGov also indicated that it would, if necessary, make available a commercial loan facility to BiFab.
Renewable energy is an important sector in Scotland and the Scottish government has a history of trying to save companies such as with the rescue deal set for Ferguson shipyards.
So it was a relief to see
The GMB (Leonard’s own union) representing the workers at the two sites posted this
So what did Leonard put?
I don’t doubt he was involved somehow in the GMB rally at the Scottish Parliament this week, but to try to make out that ScotGov needed to be pressured into trying to save these jobs when the talks were already being set up? It’s disingenuous to say the least.
Nothing like jumping on a bandwagon. It looks like we’re going to have to change “Doing a Monica” to “Being a Dick.
He say’s he’s for Real Change. but he’s sticking to the same old script.
We’ve seen so it so many times before. Next will be his listening exercise, that should be up soon.