Friday, 23 December 2016

Settlements All Round

Precisely as worded, tonight's UN Security Council Resolution on the West Bank settlements needs to be put to a division of the House of Commons.

30 or 40 Labour MPs would still vote against it, even if no one else did, while many more would abstain.

It is time to smoke them out.

That might be the last parliamentary vote cast by Jamie Reed. And almost the first.

For he will soon no longer need to worry about starving to death on £74,962 to abstain.

The Labour MPs who voted against this will deserve congratulation on having managed to find the Division Lobbies, so unfamiliar with them have they been hitherto.

Reed became the MP for remote Copeland because, in those pre-Corbyn days of a tiny Labour Party membership, no one else wanted it.

Even then, he was lucky that there was nothing like the situation in the late 1960s, when what is now the GMB had to swap Jack Cunningham, intended for what was then Chester-le-Street (and soon will be again), and Giles Radice, intended for what was then Whitehaven.

The present Leadership of Durham County Council more than calls to mind the late Alderman Andrew Cunningham.

Despite his extremely high opinion of himself, Reed has only ever held a couple of junior Opposition frontbench positions, even though Labour was in Government when he was first elected.

I still say that Tony Blair ought to announce himself as the Labour candidate, thereby effectively making it so.

His certain defeat would be the end of him, although it is a different question whether he possesses that level of self-awareness.

In 2020, the retirement of Pat Glass will open up a seat right here in his old stomping ground of County Durham.

I'll see him on the stump.

Unless he is so frightened of little, old David Lindsay that he wouldn't dare try? In that case, then he ought to stay out of politics.

The all-women shortlist that in 2010 elevated Pat, to no one's surprise more than her own, thereby spared this constituency and the nation the obscenity that would have been Neil Fleming MP, although it is probable that Owen Temple would have beaten him.

Not only would the demonstrably unelectable Fleming have been the first in the queue to vote to demonstrate his loyalty to Netanyahu, but he really is too frightened to fight me at the ballot box.

Although his social media profiles continue to claim that he lives in Lanchester as well as in London, he is not standing at May's local elections.

So the elderly, and extremely ill, incumbent is going to have give it another go, even though re-election would significantly shorten his life, and the campaign itself might very well do so.

A man has to die in order to spare Neil Fleming from being beaten in an election by David Lindsay.

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