Times: Keir Starmer is “Ed Davey tribute act”

In the Times (£), Matt Chorley points out that Keir Starmer is on a push to steal the Lib Dems’ big ideas:

So the Labour leader is back. And we now know what he was doing in Spain: trying to get on the Lib Dem website using up whatever 4G was left in his mobile package now that free roaming, which wasn’t going to disappear after Brexit, amazingly disappeared after Brexit.

I’ve lost track of where we were with the Starmer Relaunch Roulette game, but whoever had “Ed Davey tribute act” has had a good week. On October 26 last year Davey called for a windfall tax on energy companies. Twelve weeks later, Starmer did the same. And then Rishi Sunak did it. On August 9, Davey called for the energy price cap rise to be scrapped. Five days later, Starmer came back from his hols and followed suit.

And he hasn’t stopped yet:

Also back on August 9 the Lib Dems demanded that parliament be recalled. It took Starmer a few more days to get to that bit of their snazzy new website, but lo and behold, yesterday Labour emailed Boris Johnson demanding parliament be recalled.

Chorley quotes Ed’s tweet:

before commenting

Hot sass from Sir Ed to Sir Keir about proportional representation. Oh those summer knights.

 

 

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10 Comments

  • lynne featherstone 20th Aug '22 - 9:20am

    At least one person in the media is on the ball – full credit to Matt Chorley for not only spotting it (which I am sure most do) but for having the cojones to call it out.

  • This is one of the roles of a Third Party like ours – to develop ideas that can be taken up by Oppositions & than Governments.
    Of course if Labour were to adopt Electoral Reform we could do a lot more.

  • William Wallace 20th Aug '22 - 10:38am

    I fear that there are many within Labour who think that adoption of changes in the voting system would split their party into separate factions, and out of a chance at single-party power. It would do the same for the Conservatives, now that many former UKIP members and candidates have infiltrated them. First past the post hold the two-party system in place. That offers Labour politicians the chance of office when the public get really fed up with the Tories, every now and again.

  • I’m sure William Wallace is correct. Just a pity the Liberal Party failed to get its act together on this when the issue came up way back in 1917 when the Representation of the People Act (1918) was being debated…..probably for the same reasons and motives that William expounds now.

  • Jason Connor 20th Aug '22 - 4:37pm

    All this does is perpetuate the two party system as others had pointed out. It’s all too easy for one of the two main parties to steal ideas from the Lib Dems and others, then take the credit for them. Labour politicians will certainly not thank the LDs for any ideas they steal. They are too arrogant to do that.

  • David Blake 20th Aug '22 - 5:50pm

    Interesting that James O’Brien recently said that he thought LBC didn’t give the Liberal Democrats enough coverage.

  • From Starmer’s point of view coming late to the table has its advantages. If the Tories and media have ignored what Lib Dems say, give it a few more days then say it. If they have responded take note of the response and let it inform what you say. Meanwhile Starmer’s instinctive (and in party terms almost inevitable) caution could be an advantage for Lib Dems if handled with care.

  • George Thomas 21st Aug '22 - 11:09am

    Labour policies ideas will get a lot more scrutiny that LD’s by being largest opposition and LD’s will only get any media attention if identifying issue and potential solution first which might explain both parties’ actions so far.

    Of course both are trying to get any attention while media are more interested in Tory MP’s and who will become next PM. That these two can get more coverage for talking about “woke” than opposition can get for talking about cost-of-living crisis is Exhibit A in why current voting system doesn’t work for the UK.

  • It’s a pity you can’t copyrite ideas. It’s up to leaders to remind their opposite number where their ideas came from and reap any benefit available. Luckily there’s no shortage of ideas and some are more suited to our Party than to others.

  • Regarding Ed Davey’s ‘wizzard idea’ about the energy price cap, it actually looks as if Ed pinched it from both Labour and the Tories..
    Way back in Jan 2013 Ed Davey called Ed Milliband’s idea of an energy cap freeze an ‘irresponsible con’. When the Tories copied the idea in 2017 Ed said nothing.. Now Ed has forgotten all that and rebranded it as his own…

    Peter Hirst writes, “t’s a pity you can’t copyrite ideas”…Hmmm, Ed Milliband would be in for almost ten years of royalties..

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