Is the party genuinely in a tailspin? Or are current reports of internal strife the confection of a largely right wing media hellbent on undermining earnest Ed because they object to his mildly social democratic policy platform?
Is there any material difference between those two situations in terms of the likely impact upon Miliband’s abysmal poll ratings and the party’s electoral prospects?
The question facing the strategists is, I guess, what can be done. Or, perhaps more pertinently, can anything be done? James Forsyth in the Spectator, for example, notes that:
what is alarming for Labour is that it is not obvious how they pull out of this downward spiral. Opposition parties rarely put on votes in the last few months of a parliament and Miliband has already fired several of his best policy shots.
Forsyth, and other commentators, note that Miliband’s characteristic response to bad press is to make a speech. But it was a poorly executed speech that triggered this latest malaise, so that isn’t perhaps the failsafe strategy it once was. And it may be that another speech isn’t really what’s needed.
It feels like the Labour party need to try something different. But what? [Read more…]