There’s been a fair bit of speculation over the past few months about the career plans of Mr Harriet Harman, as he probably doesn’t want to be known. I broke the story that the deputy general secretary of Unite was being touted as a possible Unite general secretary candidate in September. And of course he’s been mentioned several times as coveting a parliamentary seat – Leyton and Wanstead is the most commonly mentioned; the new constituency of Hampstead and Kilburn has also cropped up. This week’s Tribune should have more details – go and buy one.
But all this gossip reminds me of what I’ve been told privately – that even if Dromey does run, he will no longer be ‘parachuted’ into a seat by the Unite machine. Last year, joint general secretary Tony Woodley was going round telling his staff to find Dromey “a seat, any seat”. Anyone would think he wanted the man out of his office. Anyway, that is now over and the parachute is, the blog fan club tells me, firmly back in its box. That’s not to say Dromey won’t run – but he won’t be pushed.
And rumours are still flying around that Dromey may still throw his hat into the Unite leadership ring, on the grounds that since he ran in the last two T&G elections, it wouldn’t be the same without him. It’s getting crowded. A poster below has pointed out that John Rowse of the former T&G section also intends to run. I did actually hear about this but Rowse hasn’t made any public pronouncements. Watch this space.