Unite poised to back Ed Miliband

It is (as I have repeatedly, punctiliously and exhaustively been told) a three stage process – but the first two stages are complete, with only the third to run. Unite’s national political committee met today to decide a recommendation for Britain’s biggest union©’s choice for leader of the Labour party.

Feedback came in from the regional political committees. Political officers, led by the mighty Charlie Whelan, hung around waiting. And around 2pm, they emerged with the result: Ed Miliband. And that’s almost certainly who Unite’s executive, meeting on Monday, will back.

Why? Because the feeling towards Ed M was, I am told “overwhelming support – like huge!”

I’ll leave the analysis of how much this helps the younger Ed steal a march on his brother to others. For now, suffice to say that at least one of Unite’s two joint general secretaries was inclined to support him already – but he’s the one who’s leaving at the end of this year. The other is keeping schtum, as I reported earlier.

For those who thought Unite would support Ed Balls because they expected Charlie Whelan to move heaven and earth to get him nominated as the ‘Gordon Brown Mk 2’ candidate (their words, my, er, paraphrasing), this is a bit of a slap in the face.

But aside from the issue of whether Whelan did try to do this or not, could it be (and this is pure speculation I admit) that Ed M, who worked so close to Brown as chief economic adviser at the Treasury, is also smiled on by Brownites.

Update: Just after writing those words I came across this by ex-Hazel Blears special adviser Paul Richards:

“It seems unlikely that Unite, the last big union to declare, will back Ed Balls next week. Most of the Brownites (what Kevin Maguire calls the Talibrown) are not supporting him. The former team around Brown at No10 – Stewart Wood, David Muir and others – are supporting, not Balls, but Ed Miliband”


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One Response to “Unite poised to back Ed Miliband”

  1. DemoCritic Says:

    Labour Leadership Contest 2010…

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