Well no one, at least that was the decision made by Friday’s High Peak Constituency Meeting, at least in terms of whether to make a supporting nomination to one of the leadership candidates.
In terms of why ? well there was a variety of reasons, some around the democracy of the process, what it implies on behalf of the constituency, and what benefit do we or the candidate gain by making one.
Part of the concern was that despite, the various candidates having varying degrees of media exposure over the years in terms of the information to date on what they stands and in particular what’s being covered in the leaflet’s folk didn’t feel we knew enough about who they are, why they are standing and on a variety of issues flagged up at our meeting on Friday what they will do.
That said following our decision not to make a nomination, we did have a good discussion on the merits or otherwise of the various candidates, in general the was very little support for Diane Abbott, with a number of people being disappointed by her media performance so far, with I imagine most reaching that view from her dreadful performance on this week.
From my impression of the meeting, two more of the candidates didn’t seem to fair well, David Miliband for being seen as a bit aloof and possible two much an academic for the job, and Ed Balls for a being a bit too caustic in this media age to make the connection and get the support needed to win a general election, he’s also possible seen as to connected to Gordon Brown to have a good stab at getting the job.
I have to say though, from seeing Ed Balls, last Friday in Denton, that whilst (in my mind at least) some of the existing views on him have being challenged as the performance was quite good, some concerns still remain and I can’t see him at the moment featuring in my top two or three.
Ed Miliband on the other hand got a number of supportive comments from those in attendance on Friday and was in my view the preferred of the two Miliband’s, and was definitely viewed as the Miliband most likely to be able to work with and listen to members and from that make the connection needed to be a good leader and hopefully take the party on.
Lastly and although not a favourite from the meeting as he was felt to be a little light weight is Andy Burnham, who whilst my preferred choice at the moment from the comments at the meeting he will have a job to do to convince people that he would have the necessary ‘gravitas’ to take the top job, although some recent performances at events including the LGA Labour Group Hustings causing some folk to think again.
All in all, an interesting discussion, with my feeling being that there is still much to play for in terms of the leadership, with Ed Miliband being the possible High Peak favourite at the moment, and Andy Burnham or David Miliband coming a close second.