Of course Theresa May has called a general election: the Tories are almost 20 percentage points ahead in the polls, and have been for some time. This is not even going to be close. If Labour could not even hold a safe seat in a by-election in Copeland (Labour since 1935) what do you think is going to happen here? Before then the last time the governing party had won a seat in a by-election was 35 years ago.
I almost feel sorry for Corbyn, this (omni)shambling zombie of Old Labour.
A good half of his awful polling is down to his not being able to marshal the support of his MPs, which serves as its own justification.
To sum up the position of the Parliamentary Labour Party: we do not have faith in Corbyn because he does not cannot lead us. Why can’t he lead us? Because we do not have faith in him.
The logic is circular which is quite fitting because so is the noose which I am imagining around his neck, electorally speaking.
Unfortunately he does not have the moral authority to break the Gordian knot in which the noose is tied – YES, I’m still on the rope metaphor – after having rebelled so much himself. To wit, he defied the whip 428 times under Blair and Brown.
The other half of his awful polling is that he is simply, well, just a bit much.
Let us put it in to context: I am a left wing, Guardian reading guy of Irish ancestry born in Islington– in other words precisely his demographic – and I am distinctly uncomfortable with him. I cringe when he cannot even condemn the IRA. And when he states that the democratic wishes of the people of Northern Ireland should be respected but adds for absolutely no reason that he thinks Ireland should be united. (I do not care if that is what he thinks, he should have as the leader of opposition maintained a studied disinterestedness in the matter, not nourish the resentments of yesteryear.) And when he talk about our “friends in Hamas” and the “tragedy” of Osama bin Laden’s death. Or when he appoints Seamus Milne as his director of communications, a man who thinks the literal imperialism of Russia’s annexation of Crimea was justified by the not-at-all imperialism of the US.
Just call it a hunch but if it is not working with me I do not think this is going to play in, I don’t know, rural Cumbria…
Some shit is just unspinnable.