Comment: Ed Miliband is destroying Labour

Richard Hillgrove is a business and political public relations consultant.
Richard Hillgrove is a business and political public relations consultant.

Ed should see the writing in fluorescent paint all over the wall: do the right thing and just go.

By Richard Hillgrove

Labour don't have to wait 18 years in opposition like they did with Neil Kinnock to get back into power.

Let's face it, Ed Miliband got the job by mistake. The Labour leadership should have been decided under the First Past the Post system, which is the system he has to face the country on, and what the country overwhelmingly showed they supported in the recent referendum.


David Miliband spent years building up brand Miliband, then his inexperienced, naive younger brother got the keys to his car and floored it with nutty left wing promises popular to the unions and statements that artificially gave him the union vote. All anyone knew about him was that he was a Miliband and seemed to be saying all the right things if you were a left wing hardliner. In truth he simply went in and fed some juicy bits of steak to the unions to snare their vote, even though now he's completely backtracked on everything he promised. He wouldn't even march with the students.

Ed never expected to actually win the party leadership in a million years. He just wanted to wind up his older brother a bit. Because Labour don't have a mechanism for turfing out someone who is performing poorly, Ed should see the writing in fluorescent paint all over the wall: do the right thing and just go.

I had personal experience of how incredibly flaky and non-representative of any ideology (left or right wing) Ed Miliband is at the dinner for Tony Blair during his last Labour party conference in Manchester. I was introduced to Ed Miliband as the PR man that saved Little Chef. Ed promised that he would help me organise a visit to No 10 for Heston Blumenthal as Britain's favourite roadside restaurant brand was about to turn 50 years of age. He said that he would be bringing a minister right over to our table and sort it. My wife and I waited and waited and waited. But there was no Ed. He fled.

Rather than standing tall and being a man of conviction, the whole "being my own man" thing feels more the uttering of a pubescent boy trying to get parental attention. A younger sibling desperate to be noticed from parents more enamoured with the first born. "I'm a person too" is more what he meant and should have said.

In his time as party leader, Ed has achieved one remarkable feat. A hatrick. He has ensured that no-one from either the business community, the unions or the general public now wants anything to do with him.

His only remaining friends are Labour party loons like Harriet Harmen, who he is now using to sandbag himself with.

Most importantly right now, the coalition needs a strong, credible, centre-ground opposition, but something which Ed Miliband has assigned to history.

If Ed does one thing right, like the young boy in the Tom Hanks film Big, it's to finally realise the party's over and it's time to go back home.

With each day that passes, Ed Miliband is creating more and more and more damage to the Labour party. Ed must go and give the keys back to David.

Richard Hillgrove is a business and political public relations consultant.

The opinions in politics.co.uk's Comment and Analysis section are those of the author and are no reflection of the views of the website or its owners.
 

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