Friday 28 February 2020


Last night's leadership debate

It was a wobbly start for the outsider in last night's leadership debate on Sky, but Lisa Nandy came back strong.  While Long-Bailey and Starmer reeled off their well-rehearsed introductory speeches, Nandy was clearly unprepared and her head bobbed up and down as she constantly referred to the notes in front of her.  Her poor start was soon vanquished as the audience began to deliver a series of awkward questions.

Starmer, who had delivered easily the most polished and confident opening speech, stuttered and stammered his way horribly through a couple of questions.  Long-Bailey, now sporting a hairdo that made her look more like a character from Desperate Housewives than a potential political leader, had little impact throughout the debate.  At one point she insulted the intelligence of northern Brexit voters, claiming they were mistaken in their 'belief' that Labour were trying to reverse Brexit.  It was not a question of 'belief' dear, the facts were there for all to see!  She later gave us an insight into her parenting skills - or lack of them.  An elderly blind woman in the audience asked the candidates for examples of how she could interpret their personalities.  Long-Bailey announced that she was a strong northern lass who didn't take any nonsense from anyone.  In the very next sentence she referred to her little boy and how when he gets home from school she waits on him hand and foot, giving in to his every demand.  Contradiction asides, what a horrible little twat he's going to grow up to be.

One third of the audience was made up of Labour members, another third Labour voters and a third former Labour voters.  One of the Labour members got very up tight about anti-Semitism, denouncing the Chief Rabbi as a Tory and suggesting it was all a fantasy concocted by right wingers.  At this point Nandy jumped in and took control of the situation.  However, her assessment led to the most exciting exchange of the entire debate as a flustered Keir Starmer lost his cool.  Sadly, even when he loses it he still comes across excruciatingly dull.  Watch their spat below.

At the end of the debate presenter Sophy Ridge asked the audience to raise their hands as to who they thought had won the debate.  A handful chose Starmer, a handful chose Long-Bailey.  The overwhelming majority chose Nandy, the candidate widely expected to come a distant third in this epic contest.  Most viewers will probably have agreed that none of them were particularly likeable or electable.  The future's bleak for Labour, regardless of who wins.