Sunday 25 April 2021


Labour are desperate to cling onto Hartlepool in the big by-election just eleven days away now.  Sir Squeaky has already hit the Hartlepool campaign trail several times, while plenty of other prominent Labour figures have also paid a visit - including Rayner, Nandy, Ashworth, Hilary Benn, that dreadful scarecrow woman who is their shadow chancellor and, wait for it, Peter Mandelson.  Yes that's right, they've brought in the most controversial MP in Hartlepool's history at the same time as spitting feathers over 'Tory sleaze'.  The irony is clearly lost on Starmer's Labour.

Just a reminder that Mandelson had to resign from Tony Blair's Cabinet twice over financial scandals.  The first time around Blair declared that Mandy had to go in order to keep the New Labour brand in 'stark contrast' to the sleaze-ridden Tories.  However, Blair restored Mandelson to the Cabinet just ten months later.  Fourteen months then passed before he was forced to resign again.  On both occasions he refused to admit he'd done anything wrong.

Now if New Labour were really the virtuous flip side of the dastardly sleazy Tories, one would have expected the party to give Mandelson a wide birth after that second resignation (and his departure as MP for Hartlepool).  Not a chance.  Mandelson was appointed an EU commissioner three years later and in 2008 was given a life peerage by Blair's successor Gordon Brown.

Meanwhile, back in the present day Labour's by-election candidate in Hartlepool managed to squeeze his Mandelson promo video in between tweets attacking Tory sleaze.  You couldn't make it up.

Like Mandelson, Dr Williams is originally from the south of England.