Lansley's latest gaffe

Senior Tory declares: "I think we're really going to win"

From the Conservative conference

The gaffe-prone Andrew Lansley has done it again. At the start of his speech this afternoon, the shadow health secretary declared:

I'm looking forward to 2010. We've got the team, we've got the captain . . . I think we're really going to win this time. But you know, I'm not just thinking about the World Cup, I'm thinking about the general election.

Lansley's casual triumphalism is the antithesis of the sober, businesslike attitude that David Cameron has encouraged his party to adopt. This year, after Lansley let slip the Conservative plan to cut public spending by 10 per cent in most Whitehall departments, a source in Cameron's office told ConservativeHome that "no one is unsackable . . . [Lansley] will not be forgiven another gaffe."

After this latest gaffe, it's even more likely that Lansley will follow Alan Duncan out of the shadow cabinet before the election.

George Eaton is political editor of the New Statesman.

Getty
Show Hide image

Sarah Champion wants to un-resign and join Jeremy Corbyn's shadow cabinet again

The MP is understood to have emailed asking for her job back. 

Sarah Champion, MP for Rotherham, is to rejoin the shadow cabinet less than a month after her dramatic resignation. 

On 28 June, in the aftermath of Brexit, she tweeted: "I have just stepped down from my shadow minister job, but not my responsibilities to my constituents, party or victims of abuse."

Now, she has reportedly emailed Jeremy Corbyn's team to request an un-resignation from her position as shadow minister for preventing abuse. 

According to the Guido Fawkes blog, she wrote: "I would like to formally retract my resignation and ask to be reinstated to my role as Shadow Home Office minister for preventing abuse and domestic violence with immediate effect."

Unsurprisingly, perhaps, given their staffing issues on the shadow cabinet, the Corbyn team is understood to be welcoming her back. 

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell has repeatedly urged ex-shadow cabinet MPs to come back. On 1 July he said: "Wouldn't it be better if people came back and worked with us?"

And on Sunday, he alarmed weekend TV viewers by turning straight to camera and telling the nation: "We've got to stop this now."