The New Statesman’s rolling politics blog


Mandelson gives Ed Miliband advice

And tells him not to turn his back on New Labour.

Peter Mandelson has been issuing (unasked for?) advice to Ed Miliband. Speaking at the Cheltenham Literary Festival last night, Mandelson suggested that Miliband should not distance himself from the achievements of New Labour.

"I would not be saying that all those Labour Party members and all those Labour voters who supported the party through three successive general elections that what they were voting for - New Labour - is nothing. It's an insult to those people that worked for the Labour Party, who voted for the Labour Party, to say to them that they voted for something that was fraudulent, useless or didn't deliver. Restyle it, remould it, let it address new challenges, let it build and take a new direction that the new generation wants. But you don't have to do that by defining it against what your own party of government has done over the last 20 years."

As one of its architects, Mandelon clearly has a vested interested in keeping the New Labour dream alive. But he seems to be a little out of touch when he says that voters didn't want to be told New Labour was "fraudulent, useless or didn't deliver". Isn't that what voters told Labour in the last election, when they chose not to re-elect them to government?