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30 September 2015

Andy Burnham thanks Labour conference for imaginary standing ovation

Tempting fate.

By Media Mole

As your mole writes, Labour’s shadow home secretary and turncoat-in-chief Andy Burnham – a man who, it may surprise you to learn, is from the north – is giving his speech to the Labour conference. 

“Wow, what a welcome,” he began. “Not bad for a runner up.”

This struck some observers as a bit odd, because the welcome, frankly, was pretty bad for a runner up. Only a tiny minority of those in the hall had bothered to stand up to greet Burnham – few enough, in fact, that it wasn’t immediately obvious whether they were giving a standing ovation or trying to leave. 

This mystery was quickly cleared up by a quick look at the text of the speech issued by the party’s press office. Here’s how it begins:

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The “check against delivery” note has always been useful to Britain’s hard-working hacks. In this case, perhaps, a suggestion that Burnham checked the speech against the welcome he actually received may have been useful, too.

Still. You can’t expect too much polish from someone from outside the Westminster Bubble, I suppose.

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