MacShane is rather associated with the Blairite wing of New Labour, though is very much a party loyalist. He writes in the Yorkshire Post.
Jim Purnell is like the Conservatives' John Redwood. A clever clogs intellectual fizzing with new ideas and as smart as buttons on the seminar circuit. But political bottom and judgment? Hmm. Mr Purnell was educated in France and was trained in the rigorous school of French intellectualism. It does not fit the messy pragmatic rambling nature of British political life where the theatrical gesture is laughed at more than admired.
Denis has never been a great fan of the non-modernising French left - where the Socialists have had a terrible night, as Sarkozy bucks the anti-government mood across the continent - but then I am not sure James Purnell is quite of that persuasion either.