It particularly shows how influential MP nominations have proved in influencing CLP nominations. I noted that:
The most important example of a switcher CLP was David Miliband’s victory in the Bassetlaw primary, because it also converted John Mann MP’s own vote. None of the other CLP nominations carry any weight in the electoral college. The scale of participation made it unlikely that the MPs preference would prove decisive, as was most often the case elsewhere.
This did generate a comment from Joanne Milligan claiming that .. "I’m led to believe that Chuka Umunna and Kate Hoey have said they will cast their MP vote for the candidate who won their CLPs supporting nomination".
That seemed worth checking out. But I now have it on very good authority that the rumour is false. Chuka is supporting Ed Miliband for the leadership, having nominated him for the role.
A Streatham party member here on the office research team confirms that Ummuna did not make any such promise, but simply consulted members before his own nomination.
It may be that our MPs for Bassetlaw and Streatham take different views of Edmund Burke's famous speech to the electors of Bristol of 1774. Perhaps this might inform their contributions to future debates about party democracy.
John Mann's initiative was a creative and novel one. It also enfranchised party supporters in Bassetlaw who will not have a vote in the contest, asking them to influence (and indeed determine) their MPs vote.
The Streatham CLP decided its nomination in a traditional way. It seems to me that Umunna's position is a pluralist one. Presumably, the point of Labour's electoral college is that the views of MPs, members and affiliates are all taken into account. If CLPs mandate their MPs, it rather defeats the purpose of the electoral system we use.