Monday 18 April 2011

Faction formerly known as 'Blairites' to publish The Purple Book

Remember the 2001 general election? The posters were purple - a lot done, a lot to do - in a bid to seek a somewhat mandateless re-coronation of the then very popular Tony Blair.

And now the purple banner is to be revived this Autumn, to seize the chance to recapture those old New Labour glories, and (it is suggested) to emulate the success of the Orange Book Liberal Democrats too.

Rachel Sylvester has the scoop in her Times column in Tuesday's paper (£) about a book which Progress plan to publish around the Autumn conference.

Now, the Blairites in the Labour Party are planning to publish their own modernisers’ manifesto that they hope will reshape politics on the Centre Left in a similar way. It is going to be called The Purple Book.

“Purple was the colour of new Labour,” says one of those involved. “It’s what you get if you combine red and blue. It symbolises the need to stay on the centre ground.”

The book will involve Tessa Jowell, Liam Byrne and Alan Milburn, John Woodcock and Liz Kendall, among others. "It is not yet clear whether David Miliband will write a chapter, although he sympathises with the aims of The Purple Book", writes Sylvester.

But please do not call them 'Blairites', though The Times column itself does so. Sylvester also writes:

Already, those discussing the project hope that they may in future be known as the Purple Book group rather than Blairites — an outdated adjective, almost two decades after Tony Blair first became leader — just as some Lib Dems are described as Orange Book MPs.

You can read my considered take on this colourful development in a Labour Uncut column on Tuesday.

I'll add the link here when it's published. (Labour Uncut: Purple Bookers try to revive New Labour glories


Robert said...

The end of the Labour party it's about time to, lets no kid our selves Labour was needed after the war, it was needed right up until 1980's then it changed with morons like Kinnock.

At least now it's no more pretense, the Blairites do not like being pushed to the back, I suspect they would have asked Blair for a few quid.

Saves me money, no need to rejoin anymore or wait for the party, what next coalition with the Tories.

David Lindsay said...

Neither the original nor the best.