I was away for the weekend to celebrate my Mother's election at the tender age of 89 as Honorary President of her favourite local charity, the Melling Tithebarn Arts Association. Checking out this site on my return, I discover hoardes of searches including the name of esteemed Labour leader's member of staff for party liaison, Jonathan Ashworth. What's going on?
Oh, of course - I remember it's another breach of Labour Party members rights by its National Executive Committee candidate for Selections in the Spotlight. I asked last week which NEC members were on the short-listing panel for Leicester South. All to no avail in this instance.
Comments on Labour List about the outcome highlight some of the issues arising.
Personally, I find myself in a quandary. Of course, I want the Labour candidate to win the by-election. But in this instance, I want this particular candidate to reflect long and hard when elected on his personal role as Deputy Political Secretary to former Prime Minister, Gordon Brown, with regard to members' rights.
My hope is that, like all sitting Labour MPs, he will be required by the Party to face a full reselection process before the next General Election.This is one Rule Change I hope all CLPs will support at Annual Conference 2011.
I still dream of the adoption of annual parliamentary elections - as proposed among others by the Chartists - as the most effective way of holding our elected representatives to account, and reducing the risk of abuses of power, position and patronage.