Op-ed: Michael Dugher: The campaign manager the Tories can always rely on.
I see Michael Dugher has been busy plotting against Corbyn again.
Despite knowing how impossible it is for Labour to win 400 council seats after the high watermark of 2012, this is the bar he's set for Labour in the local elections.
I'm surprised he hasn't come out and said Labour need to win back the council of Atlantis if Labour is going to prove they've made progress under Corbyn.
Ok that's a tad farfetched, but only a tad.
Dugher is so transparent, it's impossible NOT to see what he is up to. The higher the bar the bigger the fail. And it's a fail he craves.
A big fail means he has grounds to call on Jeremy to resign.
I can see it now - Dugher wearing his despairing face - the one he probably practices in a mirror at home - as he bemoans Labour's backward slide under Corbyn via TV interview after TV interview.
What angers me most, is the impact Dugher's plotting might have on vulnerable people.
As we know from the overly optimistic 2015 election polls, the expectation that Labour was in a comfortable position worked against Labour. Had the polls more accurately predicted a narrow Tory win, more Labour supporters would have been galvanised to vote. Similarly, if Dugher's overly optimistic predictions lead the voting public to expect an easy ride for Labour in May, thousands of Labour inclined voters, blind to a plotters rhetoric, will not bother to vote; and as Jeremy rightly says, a Labour council is the best protection against Tory cuts.
Dugher's game playing could contribute to an elderly person sitting in their own faeces an extra thirty minutes because of a slashed social care budget, or a depressed mum having no library to take her toddler to, to break up a long lonely day.
I know what Dugher would say to this - he'd say I have indulged myself by voting for a Labour leader who is so unelectable the Tories are certain to win again, with all the harm that will cause to people. But I genuinely believe Jeremy to be our best shot at winning in 2020.
That's not to say I'm certain he will win. I don't possess the so called 'moderates' arrogance when it comes to predicting future elections, especially when the world appears to be suffering from 'post financial crash disorder.' I hope he will win, but I don't know he will for sure.
But Dugher knows full well the devastating consequences Tory led councils will have for vulnerable people, so he has no excuse.
Dugher is clearly very angry and bitter about Jeremy's leadership. Does his bitterness simply stem from a belief that Jeremy is the wrong leader? I don't think so.
I'm inclined to believe it stems from his role as Andy Burnham's campaign manager in the leadership elections. Burnham was odds on to win at the start of the race. Had Burnham won, Dugher would have secured his place in history as the man who ran a successful leadership campaign. Not only that, his career would have flourished under a grateful Burnham's leadership.
But it all went 'horribly wrong' when a bearded, sixty-six year-old left winger, who had never expressed any interest in being leader before, unexpectedly entered the race.
But rather than blaming himself for failing to have his finger on the pulse of the membership, Dugher seems determined to blame Corbyn for standing, and the members for voting for him.
We need to be punished.
Maybe he believes Corbyn's failure is the only balm that will take the sting out of his own? Maybe that is true. Or maybe, the balm that will really take the sting out of his 'failure,' is if he turned his fire on the Tories and helped us defeat them, because at the moment he is acting like their unpaid campaign manager, and I fail to see any good that can come from that.
By Chelley Ryan
Find Chelley at the Morning Star online
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