James Forsyth

Balls’s real priorities in education

Balls's real priorities in education
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The more that comes out about the Brown-Blair tensions, the more you realise quite how damaging they were to good government. Just take this example from the forthcoming BBC documentary on the Blair years that the Daily Mail reports today,

“Left-wing Labour MP Ian Gibson reveals how Mr Balls - now Schools Secretary - told him to step up the fight against the fees.

He says: "I met Ed and he said, 'Gosh, you've been on the TV and radio a lot recently on the issue, keep going, excellent'."  So a Prime Minister whose passion is education was prepared to have his henchman jeopardise the passage of a hugely important piece of education legislation for purely factional advantage. It really does make you realise that all the ink spilled on the TB-GBees far from being tittle-tattle, was detailing the most important divide in British politics. 

Written byJames Forsyth

James Forsyth is Political Editor of the Spectator. He is also a columnist in The Sun.

Topics in this articlePolitics