James Forsyth

Is Labour’s machine up to fighting a general election campaign?

Is Labour's machine up to fighting a general election campaign?
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Judging by the tone of the commentary at the moment, you would think that Labour were badly behind in the polls. In fact, they are ahead by a few points—a margin that would still give Miliband a majority.

But what should worry the Labour leader most is that every time the Labour machine is put under scrutiny it is found wanting. Tom Watson, in an intervention that will further worry leadership loyalists, has been out and about making this point this morning.

Last month’s election campaign when Miliband didn’t know the name of the candidate he was campaigning for in Swindon was all too typical of Labour’s failings. The left hand often doesn’t know what the right hand is doing which, as I report in The Mail on Sunday, is how Miliband’s office were taken by surprise by the pictures of him posing with The Sun.

Labour simply has to sort these problems out before the general election campaign, which is now only ten months away now. If they don’t, the wheels will come off the car during the campaign—with disastrous results.