James Forsyth

Jon Cruddas won’t run for Labour leader

Jon Cruddas won't run for Labour leader
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The Guardian has just broken the news that Jon Cruddas won’t run for Labour leader. This is a pity. Cruddas is one of the most honest and engaging politicians you could ever hope to find. He was prepared to speak up about immigration and its effects on the working class when most Labour politicians just wanted to ignore the issue. There are also few people in public life keener to debate and explore ideas than Cruddas.

In an article in The Guardian, Cruddas says—with characteristic frankness—that he’s not running because being a major party leader requires ‘certain qualities I do not possess’. He does not, however, rule out taking on a senior job. Given his campaigning skills and interest in organising, party chair would seem like an obvious role for him to fill.

Cruddas’ decision to rule himself out turns him into one of, if not the most, coveted endorsements in the Labour leadership race. We can expect all candidates to try hard to woo him. As The Guardian reports, Cruddas has developed intellectual links with James Purnell, one of David Miliband’s key allies. The endorsement of Cruddas would be a massive boost for David Miliband who is trying to break out of the Blairite elitist box that his opponents have sought to put him in. 

Written byJames Forsyth

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

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