Wednesday, 6 August 2008

Leighton jumping ship... again!

Matt Withers from 'Wales on Sunday' in a new post on his blog, 'All aboard the Miliband Express' speculates on

... the growing number of Labourites, seeing the way the prevailing wind is blowing, are being lured by the fresh face, boyish charms and fighting talk of Foreign Secretary David Miliband.

Rhodri Morgan thinks any kind of leadership bid would be "suicide". But at least one of his Labour ministers is keen to be intellectually linked to the man known as 'Brains'. Here's a press release sent out by Deputy Regeneration Minister Leighton Andrews today:

LABOUR Minister Leighton Andrews [MW: an outside, outside contender for leader of Welsh Labour] says that that genuine community empowerment must be at the heart of the next phase of devolution.

The Rhondda AM, who co-ordinated the successful Yes for Wales campaign in 1997 will speak of the need for "double devolution" - echoing a phrase first used by Foreign Secretary David Miliband in his role as Environment Secretary in February 2006.

Speaking during a Community Housing Cymru debate at the National Eisteddfod in Cardiff, Mr Andrews will say:"It is not just about transferring law-making powers from Westminster to the Assembly - we should be championing the transfer of more power to our communities as well. Double devolution, in other words."

Gosh - and this from the man who once wrote: "The success of Gordon Brown as the new Prime Minister provides a strong lesson for Welsh Labour on how to renew itself in office seamlessly. We must ensure that we build on the platform that Gordon Brown has built for us."

They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, or even loose endorsement in this case. If you can switch from one political party to another in order to suit your needs and political outlook, why not from one leader to another within one party?


Dotcommentator 6 August 2008 at 12:10  

Paul Flynn's pamphlet Dragons and Poodles is a good primer for the student of devolution.

His assessment of Leighton Andrews:

"A lobbyist recently metamorphosised into a ‘consultant’. Heaped praise on Peter Hain booklet at the same time that Peter wrote a foreword to Leighton’s book heaping praise on Leighton. Leighton said ‘Peter believes in mutual support’. Given a place on a quango by William Hague in 1996. Leading role in referendum campaign, the victory of which he attributes to a logo he picked. Hagiographer to Alun Michael, frequently seen around the Assembly building. Oleaginous, accommodating, falls on his feet, apprentice shape-shifter."

Anonymous 6 August 2008 at 12:26  

There's someone disturbing about him. Even his wikipedia profile has more than a fair share of political spin.

Bay boy 6 August 2008 at 12:42  

Andrews needs to get a grip on his own self-importance. He struts round the bay like C-3PO with his trusty PR man, or R2-D2 doing his bidding. Have you seen his efforts on Wikipedia?

Pontcanna Boy 6 August 2008 at 14:10  

This is hilarious. For a man with no nominations for leader and even fewer friends, I suppose you got to admire his chutzpah!

And his wikipedia entry is hilarious. Well done to his (in)famous reseracher!

Bay babe 6 August 2008 at 14:16  

The hamster has done it again. Got out of his wheel of spin to get some more airtime on the BBC.

Lewis Merthyr 6 August 2008 at 15:20  

He looks like Penfold in Mighty Mouse. There is an old saying that you end with the politicians you deserve. If that's the cae what has the Rhondda done to deserve Andrews and Bryant the 'Laurel and Hardie of Welsh politics'.

Oliver 6 August 2008 at 15:30  

"He looks like Penfold in Mighty Mouse."

That's completely incorrect, and you should get your facts right before flinging around such comments and accusations.

Penfold was in Dangermouse.

Miss Wagstaff 6 August 2008 at 17:27  

Dotcommentator, your knowledge has no limits.

Wasn't in Ciaran from Blamerbell Briefs that started the ball rolling with 'Penfold' Andrews?

Dotcommentator 6 August 2008 at 17:34  

Thanks. There is no beginning to my talent.

Rhetoric Innes 6 August 2008 at 18:24  

Rhodri morgan is off the mark...
hes far too traditional and old hat to be a leader of a modern nation

Anonymous 7 August 2008 at 08:08  

I think its time that people looked at the regeneration policies, not the spin, that Leighton Andrews is backing. They are far more dangerous for Wales.
This ex Lobby Manager's prime mission is his career, Wales deserves better.
He made lots of promises at the Bevan meeting in merthyr, I wonder if he has had meetings with the people he promised to get back too, or took any notice of the excellent feedback at that meeting.

David Taylor is a virgin 7 August 2008 at 10:42  

Leighton Andrews in 'furthering his own career' shock!

Assembly virgin 7 August 2008 at 12:51  

Who is this David Taylor bloke? Was he in Duran Duran? :P

Vicki 7 August 2008 at 20:26  

You should've seen his cheeky little face when Mike was given to him. You're no-one without a civil servant helper in this place.

Ie Dros Cymru veteran 11 August 2008 at 23:07  

The Yes campaign was co-ordinated by Darren who now runs positif politics, not Leighton Andrews, he had a role but that wasnt it
Amazing this man who says he wants double devolution has put in place a regeneration policy that ensures a total top dowm approach with over arching strategic Oartnershios between clusters of Local Authorities, wheres the community in that lot ?

Anonymous 11 August 2008 at 23:42  

Mr Hill is on Facebook. We should ask him how much of a role Andrews played.

Assembly security guard 13 August 2008 at 10:23  

Err... I think you'll find it was Leighton who hired Daran to work on the campaign. Daran reported to Leighton throughout.

Read "Wales Says Yes - the inside story of the Yes for Wales campaign"

I have to say, all these attacks on Leighton seem to be driven by jelousy. He is a highly effective and popular local AM who, unlike most of them, also happens to attract half-decent staff who happen to know their arse from their elbow.

Its no coincidence that Huw Lewis and Leighton Andrews have the best researchers in the Labour group. They are talented and exciting politicians who allow their staff the freedom to work on their own initiative so they always attract the most talented, loyal and long-serving helpers

Carwyn's office, on the other hand...

Miss Wagstaff 13 August 2008 at 18:17  

Behave support staff ;)

Anonymous 18 August 2008 at 14:31  

"They are talented and exciting politicians"

You could call Andrews many things, exciting is certainly not one of them!

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