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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Rise of the next generation

Because it is Christmas I suppose we can forgive the Independent for repeating itself, which explains why this article has a familiar feel about it. In fact the paper carried a similar piece back in September, prompting me to blog on it then too.

The current article contains a bit more detail of the many sons and daughters of Labour MPs seeking to extend or create a dynasty. In addition to Euan Blair's interest in Coventry North West, Will Straw lurking around Rossendale and Darwen, and Joe Dromey, devoting a lot of time to the safe Labour seat of Lewisham Deptford, there is a whole list of up-and-coming off-spring seeking to capitalise on the family name:

There is Emily Benn, the 23 year old granddaughter of Tony Benn and whose uncle is frontbencher Hilary Benn. She tried and failed to win East Worthing in 2010 at the age of 21 and is now on a graduate training programme at UBS Investment Bank.

Then there is Andy Sawford, the 36 year old son of Phil Sawford, who was, until 2005 the MP for Kettering, the next-door seat to Corby. By coincidence Andy Sawford won the Corby by-election for Labour last month, replacing departing MP Louise Mensch.

Finally there is Georgia Gould, the 26 year old daughter of Philip Gould. The late Philip Gould, was one of the founders of New Labour. Random House supremo Gail Rebuck is her mother.

Georgia is thought to be interested in going for a south-east seat despite the controversy in 2009 when, straight out of Oxford, she put herself forward for the Labour selection for Erith and Thamesmead. Her attempt sparked cries of nepotism, and she failed to get selected. But she is thought to be still interested in going for a seat next time.

Of course the Tories have been practising this sort of dynastic politics for some time. As the Independent points out they have the Gummers (John and son Ben), the Johnsons (brothers Boris and Jo) and the Hurds (Douglas and son Nick). How many more will emerge over the next few years on both sides?
My 3 yr old grandson Darragh is showing a bit of interest - as long as Montgomeryshire survives that is
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