Note: I started drafting this post the other day, when it looked as though Patrick Diamond was going to be Labour's candidate in Hartlepool. However, he now isn't, but it seemed silly to let the several minutes of work behind it go to waste. Enjoy it as an insight into the life of a New Labour special adviser.
Just put a couple of words in, and it's amazing what you can find out about Labour by-election candidates.
First, he seems to believe that social democracy should be for good things and against bad things. He may be saying more beneath all the buzzwords in this article
, but I doubt it. Still, it'd be a good source text for a game of New Labour buzzword bingo.
He seems to be an expert in writing policy documents in fluent New Labourese as this article attests
. Again, anyone able to work out just what (if anything) he's actually suggesting, can leave their suggestions in the comments. I think, though, that we can tentatively define 'good things' as 'things that help us to win elections' and 'bad things' as 'things that helps us lose elections'.
He appears to have edited two books
. Of course, a tragic printing error will mean 'edited' ends up appearing as 'authored' or 'written' on his election leaflets.
Still, he has experience of losing elections. He failed in an attempt to get elected to Lambeth Council (despite some problems over his eligibility
) from Oval Ward in 2002 (see here
- pdf file - for details) - suffering quite a heavy defeat to the Liberal Democrats and in 1998 he came a distant third behind Conservatives and Liberal Democrats in Trumpington Ward in Cambridge
. So, he's got experience of losing to both the other main parties, which will no doubt come in useful for him, though I'm sure he's telling himself it'll be third time lucky. I wonder if the members of Hartlepool Labour Party were informed of his previous electoral form, though?
Still, he did get himself elected as chair of Labour Students in the 90s which, as anyone who's encountered the Labour Students machine in action can tell you, involves absolutely no pressure being applied to delegates to choose the 'right' candidate.
Interestingly, the final paragraph of this Patrick Wintour article
seems to indicate that Diamond had a key role in Mandelson's resignation as Northern Ireland Secretary:
Similarly, if last Saturday lunchtime his special adviser, Patrick Diamond, had been allowed to tell the truth to the Observer's political reporter, Gaby Hinsliff, about Mr Mandelson's personal call to Mr O'Brien, his political career might not be in ruins. There would have been acute questions about the phone call, but no evidence existed of undue pressure by Mr Mandelson. He would probably have survived - but no more.