Sunday, October 10

The Sunday Quote

'' The Labour Party is going around stirring up apathy ''

The late Lord (William) Whitelaw, commenting in The Observer 1 May 1983.

The comment could well apply to 'Labour North' who are currently making desperate attempts (and desperate mistakes) to interest North East voters in the referendum on the Elected Regional Assembly.

When Chris Williamson, former agent in the Euro Elections, received a telephone call from Labours North East call centre a few days ago the canvasser asked whether she would be voting for the 'Yes' campaign. When told that in the event of a 'No' vote that the current unelected assembly would carry on acting as a democracy by-pass to Brussels, the caller was apparently flummoxed. Clearly Mrs Williamson's knowledgeable response was not anticipated and thus not built into the 'response script'.

Perhaps Gordon Brown will be better prepared to field questions from the NE business community following his presentation to delegates at the Labour Party organised and funded event on Tuesday morning ! I will let you all know. Perhaps unlike his former colleague and adversary, Peter Mandleson, he will actually answer the carefully crafted questions that at least one representative will put to him.

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