#LabourLeadership: How I’m voting

Leader

1. Liz Kendall

2. Yvette Cooper

3. Andy Burnham

Let’s state the obvious: Jeremy Corbyn would be an electoral and, I think, moral disaster for the Labour Party. It is again left to the moderates to save the Labour party.

Liz Kendall gets my first preference as the only candidate who has shown understanding of our pressing need to win back Conservative voters. She has set out the most ambitious Labour plan in decades to hand power back to the people, highlighting the public’s mistrust of a Labour Party that does things to and for people.

We should clearly use all three preferences to stop Corbyn, so the next question is who is the ABC candidate?

This is a real problem for moderates, but between Andy Burnham and Yvette Cooper, only one has taken Corbyn on directly, if a little late. For that, Cooper deserves a second preference. It is also time we elected a woman leader of our party.

While there is a case to make for keeping Andy in the run-off, I cannot in good faith urge a higher preference for someone who has put his ‘party first’ mantra ahead of proper scrutiny of the electoral oblivion that awaits us if we elect Corbyn.

Deputy

1. Ben Bradshaw

2. Caroline Flint

3. Stella Creasy

Ben Bradshaw would make a highly competent deputy and understands the role: I believe him when he says he would be loyal in public but challenging in private. His electoral record, turning a Tory seat — in the south, no less — into a safe Labour one is quite remarkable.

Caroline Flint is clearly one of Labour’s strongest performers both in the Commons and on the media. She is fiercely loyal (and loyally fierce) and her story tells you how much she understands what it’s like to need a Labour government.

Stella Creasy will get my third preference. Lots of people are convinced by her ideas on changing campaigning but I am convinced by her political views: she is a strong supporter of co-operatives and mutualism in particular, which Labour would benefit from having at the top.

London mayor

  1. Tessa Jowell
  2. David Lammy
  3. Gareth Thomas

What can you say about Tessa Jowell that hasn’t already been said? She is a passionate advocate for both Labour and London, and her #OneLondon pitch shows a deep understanding of the shifting opportunities — and tensions — in the capital. And I have watched this video at least 4 times today.

Polls regularly show Tessa is the only candidate who can beat the likely Tory candidate Zac Goldsmith.

An honourable mention for David Lammy who understands how Labour and a message of opportunity go hand-in-hand, and Gareth Thomas who — like Stella — is a good communicator of the role co-operative solutions can play in Labour’s future.

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There are a number of other important positions up for election, too. I would urge members to consider Labour First’s recommendations for the following positions:

Conference Arrangements Committee

Michael Cashman

Gloria De Piero

National Constitutional Committee

Judith Blake

National Policy Forum

This is a regional ballot and you have up to four votes — as I’m in London I will be voting for the following:

Unmesh Desai

Alon Or-Bach

Nicky Gavron

Fiona Twycross

Youth Rep: Jack Falkingham

I would urge members in other regions to consider Labour First’s recommendations:

East of England

Sandy Martin

Alex Mayer

Stacey Nash

James Valentine

Youth Rep: Tom Maisey

East Midlands

Rufia Ashraf

Natalie Fleet

Andrew Furlong

Mark Glover

Youth Rep: Christian Weaver

North

Nick Forbes

Nick Wallis

Brynnen Ririe

Helen Hughes

North West

Zahid Chauhan

James Frith

Joanne Harding

Anne Trafford

Youth rep: Jasmin Beckett

Scotland

Gemma Doyle

Jamie Glackin

Cat Headley

Katrina Murray

Youth rep: Katie Dearden

South East

Duncan Enright

Victoria Grouleff

Naushabah Khan

Martin Phillips

Youth Rep: Helena Dollimore

South West

Keir Singh Dhillon

Joanne McCarron

Mark Dempsey

Brenda Weston

Youth Rep: Sarah Staples

Wales

Chris Elmore

Anthony Hunt

Jen Smith

Mary Wimbury

Youth Rep: Martha O’Neill

West Midlands

Christopher Bloore

Mariam Khan

Trudie McGuiness

Jackie Taylor

Youth Rep: Jeevan Jones

Yorkshire

Nicki Bellfield

Rory Bickerton

Jayne Hill

Adam Wilkinson

Youth Rep: Josh Molloy

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