Another day, another monumental failure to predict the obvious by the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog. The Great Guido had been trying to predict the outcome of the contest to secure the Labour nomination for Mayor of Greater Manchester, and to this end had been shamelessly rubbishing Leigh MP and currently shadow Home Secretary Andy Burnham.
Indeed, the Fawkes folks had told their avid readers back in May “Northerners Mock ‘Grim Up North’ Burnham”, going on to claim “Burnham played up his Northern credentials when he threw his hat in the ring to be Labour’s Greater Manchester Mayoral candidate … Sounding like the seventh Python won Burnham no favours. A series of prominent Northerners in politics and the media took to Twitter to take t’piss out of the shadow home secretary”. Very good - but Manchester is not in Yorkshire.
That is where they might take t’piss out of someone … like the clueless Staines and his pals. But, undeterred, they were back on Burnham’s case in June, gleefully reporting “Burnham Comes Last In Two Manchester Hustings”, and going on to leer “Scouser Andy Burnham running for Manchester mayor was always an odd one. The Everton fan’s Twitter stream is full of opposition from local Mancs who would rather have Stretford boy Tony Lloyd in the job”. And there was more.
“So it’s not surprising that Burnham’s campaign has bombed - he came last in the Co-Op Party hustings last week, and came last again in the Gorton CLP hustings last night. Lloyd won both by a landslide. Maybe Andy’s just too Westminster bubble”. The Great Guido somehow missed that Burnham represented a Greater Manchester constituency.
There was, though, as Captain Blackadder might have said, only one thing wrong with this idea - it was bollocks. As Zelo Street told in June, attempts by those loyal to Rochdale’s nominally Labour MP Simon Danczuk attempted to stop Burnham talking to the local Labour Party failed. They later nominated Burnham.
Rochdale Constituency Labour Party (CLP) was not the only one: Burnham secured the approval of six more. Then came the late opinion polls of Labour members, and by this stage the Fawkes rabble had fallen silent. Why should this be? Well, it could have been because the prediction was that Burnham would not only win, but win convincingly. And so it came to pass: Andy Burnham secured the Labour nomination on the first ballot.
What would The Great Guido do now? How would Staines and his entourage talk their way out of this latest humiliation? “Burnham To Finally Quit Shadow Cabinet” was the spin, as if he had wanted to quit, but didn’t. This was complete crap: Burnham had never shown the first inkling of leaving his shadow cabinet post. The only reason for pushing this line is that the Fawkes rabble has got it wrong, and has tried to spin its way out of it.
The Great Guido has chalked up another glorious failure. Another fine mess, once again.