Ed Miliband then. I'm not unhappy about it. When I saw David in action during the general election campaign, I was genuinely impressed with both his communication skills and the cut of his suit, but frankly he would have been predictable and who needs yet another smooth operator? At that time, David Miliband seemed like a good fit against Cameron and Clegg, but courtesy of the coalition I've changed my mind. Cameron Major and Cameron Minor and David Miliband - they'd have been like a scissor-cut string of paper-dollies. Ed is at least an interesting choice - dark-eyed and sixth-former-geeky I'll grant you, but patently super-intelligent and sincere. Apparently during the leadership elections, another 32,000 members joined. I didn't. Perhaps it's finally time?
I have two boys. I explained what was happening at the top of the Labour party over breakfast the other day - about younger brother Ed going for the leadership although he knew older-brother David was desperate for it, about Ed winning, and now noone knew what David would do and whether he would take a job under his brother. Over porridge, I conducted a scientific poll. Similar to those polls the cosmetic industry uses - 93% of women think this hugely expensive moisturiser strips the fat from their jowls and slaps it onto their breasts. (Sample size: 14 women genetically related to the marketting manager.)
1. Do you think David Miliband should take a job in the Shadow Cabinet and work under his brother?
2. Will David Miliband take a job in the Shadow Cabinet and work under his brother?
1. No he shouldn't. Definitely not.
2. No he won't. (Cue scornful laughter.)
1. Yes he should.
2. No he won't. (Shaking of head.)
Interestingly, my nine-year-old followed up."What job is he being offered?," he asked, "and is it a very good one?" I explained that David could have whatever job he wanted (apart from his brother's of course.)
He considered David's options some more: "And exactly how long will Ed get to stay leader?"
As for me (and I admit I'm an only child), I'm of the opinion, David should take the job his brother offers him. Take it and try it on for size. If the media make a meal of it and the party loses more than it gains by having him as Shadow Chancellor, then walk away. That way he knows he tried - he did his best. Something in him isn't ready to give up just yet or he would have done it by now, surely? I agree the whole psychodrama at the top of the Labour party goes on, but hey at least that's something people can understand. Our politicians are human. Occasionally, their families drive them to distraction but they love them enough to stand beside them when it counts because that is what family is for. That's what I'm hoping I get to explain to my boys when we know exactly what David Miliband has decided.