Monday, June 29, 2009

Have Peter & Shaun Fallen Out?

The FT's George Parker and Brian Groom have a very revealing interview with Peter Mandelson this morning. This exchange caught me eye, as it reveals that Lord M and Shaun Woodward clearly do not get on at all.

Although Lord Mandelson shares advisory duties in Number 10 with Ed Balls, an old foe, he seems less happy about the growing presence in the inner circle of Shaun Woodward, a Tory defector and now Northern Ireland secretary.

Gordon Brown rates Mr Woodward and turns to him for advice – most noticeably during prime minister’s question time. But Whitehall insiders suggest that Lord Mandelson finds the Northern Ireland secretary a doleful presence and questions his judgment.

Asked about Mr Woodward’s role, he is icily precise. “I have meetings with the prime minister and Ed Balls because Ed plays an informal role as well – as he did at the Treasury,” he says.

“But my main desire is to weld together the team of full-time staff working in central government.”

On whether he endorses the advice being offered by the Northern Ireland secretary, he replies: “I don’t know.

“What is the advice being dispensed by Mr. Woodward?”



Thats News said...


Even more reason to suspect that things are becoming a little more scary in Brown's Britain...

Gordon Brown’s Britain. A scary place in which to live

Oldrightie said...

Typical of a coterie of mis-fits, each vying to be the leader's best friend. Pathetic.

Brett Trevalyan said...

I thought that the "Devils Kitchen" was very eloquent this morning on the subject of Labour's latest spending plans .... worth a look.

Thats News said...


It's a pity you feel the need to protect your blog comments from the slackjaws and ne'r-do-well cyber-vandals.

They spoil it for everyone. Which is, of course, their entire reason for coming here. How sad is that?

I bet they vandalise trains and bus stops, too.

Alan Douglas said...

Mandiavelli strikes again.

Here is a prediction : Mandy will continue to support Brown until poor Brown has to retire for medical/stress reasons.

That will be within days of a "successful" Irish referendum on the ConLisbon Treaty.

Alan Douglas

Max Atkinson said...

Are Mandelson and Woodward the best Brown could come up with after boasting that he'd form 'a government of all the talents' when he bulldozed his way into the job two years ago?'

Osama the Nazarene said...

Rats - sinking ship; ferrets - sack all come to mind about NuLiebore.

Alan Douglas 11:56.
100% spot on. Mandelson is the EU's man in the NuLiebore Government. His allegiance is to the Eurocrats first and foremost.

Rex said...

Now that labour have made the decision not to do a spending review until after the election Cameron should not be drawn into any spending pledges but just follow Brown/Mandies example and state that they are unable to do a review until the have seen the books so hence no spending cuts or otherwise can be announced.

Then it will not be possible for Brown to consistently bleat on about tories 10% cuts......

Yak40 said...

It's almost beyond belief that Mandelson is in effect second in command in this gov't not to mention Brown's creating "instant" peers to fill Cabonet slots thus implying his own backbenchers either can't be trusted or are incompetent and talentless.

UK a democracy ? Getting harder to justify.

moorlandhunter said...

Will Woodward be looking for another political home, now that he appears not to be appreciated in the Labour ranks?
I mean just how low can the Champagne Socialist millionaire Woodward with his seven homes and untold wealth get? How can this very working class man get without selling the rest of his soul? I wonder if Woodwards rallying call is ‘Power to the working classes?’ Lol.
A true socialist like Woodward and our very own class hypocrite Tony Benn who has so much wealth, but likes to hide this fact from the proletariat would redistribute his wealth to the classes based on need. But like all those Champers socialists they talk the talk but never walk the walk.

Anonymous said...

When watching Prime Minister's Questions, I always keep a close eye on Shaun Woodward, who appears to keep an even closer eye on Gordon.

I've come to the conclusion that Shaun is Gordon's mental health minder/adviser and is there to act should Gordon explode. Quite what Shaun would do in this event, I must admit, is rather puzzling. It's interesting to speculate!