It appears that Angela Eagle hasn’t given up on her leadership ambitions, and has enlisted the help of Labour’s most notorious spin-doctor to help oust Jeremy Corbyn.
Sources inside Parliament have told WriteYou that the MP for Wallasey has been meeting regularly with Lord Mandelson, the main topic of conversation being the ongoing leadership coup. Reports suggest that the former Director of Communications has been visiting Eagle’s office in the Palace of Westminster repeatedly for the past week, and staying for hours at a time.
Eagle, who resigned from Corbyn’s Shadow Cabinet last week, has been tipped as a potential successor following a turbulent few weeks for the Labour Party.
Former adviser to Prime Ministers Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, Mandelson is credited with being one of the architects of New Labour and delivering electoral success between 1997 and 2005. More recently, he described Corbyn’s leadership as having turned the Labour Party into a “narrow sect” that was destined for an electoral “abyss”. Little surprise, then, that Lord Mandelson has descended from the House of Lords to offer some direction to Labour’s leadership hopefuls.
Eagle is not the only name being mentioned as a potential challenger to Jeremy Corbyn. Deputy Leader Tom Watson has ruled himself out of the contest. Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell would be a members’ favourite should Corbyn step aside, although would almost certainly face similar problems with the PLP. There has also been a recent surge in support for former Work and Pensions Minister Owen Smith, touted as a potential unity candidate given his left-wing credentials.