is what did for the only likely winner for Labour in Reading West, Mark Bennett. the VitalRead blog agrees with me, here:
In Reading West, where retiring MP Martin Salter hands over a Labour majority of more than 4,600, Mark Bennett, who used to be Alastair Campbell’s deputy at 10 Downing Street and who was said to have been the author of a critical memo about Gordon Brown, suddenly joined the contest “from nowhere” according to local sources.
although those "local sources" are likely to be talking arse, as they often do. Anyway, Mark Bennett did not make the shortlist, although a couple of GIRLS did! We can't have THAT of course.
Armed with glossily printed letters to party members, Mr Bennett won significant support before falling to a pincer movement and failing to make the final shortlist
so who was against him then?
Thanks to everyone who has commented on the demise of my blog and its reinstatement here. Investigations continue as to how this has happened, and the strong hint in Salter's last Westminster Diary column, which railed against political bloggers and referred obliquely to legal action, did not escape me. Looks like I might have to go autonomous rather than being a rent-free tenant on blogger.com as I have been up to now. Being autonomous pays better anyway.