not Reading this time but Peterborough - named party officials are being quoted in the local paper saying they are pissed off that Their Bloke will not now be allowed to stand. One of them, Ron Graves, who was on the Dark Side from 1997 on, says "We had it before and it didn't work". Didn't it? You had a Labour MP for eight years, arsehole. You won't get one again. But you'd like that, wouldn't you? A Peterborough source calls those quoted "vegetable heads" and he is right. Oh and as I have said before, there are too many people who think newspapers tell the truth, even that they are not allowed to print outright lies. Not true. They do it all the time. This one has, saying that Their Bloke fought the seat twice (he didn't) and "just missed" winning (by nearly 5K).
The cutting I was sent refused to download properly, hence the slightly bizarre pasting below, but I thought readers would like to see for themselves.
W men-only for Labou · city
By BEN TRUSLOVE firstname.lastname@example.org
CITY Labour Party members are .considering to appeal after the na- tional party decided they can only
select a woman candidate to fight in the next General Election.
Labour's National Executive Committee (NEC)decided on Wednesday that its next General Election candidate for the Peter- borough constituency will be selected from an all-women shortlist.
The city was picked as one of 26 "mar- ginal" constituencies which the party be- lieves can be won from the Coalition when the country goes to the polls, probably in 2015. Of those, 12 have all-women short- lists.
It will mean Ed Murphy will not be able to stand for Labour in the next General Election despite competing for the seat at the last two elections.
Mr Murphy; who is also the local party's spokesman, said: "We welcome the move from the NEC to start the ball rolling early so we can start to fight for the election.
"However, we hope that the local party will be able to determine who is picked to stand.
"1 believe in positive discrimination to get more women into parliament but most of my colleagues in the Peterborough par- ty don't."
Mr Murphy added he would have been delighted to represent Labour in the next election but the decision made at a national level has infuriated some in Peterborough Constituency Labour Party (CLP).
Ron Graves, political education officer for Peterborough CLp, said he did not agree with the decision.
He said: "Some people would see it as to- kenism, as if saying any woman would do. "Wewant the right candidate for the job,
that's the most important thing. "My own opinion is all-women shortlists
don't do the job. We have had it before and it didn't work out.
"This won't cause a split from the na- tional Labour party but it will make for an interesting conversation.
"What 1would really like to know is why Peterborough? The NEC spoke to us before Christmas but nothing was decided."
Angus Ellis, chairman of the constitu- ency group, said a meeting will have to be held to discuss the NEC's decision.
But members do not know if they will be allowed to overturn the decision even if they want to.
Mr Ellis added: "1 don't want to give my own opinion on the matter. Ed was a bril- liant candidate who only just missed out last time."
City Conservative MP Stewart Jackson, who beat Mr Murphy with a majority of 4,861at the last election, said: "I have some sympathy with Mr Murphy. He fought quite a strong campaign but has been dumped by an outside body. 1 don't believe in all-women shortlists, they are a retro- grade step. Gender should not come into deciding the best candidate."
And Nick Sandford, who stood as the Lib Dem candidate, said: "As a party we don't really favour artificially increasing the number of women in Parliament."
A Labour Party spokeswoman said: "The National Executive Committee resolved that Peterborough would be an all-women shortlist.
"This decision followed a period of con- sultation with local Labour Party mem- bers in Peterborough.
"If people want a Parliament that is more open, plural and democratic then we need to make big changes.
"Labour has the most successful record of women's representation in comparison to all other political parties and will al- ways have equality as a core value."