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The important thing is that Andy Burnham’s mum thinks he’s cool

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Issue 2466
Stills from Liz Kendall and Andy Burnhams videos

Labour leadership hopefuls Liz Kendall and Andy Burnham have a secret weapon to reverse the surge for left candidate Jeremy Corbyn—rubbish videos on YouTube.

Comic relief uber-Blairite Kendall says, “I believe our party has the imagination, the ideas and energy to win in 2020—and make sure Britain faces the challenges of the future.”

Sadly no such creativity seems to have gone into the video itself, which mainly consists of watching her sit typing at her computer. Troublemaker hopes she’s getting paid for so prominently displaying its logo.

You can tell when there’s supposed to be a good bit because Kendall is so impressed by her own words she smiles or nods seriously.

The rest of Kendall’s video is spent pacing the room looking for ways to sound slightly less appalling.

But it does have the merit of being brief. Burnham on the other hand takes more than eight minutes to explain that we should vote for him because his mum and dad say so. “He’s always given us a laugh hasn’t he?” entreats mum Eileen. It’s a compelling case.

Though if we’re picking our leaders based on parental endorsement now, perhaps we may as well just go back to rule by a hereditary monarchy.

Still, Burnham’s wife, his brother, his children’s rugby coach and his old pal the former Millennium Dome secretary Lord Falconer also agree that he’s an all-round great bloke.

So that’s settled then. 

The video also highlights some of Burnham’s triumphs as a constituency MP, such as noticing when the Hillsborough justice campaign was getting popular enough to hitch his wagon to it. But it’s strangely silent about privatising the NHS through PFI.

Troublemaker awaits with bated breath the testimony from Yvette Cooper—Shadow Minister for Islamophobia and Immigrant-bashing and Iain Duncan Smith’s predecessor at the Department of Scapegoating Benefit Claimants.

Jobless human chain heroes

The staff at the Bellevue Hotel in Sousse, Tunisia, were hailed as heroes after they formed a human chain to protect tourists from a gunman.

But now they are on the scrapheap, after a British government terror warning meant there would be no more flights there from Britain. The hotel is due to close next week, putting most of those who joined the human chain out of work.

Sleep in a box but don’t complain

You’re allowed to be homeless in Manchester—just not to be angry about it. The council has graciously granted permission to sleep in cardboard boxes or sleeping bags—but not tents.

It has drawn up a list to distinguish between “genuine” rough sleepers and those banned by a court order against homelessness protesters.

Ukip and the bosses have Chunnel vision

Troublemaker would like to nominate Abdul Rahman Haroun for some kind of medal.

The 40 year old Sudanese refugee travelled the entire 30 miles of the Channel Tunnel last week—on foot.

He had to walk for more than ten hours in total darkness, avoiding trains going past at 100 miles an hour.

But Eurostar bosses seem to be putting themselves forward for villain of the year.

They say Abdul’s only reward should be deportation or possibly jail.

Going up, going down graphic

Senior Ukip MEP Mike Hookem could have saved Abdul the bother. He went on a “fact-finding” mission to Calais last week, boasting of shining his car lights at the “illegals” to “put them off” crossing the border.

He insisted it was easy for migrants, saying “I’m 61 and I climbed over the fence.

“At 61 years of age, I could have been through that tunnel.”

Perhaps all the people who have died making the attempt were actually very young-looking 62 year olds.

Muddled myths are really Poles apart

What would it look like if all the Polish workers in Britain went on strike against scapegoating?

The MP for Boston in Lincolnshire is worried. Tory Matt Warman said, “No one can deny the contribution they make… the whole country sees it on the shelves and supermarkets and farm shops.

“So any withdrawal of that contribution would be detrimental.”

But hang on—aren’t they meant to be benefit scroungers?

The Calais crisis gave the right wing Daily Express rag a chance to bring together some of its favourite subjects last week.

First it breathlessly warned that the immigrants were being infiltrated by the anarchists.

But this was quickly eclipsed by “disgust”, “fury” and even “rage” at the BBC’s Songs of Praise’s trip to the migrants’ makeshift church.


James Lupton

Banker, Tory donor and first in line for the Lords

  • David Cameron has put Lupton forward to be one of 30 new Tory peers
  • The investment banker with a personal fortune of £130 million is also the Tories’ joint treasurer
  • Donated £2.6 million for the election. Seems he’s getting his money’s worth

Not feeling the benefit

The official statistics watchdog says the Tories aren’t releasing data about who is hit by benefit sanctions. One in six unemployed people have their benefits cut off by sanctions each year, new research by the Guardian newspaper suggests.

Two years into the government’s benefit cap, nearly two thirds of those affected are single parents—mostly of children under five.

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