Dan Jarvis, seen as a possible future leader of the Labour Party, has made a speech today which has been seen as potentially explaining his political position for any future contest. When asked about this year’s local elections, he also suggested that the party needs to perform well in May’s local elections.
Jarvis has been the Labour MP for the constituency of Barnsley Central since a 2011 by-election. He was thought to have been a contender for the Labour leadership following Ed Miliband’s resignation, but he didn’t stand for what he said were family reasons.
Speaking at his speech Jarvis was asked about the importance of the local elections in May. He replied:
“The metric by which all of us are judged in politics is votes in the ballot box. We’ve got very important elections taking place in May. It’s a major test for all of us, all of us have to be out there making that case”.
Jarvis also sought to distance himself from the Blair years and New Labour. Referring to a quote made by Peter Mandelson that he was “intensely relaxed about people getting filthy rich” Jarvis said in his speech:
“New Labour were intensely relaxed about things they shouldn’t have been intensely relaxed about”.
Referring to the speech the Spectator Magazine noted:
“Dan Jarvis gave a speech to think tank Demos this morning which is being written up as part of his long-term bid to lead the Labour party. It was a serious speech about the economy, peppered with personal references and devoid of any mention of Jeremy Corbyn”.