This weekend, pollster Peter Kellner said that Labour should have cancelled this year’s conference: that “they should go away in private and think about what they want to say and do.” Unsurprisingly, the conference is going ahead, but the party would do well to heed Kellner’s criticism. Ed Miliband’s speech this afternoon must set out clear priorities if the party is to be electable in 2015. Labour had its second worst result since 1918 in last year’s election. The party polled more in the calamitous election of 1931—and was only less popular once, in 1983.
What went so wrong? A big factor in Labour’s defeat last year was their failure to win over aspirational working-class, or “C2”, voters—the “Mondeo man” so skilfully targeted by Tony Blair. In 2010, “Mondeo men” deserted Labour in droves: Blair gained 50 per cent of the C2