Blogpost by David Foreman
WITH such huge resources being pumped into Harlow Common ward many are wondering why this is the ‘Stalingrad’ of all battles for a local election ward.
Perhaps Cllr Toal aiming personal attacks at Robert Halfon last year and him quite rightly taking umbrage has something to do with it. Perhaps, as I heard it, Harlow Conservative’s see removing Cllr Toal is worth it no matter what the cost.
You have to wonder at the mentality of the local Labour Party rewarding Cllr Toal with a promotion to Deputy Leader for having a dig at Halfon regarding him campaigning at the roadside, a jibe aimed at his disability.
I bumped into Robert Halfon in the town centre the month after last year’s General Election last year and we discussed the campaign. Robert was clearly hurt and upset by the personal attack from Cllr Toal, more so than the aggravation I caused him over the bombing of Gaza and I have to say I hassled him a lot on that issue.
All MPs have to take a lot of crap from their constituents and their political opponents, but this really should be on the basis of policies, not personality. I have differences with Robert Halfon on various topics, but the one thing I can say he has always treated me with the utmost courtesy and consideration.
Someone in the Labour Party recounted a story to me which demonstrates some of Robert’s personal qualities. Whilst sitting by the A414 near the M11 roundabout a group of Labour people decided to take up camp opposite Robert. Robert responded by buying teas and coffees for his opponents because that’s what he’s like: sees politics as a battle of ideas.
So why the digs at him? Who knows? But what we now see is a clash of the Titans with Unite and East of England TULO wading in to support Unite card carrying – and that’s all she does on the union front – Cllr Toal this Saturday in Radburn Close at 11am.
As a Unite member I won’t be helping them, even if I didn’t have something more important to do. Why not? Just like in my footballing days I prefer to play the ball, not the man. Sometimes the sheer hypocrisy of a situation makes one want to cry.
If Harlow Labour Party weren’t so Blairite in its outlook, it might be able to take on Robert Halfon on the basis of policies, rather than personality. A stalwart of Harlow Labour said to me a week ago that “The Corbyn magic is yet to touch Harlow”. How right they were.
Whilst some like me want to see Corbyn pull the rabbit out of the hat, others like Cllr Toal prefer to be two-faced about it. Soon after Corbyn’s victory Cllr Toal rushed out an obsequious press release for Jeremy. What a turnaround from describing Corbyn as a “Dinosaur” at the party leadership selection meeting in Flex Meadow last year. Cllr Toal spoke later in favour of Yvette Cooper.
Thatcher once spoke of “The Lady’s not for turning”, but careerists like Cllr Toal can spot the tide turning and do a 180. However, Cllr Toal needs to remember that dinosaurs have been the most successful life form on this planet.
YH will be giving cllr Toal a right to reply over the election period.
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