Is he now safe until at least the general election?
There was a time not so long ago when hardly a week went by without what became known on PB as an “Ed is crap” thread.
This was mostly driven by a series of less than convincing public appearances and his poor leader ratings. At one stage at the start of the year Miliband was barely getting the backing of a majority of his party’s supporters.
Three months of solid polls leads for Labour, mostly in double digits, have started changing perceptions and even his most vocal critics within the party, the Dan Hodges tendency, are grudgingly being less venomous about him.
I agree with Hodges that the main driver of this has been Osborne’s “catastrophic budget” in March from which all the Tory troubles seem to emanate.
But Ed has seized his chance and, most of all, he’s operating with a confidence that is in stark contrast to his performances in the first eighteen months of his leadership.
You know that someone’s making an impact when the main criticism from opponents is that they are being “opportunistic” which is what is happening to Ed.
The consequence of this is that the Labour leader is now more secure in his position and the talk of an Ed Balls inspired coup to get his wife into the job has all but evaporated. Yesterday at PMQs Balls was uncharacteristically subdued as seen in the screen shot above.
Labour looks set to go into the election with EdM at the helm and he’s going to be a tougher proposition than the blue team thought.
Ladbrokes have 5/4 that Ed will be PM before 2020. Those look like good odds.
Mike Smithson @MSmithsonPB