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DROMEY VIES FOR SIMON SEAT

05-02-2010

Erdington

Sion Simon’s baffling decision to stand down as an MP has attracted a queue of admirers for his Erdington constituency including one, as yet unmentioned, big hitter – union boss and Labour party treasurer Jack Dromey a.k.a. Mr Harriet Harman.

Dromey, the deputy general secretary of Unite, has been seeking a seat, on and off, since 1997 and speculation previously linked him to Wolverhampton North East, currently held by retiring MP Ken Purchase. In the event, it was restricted to an all-women shortlist, with Emma Reynolds securing the nomination.

More recently, Dromey has been in the frame for Leyton and Wanstead, but Erdington’s 9,000 plus majority would be even more tempting – not least because attempts to parachute him into the London constituency (which has a 7,000 majority) have already annoyed party members.

Meanwhile, Labour colleagues are still puzzled by Simon’s decision to quit for the non-existent post of Birmingham Mayor, claiming that it simply doesn't add up.

Whoever wins the next election, it will take at least two years for the necessary legislation to be put in place to create the position, and Boris Johnson used his parliamentary platform to help him campaign for the London Mayor’s job, only leaving the Commons after taking control of City Hall.

Why, Labourites wonder, couldn't Simon do the same?

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