Nearly a week on, Ed Miliband’s conference speech still looks a very good one. It pulled off several important tricks – saying something about the country, uniting the party, impressing the commentariat, looking good on the news and helping define not just Labour but also the Conservative Party.
The shelving of both Lords reform and the boundary changes marks a new phase for the coalition.
Stage one was a meeting of minds, with liberal Tories joining together with economic liberals in the Lib Dems to reduce the deficit and reform public services.
Saul Alinsky once wrote that ‘a liberal is someone who walks out of the room when the argument turns into a fight’. Judging by the response to Ed Miliband’s speech on immigration last week, there is a modern equivalent: to tweet disapproval without engaging in the argument at all.
This was a speech from the Left.