Ed Miliband’s leadership was thrown into crisis once more this morning, after reports began to circulate around Westminster that a senior parliamentary aide was planning to defect to the Tories.
Sadie Smith, 32, has worked for Members of Parliament for eleven years but, in a memo leaked to Total Politics over the weekend, she declares, “Face it, we’re just not the party we used to be when St Tony was in charge. Have you been to party conference recently? There’s been no bloody Jamaica Night since 2006 – the cocktails there used to be banging – and far less free canapé action than there used to be.”
She added, “Sod this, I’m off to the Tories. Start pouring me a large Cru, boys, I’ll be along as soon as I’ve press released my sorrowful departure.”
A spokesman for Mr Miliband said, “Sadie who? Nope, never ... oh wait, didn’t she once share an office with Ed’s researcher? Yes, I remember her. Blonde. Used to shout at the office equipment. I take it that as you’re bigging her up as a well connected and senior aide, this previously-unheard-of individual has just said something profoundly unhelpful?”
The senior aide is well-connected within the Labour Party.
A graduate of Magdalene College, Cambridge, Ms Smith has been a fixture of the parliamentary estate since 2001, and counts John Mann, Martin Salter, and Tom Watson amongst her former employers. She still works for a well-known politician, although harbours no political aspirations of her own and was once overheard in the Sports and Social Club slurring, “The one thing this place isn’t short of is middle-class Cambridge graduates who’ve been educated beyond their ability. I... er ... whatsdat? Yeah, large one please.”
Mr Miliband’s office would neither confirm nor deny the rumour that the loss of Ms Smith from the party would render it more or less defunct. One party source, who didn’t want to be named, said, “Frankly, this is the biggest crisis Labour has faced since Ramsay MacDonald blotted his copybook.”
He added, “When I first heard that a high-profile defection had occurred, I naturally just assumed that John McDonnell had finally broken cover and had set up his own party with a commitment to napalming all public schools and nationalising Diane Abbott. But this is worse. Much worse.”
Ed Miliband is expected to address the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) on the subject of Ms Smith’s defection in an attempt to calm the panic that has broken out as the news leaked over the weekend. Her employment is not expected to be affected by her decision.
Thomas Tweddle, a colleague of Ms Smith’s, commented, “Oh bugger, really? I still have to put up with her singing in the office? It’s alright for you, she had In the Jungle stuck in her head last week. The woman’s a complete stranger to the notions of pitch and vocal talent. Still, I always thought she was a closet Tory. She believed that it would do the Labour Party no real harm to win a general election semi-occasionally so, naturally, we all had our suspicions.”
Emerging from her Vauxhall flat, Ms Smith tearfully addressed the assembled photographers.
“This is not about chasing power. This is about appearing in a national organ of record and, hopefully, getting a book and TV gig on the back of further comments I will be happy to make every time some copy-short hack decides to write an Ed-is-rubbish story.
“I feel this to be my moral duty. What’s that? Oh yes. Large one please.”
Written in response to this, with apologies to Luke Bozier. Oh, and I’m not really defecting. Sorry, the comrades!