I was chastised by some of my Labour Party ‘comrades’ this week for issuing the following tweet in advance of the televised Leaders Debate on Tuesday evening:“Never keen on movie sequels and I can’t see this latest version of Dumb and Dumber on ITV at 8pm being as good as the original” accompanied by a GIF of Jim Carrey and Jeff Daniels, the actors from the blockbuster 90’s film.
— Frank McKenna (@DowntownFrank) November 19, 2019
Apparently, taking the piss out of St Jeremy is bang out of order and it is comments like this from Labour Party members like me that will result in Boris Johnson walking back into 10 Downing Street on Friday 13th December.
I have two big problems with this reaction. First, one of the first casualties of a democracy in turmoil is humour and the ability for us to laugh at ourselves and those we support. For those who took Umbridge at my throwaway tweet, have a word with yourselves.
Whatever you may personally think of the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Opposition, the fact is that neither score particularly well in polls, pub conversations or around the dinner tables of British families in terms of their personal ratings. It is the main reason why this General Election has turned into an ‘Unpopularity Contest’.
Second, a problem that Corbynistas may well have to face up to in a few weeks’ time, the traditional Labour voters who are seemingly turning their backs on the party are not doing so because of a jokey tweet from Frank McKenna, or indeed a lack of full throated support from ‘moderates’ in the party.
If that were the case, why isn’t Johnson hemorrhaging the same level of support in the face of a tirade of attacks from people like Dominic Grieve, Ken Clarke, Michael Heseltine, David Gauke and even his own brother Jo?
Sadly, for Corbyn and Labour, he is just not seen as a credible leader. And, when push comes to shove, unless there is a big turnaround over the next fortnight, it is Jeremy who the electorate will be assigning the title of ‘Dumber’ to.