“feels like a lecture rather than a dialogue”

There was some speculation over who the high-profile person was that the Secretary of State for Wales etc, Peter Hain, [Welsh Politician of the Year 2006 – Ed] was due to announce as his campaign manager, and today we know… *drum roll* Step forward Phil Woolas, minister for local government. Also named as supporters are a couple of members of his NIO ministerial team [but not all of them? – Ed], his two parliamentary private secretaries, a Welsh MEP, and 21 other assorted Labour MPs who “would be willing speak in favour of his bid for the deputy leadership.” Better get to work on that public profile, Phil.From the report in the Guardian

In a letter to MPs, Mr Hain acknowledged the need to show a “new respect” for the wider party.

“Too often the government has seemed to hand down policies from on high, and too often our communication with the party feels like a lecture rather than a dialogue,” he said.

At the same time he stressed the need to develop a “radical programme of progressive policies” with measures to narrow the gap between the rich and the poor and “grasp the leadership of the green agenda”.

Mr Hain said that while remaining tough on security, there was a need to protect civil liberties and ensure “the right balance between the power of the state and the freedoms of the citizen”.

He also expressed support for an elected House of Lords and electoral reform for parliamentary elections in the form of the alternative vote in existing single-member seats.

[And support for the rule of law? – Ed]