Off they went, one by one, Labour’s monstrous regiment of women. The nagging harridans, the terminally bovine, the frail and charming, the clever, the stupid, the poutingly minxtastic - all gone, gone. There are now about as many women left in the cabinet as in the Long Room at Lord’s.
Over the years they have left in dribs and drabs - Ruth Kelly, Fiona Mactaggart, Estelle Morris - but this week we have seen a stampede of pretty little feet for the exit. Last out was Caroline Flint, a doughty feminist who nonetheless conceded to pose for a glam centrefold in The Observer.
She says Gordon made her do it. The money shot, however, came on Friday with her interminable and fabulously piqued letter to Brown, the tone of which suggested he’d been caught with the au pair. You don’t care for my feelings! You don’t understand me! I’m just a sex object to you!
Feminists have lamented that this has been a terrible week for women in politics and, by and large, blamed men. But there are still plenty of women left in Westminster - simply that an awful lot have decided that high office is a bit too much like hard work.
“I wanted to laugh, play with children, read novels!” Fiona Mactaggart said, by way of explaining her disillusion with ministerial life.
Still, it’s a shame about Ms Flint. The temptress of the Don valley at least put a bit of colour into grey politics.
Sunday, June 07, 2009
Women In Politics
A nice piece in the Sunday Times today by Rod Liddle: