Yesterday, I posted a piece looking at Heidi Alexander, the new Shadow Health Secretary, and I spectacularly jumped the gun. I suggested that she had little record on health matters and I couldn’t make much of an assessment of her qualities to be Shadow Health Secretary. I’m very pleased to say I was wrong, and I can.
Heidi Alexander has a rather robust record of fighting for her local NHS provision. More impressively, she has a few big wins under her belt. She was instrumental in the nationally covered campaign to save Lewisham Hospital, and has continued to raise concerns about the NHS in herconstituency.
How translatable is successfully campaigning at the grassroots level to the frontbench, where Alexander must publicise and defend Labour’s policies on the NHS? I’m not sure. Will she be able to cope with the arguable more-fun element of attacking the Tories over their health record? Probably, if the articulate and personal speech below is anything to go by.
In short, I was wrong about Heidi Alexander. She may not have much experience speaking from the frontbenches, and she may not have served on any health posts so far in her political career. However, what she does have is the gumption to fight for her local community and her local people. Bring that to a national level, and I’m sure she will have plenty of allies amongst the health sector.
UPDATE 15/09/15 -Heidi Alexander may have dug herself an early hole gathering early allies in the healthcare professions by describing the potential benefits of homeopathy…
Look forward to a more detailed post as Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonell, the Shadow Chancellor, have praised homeopathy. Hmmm