David Miliband is quitting the House of Commons to go and work for the International Rescue Committee in the United States, the Daily Mirror has revealed this evening.
Friends of both Miliband brothers have long thought that David, who expected to win the Labour leadership contest in 2010, was not really prepared to serve under Ed. David’s departure confirms that.
I also suspect, as John Rentoul points out, that David had realised that he was never going to be Labour leader. Ed Miliband’s position is so secure that it is pretty much a certainty that he’ll lead Labour into the election. It was also always highly unlikely that Labour would replace one Miliband with another.
I must admit that I have always thought that David Miliband wasn’t as good a politician as his admirers made him out to be. But if he had gone for it in the summer of 2008 or even 2009, I expect he could have toppled Gordon Brown and become Prime Minister. The real failure of his political career was not losing to his brother, but not following James Purnell out of the Cabinet in June 2009.