Andy Burnham's last stand
Analysis of a dramatic day in the politics of the North
On the steps of Manchester’s central library yesterday, flanked by his deputy mayors, Andy Burnham chose to fight. Like Davy Crockett wielding his rifle as a club at The Battle of the Alamo with Mexican troops encircling him and his last defenders dwindling in strength, Burnham picked this spot and this moment to make a stand.
Whether or not you agree with Burnham’s arguments about Tier 3 restrictions, this was old-fashioned political theatre. Stirring stuff. The mayor of a great Northern city facing down London - daring them to cross him. “The North stands on the brink of being back where we were in the 1980s,” Burnham said - “being pushed aside.” Within minutes, Twitter lit up with memes from Game of Thrones crowning him as the “King in the North”. This is “Number 10’s Night Mayor” says the front page of this morning’s Metro.
Burnham called for cities in the North to stand together against the power of Westminster. He might as well have marched out of the library and pulled an old co…
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