Yesterday Ed Miliband beat four other candidates, including his older and heretofore more prominent brother David (the former foreign secretary), to win the leadership of Britain’s Labour Party and thereby assume the shadow prime ministership. Sons of the famous British Marxist Ralph, the Milibands are of Jewish descent, though both identify as non-religious. The Nation—at which Ed interned two decades ago—called on whoever won to reclaim the party’s left-wing legacy, which got smudged when Tony Blair reinvigorated it as “New Labour” in the 1990s. Britain has had only one Jewish prime minister, Benjamin Disraeli, who was the subject of Adam Kirsch’s Nextbook Press biography.
That’s not all! Oona King, the daughter of a black father and a Jewish mother, was defeated last week in her bid to be Labour’s nominee for mayor of London. The victor, Ken Livingstone, a former mayor, is not a big fan of Israel! He will face incumbent Boris Johnson, a Tory, who previously unseated him.
And! Susan Kramer, who is running to be president of the Liberal Democrats, is a Jew (the party’s Nick Clegg serves as the deputy prime minister in the coalition government led by Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron). A former MP, Kramer lost her London seat earlier this year to Conservative Zac Goldsmith, who, yes.
British politicians: Some of them are Jewish!
New Labour Leader Looks to ‘Middle England’ [NYT]
Ken Livingstone Beats Oona King to Labour Nomination for London Mayor [Guardian]
Related: Labour’s Fraternal Struggle [The Nation]
Benjamin Disraeli [Nextbook Press]
Yes, Minister [Tablet Magazine]
Marc Tracy is a staff writer at The New Republic, and was previously a staff writer at Tablet. He tweets @marcatracy.