Keir Starmer is refusing to play Downing Street’s game. So far, it’s working | Rafael Behr

The Labour leader won’t accept the label of anti-Brexit lawyer. And with coronavirus on the rise, his competence is cutting through

It is hard to read the mood of a party at a virtual conference. The camera cannot transmit the pitch of chatter in the bars, the balance of swagger and despond. The body language at the annual jamborees is normally a useful measure of each tribe’s confidence, but this year the signal is blocked.

It is Labour’s turn this week and opinion polls give grounds for cautious optimism. Keir Starmer is judged more capable as a prime minister than the actual prime minister. The ratings for their respective parties are broadly level-pegging, though incumbent governments have suffered worse and bounced back to victory.

Continue reading…