Liam Byrne MP is Labour’s candidate in the West Midlands Mayoral election which takes place on (Super) Thursday 6th May.
Byrne is running a campaign that most in the modernising wing of the party would be proud of.
It’s future facing and has an optimistic tone, whilst being critical of the status quo.
It manages to convey a sense of both radicalism and pragmatism.
It combines a pro-business and pro-community agenda.
Byrne is tying himself to the national Labour brand and trying to leverage the elements that the public regard most positively, which includes the leadership of Starmer and Rayner.
Byrne is running against a Conservative incumbent – Andy Street – who has a brand that is distinct from that of a traditional Tory candidate.
Whilst one could not say Andy Street is similar to Boris Johnson in many regards, they do both share the trait of having an appealing personal brand that builds on that of the Conservative master brand.
In 2017 Street won by 3,766 votes and one would expect this year’s contest to be close too.
The result is obviously important locally, but national campaign managers will be looking to learn lessons from the contest for the next general election .