It says everything about the tabloid culture of British politics that we are hearing that David Miliband has visited Gillian Duffy - the woman branded "a bigot" by Gordon Brown during the last election - and that we are being breathlessly told that he has secured her support.
Are we now going the way of the US in searching for our own Joe the Plumber? That one citizen who will come to represent the disenfranchised millions?
It appears that the shadow foreign secretary has managed to sway Duffy back after meeting her for a coffee and chat over the weekend.
She told the Daily Mirror she found him "very intelligent but also down to earth" when he visited her home in Rochdale for "a cup of tea and a chat".
I find that profoundly depressing. I've nothing against the woman herself, she just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, but what is Miliband playing at travelling to Rochdale to secure her backing?
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