Why Jeremy Hunt might be onto a loser in his fight with the doctors

November 16th, 2015

Antifrank on  “picking your battles carefully”

The government is heading for a major confrontation with junior doctors over pay restructuring. Jeremy Hunt is looking to change their terms of employment to facilitate his vision of a seven day a week health service. Junior doctors feel that the revised terms pull the rug from under them. They feel that Jeremy Hunt is spoiling for a fight and that he is looking to impose his terms on them. As a result, they are due to strike for three days in December. How is this going to pan out?

This isn’t going to be a fancy article. It’s largely going to consist of one table, courtesy of Ipsos-MORI. 


It seems to me that Jeremy Hunt can lose quickly or he can lose slowly. Losing slowly will be more damaging and more humiliating. He should concede gracefully and enter into negotiations with no preconditions. This is a battle that he has very poor chances of winning.