Labour Party

Get Labour on the streets!

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:51
Author

Editorial

Whenever the Budget emerges, and whatever the details, it won’t keep Boris Johnson’s promise to “end austerity”.

That doesn’t mean we have to wait until 2024. Even under the Thatcher and Major Tory governments, mass protest forced the end of the poll tax and a partial reversal of NHS cuts after 1990.

Solidarity urges Labour and trade union activists to join with us in a campaign to get Labour on the streets to rebuild the NHS and save our schools, and to end austerity.

By “campaign” here we mean not a committee, a website, a grant from this or that foundation, a Twitter account, but a

The best medicine

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:44
Author

Colin Foster

The Labour Party machine is hastening to “clean house”. It announced at the end of January that it had expelled 45 members over antisemitism in 2019. Another 104 members voluntarily quit in 2019 while charges of antisemitism were pending.

In 2018, ten people were expelled and in 2017, one.

296 members were suspended over antisemitism complaints in 2019, compared with 98 suspended in 2018. The numbers are still small compared to the many hundreds “auto-excluded” in 2015 and 2016 (without a hearing and often without precise charges), not for antisemitism but for left-wing associations, current

Letters

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:19

Leeds East MP and deputy leadership candidate Richard Burgon’s politics are, in general, close to those of the Stalinist Morning Star. So it is ironic that he has made eloquent arguments for Labour Party democracy that virtually no other prominent figure is making.

Interviewed on Novara Media, Burgon argues forcefully that Labour members must make Labour policy – including manifesto policy – through conference. He maintains and develops this argument for about ten minutes, defending it against persistent attempts by Novara interviewers Michael Walker and Aaron Bastani to talk him out of it.

The ballot papers for Labour leader

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:14
Author

Martin Thomas

Many of us are minded to vote for Rebecca Long Bailey for Labour leader when balloting opens on 24 February.

In the nominations stage we backed none of the candidates.

We used that stage to challenge them on a charter of labour movement democracy, and on the need to get Labour on the streets to combat the Tories in the next months and years.

We supported interrogations put to them by groups like Free Our Unions, Labour Campaign for Free Movement, and Labour for a Socialist Europe, to back Labour conference policy for scrapping all anti-union laws and for defending and extending free movement.

How to beat transphobia

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:08
Author

Katy Dollar

The Labour Campaign for Trans Rights, founded by transgender and non-binary Labour members in order to advance trans liberation through the Labour Party, launched on 11 February with a set of pledges for leadership candidates.

The proposed reforms of the Gender Recognition Act were a step forward against trans oppression, but also began a debate which brought deeply reactionary views into the public discourse, including within the labour movement.

The comrades involved are right that trans liberation should be an aim of the Labour Party and that this will require fighting transphobia in our

A Labour newspaper?

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 11:03
Author

Keith Road

Should the labour movement have its own newspaper? That is the question posed by Richard Burgon, currently running for Deputy Leader of the Labour Party.

Burgon, speaking to Novara Media, said that a Labour freesheet could mimic the Evening Standard or the Metro. The various editions of the Metro currently have a total circulation of 1.4m, and the ES has about 800,000 around London. That makes them two of the most-read newspapers in the UK.

Burgon was attacked by Ian Murray, the most right-wing of those standing for the deputy leadership: “We are a party aspiring to be in government, not a

Rebecca Long-Bailey says she's a Zionist

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 10:55
Author

Ira Berkovic

At a hustings organised by the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM) on 13 February, Labour leadership candidates were asked if they were a “Zionist”. Three of the four said they were; Keir Starmer said that he wasn’t, but was “supportive” of and sympathetic to Zionism.

In their answers, all candidates emphasised their support for the right of Israeli Jews to national self determination. Emily Thornberry, Lisa Nandy, and Rebecca Long-Bailey presented this as the basis of their “Zionism”. Long-Bailey said: “I also agree with a secure Israel alongside a viable Palestinian state... I suppose that makes me

Right-wing push by council leaders

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 10:49
Author

Josh Lovell

Nick Forbes, Labour’s leader in the Local Government Association [LGA], has announced the results of a survey about the general election, responded to by only one in eight of Labour’s councillors.

I admit to being one of the 87% who did not respond. Unhelpfully, it appears councillors haven’t been sent the results. Nor can I find them published online.

We should take with a pinch of salt the conclusions drawn from any survey with a 13% response rate. We are told councillors believed that the two most significant factors in our loss were either dissatisfaction with Corbyn or the party’s stance

Good riddance to Andrew Murray. But who will replace him?

Published on: Wed, 19/02/2020 - 09:14
Author

Martin Thomas

On Wednesday 19 February 2020, the Financial Times reported that Andrew Murray had resigned from his job in the Labour Party "Leader's Office". We should beware, though. If it's good that Murray and maybe Milne are going, it doesn't follow that their replacements will be good.

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