Momentum

Labour: fight back for democracy and policies!

Josh Lovell outlines priorities which Momentum Internationalists will fight for as the leadership swings Labour to the right. It is now one year since the Labour Party’s 2019 national conference — arguably the most radical Labour Party event in decades. Delegates passed resolutions committing the party to 2030 decarbonisation as part of a worker-led just transition, to support the abolition of academies and private schools, and to defend and extend free movement, ensure voting rights for all UK residents, abolish No Recourse to Public Funds, and to close all detention centres (to name but a...

Young Labour: democracy, struggle, Internationalism

Set up to back internationalist, class-struggle candidates in the current Young Labour elections (nominations close 27 September, ballot 19 October to 12 November), Young Labour Internationalists also aim to connect Young Labour activists with social movements and struggles. In particular, they plan to get young activists involved in the NHS workers’ fight, and in making solidarity with freedom struggles in other countries: Belarus, China, Montenegro, Poland... You can read their full platform

Rebuilding Momentum groups

Roxana Fraser, an activist in the Southampton Momentum group, talked with Cathy Nugent from Solidarity. Our group has been and remains well functioning — we’ve been meeting online regularly during lockdown. We have been in touch with other local groups. It is important right now for groups to invite others to meetings and so on. In my experience there was very little support for local groups after the early days of Momentum. All the focus was on helping Labour to win elections and fighting the internal battles in Labour. But local groups should be doing a lot more. We’ve organised a lot of...

Momentum Internationalists is relaunching

Momentum Internationalists is planning a renewed drive to raise the politics of class struggle and internationalism in the labour movement. The campaign group was founded by supporters of Labour for a Socialist Europe in the run-up to the elections for the National Co-ordinating Group of the big left-Labour group Momentum. In that election, it argued: • that Momentum should uphold basic norms of labour-movement democracy (for example having an annual conference to set policy, so as to be able to campaign for the sovereignty of Labour Party Conference without looking ridiculous) • that the...

Row over Labour slate

The new leadership of the Labour left group Momentum has faced criticism for endorsing all six candidates on the “Centre Left Grassroots Alliance” left slate for the Constituency Labour Party seats on Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC), despite failing to get a statement on trans rights supported by the slate as it said it would do. The elections are for 18 of 39 seats on the NEC, and are now in the nominations stage. That closes on 27 September, and balloting will be 19 October to 12 November. There was a genuine problem of timescale, with the new Momentum national coordinating group...

Momentum and the pandemic: left-wing demands or "Strong Leader" talk?

Despite the new regime in Momentum, the "pinned tweet" on its its Twitter account is still one from 6 May (under the old regime) which indicated that the answer to the virus is that favourite of demagogues, "strong leadership", and hints strongly (though surely inadvertently) that the "strength" should be exerted primarily against migrants. It has a video which cross-cuts between floundering statements from Tory ministers - no shortage of those! - with words from New Zealand prime minister Jacinda Ardern. New Zealand has done well in the pandemic. The virus arrived there six weeks or more...

Momentum's social media output

Update on 15 July: Interestingly, on the first day of renewed strike action by the Tower Hamlets council workers, Momentum's Twitter was full of stuff about the strike, but there was nothing on its Facebook. This seems worth noting, but we don't know what it represents. Last week we published an article about the first changes socialists should push for in Momentum, following victory for a reform slate in the Labour left group’s internal elections. It’s clearly early to judge the new regime. All we have to go on for now is Momentum’s social media output — a very large part of what it does...

Forward Momentum sweeps election

Reform group Forward Momentum has swept the board in the elections for Momentum’s National Coordinating Group, winning all 20 seats elected by members. Full results here. Momentum Renewal won the four seats reserved for and chosen by Public Office Holders (councillors and MPs). Since then four people broadly on the Momentum Renewal side have been selected for the seats reserved for non-union “affiliates” — many of them not representing much. Even with that manoeuvring, Forward Momentum has a clear majority. But that majority is not united by a clear political perspective. Serious debate of the...

Momentum: what needs to change?

With a clear Forward Momentum majority on the National Coordinating Group of the big Labour left organisation Momentum, there is the possibility of significant changes for the better in the organisation. There is so much that needs changing in Momentum that it’s almost hard to know where to begin. Here are some ideas for priorities in the next month or two. Much bigger changes are needed in the longer term. Small bits and pieces around certain disputes it may have seen as “trendy” (e.g. the McDonald’s strikes) aside, Momentum has done essentially nothing to support workers’ struggles. An...

Top Labour official suspended

Novara Media reports ( bit.ly/novarareport) that half a dozen former senior Labour officials have been suspended in connection with the party’s leaked report on antisemitism (and in fact a wide range of other issues). This includes Emilie Oldknow, who was reported to be Keir Starmer’s choice for new General Secretary of the party until the leaked report made that impossible. A Labour NEC (National Executive) member told Novara: “Almost three months since the leaked Labour Party report, which exposed racism, sexism, discrimination and bullying by senior officials in Southside, justice is...

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