MPs have claimed that those on Labour’s left are “afraid to say anything”, as internal tensions threaten to overshadow the party convention in Brighton.
Senior Left leaders within the party have told Granthshala Some members are concerned with Sir Keir Starmer’s efforts to rewrite the leadership competition rules and criticize the disciplinary procedures.
The Ian Lavery MP said some members, councilors and lawmakers – huge supporters of former leader Jeremy Corbyn – are being silenced by letters sent by the party, because they feel they have broken its rules.
He added: “For the first time I remember, people are worried about what they might talk about – really afraid to say anything.”
Earlier this month, Jarrow MP Kate Osborne received a “notice of investigation” from Labor’s Governance and Legal Unit (GLU). He said the party made “serious allegations of violation of party rules” in the letter.
A statement on his Twitter also said: “The allegations were completely baseless. The evidence relied upon was of no use.
“There was nothing that violated the rules. I was told that I could not discuss the matter with anyone – except the Samaritans.
“Soon after the legal letter [from her solicitor] The party withdrew the probe claiming it was an “administrative error” and apologized for the mistake and the pain it caused me.
A similar letter was sent to Young Labor president Jess Bernard a week after Ms Osborne – on tweets posted by her. Following complaints, the GLU dismissed the complaint against him, saying it was “issued in error.”
Mr Lavery, a Wansbeck MP and former Labor chair, fears the party will lose more members after 150,000 members resign or are expelled.
He said the numbers were a “huge loss” and that the party appeared to be going through “an identity crisis” as Mr Corbyn was succeeded as Labor leader by Sir Keir.
Mr Lavery said the party is “absolutely rudderless” because voters and members “know less who [Sir Keir] and what does it stand for”.
He added: “People thought she would be a safe pair of hands… but she is Her Majesty’s opposition in name only.”
A senior labor source told Granthshala That there has been a “degree of tension” before the convention began, including members who voted for Sir Keir to lead the party.
The MP said Sir Keir was preparing to make changes to the rules at the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting on the first day of the annual convention.
One of the new plans – Sir Keir’s plan to replace the one member one vote (OMOV) system with an electoral college – was abandoned at the eleventh hour.
The idea has been branded as “backward” by critics, as it sought to undo the mechanism put in place by former leader Ed Miliband, which allowed Mr Corbyn to succeed in 2015 with the help of registered supporters. Was.
“My understanding is that the electorate is not coming to the NEC”, said deputy Labor leader Angela Rainer.
Other proposed rules set for debate and voting by the NEC include raising the trigger ballot threshold to 50 percent, increasing the number of nominations required to become a leadership candidate, eliminating registered supporters, as well as proposing to cut the number of nominations. of conference resolutions.
The unnamed MP, a Corbyn aide, said there was “great dissatisfaction” with Sir Keir’s plans and described them as a “backward top-down elitist reform”.
He accused Sir Keir of seeking to split the party when he first became leader to become a united force.
He added: “The people who voted for Keir are extremely jealous – he is testing their loyalty.
“Why have these new rules come to the fore at this stage? Why are we not targeting the government?
“People are very tense about it. He has betrayed them. He had promised to unite the party, but it is not united.
Former Shadow Justice Secretary Richard Bergen said Sir Keir had fallen off a “strange rabbit”.
He said the Labor leader’s focus on the rule change was “disturbing” at a time when the UK grapples with the effects of the COVID pandemic, Brexit and government policies such as a proposed reduction in benefits.
The MP for Leeds East said: “It makes Labor irrelevant and out of touch.”
“His focus on internal mystical rule-fights and fighting battles against party members is in stark contrast to the realities people face on a day-to-day basis.
“It makes him look politically younger. People want big ideas and solutions for their problems.”
The lawmakers – who are members of the Socialist campaign group of Labor MPs – have also said there has been “no movement” over whether Mr Corbyn would have the whip reinstated.
In 2020, the Islington North MP was suspended from the party for 54 years of membership and nearly five years as Labor leader. He was then suspended, but the whip was withdrawn.
Mr Corbyn wrote on Twitter on the first day of the conference: “At the conference, I look forward to hearing how Labor will bring a wealth tax to fund a national care service like the NHS, take the radical action needed to decarbonize by 2030, stand Stay up against the drudgery of a new Cold War, and to rein in the wealth and power of a small elite.
“I know that our trade unions and members have developed these policies.
“But the signs are that the leadership wants to close the debate, shutting down members and trade unions with the end result that Labor moves forward rather than challenging our broken political and economic system.”
Credit: www.independent.co.uk /