From antisemitism accusations to disunity on Brexit, the Labour Party leadership have been through a tough time. So much so that a new party was created primarily from disgruntled Labour Members of Parliament.
It seems like a ruse to just look better united than the Conservative and Unionist’s, as none of the Labour leadership seem to resign or shift opinion when it seems appropriate to do so. This stringent tactic of looking strong in the eyes of the public has its flaws, and many of them.
Tory v Labour – who is more divided?
Jeremy Corbyn has regularly criticised the disunity and differences of the Government, especially in issues such Brexit. Admittedly the Government has seen ministerial resignations and decreased popularity. But how united, or rather, how divided is Labour? Well recently it suffered a blow to it’s parliamentary membership. Seven MP’s leaving to start a new party called Change UK. Their main issue? To have a unified stance on Brexit and that is for a second referendum and effectively support the remain camp. Not much for change there then. Significantly, this splinter party was in part a protest against the leadership of the Labour Party. This major rift brings in to question the stability of the leadership and its relationship with its members.
Then you have the other groups outside of parliament who generally or constitutionally associate themselves with the Labour Party. Momentum, Labour and Jeremy Corbyn’s grassroots political campaign organisation, is deeply set in its left-wing ideology. But with its prominent position in the party and its influence on party policy, many party members have become disengaged. It has directly or indirectly helped increase polarisation of the party. Yet it is still the treasured cheer leading group of the leadership.
To add to these conflicting views are the other naturally aligned organisations like the ‘People’s Vote’ and ‘For our Future’s Sake’ (FFS). These are splitting the voter base further. The notion to hand over Brexit to the public is being called upon by two organisations. Either a second referendum (apparently one isn’t enough) or a vote on any deal. Yet this matter still divides the leadership. Tom Watson (Deputy Leader) recently calling for a second referendum and Jeremy Corbyn being a former brexiteer, there is no clear consensus. It is no wonder all they seem to do is play party politics to humiliate the Government.
One man’s loss is another man’s gain.
Whilst on the topic of Brexit, it is important to note Labour has lost favour with many of its voter base, with many defecting to the Brexit Party and the United Kingdom Independent Party (UKIP). This has mainly been due to the Labour Party’s mixed signals about their stance on Brexit, causing many to find a better directed party. In the recent local elections, Labour lost significant seats to parties that were becoming dormant, including the Liberal Democrats and Green Party. Labour supporters are becoming polarised, being led by a divided leadership.
On the bright side…
Finally, and admittedly Jeremy Corbyn has bought a different energy to the party, an energy better to suited to what Labour did stand for as compared to his predecessors who showed the party to look a bit like the Tories. Corbyn has reignited the socialist ideologies in the party that were starting to diminish under Blair and Brown’s New Labour approach, bringing the party to a more centrist perspective. To completely turn this around and actually differentiate Labour from the Conservatives came Corbyn and McDonnell. Both possess a significant difference to their predecessors Blair and Brown. Undoubtedly this has bought back a lot of voters who left the party due to previous leaderships.
Overall, it is fair to say Labour need a new lease of life, a breath of fresh air breathed in to its rather outdated leadership of career politicians and fantasists.
Do you think they need a new leadership? Comment below!