Labour First’s email to its mailing list shows clearly that while Labour’s leadership focuses on the task of toppling a Tory government that can only prop itself up using the DUP as a crutch, Labour members must continue to organise to ensure that the Labour Party that confounded media and ‘moderate’ negativity last week continues into the future.
Labour First, once famously described as ‘like Britain First but tougher on immigrants‘, sent the following email to its mailing list subscribers, rallying them for their attempt to control this year’s Labour conference in Brighton
As a network for Labour moderates, we hope that the spirit of unity and teamwork that characterised the election campaign will be carried forward by members from all wings of the party, and that the leadership will reach out and use the talents of all our MPs. Ensuring the pluralism of the party is respected, by for instance, returning to a Shadow Cabinet partly elected by the PLP would be a useful step forward…
We will be intolerant of any sectarian antics from Momentum that distract or detract from the task of returning Labour to power. We will fight to keep Labour as a broad church democratic socialist party with many traditions within it, but that these do not legitimately include revolutionaries and entryists who are not democratic socialists.
Within the party, some CLPs have not yet elected delegates to Annual Conference and made nominations for the National Constitutional Committee and Conference Arrangements Committee. The deadline for these decisions has been extended to 9 July.
Here is what we need you to do:
Let us know now by replying to this email the date when your CLP will be electing its conference delegate(s) if this didn’t happen before the General Election – your CLP Secretary will be able to tell you this.
Make sure you have moderate candidates ready to stand to be delegate(s) and that moderate members know this is a “must attend” meeting.
Ask your CLP to nominate both of Michael Cashman and Gloria De Piero for re-election to the CLP section of the Conference Arrangements Committee (CAC), which is elected by One Member One Vote this summer.
Ask your CLP to nominate both of Rose Burley and Kevin Hepworth for the CLP section of the National Constitutional Committee (NCC). Revised advice circulated by the Party says CLPs can nominate two candidates for these two vacancies. This election takes place among CLP delegates at conference.
In other words, while hoping that left-wing members will focus on unity, Labour First and its allies are busily preparing for this year’s crucial Conference and are determined to retain their anti-democratic grip on Labour Party structures.
It goes without saying that any Labour member who wants Labour to continue as the genuine alternative that inspired millions of voters last week should go nowhere near any of the above candidates for the incredibly important positions on the CAC and NCC.
But that’s not enough – it’s vital to organise to ensure that good candidates are nominated for and then elected to those positions.
And even more vital to ensure that left delegates are sent to Conference with a clear mandate to vote through the McDonnell Amendment and to reject the attempts Labour’s right-wingers are planning to try to disenfranchise Labour members by returning to the old ‘electoral college’ system.
Right-wingers initially supported Ed Miliband’s drive toward ‘one member one vote’ elections for the Labour leader and deputy leader positions – but now hate it because of the power it gives to an overwhelmingly pro-Corbyn membership and want to return to a ststem that gave a few hundred MPs as much voting power as Labour’s now 800,000-strong membership.
Jeremy Corbyn’s newly-strengthened position not only within the Labour Party but in the media and the minds of the electorate must not be sabotaged by those who are still – no matter how they dress it up in a cloak of ‘unity’ talk – only interested in seizing back control of the party, even if it deprives hundreds of thousands of members and a newly-galvanised public of a genuine electoral alternative that they clearly want.
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