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Breaking: Labour trying to save Evans by avoiding proper vote count

Unite trying to force party to hold proper ‘card vote’ instead of show of hands

Keir Starmer’s Labour party machine has spent weeks in an escalating war to rule out conference delegates it thinks may vote against the confirmation of David Evans as general secretary today – but with unions lining up to oppose him and even right unions furious with Starmer’s ineptitude and arrogance, the Labour right is still not confident it has done enough to win the vote.

So the party is now trying to make the vote a mere ‘show of hands’, in which the conference session chair simply declares what s/he takes the result to be from the number of hands up – even though each hand does not carry the same voting weight, as delegates from larger local parties and larger unions represent larger numbers of eligible votes.

This is obviously open to abuse and has been misused by the right before to seize power.

Unite and other unions are furious at yet another attempt to bypass democracy to save the architect of the right’s war on members, unions and freedom of speech and are insisting that a properly-counted ‘card vote’ be held to decide the issue.

The contempt of Starmer, Evans and their faction for democracy and accountability knows no bounds.

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    1. I posted this comment on 8th Sept

      There is an interesting article on LabourList. I would encourage you to follow the link and read the full article.

      It has been suggested to LabourList that a full vote on Evans is expected to take place on day one of Labour conference later this month. It would be a card vote, rather than a show of hands, because the weight of the unions is more accurately represented this way. The conference chair, thought most likely to be NEC chair Margaret Beckett on the Saturday, can decide whether to have a vote at all. Historically no vote has been taken: instead, the chair has told conference how the NEC voted and their pick has been endorsed with ‘aye’s. The chair could therefore choose this path (and their ruling could only be overturned by a two-thirds majority). However, Keir Starmer allies are confident that a card vote on Evans would be won, which would be a show of strength and a way to disillusion those opposed to the current leadership early in the conference.

  1. Well at least the delegates are aware of this ploy – and will hopefully
    make sure this anti-democratic tactic is blocked before it happens ..

    I have no idea of how this can be achieved .. am hoping against hope.

  2. News Headlines:

    “The Labour Party prepares for the general election by taking the fight to itself”

    (Late Night Mash, Thursday on Dave and repeated Sunday night).

  3. One thing’s for sure, none of the MSM is going to report the embarrassing contortions that Sir Billionaires Budy is putting himself through to protect his wretched GenSec appointee.

    1. While I love the above artwork, dumping neoliberalism was never going to be painless. You can’t have Socialism and migrant Labour keeping wages down.

    2. Yup – 1970s revisited!! – I’ve still got a book of green shield stamps, my mother (aleha ha-shalom) was a collector. Thanks for t he memory prompt Linda.

      (and we all know what happened across the 1970s – neoliberal economics and politics took hold in Friedman’s neoliberal petri-dish otherwise known as the UK – maybe the ‘banking crisis’, brexit, the covid vaccination lie and Ext.Rebellion all prove that capitalism is in its dying days and maybe, therefore, it’s just as well that the enemy-within made sure Jeremy lost GE2019 and made sure he was not leader when the planned covid narrative took hold)

      1. Aah the 1970’s. Great days of Labour politics. 3 day week, IMF brought in to bail out the Labour government, inflation over 20% at one stage. Hilarious that Starmerites toying with the idea of show of hands mass meeting which they have condemned as so open to abuse and shady operators and a symbol of the corrupt past. Who is playing Red Robbo today I wonder?

      2. Plain Citizen 25/09/2021 at 3:44 pm :

        Yeah, the three-day week was in 1973, under Heath’s Tory government.

        Must try harder!


  4. Nothing less than a properly counted card vote will be acceptable, so all efforts to ensure this must be undertaken!

  5. Off Topic question: What’s tthe best non-BBC place for live Labour Conference coverage? Sorry for such a dumb question, but not using social media and (thanks to the covid fiasco) the MSM, makes me feel a bit isolated and disconnected in this regard..

  6. It’s exactly the sort of underhand & anti democratic tactic that a Gen Sec like Evans would employ to get his own way and yet another very good reason why is appointment to that post shouldn’t be confirmed.

    What more to people need to know about him and those who support him?

  7. I recall it was a show of hands which determined Labour’s fateful Brexit policy 2 years ago. I wonder how different it might have been if the were weighted by size of CLP? It seems a strange way of doing it, since I suspect the majority of CLP members are inactive and just not got round to resigning.

    1. I also recall that it was Jennie Formby who stepped in and overruled the Chair’s decision on this vote and then compounded this by refusing applications for a card vote on what was self evidently a close run and contentious vote
      So much for democracy.

      1. She was a clever woman, that Jennie Formby. The peoplesvote frontsmen that Starmer and Mandelsohn were priming would have achieved their nefarious objective under a GS less proficient that Jenny F.

      2. qwertboi – So much for democracy.
        There is nothing clever about subverting democracy.

      3. “There is nothing clever about subverting democracy.”

        Tell Sir Elmer of the billionaires that! (but that’s not what what the wonderful Jenny F did)

      4. qwertboi – So how would you describe Jennie Formby actions.
        Even if we set aside her overruling the Chair’s decision (I can’t remember that happening before, can you?) what legitimate reason did she have for refusing a card vote.

  8. Clause 3. Conference rule 3 – Voting
    A. Voting at Party conference on resolutions,
    reports, amendments, proposals and
    references back shall be by show of hands or,
    when the conditions laid down by the CAC
    require it, by card. When a card vote is called,
    voting shall be in two sections as follows:
    Duncan Shipley Dalton [Barrister] believes that when a card vote is called for, it must be taken otherwise a simple show of hands vote is not enough.
    At conference in 2016 there was a request from the floor for a card vote. Under Conference Standing Orders as set by the CAC if a card vote is requested it “must” take place.
    Under the Party Rule book Chapter 3 Clause III. (3) voting is by card when the conditions laid down by the CAC rules require it. Clearly when a request was made from the floor for a card vote the conditions laid down by CAC and which have the force of the Party Rules required a card vote be taken. Paddy Lillis ignored this even after being told the rule required a card vote by Christine Shawcroft who was on the platform.
    The failure to take a card vote means the bundling motion was in my view invalidly declared passed.

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