So we are on the verge of leadership contenders being announced and, despite their feverish efforts to exclude as many people perceived to likely be voters for the current leadership, the contender or contenders will lose. The only way that supporters of Labour as a democratic party will be outvoted is if the alleged illegal activities of those associated with the “coup” spread to vote rigging.
So what next? Hilary Benn has already stated he will support any elected candidate just as long as it’s not Corbyn, which really could have gone unsaid as that has been the position of the hardcore bloc of agitators within Labour since Corbyn’s leadership began.
MP Steve McCabe has said that people trapped in poverty neither have the time to deal with party politics or the inclination and I partially agree with that notion. For most people, party politics is as interesting as the machinations of the local golf club committee. I doubt many of the electorate care about Jeremy Corbyn or Steve McCabe (who I’d never heard of), and they certainly don’t care about what happens to the 172 Labour MPs who have decided that they can’t work within the democratic constraints of the Labour party. For the general public there is some sort of kerfuffle in Labour and Corbyn isn’t popular with MPs. When those MPs are deselected and replaced the public will know that whatever the kerfuffle was about, the MPs now in Labour will be able to work with him and then they’ll judge the party on whatever policy positions they set out.
When the leadership contest begins MPs will choose sides. MPs can choose to back Corbyn’s leadership and Labour as a democratic party or they can choose to side with whomever stands against the party. It will be a line in the sand that is clearly drawn, no abstainers allowed. Once the voting is over, stock will be taken and the house will be cleaned. Those against Corbyn’s leadership have been contemptuous of the party membership, content to smear and belittle the members in an attempt to discredit the leadership and no credible alternative leadership has reared its head.
Corbyn happily endorsed the democratic process of the party and I have no doubt that he will abide by its decision; it hasn’t been Corbyn who has, as Robert Preston put it, been gerrymandering the system. I’ve said before that I didn’t vote for Corbyn last year but I will be this time around, though I will be voting to keep Labour a democratic party and not a play thing for wealthy donors. I may be dismissed by the “coup” as some sort of hard left trot whatnot but I’m just a Labour voter who has heard nothing but insults, smears, and lies coming from the “plotters” and nothing even resembling credible leadership, let alone a leadership that will repair the damage their “coup” has subjected the party to.
(Originally written 19/07/2016)