Excellent points, worth repeating, from a much longer article by Labour loyalist Ian Mearns.
Some in the PLP are quick to forget that we have lost two elections offering a lighter version of more of the same and that 1997 is nearly two decades ago. Politics has changed, people have changed and the world has changed.
The days of appealing to a couple of hundred thousand voters in marginal seats in south-east England and the Midlands are gone.
The “we’ll do austerity too, just not as bad but for longer” message lost us Scotland. We took it for granted, and the electorate has had enough. Ukip are coming second in seats across traditional Labour heartlands across northern England.
The reality that some in the PLP need to get their heads around is that despite Corbyn being “unelectable” he has steered the party to four by-election victories, increasing Labour’s share of the vote in three, and won the local elections in May.
A reversal of tax credit cuts, significant revisions of the Trade Union Act, watering down of the academisation programme, and reversal of cuts to disability benefits are just some of the things we have achieved as a movement without a united PLP.
Corbyn is opposing the Tories, we are opposing the Tories and we have been winning.
There’s a monumental lesson to be learned here by a vast majority of my colleagues in the PLP. The Labour Party is more than a party, it is a movement. It is not my party, her party, his party or their party.
It is our party. We share common values. We should be working together and protecting each other. We should be making sure that the Tories are held to account for what they are doing to hard-working people and the most vulnerable up and down our country.
We should be working together and campaigning for the return of a Labour government. Democracy isn’t a notion that you can wheel out when you like the outcome then disregard when you’re not so happy.
Corbyn continues to represent the will of the membership, and that should be respected. Members of the PLP would do well to realise they too are only in position due to, in some cases, the party machine putting them there, and in other cases due to their local party members.
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