Boost for Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour as Len McCluskey is re-elected as leader of Unite

Last Updated: April 22, 2017By

Len McCluskey is expected to support rule changes that will ensure a leftwing candidate will be able to stand in future Labour leadership elections [Image: Gareth Fuller/PA].

Clearly, this means more members of Unite support Jeremy Corbyn’s left-wing Labour Party than any attempt to restore it to the neoliberals who ruined the party’s chances in the 2010 and 2015 general elections.

Meanwhile Gerard Coyne, who championed the right-wing, has been suspended from his position in the union, for reasons that have yet to become clear. Perhaps we should all draw our own conclusions from that.

This Writer would like to think Mr McCluskey will be able to find a place for Ian Allinson, the grassroots candidate, in his leadership team. Mr Allinson has spoken impressively whenever I have seen him.

Len McCluskey has been re-elected leader of the Unite union in a narrow victory that has been greeted with relief by supporters of the Labour leader, Jeremy Corbyn.

The incumbent defeated his opponent, Gerard Coyne, after a bitter month-long campaign that culminated in Coyne’s suspension from his union role 24 hours before the vote declaration.

McCluskey won 59,067 votes (45.4%), Coyne won 53,544 (41.5%) and grassroots candidate Ian Allinson took 17,143 (13.1%), on a turnout of just over 12%, the union announced.

Coyne’s team was hoping for a high turnout of up to 20% of the membership, which they believed would have ensured a surprise victory. McCluskey’s vote dropped from 144,570 in 2013 when the turnout was nearly 15%.

The result was a boost for the Labour leader and the left of the Labour party.

McCluskey is a close ally of Corbyn and is expected to use Unite’s influence to push through rule changes that will ensure a leftwing candidate will be able to stand in any future Labour leadership election.

Source: Len McCluskey re-elected leader of Unite by narrow margin | Politics | The Guardian

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  1. Jeffrey Davies April 22, 2017 at 12:34 pm - Reply

    Twelve percent voted of this union sais a lot about its members didn’t care who was leading it Yet he did win len atleast that’s over

  2. gfranklinpercival April 22, 2017 at 2:22 pm - Reply

    I also was appalled by the abysmal participation rate. There were three election addresses to read and a ballot to mark and post. Why are people so damned apathetic when they must know it will be them one day?

  3. Christine Cullen April 22, 2017 at 3:30 pm - Reply

    People seem to be all electioneered out. I hope this isn’t going to last. I’ve heard several people say they won’t be voting in the coming general election and mostly they’re not dyed in the wool Tories unfortunately.

    • Mike Sivier April 22, 2017 at 4:34 pm - Reply

      Tories always vote because they like power.

      • Christine Cullen April 22, 2017 at 6:16 pm - Reply

        They are giving Tom Brake my LD MP a horrible time at the moment and doing the usual sneering at Labour who are badly outnumbered in the London Borough of Sutton. You certainly need a thick skin to oppose the Tories in full spiteful flight!

  4. Joan Edington April 22, 2017 at 5:32 pm - Reply

    The turnout rate indicates the lack of support the unions have in the current, young workforce. I was membership secretary/treasurer of our local branch of ASTMS/MSF/Amicus/Unite for a couple of decades and the dwindling turnout to meetings was disheartening, to say the least. Employees joined when they had a problem at work then cancelled their membership when things were sorted, ungratefully saying they didn’t need the union any more.

    Now retired, I am still a member and did cast my vote. I didn’t win, mind you. I wanted to support Ian Allison who was a giant in my eyes for his work at my previous employer, ICL/Fujitsu. I hope he will get the recognition he deserves, outside his workplace.

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