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It’s done, then.
The Labour Party’s ruling National Executive Committee has voted to override the wishes of party members in Islington North, denying them the opportunity to re-select Jeremy Corbyn as their Parliamentary candidate in the next general election.
This will not be a big deal for Mr Corbyn. He’ll just stand as an independent and win his seat again anyway. He’s won it at the last 10 elections and he’ll probably be helped by many soon-to-be-former members of Islington North Constituency Labour Party.
But for the Labour Party it is massive.
It means that Starmer has reneged on a promise he made when he was trying to trick Labour members into making him party leader.
He stated: “The selections for Labour candidates needs [sic] to be more democratic and we should end NEC impositions of candidates. Local party members should select their candidates for every election.”
His motion to the NEC to ban Mr Corbyn from standing is a clear betrayal of this.
What is Labour Party democracy now? That local party members can select any candidate they want – as long as that person has been pre-selected and approved by Keir Starmer?
That is not democracy. That is dictatorship.
Picture the scene in the House of Commons after the next election: Keir Starmer sitting on the front bench, surrounded by his cabinet of red Tories. And behind them, row upon row of identical Starmtroopers, itching for their turn to stand up and regurgitate whatever words the Starmperor puts into their mouths.
Picture them performing a version of the Nazi salute as the lurch to their jackbooted feet, because they might as well.
And those feet will spend the following five years stamping on your face in true Orwellian tradition.
I’m not keen on that.
I’d rather give it a miss.
The trouble is, in a two-party monopoly where the only other popular choice is the Conservatives, I’ve been left with no choice at all.
It’s either one set of fascists – and I use the term advisedly – or another.
In a country that is predominantly left-wing – the only reason the Tories keep getting in is the First Past The Post system that allows candidates with the largest minority of the vote to take the seat – it means the vast majority of voters are disenfranchised. We have nobody left to vote for.
So we come back to Mr Corbyn’s option – to stand as an Independent candidate.
Is it time for others who have been pushed out of Labour for their popular views to band together with him? He already has an organisation – his Project for Peace and Justice. Perhaps it is time to make it a political party. Perhaps it could link up with other such groups that have sprung up over the last few years.
Perhaps they could offer us an alternative that we could all support.
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