Keir Starmer must be really desperate to divert blame for Labour’s diabolical performance in the English local elections off himself.
He has launched a shadow cabinet reshuffle that has already been dubbed a right-turn so hard it would give you whiplash.
Nowhere is this clearer than in his appointment of Rachel (more Tory than the Tories) Reeves as shadow chancellor.
Ms Reeves is the Labour politician (never forget) who, as shadow Work and Pensions Secretary back in 2013, vowed to be “tougher than the Tories” on benefit claimants.
The former banker said a Labour government with her as Work and Pensions Secretary would be tougher than the Tories on benefit claimants, in order to reduce the national benefits bill – a bill which, by the way, has always been entirely affordable.
Two years later, in 2015, she unilaterally cut millions of UK citizens and voters from Labour’s target electorate by saying the party did not want to represent people who don’t have a job.
“We are not the party of people on benefits. We don’t want to be seen, and we’re not, the party to represent those who are out of work,” she said.
“Labour are a party of working people, formed for and by working people.”
So, according to Ms Reeves, nobody currently claiming Universal Credit because of the Covid-19 crisis should expect help from Labour. Have I got that right?
I’ll admit, that’s an extreme conclusion to draw, but it is clear that, as Labour MPs go, Reeves is an extreme right-winger.
Don’t forget that the Tories have modelled themselves as “the party of the workers” in recent years. They love working people because working people generate the profits their donors send to their offshore bank accounts.
In promoting Reeves, Starmer has sent a very clear message to the electorate – that we can all go to hell as far as he cares. He’s in politics for himself and nobody else.
Why do I say this? Simple.
Commentators are going to be so horrified that Reeves is now in one of Labour’s top jobs that they’ll forget about Starmer’s abysmal election. Or at least that’s what he’s hoping, I reckon.
It mustn’t work. Labour’s election campaign was run from Starmer’s office and as leader he is ultimately responsible for it. The buck stops with him and he should not be trying to pass it onto those he has sacked already or will sack in the immediate future.
And Reeves will be a terrible shadow chancellor. Critics may have attacked former shadow chancellor Annaliese Dodds for failing to challenge the Tories adequately – but, again, it is likely that she was hamstrung by Starmer.
Reeves is likely to agree with every single penny-pinching policy the Tories produce for the purposes of garotting us.
Finally, let’s not forget that by promoting Reeves, Starmer is contradicting his own policy on anti-Semitism because – as we all know – Reeves is a supporter of anti-Semites.
She infamously praised Nancy Astor who, besides being the first female MP, was a notorious anti-Semite, Nazi idealogue and supporter of Hitler.
That’s the extent of Rachel Reeves’s right-wing tendencies. Starmer should be expelling, not promoting her.
Source: Labour reshuffle: Anneliese Dodds out in Starmer’s post-election reshuffle – BBC News
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