14 thoughts on “‘Back to Blairism, ruin for British Labour’

  1. Pingback: British Blairites unwelcome at Durham Miners’ Gala | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Burnham heads potential biggest rebellion since Blair era

    by Luke James and Conrad Landin

    LABOUR leader Harriet Harman came under intense pressure to reverse her support for some Tory cuts to child tax credits at a meeting of the shadow cabinet yesterday.

    Ms Harman wants Labour to support the two-child cap on tax credits and abstain on the government’s Welfare Reform and Work Bill next week.

    She has the support of shadow chancellor Chris Leslie and shadow work and pensions secretary Rachel Reeves.

    But half of Labour’s shadow ministers rebelled when she asked for their views at yesterday’s weekly meeting, a party source told the Morning Star.

    Leadership candidate Andy Burnham led calls for Labour to table a “reasoned amendment” and, if that failed, vote against the Tory bill altogether.

    Rival Yvette Cooper also supported the principle of an amendment but was not clear whether she would vote against the bill.

    Speaking to reporters in Parliament yesterday, Mr Burnham branded the Tories’ plans “unsupportable.”

    “I don’t think Harriet did get it right in certain respects on the welfare reform Bill,” said party leadership contender Andy Burnham.

    “I’ve made my view very clear today in terms of calling for a reasoned amendment and indeed, if that fails, opposition to the Bill.”

    The shadow health secretary said that he backed a benefit cap, but that he could not support cuts to tax credits that diminished the incentive to work.

    After Labour MPs voted against the government’s Budget last night, Mr Burnham pointed out that it would be inconsistent to abstain on a welfare Bill containing the same measures.

    But he remained slippery on the suggestion that he might go against the party whip.

    “I’m not normally somebody who then goes outside of the collective ways of agreeing things,” he said.

    “But I’ve made my position very clear in terms of what I expect to be.”

    One Labour MP told the Star last night that Ms Harman could face the biggest rebellion since the Tony Blair era if she refused to change her position.

    The MP was at a “heated” Labour Parliamentary Party meeting on Monday, where there was a 60-40 split against her position.

    “The main thrust was that to stay silent would amount to a betrayal of the people who look to Labour to represent them,” the source said.

    “It could be that 80 or more would be prepared to rebel if the Labour leadership doesn’t change its position. It wasn’t just the usual suspects who spoke against it.”

    A Labour Party spokesman said that Ms Harman would make her final decision “soon.”

    One insider told the Star: “We’ve got no idea what she’s going to do.”



  3. Clear contrast

    FRONT-RUNNER Andy Burnham was apparently “joking” when he said that he “might be open to listening” to suggestions to include Jeremy Corbyn in his shadow cabinet.

    That puts all three non-Corbyn hopefuls on message after weekend calls to isolate the socialist candidate, but opposition to Corbyn by Burnham, Yvette Cooper and Liz Kendall is not all they have in common.

    Blairite factional group Progress, which backs Kendall, admits that it was “spoilt for choice” in making its decision, since Burnham is its former vice-chair, Kendall its current vice-chair and Cooper a former patron.

    There is concern, according to the Torygraph, among MPs who nominated the Islington North MP to facilitate discussion but won’t vote for him, that Corbyn’s anti-austerity message is putting the party on the “wrong side of the public.”

    They mean that the three Progress candidates are indeed on the wrong side of the public and that Corbyn’s clear pro-working class stance proves this every day.

    If only Labour voters had been given a non-choice of three austerity candidates, to a background chorus of Chuka Umunna and Tristram Hunt instructing the electorate to stop having a tantrum and do as you’re told, all would be well, they argue.

    Nothing illustrates better the political bankruptcy of the Progress/New Labourites, confirming the importance of having a real socialist alternative in this campaign.



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  12. Pingback: Big Durham Miners Gala in England | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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