Original article by Rachael Swindon
I don’t usually write a blog in the early hours of a Sunday morning, but here I stand, tea in hand, realising it wasn’t a bad idea to leave it until the last minute after all.
I’m genuinely not sure where to start.
The Labour Party has just received the most brutal of electoral hammerings. Actually, it was worse than that and worse than many of us expected. It was a catastrophic wipeout.
If the dismal but entirely explainable smear-ridden defeat in the Brexit election of December 2019 was the boat hitting the rocks, Thursday the 6th of May 2021 was the Titanic crashing into the mother of all icebergs, twice over.
I won’t bother you with many stats of just how bad it was – you’ve probably seen enough of Britain Elects and co on your timeline to make your own minds up. It was awful, wasn’t it?
Hartlepool, a constituency held twice under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, featured in several of my blogs in the build-up to the crucial by-election.
Did the Labour Party really think a carpetbagging candidate, that quite brilliantly managed to top a shortlist of one, who passionately supported Remain during and after the EU Referendum, and defended the murderous human rights abusing Saudi Arabian regime (following an £8,000 all-expenses-paid junket there) was ever the right candidate to hold on to a constituency that strongly backed the vote to leave the European Union and is better known for hanging a monkey than it is for hanging human rights activists?
At first I did wonder if Starmer wanted to lose Hartlepool, such was the utter awfulness of the candidate. The imposition made no sense whatsoever – but then it clicked. This awfulness is entirely consistent with Starmer’s 13 months of failure, infighting, incompetence, naivety, appeasement and mind-blowing senselessness. His own personal judgement is entirely shot to pieces, and his own credibility has never been so low.
This insipid, monotone, charisma-free, over-promoted chancer was supposed to be twenty points ahead by now. Twenty!
Surely it’s time for Jeremy Corbyn to do the right thing, own the disaster, and apologise for Keir Starmer’s fucking uselessness, because you can be sure as hell the knight of the realm will be saying the buck stops with him, while demonstrating he believes the buck still stops with Jeremy, or a vaccine bounce, or Covid-19, or newly-sacked party chair, Angela Rayner, those pesky lefties, the sunshine, the moonlight, or even the good times. Why not blame Meghan Markle too, Sir Keir? She already seems to be deeply disliked by the tabloids that you write for, so you’re already halfway there.
Another thing you need to consider when assessing Keir Starmer’s collapse is the press coverage he has received during his time as leader of the opposition. Compare it to the vitriolic sludge thrown at Jeremy, day in, day out, and even Ed Miliband to a lesser extent, and please ask yourself, where would Keir Starmer be without them now?
If the dishonest British Press and all of the power that comes with them are refusing to throw quite literally everything at the leader of the Labour Party I’m afraid they’re simply not a leader worth having. And why would they bother throwing everything at a party and leader that quite simply does not pose a single threat to the establishment?
This Labour Party *is* the establishment.
Starmer made the huge mistake of walking in the middle of the road for too long, it’s not just radicalism that Starmer comes up short on, its even having a few half-decent policies might help. I mean seriously, without the aid of your favoured search engine, just how many current Labour policies can you name? One? Three? Five?
He stands for nothing and no one. If people want to vote for the Tories there’s every possibility they will vote for the governing Tories and not the parody version. If they want to vote for a not-so-nasty Tory Party they have the Lib Dems, still tarnished from their coalition years, but a simple option for you middle-of-the road centrist dads. So why pitch Labour to the same audience.
when we have a gaping great void over here on the left that just needs a few tweaks and some decent principled leadership to guide the Labour Party through at this very difficult time?
Has Starmer simply been selected to bring about a sudden death to the Labour Party, so I can suffer through a one-party state for the rest of my living days? Surely nobody can be this awful intentionally? But at the same time, this is Starmer, and he really could be this awful.
When Starmer was elected by the Labour Party he promised to deliver unity, before going on to launch an unnecessary and unwinnable factional war against the Labour left.
When Starmer was elected by theLabour Party we were promised a leader that would be twenty points ahead of the worst government in living memory. They kept going on at Jeremy about “electability”, right? You saw what just unfolded – Labour have made something like 150 council seat losses, the last time I checked, and this is following eleven long years of Tory rule. Just how fucking atrocious are you, Starmer? Just how bad do you need to be before you realise just how bad you really are?
Further proof of Starmer owning his own mess appeared earlier this evening, following the sacking of Angela Rayner as Party chair – and several more women from the Shadow Cabinet are tipped to be on their way out sooner rather than later, including Lisa Nandy, who is still seem as threat by much of Starmer’s team, despite the leadership election ending thirteen months ago
Looking in from the outside, Labour, particularly Starmer, would appear to be in an unprecedented state of meltdown.
Put your tiny violins away, because these wounds are entirely self-inflicted.
We campaigned against various Labour councillors, from across the country, using a letter from several hundred of them from a few years back, demanding Jeremy Corbyn stand down as Party leader. Karma works in mysterious and wonderful ways.
Finally, well done to Labour-held Preston Council, who didn’t lose a single seat, simply because they are still successfully following the ‘Corbyn way’ of doing things, and congratulations to Welsh Labour leader Mark Drakeford, a leader a fair way to the left of Starmer, who had some good results in Wales.
The coming hours and days are going to be somewhat explosive, in my opinion. Starmer is on the brink, it will only take one firm push from either direction and he will fall over the edge. This is his lowest point as leader of the Labour Party, and he is running out of friends, beyond a few diehard cheerleaders who insist he is indeed *still* the second coming.
New divisions have opened, more internal warfare is bound to follow, and that means there will only be one winner, again.
And that is the Conservative Party.
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