William Hallowell: Why do the Labour Party STILL believe they are the ‘party of working people’?

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Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer. Photo credit: PA Wire/PA Images - Picture by: Ian Forsyth.

Was the working-class’ message of discontent towards Labour not clear enough after the 2019 General Election, or the May local elections?

By William Hallowell.

It is mad that Labour politicians still believe they represent the working-class. Evidently, they do not, and certainly not under Sir Keir Starmer.

Working people could not have made this much clearer after giving their votes to the Conservatives in 2019 to Get Brexit Done, or after the huge losses in the May ‘Super Thursday’ elections, which called into question the stability, strength and indeed, duration of Starmer’s leadership.

Despite the Labour leader’s lack of representation of socialist interests, and also his lack of support for Labour’s Left (which he made perfectly clear by refusing to readmit Jeremy Corbyn into the Parliamentary Labour Party (PLP), despite demands from Corbyn’s allies to do so, and proscribing several left-wing factions from the party), Starmer doesn’t represent the interests or the views of the working-class. Why? One simple, yet so divisive – especially within the Labour Party – word: Brexit.

How can Starmer, and the majority of his referendum-resenting MPs, proclaim to ‘represent’ to working-class so authoritatively and so arrogantly, when most of them favour rejoining the European Union – a view so contradictory to such a large proportion of working-class people?

That is why so many defected to the Conservative Party in December 2019 and May 2021; that is the truth; not one of the many blame-shifting excuses for lack of support from the working-class: the ‘Murdochian’ press and ‘character assassination’ of Corbyn, to name a frequent one (as opposed to lack of decisiveness and clarity over Corbyn’s Brexit strategy, or general contempt held towards the average voter, instead).

Is it any wonder that working-class people have begun to shy away from Labour over the last two years when the ranks of the PLP, and many of their supporters, would sooner don the flag of the European Union – or worse, commend the countries of the hammer and sickle ideology – before they would dare wave Red, White and Blue for Britain? When the priorities of Labour MPs are fighting for international causes, such as the ‘freeing’ of Palestine, rather than fighting for the domestic causes of working people at home, it should come as no surprise that their working-class vote has decreased.

The PLP’s political priorities are simply not attuned to those of the working class. The average voter, let alone Labour voter, is not concerned with the party’s weaponisation of woke ideology, which focuses on divisive topics such as the transgender issue, or the tearing down of statues in the name of ‘anti-racism’ – which in reality, is merely an excuse to wreak havoc, and anarchism, on the streets of Britain.

Working-class voters are instead focused on their job representation and Brexit – and they want a party which reflects these issues.

They do not want a race-baiting, patriot-shaming party that looks down on them. And neither are they interested in a Labour leader who’s patriotism is disingenuous, a pseudo-patriotism as it were, that is merely a political attempt to win back votes – the same leader who openly called to dismantle the monarchy and who supports the anti-British (and thus, unpatriotic) nature of the Black Lives Matter movement and woke ideological fantasies.

When so many working people take pride in their patriotism, yet are shamed as ‘flag-shaggers’ by the snobbish, middle-class movement within the Labour Party, is it any wonder that Labour have lost such a disastrous amount of working-class support?

Sir Keir Starmer and his frontbench claim to support the working-class, but they must be able to see that ‘supporting’ the working-class extends far beyond the lazy, wannabe-populist, back-of-the-fag-packet realms of calling for a £10 an hour minimum wage. Any party could back this policy – it’s hardly groundbreaking politics.

Though the Conservative Party has its obvious faults, including their policies which negatively impact the working-class (chiefly and most recently, their National Insurance contributions increase), it is this Conservative Government that vowed to deliver a Brexit strategy, which they have; and, it is this Conservative Government that have committed to ‘Levelling Up’ Britain, pumping lots of money into poor areas – areas that may have been, or are, traditionally Red, and are doing so.

Labour politicians who, still, truly believe they represent working people are either arrogant, mad or blind to reality.

Even after the last General Election, even after the May local elections and even after their embarrassing and symbolic by-election defeat in the former Red heartland, Hartlepool, Labour are desperately losing grip of the working-class vote – the vote they so desperately need to survive.

For more from William Hallowell please follow him on Twitter.

© 2021 William Hallwell

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