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FOUR MEMBERS OF THE ‘USDAW GROUP OF MPS’ QUIT LABOUR IN ANTI-CORBYN SPLIT – CORBYN MUST LAUNCH STRUGGLE TO KICK OUT BLAIRITES AND FIGHT FOR SOCIALIST POLICIES

February 20, 2019 Leave a comment

Since this article was originally written an 8th Labour MP, Joan Ryan, has quit to join the ‘Independent Group’. She is yet another member of the Usdaw group of MPs.

Many Usdaw members will have been unsurprised to see the long-awaited split of some Blairite MPs away from the Labour Party finally manifest itself as the Independent Group in parliament of 7 MPs.

These MPs have been firmly hostile to the leadership of Labour by Jeremy Corbyn, and his radical manifesto in 2017, that put forward many of the demands that trade unionists have been making for including a £10 an hour minimum wage, renationalisation of the railways, a mass council house building programme and more.

Corbyn’s repeated victories have been followed with a strengthening of the left on Usdaw’s EC and the beginnings of a more combative policy to fight for our members interests.

Instead these Blairites wish to take us back to the past with neoliberal policies and support for austerity, as expressed in their statement of their views

“Britain works best as a diverse, mixed social market economy, in which well-regulated private enterprise can reward aspiration and drive economic progress and where government has the responsibility to ensure the sound stewardship of taxpayers’ money and a stable, fair and balanced economy”

If these MPs had remained within the Labour Party they would have continued to fight for such positions and sabotage a Corbyn-led government from implementing its programme.

Therefore it was entirely correct for those on the left within Usdaw to have argued at the 2017 ADM for support for mandatory reselection so that such MPs could have been challenged by the members rather than being able to leave on their own terms.

The seven are far from the only Labour MPs who share their views, with the majority of Blairite MPs still being of the opinion that it is better to attack Corbyn from within the Labour Party. And while they remain, Usdaw’s socialist president Amy Murphy has been recently expelled from Labour!

Usdaw members will be alarmed that three of the new Independent Group are members of Usdaw’s parliamentary group, Luciana Berger, Gavin Shuker and Ann Coffey, the latter being the former Secretary of the group.

Usdaw should immediately withdraw any financial or other support from these MPs. But it also raises questions about why the Usdaw group of MPs includes people who are so clearly hostile to policies passed by our ADM.

Corbyn should withdraw the whip from any MP who helps to prop up the Tories.

These events make even clearer that what is needed to consolidate the victory of Corbyn in two leadership elections is the refounding of the Labour Party, restoring a socialist clause in its constitution and the collective rights of trade unions and opening it’s doors to all groups who wish to join