Wednesday, 8 July 2015

What is the point of the Labour Party?

ONE of the great aspects of democracy is usually there is always 'another way'.

Unhappy with the Government? Well take a look at the party in opposition. Had enough of the Government? Then vote the other lot in! 

Be it Thatcher in 79 or Blair in 97, oppositions should show Governments up and present an opportunity for us to vote them in and 'let them have a go'.

Except today, the Labour Party - Her Majesty's official opposition - is not doing that.

Instead the party which once threatened to wipe the dishevelled Tory party of the late 90s almost off the electoral map is now giving the Conservatives a free run at being the Government.

Why? Because Labour must have a debate with itself about why it lost in May, a debate which has seen its MPs coerced into putting someone on the ballot they hope will lose!

The worst part of all this is the party is repeating the mistake of 2010 when it spent the whole summer 'having a debate'.

Meanwhile the Tories not only governed but spun the narrative that the nation was penniless and it was all Labour's fault - a charge which stuck and condemned Labour and Ed Miliband to defeat in May.

And so back to the present, Chancellor George Osborne delivered the first Conservative budget for 19 years.

Labour through Harriett Harperson trotted out the same tired cliches and the candidates all said they'd oppose the jolly bad bits they didn't agree with....

Three of four candidates standing will basically continue the same approach as Ed Miliband, trying desperately to regain economic credibility while also still reaching for their wallets to spend, spend and spend.

Liz Kendall said it was wise to adopt some of the Tory economic polices and was instantly branded 'Tory' by her rivals.

Which is fine, until you realise that actually at the moment, voters might not like the 'Tory' medicine but trust it more than Labour's cure.

Labour needs to start listening to the nation which once flocked to it in its droves and send a message it's still an aspiring Government.

Because otherwise very soon a lot more people may ask 'What is the point of the Labour Party?'

PS: Labour, you lost in May because people didn't like the policies and didn't trust your leader. Worst still while the electorate didn't like the Tories, they were scared of you. Debate done!

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