Prepare a workers’ list for the general election
“Absolutely!” That is a common refrain from people reading the headline ‘Tories Out’ that has featured on a number of the recent issues of the Socialist.
There is no doubt that, for very good reasons, millions of working-class people want them gone after over a decade of austerity, pandemic catastrophe and now cost-of-living hell.
But when a general election happens, at some point between now and December 2024 at the latest, what is the alternative? Sir Keir Starmer, by blocking Jeremy Corbyn from standing as a Labour candidate, and declaring his party is “unrecognisable from 2019”, is sending a clear signal to the bosses that he is on their side – not on the side of working-class people.
The trade unions have led the fight for pay and funding for services with the biggest strike wave for decades. The Socialist Party is calling on them to lead the fight for a working-class political alternative too.
We have prepared the model motion below, calling for the trade unions to back Corbyn to stand in the next general election.
Our members are campaigning for the trade unions to prepare a workers’ list for the next general election. It could include Corbyn and other left-wing MPs barred from standing for Labour, trade union leaders themselves, and hundreds of workers that have been on strike in the last months.
Such a stand would make a huge difference, it would boost workers’ confidence and raise the possibility of a small group of genuine workers’ MPs after the next election.
And if a union-backed workers’ list doesn’t get off the ground in time, the Socialist Party is backing the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition’s campaign to bring together 100 candidates to stand. Such a stand could bring together members of left-wing groups and parties including the Socialist Party, as well as individual trade unionists and campaigners. It would plant a flag and give over a million people the option to vote for a working-class alternative to Tories and Labour.
Model motion to move in your trade union
Support Jeremy Corbyn for MP
This union organisation/conference notes the announcement by Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer that Jeremy Corbyn will not be allowed to defend the Islington North seat, that he has held since 1983, as a Labour candidate at the next general election.
This union organisation/conference believes that:
This is an utterly undemocratic act, removing Jeremy’s right to take part in a selection contest
As with Jeremy’s suspension from the Parliamentary Labour Party, this is a political statement by the Labour leadership, moving the party to the right politically, proving its credentials to big business and the capitalist establishment. It follows the refusal of Starmer to support striking workers, and the sacking of Sam Tarry from the shadow cabinet for speaking up for union action from the picket line
It is confirmation that, under Starmer’s leadership, Labour does not represent the interests of workers and working-class communities
Therefore, workers need political representation that supports their action against the cost-of-living squeeze, and stands for policies such as re-nationalisation, opposition to cuts, and for the repeal of the Tory anti-union laws
Therefore, this union organisation/conference agrees to:
Instruct the union NEC/EC/Executive to give full support to Jeremy Corbyn, and if necessary change the rules of the union to allow the union to campaign for his re-election as the Islington North MP if he decides to stand in the next general election, including as an independent candidate
Where there are local authority elections in May 2023
Encourage members to consider standing as anti-cuts candidates in the council elections scheduled for May. We note that there is nothing that prevents them standing as candidates, in a personal capacity, for any party which truly supports trade unionist and socialist principles