On 6 February the TSSA transport union sent a report it had produced to Momentum which showed what a lot of us, Labour party members and supporters, already sensed was true. Yes, the party is in a tricky position, bound to lose some votes whatever path it chooses, but nevertheless, the path that most closely aligns us with our principles right now would be that which leads to No Brexit.
After the abysmal general election of 2015, and Jeremy Corbyn’s bid for Labour leader, I saw a wave of exasperation turn into a wave of hope quicker than I’ve ever seen before. I campaigned enthusiastically in both leadership challenges on the promise of much more than Corbyn’s solid left-wing credentials.
I saw an opportunity to stem the rightward drift in the political discourse, to forever bury the immigration-control mugs, to never again chase after the electorate while allowing its views to be shaped by a more and more reactionary media culture. In short, I saw a party that had the rare chance to reinvent itself into a force of principled politics, policy-making from the ground up, participatory democracy and workplace organising.
On many issues of the day, our Labour party has managed to shift the debate quite far. Welfare reforms and austerity cuts are now widely recognised as political tools in the hands of Tory ideology, rather than necessary evils that the financial crisis visited upon us. Waves of attacks on Early Years services for example, usually administered by local authorities, are met with ever more robust opposition in local Labour…