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The Broad Church Is Dead: A Split in the Labour Party Is Now Inevitable

The fallout from the 2019 General Election is in full swing with recriminations and blame being tossed around in an attempt to “prove” non-existent points that had already been risen and debunked before the election. This fallout is increasingly being falsely directed toward socialist Labour as threats from both outside and within smell blood in the water.

It didn’t take long for neoliberals and the absurdist “blue Labour” to try and capitalise on the defeat by Corbyn and lay the blame at the feet of socialism and inclusion, relics like Margaret Hodge and Harriet Harman claiming that the defeat was as a result of Jeremy Corbyn and socialism.

This “fact” of course completely ignores every poll that proves the individual popularity of everything in Labour’s manifesto. If anything, the manifesto didn’t go far enough.

Labour won 10,269,076 votes at the election, a figure that is higher than Ed Milliband’s performance in 2015 (9,347,273 votes), higher than Gordon Brown in 2010 (8,609,527 votes) and higher Tony Blair in 2005 (9,552,436 votes). The figure is not far from Tony Blair’s 2001 landslide when he won 413 seats from 10,724,953 votes. 

Labour did not lose the election on ideas, Boris Johnson won it.

Significant swathes of Britain have been convinced of the crusade to leave the European Union, a quest like mentality bordering on religious fervour. The lack of voices in the Labour Party for a left-wing socialist Brexit created a one-sided argument and vacuum that the far-right stepped in to and in turn once the far-right were involved Brexit became entirely about race and immigration, with arguments about EU neoliberalism and overreach buried amongst the bile. Few on the left could stand with that.

The Conservatives unequivocal stance on Brexit won votes and it’s absurd to suggest that the architects of those who pushed Labour toward their stance on a second referendum should now be blaming Jeremy Corbyn and socialism for what they have engineered, or that they should be involved in the leadership of the party going forward.

The Blairite cult was more guilty than anyone of undermining Jeremy Corbyn and the socialist project, they were responsible for pushing the party to accept the stance on Brexit and there can be no doubt that while the motivations of many were from a genuine stance for Remain, many also knew that the resulting election would deliver a serious blow to Labour within Leave areas. 

This calculating move was deliberate and celebrated on election night by neoliberals.

The fact that the “broad church” of Labour has now entirely collapsed is a reality that some are unwilling the face and this must be accepted and dealt with quickly for opposition to Boris Johnson’s far-right government to flourish. Johnson is coming for independent media, he’s coming for the BBC and NHS and he’s coming for the Supreme Court, in-fighting within Labour is only going to aid his actions.

There is no future between neoliberal Labour and socialist Labour, the two ideologies are inherently opposed and it is clear that the majority of those espousing neoliberalism are unwilling to compromise or adapt to the changing reality of the political and social situation. Clinging to a dying ideology, they are a millstone around Labour’s neck and will only continue to try and undermine socialism going forward.

If Jeremy Corbyn made one mistake it was trying to uphold this “broad church” and, through his nature, seeking compromise and negotiation with those out for his blood. With the stakes now so high, there can no longer be compromise and a split in the Labour Party is now inevitable. It should be welcomed.

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