When the annals of British political history are written it will be a dedicated author who even bothers to mention Change UK as a footnote, the “party” now losing six of its 11 MPs as the CUKs essentially wave the white flag and surely can’t be long for this mortal world.
In these dark times of far-right surges, international genocide and the continued existence of Love Island, everybody needs some amusement and the CUKs are certainly the gift that keeps on giving.
Six Change UK MPs have decided to split with the party including both leader Heidi Allen and Chuka Umunna, seen as the creative force behind the party. Allen lasted 68 days as leader.
Not quite as bad as Brian Clough’s infamous 44 days as Leeds United manager, but not far off. While Cloughie’s 44 days is the benchmark for short and inglorious football management reigns, Allen’s time as leader of the CUKs will surely now be the benchmark of political disaster.
The others leaving the party are ex-Labour MPs Gavin Shuker, Luciana Berger and Angela Smith alongside ex-Tory Sarah Wollaston. Those who have left the party will now be sitting as independents.
Seen largely as a desperate neoliberal attempt at ending the reign of the Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour Party, the CUKs have lurched from one incompetent disaster to another, seemingly under the arrogant impression that they had the support of the masses.
Chuka Umunna has ended up less as a British Obama and more of a British Juan Guaidó.
From the moment they couldn’t decide on a name, or a logo, or ensure their candidates weren’t racists, or not suggest bringing back National Service, the CUKs have been seen as little more than a joke amongst the few members of the electorate who actually registered their presence.
It seems however, they have one last joke up their sleeves.
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Corbyn: The Strange Rebirth of Radical Politics
By Richard Seymour
Richard Seymour tells the story of how Corbyn’s rise was made possible by the long decline of Labour and by a deep crisis in British democracy. He shows how Corbyn began the task of rebuilding Labour as a grassroots party, with a coalition of trade unionists, young and precarious workers, students and ‘Old Labour’ pugilists, who then became the biggest campaigning army in British politics. Utilizing social media, activists turned the media’s Project Fear on its head and broke the ideological monopoly of the tabloids. After the election, with all the artillery still ranged against Corbyn, and with all the weaknesses of the Left’s revival, Seymour asks what Corbyn can do with his newfound success.
News, articles & stories from the worlds of politics & history, with a dose of retro culture.