Over 100 Labour MPs have come out against the New Labour government's plans to cut benefit for single parents.
The Welfare State Network organised a lobby of Harriet Harman, the minister responsible, on Tuesday 25th. It is the first high-profile show of opposition to the Blair regime's pale-Tory policies, and every trade unionist and socialist must hope it pushes the government into backing down on its plan to impoverish further many of those who are already most hard-pressed.
But where are the trade union leaders? Year after year, they told workers that it was unrealistic to hope to win much while the Tories were in power; we had to hold our fire, be patient, and wait for a Labour government. Now we have a Labour government: and not a single major union leader can do so much as say boo.
The union leaders say that it is hard to mobilise the members these days. Sometimes that is true. But if union leaders cannot even do as much as make a high-profile public protest about the benefit cuts - not call an instant mass strike, just register a protest! - then they are helping to deepen the problem rather than solve it.