Who is Tom Watson?

Submitted by cathy n on 7 September, 2015 - 2:01 Author: David Pendletone

Watson comes from a Stalinist-Labour bureaucracy background. He used to boast that his father had been expelled from school for writing pro-Cuba graffiti. On leaving school, Watson got a job in the Labour Party headquarters in Walworth Road. He then went to study Politics at Hull University in 1990; after initially eschewing student politics he became involved in the Labour Club and in 1992 became the Union President.

During this time he was heavily immersed in the National Organisation of Labour Students (NOLS) working closely with the leading lights of the time Lorna Fitzsimons and Jim Murphy, both of whom would later become ultra-Blairite MPs and in Murphy’s case a disastrous leader of the Scottish Labour Party. In the 1992 Labour leadership campaign Watson was a vocal supporter of Bryan Gould. Gould was an outrider for the modernisers (Blairites) standing against the more traditionally Old Labour rightwing, John Smith.

As President of Hull University, Watson inherited, in the President’s office, the collected works of Stalin. He would proudly display them to visitors. After his presidency, he became head of Labour Students. He then became the Labour Party Youth Officer, under Blair, subsequently working on the 1997 general election campaign. When Blair entered Downing Street for the first time in 1997, after Labour’s election victory, Watson was one of the handpicked, cheering crowd outside. In the early years of the Blair government he acted as a Brownite political fixer in the unions, in his job as Political Officer of the Amalgamated Electrical and Engineering Union (AEEU).

Watson became an MP in 2001. He voted for the war in Iraq and subsequently against an investigation into the war. According to Wikipedia, he was the campaign organiser for Labour for Birmingham Hodge Hill by-election in 2004, a campaign which saw Labour issue a leaflet entitled: "Labour is on your side, the Lib Dems are on the side of failed asylum-seekers".

Blair made Watson an Assistant Government Whip in 2004, he was promoted to Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence in 2006. In 2006 he was central to a Brownite plot to topple Blair, publicly calling for Blair to resign. Rather than Blair resigning Watson was forced to resign. When Gordon Brown eventually became Prime Minister he made Watson Minister for Digital Engagement. Later Watson was also implicated in an attempt coup against Brown, as Brown’s popularity crashed.

Since 2010, Watson has led admirable campaigns against the Murdoch press and to expose establishment child-abuse. His recent activity doesn’t change what he is in essence — a Blairite-Brownite machine-politician, an intriguer and plotter. The re-emerging left in the Labour Party should have no illusions in him whatsoever.

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