Labour's internal elections

Submitted by martin on 12 August, 2020 - 7:57 Author: Martin Thomas
Lara McNeill

Above: Lara McNeill, second from right at front, giving the "vigilance salute". That "salute" has been widely shared on social media by sections around Young Labour, including sometimes with captions such as "celebrates the 89th anniversary of the expulsion of Trotsky from the Soviet Union". More: bit.ly/rl-do.


Nominations for the elections for 18 places on Labour's National Executive (NEC), and for the Young Labour national committee, remain open until 27 September.

There are over 170 candidates in the NEC contest. Two slates (or two-and-two-halves) lead the contest for the nine CLP [Constituency Labour Party] places. Since the election is by STV, both the right-wing coalition Labour To Win and the Centre Left Grassroots Alliance (CLGA) are pushing only six names. Open Labour is pushing two, and the Tribune group of MPs three.

While siding with the left against the right, we want the shortcomings of the left slate process to be noted. Instead of first establishing a left platform, covering at least the issues key for the NEC, conference sovereignty and internal democracy, the CLGA first agreed names then asked the six to sign a platform. It got only the blandest generalities.

Jermain Jackman, on the OL slate, is as left-wing as any of the CLGA nominees, and deserves to be nominated too.

For the NEC youth place, candidates need two affiliated groups (unions or other) to reach the ballot paper. So most won't, but the two certainties seem to be Lara McNeill (CLGA) and Kira Lewis, informally backed by LTW.

They don't need CLP nominations. If they seek them, we want it noted that under the leadership of Lara McNeill and her friends, Young Labour has declined and has had a narrow-minded regime. Lara McNeill herself has been photographed giving the "vigilance salute", adopted by the Stalinists in Young Labour from the anti-Trotskyist witch-hunts of the 1930s and 40s.

Candidates for the disabled place need five CLPs. The front-runner is CLGA-backed Ellen Morrison, who already has two union nominations (Unite and Bakers), but Morrison is on a similar wavelength to McNeill. We would rather nominate Richard Rieser, well-known as a promoter of inclusive education, and with a good previous record as an activist in the teachers' union NUT.

Nominations for the YL committee places are made by individual under-27 members, not by CLPs.

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