General Elections

Labour and the 3.6% swingMatthewWed, 04/10/2017 - 11:07

The Guardian columnist Suzanne Moore describes the Tory conference: “May visibly flinching at a direct question, in her babble of repetitive phrases that mean nothing. It is as if she is not really there. There is a vacancy at the top”.

Bookmakers now make Jeremy Corbyn the favourite to be next prime minister. Their second-most-rated, at about 6/1 against, are Boris Johnson, David Davis, and Philip Hammond.

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Labour to blame in Scotland?MatthewWed, 21/06/2017 - 12:50

Scottish Labour and/or its leader Kezia Dugdale bear the blame for the re-election of a Tory government on 8 June. That’s the line currently being systematically promoted by cybernats. And it’s not confined to the fringe elements of cybernattery.

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How to go forward from 8 June
MatthewWed, 21/06/2017 - 11:12

The 8 June election result has re-energised Labour’s activist base and helped put basic working-class demands back on the agenda. The increase in turnout among young voters, and the huge Labour lead among young voters, signal a major shift in British politics. All of this opens up a new period of Labour revival and recomposition.

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France: unions must reject consensus with Macron MatthewWed, 21/06/2017 - 10:40

The French socialist newsletter Arguments pour la lutte sociale comments on the second round of France’s legislative elections, 18 June: "Abstentions: 57.4%. Watch out! This major fact must not be interpreted only as a “civic strike”, as Jean-Luc Mélenchon puts it. That is true for many, and for the majority of the 10% of blanked or spoiled ballots or ballots where the two candidates in the run-off were both more or less for Macron. But to see it only that way is to ignore the defeat suffered by the working class on 23 April [in the first round of the Presidential poll].

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Macron: a landslide with 15%?MatthewWed, 14/06/2017 - 11:09

The socialist newsletter Arguments pour la Lutte Sociale reports on the first round of France’s legislative elections (11 June).


The dominant feature of the first round is not the triumph of Macron, but the majority [51%] abstention, for the first time in a legislative ballot in France.It looks like the lowest-income groups and the youth have massively abstained.

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Contrast and compareMatthewWed, 14/06/2017 - 11:02

British Labour Party: continued pink-neoliberal policy from 1997 through to 2015, with a shade more pink from 2010. It went down from 43% of the poll in 1997 to 29% in 2010, and recovered only to 30.5% in 2015.

2017: left policy. Share of poll up to 40%, and overall turnout up to 69% (which still leaves much work to do, but...). 3.5 million extra votes gained.

French Socialist Party: continued pink-neoliberal policy. 2012: won the presidency and a parliamentary majority (with small allied parties).

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Force the Tories out!
AWLWed, 14/06/2017 - 08:48

We have a Tory minority government. But how long Theresa May, or any Tory, can stay is another matter.

The Tories look likely get a working majority in Parliament, at least on budget and confidence votes, by a deal with the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP).There will be divisions between the Tories and the DUP, and within the Tory Party as the talks on Brexit proceed and as economic stresses sharpen. The Tories are likely to drop more abrasive policies like reintroduction of grammar schools, but they are in deep trouble.

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SNP smear opponentsMatthewWed, 31/05/2017 - 11:05

When the SNP government’s record on the NHS was criticised by a nurse during the Scottish party leaders’ debate a fortnight ago, the response from the SNP and their followers was to vilify the nurse.

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Youth vote can beat ToriesMatthewWed, 31/05/2017 - 10:20

“If 38% of voters genuinely go for pro-IRA anti-nuclear pro-mass-nationalisation Corbyn, UK voters are no longer mature enough for democracy.”

The Twitter comment from Andrew Lilico of the right-wing Institute of Economic Affairs sums up how a section of the British ruling class views even the outside chance of a Corbyn victory on 8 June.

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The limits of Labour’s multilateralismMatthewWed, 24/05/2017 - 12:06

There has been some recent media attention on Jeremy Corbyn’s alleged past links to the IRA and the claim that he is a “pacifist” — meaning, he is opposed to any and every kind of military intervention, even around “humanitarian” issues.

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