The Labour Party’s “future candidates programme” released its latest results on 15 October. It was first introduced under the Miliband leadership. Starmer has modified the criteria to allow people who have only recently joined the party to apply, but, more to the point, those selected are broadly supportive of Starmer, and Momentum reports that all left-wing applicants have been unsuccessful.
The programme itself will consist of a mix of webinars and face-to-face learning with marking and graded outcomes!
Left-wing Labour members should have no truck with this sort of candidates programme. It should be the decision of local parties who appears on the long and short lists. Labour can provide skills training in speech-making, talking with media, and other practicalities to those that want it, but that should not be part of any vetting process. Starmer has said he wants candidates less focused on internal Labour party matters: short-hand for right wingers with no interest in policy debate or turning the Labour party outwards into an actual mass movement.
The programme is set to aid people seeking a “career” in politics, and bag carriers for the leadership of the time, rather than working-class candidates with a class struggle and trade union background.