The Campaign for Labour Party Democracy (CLPD) today announced that it will recommend a first preference vote for Jeremy Corbyn for leader and Angela Eagle for deputy if they are on the ballot paper. It will reconsider its preferences after the close of nominations and consider its position on subsequent preferences.
CLPD is wholeheartedly backing Jeremy Corbyn who has actively supported its campaign to democratise the party since the 1970s.
It is also not surprising that CLPD recommends a gender balanced leadership team as it was the first group in the Labour party to take up the issue of the under-representation of women in the party and in parliament. In 1980, it established a ‘women’s action committee’ which argued:
extending democracy within the party meant nothing… if it could not be extended to the large body of women effectively disenfranchised and largely excluded from the party’s powerful policy and decision-making bodies”
The decision to make a gender balanced recommendation for its preferred candidates was made by its executive last month. Once Jeremy Corbyn announced his candidacy, there was no question about CLPD’s support for him in view of his record on party democracy, policies supported by the grassroots and the party-union link. Its officers therefore recommended support for Angela Eagle as first preference because of her unique record amongst women candidates in support of democracy in the party, of a policy-making process which was accessible to the party grassroots rather than one which was entirely based, in reality, in the leader’s office, of the impartiality of party staff in internal democracy and of the party-union link.