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It’s time to halt the infighting over the leadership election

keep-calm-and-remember-unity-is-strengthI have sent this letter to all Labour MPs to try and draw a halt to the personalised infighting that has gone on with talk in the media of splits and breakaways if Jeremy Corbyn gets elected.

Dear Colleague,

Like me I am sure that you will have been dismayed at some of the statements made by figures within the Labour movement that are allowing the media to give the impression to the general public of a party that is internally divided.

You and I know that this is not the case. In many ways this is just a little bit of the over excitement that often accompanies elections.

I share John Prescott’s view that everyone should just calm down and think seriously about the long-term future of the party and the people we seek to represent.

To reassure everyone that whatever the outcome of the leadership election we have a process for uniting the party, I am writing to propose a process to be adopted immediately following the election result that would ensure the fullest inclusion of everyone within the party in determining the party’s strategy for the coming period, its policy programme and its decision making processes.

In this way nobody would feel excluded and everybody would have a democratic say.

This involves ensuring that the direction of the party rests firmly in the hands of our members.

I propose that immediately following the leadership election the new leader announces that all the leadership candidates will be given the joint responsibility of organising a wide-ranging and detailed consultation on the party’s political strategy, policy programme and internal party decision-making processes.

For this process of party membership engagement at local CLP and regional levels to take place over a three month period culminating in a recall annual conference to take the final decisions on strategy, policy programme and democratic reform.

In this way the future direction of the party will be placed firmly in the hands of its members and so that the party can come together to oppose the Tories and the clear political strategy they are embarking upon which is so damaging to so many people in this country.

More importantly we must unite in order to lay the firm foundations for winning the next election.


John McDonnell MP


  1. Phil says:

    Good stuff, John – great way to build bridges and keep the momentum up.

  2. Rod says:

    “In this way the future direction of the party will be placed firmly in the hands of its members”

    Do you really think the Progress/Blairite elite will countenance this? No chance. This is what they want to avoid at all costs.

    If they had to depend on the approval of the membership many of the untalented PLP numpties would be out on their ears before you could say Jim Murphy.

  3. Sue says:

    This is a great way to go. The membership who do the leafleting etc should have a real say in policy. Rod above is right I think that many in the PLP may not like it but if we are supposed to be a democratic party then that is the way we need to go? As things stand I think the Lib Dems are more democratic than we are.

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