19 September 2015

Jeremy Corbyn’s Biggest Challenge Is Unifying Labour


It’s been a week since Jeremy Corbyn decisively won the Labour leadership. Since, he has been under fire and extreme scrutiny every day by the rightwing press and the Conservatives with their pathetic YouTube video. Their propaganda may look like the most harmful thing that can hurt Corbyn to becoming the next prime minister but, there’s a much bigger threat to his success.

As soon as Corbyn’s campaign began gathering pace and gaining support, big players in the Labour Party made their positions crystal clear. The likes of Tristram Hunt, Yvette Cooper and Chuka Umunna all stated that they wouldn't serve in a Jeremy Corbyn cabinet. His triumph quickly prompted resignations and announcements from opposing Labour MPs. What Corbyn is left with now, is a Labour Party in a civil war. Prominent Labour MPs are now backbenchers and those who previously lead rebellions against Blair’s and Brown’s governments, are now leading the party.

Those in Labour opposing Corbyn seem to think that they own the party and that Corbyn’s election wasn't justified. However, Corbyn’s victory was the most democratic election in British history. A man was elected with socialist values and those who could be termed as ‘Blairites’, believe that a socialist shouldn't be leading a party that was born was from socialism. Their delusion seems only to stem from their plea that Tony Blair was Labour’s most successful leader. However, that does not mean that Blair owns the party nor does it mean that he is some sort of demigod who can dictate over those who do not follow his Thatcherite ideology. 

Corbyn faces huge challenges in his own party. Plots and coups have been rumoured and a sixth month tenure seems to be the most favourited. An ousting of a democratically elected leader would show how institutionalised British politicians are. An ousting of Corbyn would prove that it is the establishment that runs the country. The civil war will be bloody but Corbyn will not use force to win. His style is far more democratic and he will use his powers of honest persuasion and socialist intellect to win over opposing Labour MPs. 

The threat inside the party is far more dangerous than the propaganda in the press. Corbyn can easily overcome slander for not singing the national anthem, not having a female in the ‘top four’ cabinet positions and choosing a chancellor who had to apologise for comments about the IRA. The only reason the press is on his back is because of fear that their friends in government may face a loss in 2020. But the threat from a disbanding party would hinder Corbyn far more. If Labour can’t fight the government together, they will lose. A unification of all party members is Corbyn’s biggest challenge and one that I can’t see him winning. 

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