Despite the NEC decision and despite Owen Jones’ angry piece, Andrew Lewin believes that Labour is still a Pro-EU party and the one that can beat Farage.
To Labour voters who back a People’s Vote and are campaigning to remain in the EU, please ignore this angry article. It does not speak for the majority. The worst thing Labour supporters like Owen can do at the European Elections is lecture and patronise Remain voters.
Instead, let’s be honest about the progress made in moving Labour policy on Brexit forward, while recognising we are not where we need to be.
The good news:
– 203 Labour MPs voted for a People’s Vote in parliament;
– 34 Labour candidates have signed the @Remain_Labour pledge to campaign to give the country the final say on any Brexit deal and to vote Remain.
The @Remain_Labour pledge.
Less good news:
– The NEC decision confirms that backing a People’s Vote is an ‘option’, but did not commit to it unambiguously.
Remain campaigners have every reason to be frustrated. But instead of attacking them (as Owen does), we need to convince them to stick with Labour.
There are lots of good reasons to back Labour candidates in the European Elections. One is the likelihood of Farage topping the poll if Remain voters leave Labour and the vote fractures in multiple directions. But that cannot be our sole argument.
Just as importantly...
– Labour candidates for the European Elections are overwhelmingly Pro-EU;
– 34 have already signed the pledge, which commits to campaigning for a final say and voting Remain;
– Every Labour MEP will join the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D) group in Brussels.
Yes, the NEC decision has made it harder for Remain voters to back Labour in the European Elections, not easier.
The way to win them back in the next three weeks is not to attack them (like Owen) but to show that Labour is still a Pro-EU party and the one that can beat Farage.🔷
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(This piece was first published as a Twitter thread and turned into the above article, with the author’s consent, with the purpose of reaching a larger audience. It has been minorly edited and corrected. | The author of the tweets writes in a personal capacity.)