Letter from Richard Corbett MEP

Dear All,

As you know, European elections will be contested on 23 May. They matter.

  • For however long we’re there, it’s important that Britain has good representatives to defend the interests of our constituents. 
  • This election is shaping up to be a battle for first place between Labour and Nigel Farage’s so-called “Brexit party” (which is not a party with members, but a private limited company set up by Farage that is refusing to reveal its sources of finance).  We cannot let a shady outfit of neo-liberals and racists win a nationwide election!
  • A strong contingent of Labour MEPs could make the Socialist Group the largest one in the European Parliament at a crucial time and just as it elects the next President of the European Commission.
  • Brexit itself will be an issue and we must underline that Labour opposes the bad deal the Tory government has negotiated and believes that if the government is so confident that it is a good deal, it “should not be afraid to put that deal to the public” (to quote our manifesto).  Brexit is turning out to be very different from what the Leave campaign promised and it is only right that the public have an opportunity to confirm that they want to go ahead with it – or not.

Richard Corbett

The Greens, LibDems and Change-UK are all seeking to take votes from Labour arguing that they are more clearly committed to stopping Brexit than we are. They know that, even in so-called “Leave” areas, most Labour voters are “Remainers”, and that public opinion is anyway shifting against Brexit. They already had some success with this in the local elections. But in reality, even with proportional representation, in a 6 member constituency like Yorkshire & Humber, the threshold for getting a single seat is too high for them to easily get one – meaning such votes are wasted in terms of seats and any voters switching from us to them would serve only to reduce Labour’s vote and risk giving an extra seat to the Brexit party.

As to the Tories, they own the Brexit shambles. Their incompetence, their divisions and their inability to deliver anything viable have made a bad situation worse. Meanwhile, the country’s critical problems – austerity, the state of the NHS, housing, crime, crumbling infrastructure, and much else, are neglected.

Labour has a good team of candidates. The list is:
– Richard Corbett 
– Eloise Todd
– Jawad Khan
– Jayne Allport
– Martin Mayer
– Alison Hume

Many of you will know that my colleague Linda McAvan has decided to stand down after many years of exemplary service as a hard working and respected MEP for our region. She will be much missed, but will be supporting us strongly.

You will receive an email from the regional party later today with further information about the election campaign, including details about free campaign leaflets and other materials available for your CLP.  

I look forward to joining you on the campaign trail!

Richard

Richard Corbett MEP

Constituency Special General Meeting 2nd February 2019

Uniting to Stop a Tory Brexit

Ahead of the crucial votes this month this CLP calls for unity of the Labour Party in opposition to Theresa May’s Brexit deal which fails to meet even the lowest standard of the Labour Party’s six tests. We welcome the great strides made by the Party Leadership and MPs to safeguard the UK from a reckless plan, and we call on the party to take imminent action to prevent this Tory Brexit when the Government fails to secure the majority needed. This CLP echoes the voices of thousands of members across the UK and the unprecedented number of CLPs who submitted Brexit motions to conference, in calling for the Party to take the strongest line possible with the Government to prevent more uncertainty and to prevent the clock ticking down to a crash out of Europe.

This CLP supports Jeremy Corbyn in his efforts and agrees with him when he said, “the EU has been very clear: there are no more negotiations, clarifications or meetings.” The Tories delayed the vote for such a time as to make negotiating impossible. There is now no time for equivocation. This CLP echoes conference and party policy and supports the leadership and the work of our MPs in their calls for a general election. When the government fails to secure the support needed to pass their Brexit plan, Labour should immediately call for a general election and if this is not successful Labour will call for a final people’s vote on the deal with remain as an option.

In solidarity with our Party Leaders, this CLP Resolves:

1. To demand and prepare for an immediate general election on the failure of the Tory Brexit plan.

2. Labour must campaign for a public vote on Brexit with an option to stay in the EU, and include such a vote in our manifesto if there is a General Election.

3. (If an election is not immediately possible) To call for a people’s vote on the options available including the option to stay in the EU.

4. To notify the Party Leadership, the NEC, the NPF and other relevant bodies of this motions passing. 

No additional resolutions have been received so the Agenda is simply to discuss the motion from James Ellis and Rosie Adams plus any amendments which are submitted to me by Friday. The resolution plus our existing Constituency policy and the existing Party policy are attached.  The Secretary will bring copies of any amendments to the meeting.  

The meeting is on 2nd February 2019 at Ryedale Community and Leisure Centre, Bowling Lane, Scarborough Road, Norton, YO17 8EG, starting at 11.00 am finishing by 1.00pm. Disabled access and toilets.

Quorum

Under new national rules we are now required to have a quorum of 5% of our membership meaning we need 32 members present.

Mick has suggested the National Centre for Social Research as the best source of opinion stats.  This analysis on 21st Jan is very useful.

David Milliband says his party has ‘no strategy’ on EU withdrawal and should back Final Say referendum

David Milliband has accused Labour of a “dereliction of duty” over its refusal to back calls for a final say on Brexit.

Speaking on the eve of the party’s annual conference, the former foreign secretary said Labour had “no strategy” for Britain’s withdrawal from the EU.

The issue is expected to dominate the gathering in Liverpool, with Jeremy Corbyn facing mounting pressure to support a public vote on whatever deal Theresa May negotiates with Brussels.

Grassroots activists hope to use the conference to force a change in policy towards backing a final say referendum.

It comes after Theresa May admitted negotiations were at an “impasse” and warned that the UK would leave the bloc without a deal unless EU leaders agree to compromise.

Mr Miliband, a former Labour leadership candidate, told BBC Radio 4 Today: “Labour has got to be much, much stronger. The truth is that waiting for the government to foul up is no strategy at all. The country desperately needs a strong government but it also need a strong opposition.

“Labour’s tragedy over 20 years – and I include my own period in this – is that there was almost a complacency about Europe. The Tory tragedy was to be obsessed about Europe and the Labour tragedy was to be complacent about Europe.”

He added: “Finally the complacency is breaking, at least at the constituency level of the Labour Party, but it’s an absolute dereliction of duty for the Labour Party leadership not to embrace the fundamental principle that since the Brexit that people were sold two years ago is not available, it’s essential that the Brexit deal the prime minister does is put to people.

“The most corrosive thing in the long term will be a Brexit on terms that were missold.”

Mr Miliband predicted Ms May would “eke out” a “paper-thin deal” with Brussels and then “use the threat of no deal and the disaster that represents to try to bludgeon people to support it”.

YOU CAN DONATE TO THIRSK AND MALTON CLP AT THE LINK BELOW.
DONATE