11am and 1pm; these two hours tomorrow will potentially be a history deciding meeting for the Labour Party in Liverpool this weekend. Labour Party members including myself have voted for the future direction of the Party in the form of a straight choice between Jeremy Corbyn and Owen Smith. In this article, I will provide a narrative of how it came to this, compare the candidates as well as express my opinions on this election and what needs to happen afterwards.
The Narrative: How did it come to another Leadership election?
The current situation the Labour Party finds itself in has its roots in the previous labour leadership election last year following the General Election defeat. For a long time, it seemed to be a three-way contest between Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper and Liz Kendal until Jeremy Corbyn made it on to the ballot paper at the death. Corbin himself accepted some of the nominations he received were from fellow MP’s who did not necessarily support him and only did so in order to widen the debate. What these particular MP’s did not count on was a section of the membership and the general public who desired a real alternative; something different to what labour had been offering. Although there was speculation of infiltrators as the Labour membership surged from 200,000 to 300,000; the right people in my mind were weeded out such as Conservative MP Tim Leighton. Overall, 56,000 membership applications were rejected and the hostage ToriesforCorbyn trended on twitter in the aim of running the party. Obviously, this sort of people needed to go and the genuine applications accepted but it made no difference to the outcome as Jeremy Corbyn won in the first round of voting with a vote share of 59.5%.