Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Misreading the Labour Party

In the dying weeks of her premiership, desperate to try and save her Brexit deal, Theresa May engaged in negotiations with the Labour Party.  I’m not sure that she ever really thought that she would win over the party as a block, but there did seem reason to believe that some of the concessions she made on maintaining standards in relation to issues such as workers’ rights might have been a way of peeling off enough Labour MPs to get her deal approved.  Ultimately, it failed.  Despite all her attempts to demonstrate a willingness to protect standards and rights, and even potentially seek a closer post-Brexit relationship with the EU, the number of Labour MPs willing to buy it was limited to the usual suspects.
The new PM has adopted a different approach.  Whilst the details remain unclear, all the indications are that he has scrapped the commitments to maintaining standards and rights and is seeking a less close relationship with the EU than that enjoyed by Canada, let alone that enjoyed by countries such as Norway.  Yet it seems that he is attracting the support of more Labour MPs than ever Theresa May managed.  If only Theresa May had realised that the way to get more Labour MPs to support her deal was to promise to weaken employee rights, reduce standards, and increase the amount of damage done to trade and employment, things might have turned out very differently for her.  How could she have misread them so badly?

1 comment:

dafis said...

no deal done yet with Labour or EU. Looks like it's all heading for the bone yard - No Deal, or Parliamentary roadblock. Listening to all the assorted Remainer groups ( and Leavers to some extent) you get the impression that no-one trusts anybody and each segment has its own red lines behind which they dig in for a day or two and then shift around a bit but often in opposite directions !