The British Labor Party will not be led by a woman. The centrist and europhile Keir Starmer was elected this Saturday as head of Labor. “Congratulations to Keir Starmer, the new head of Labor,” tweeted the party announcing the victory of this 57-year-old former lawyer. He obtained 56.2% of the vote.
He succeeds the radical Jeremy Corbyn, who had said after the debacle of the legislative elections that he wanted to hand over.
Two candidates opposed Starmer in this internal race, online and by mail, by some 600,000 members. After reaching its worst electoral score since 1935, Labor has no choice but to reform to maintain its rank as an opposition force in post-Brexit Britain and then lead the battle for the legislative elections in 2024.
Responsible since 2016 for the issue of Brexit for Labor, Keir Starmer had clearly distinguished himself from the wait-and-see line of Jeremy Corbyn by declaring himself for a new referendum and especially for the maintenance of the United Kingdom in the European Union. Right after the June 2016 vote, he was part of the internal rebellion movement against Corbyn.
Barely appointed, Starmer apologized for anti-Semitism in his party. In a televised reaction, because of the coronavirus epidemic, he pledged to “eradicate the poison” of anti-Semitism, a “stain on the party”. His predecessor, the radical Corbyn, elected to everyone’s surprise in 2015, was accused of having allowed anti-Semitic sentiment to flourish within Labor.