The Labor Party has ended its experiment with the left course. After two electoral defeats in four years, the British Social Democrats have realized that Jeremy Corbyn’s policies are unlikely to be a majority.
With Keir Starmer, they have now chosen a representative of the center to be the new party leader. Left-wing candidate Rebecca Long-Bailey was beaten.
Corbyn had tried to erase the legacy of the business-friendly reformer and three-time election winner Tony Blair. He had occupied all the important party offices with his followers. Now the pendulum swings back.
Starmer must once again make the disputed traditional party a serious force that can win and rule elections. It will not be easy, because the British comrades are in the same crisis of meaning as social democracy everywhere. The internal war between Corbyn and Blair camps has tied all energies for years. Starmer must bring the party together and relocate.
The Brexit scars still have to heal. In the highly emotional debate, he was the cool pragmatist who always remained objective. The pro-Europeans in the party accused him of not being passionate enough to remain in the EU, but of supporting Corbyn’s zigzag course.
Corona crisis could help Labor return
It is almost a good thing that the opposition in the corona pandemic has been completely deregistered. The crisis is the hour of the executive – as evidenced by the rising poll ratings of Boris Johnson’s conservatives. A national effort is required in the fight against the virus, criticism is frowned upon. Starmer is therefore well advised to hold back first.
But in the long term, the corona crisis could prepare the ground for the Labor party’s comeback. First, as a crisis manager, Johnson has so far not given a good picture. He is accused of acting too late. When there was already a curfew in Italy, tens of thousands were still romping around in Britain in horse racing.
The Tories are also accused of having broken the state health system NHS in its ten years in government. The facts speak for themselves, and Labor, as the inventor of the NHS, has greater credibility in the field.
Second, the Tories are massively expanding the state in the crisis. Further billions in aid and nationalization are expected, and the debt ratio could soon exceed 100 percent of economic output.
The return of the strong state should play into the hands of Labor, because that has always been its core competence. In the future it will be difficult for the conservatives to hold up to the comrades their religious beliefs and a too loose budgetary policy.
However, there are doubts as to whether Starmer can excite his compatriots sufficiently. The lawyer, who is always neatly defeated, is very eloquent but not charismatic. In addition to the dazzling Johnson, he looks like a pale career politician. However, Starmer’s seriousness can also be an advantage for him in times of crisis – especially compared to Johnson.
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