Hit List: Dennis Skinner’s unheeded warning to Neil Kinnock about Labour’s move to the centre

Skinner, Kinnock
Skinner's unheeded warning to Kinnock on Labour veering from the left and its shift to centrism

Labour Civil War

Following Neil Kinnock’s decision not to vote for Tony Benn in Labour’s Deputy Leadership election in 1981, he clashed with Dennis Skinner in a Tribune meeting.

Kinnock boasted at a 1981 Tribune conference fringe about his supposed bravery in continuing when he claimed he was on a left-wing ‘hit list’, Skinner laid some working-class truth on him: Those who know and care what politics is really about – life and death for millions – don’t worry about incurring the wrath of opponents. They know being in Parliament is a privilege – and consider being on political ‘hit lists‘ as nothing more than a sign they’re doing the job right of standing up for those who face real hardship and conflict. They don’t tip-toe down the middle of every road in terror of taking a position someone might not like.

This Vintage footage of former Labour MP and ex-miner Dennis Skinner shows him taking down centrist idol Neil Kinnock in an unheeded warning on the direction and course of the Labour Parties as it headed straight to the centre, the course that led directly to Blair and has allowed Labour to become an alternative Tory party rather than an alternative to the Tory Party.

Of course, 43 years later and many lost battles, the final war for the heart and soul of the Labour Party was won by the right-wing under Sir Keir Starmer and the centrist infiltrators leaving the Left disenfranchised and homeless, for now…

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