Labour Leadership: We’re backing Burgon

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Labour heartlands backs Richard Burgon MP for Deputy leader of the Labour Party #Richard4Deputy

We’re backing Richard Burgon for Deputy Leader of the Labour Party  

When Richard Burgon pitched himself as a unity candidate for deputy leader of the party. The Labour Heartlands breathed a small sigh of relief knowing a champion of the working class, a standard bearer in the fight for both civil and workers rights had thrown his hat into the ring.

When shadow justice secretary and Leeds East MP made his case for choosing to run in the race.

He said there was a need to bring together different sides of the party while figuring out exactly how Labour’s policies, including on Brexit, contributed to it losing 59 seats — mainly in Leave-voting areas. Richard Burgon understands the Labour Heartlands and resonates with the working class.

Mr Burgon wrote: “Labour has always been a broad coalition of socialists, social democrats and trade unions.

“For me, that unity is our strength and is more necessary than ever in the aftermath of our devastating election defeat.

“My focus as deputy leader will be to build on that unity as we take the fight to the new Boris Johnson government and try to limit the damage it will do to our communities.”

He stated that Labour should avoid veering away from socialist policies published in the last two manifestos under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn and vowed that as deputy leader he would ensure anti-austerity messages to the public are “sharpened” up.

“Labour must not abandon its socialist policies after its general election defeat”, Richard Burgon cautioned

The shadow justice secretary Mr Burgon warned that it is a mistake “to focus blame” for Labour’s election defeat on its socialist manifesto.

He said: “A weakening of Labour’s popular commitments to ending austerity, returning rail, mail and water to public ownership and a more interventionist role for the state would not win more votes.”

Commenting on Labour’s defeat, Mr Burgon said: “My experience on the doorstep, in my strongly Leave constituency, suggests it was largely due to it becoming the ‘Brexit election’ that Boris Johnson wanted.”

The labour movement has to put its own radical position not as an electoral offer to working people but in the course of common struggles that do not write off as reactionaries vast swathes of people and whole towns.

It means a return to class and class organisation.

Richard Burgon actually got it, instead of blaming the manifesto for being over packed or throwing mud at the Party leader. He quite clearly expressed on the doorsteps it was Labours Brexit policy. The truth behind Labour’s defeat was the vote losing second referendum.

That poor Brexit policy pushed by Keir Starmer and Emily Thornberry the very people that are now trying to peddle the lie and have you believe that the 52 Labour Leave voting constituency’s left the Labour Party because they rejected Corbyn that these Labour Heartlands constituents had no use for Free Broadband. The clue is in the the words LEAVE VOTING CONSTITUENCY’S 

Burgon promises to look at more than why we lost but suggested that he should chair a “special commission” planning now on how Labour could win back support in Leave-voting constituencies.

But Mr Burgon argued: “In 2017 we won 3.5 million extra votes, making huge strides in winning back the five million votes lost between 1997 and 2010 after backing war and proposing austerity.

“Given that we had the same leader in Jeremy Corbyn and a similar manifesto to 2017, I think it is mistaken to focus blame there.”

After the election Burgon said: “It’s not easy when your heart is broken, when the exit poll comes through, when your favourite candidate doesn’t win.

“But we need to come through. We need to win next time.”

Burgon has a unique ability to be enthusiastic about socialism, the future and the Labour movement while still being pragmatic in ideology. He understands the working class needs to be listened to as well as represented. 

Mr Burgon urged people to resist demoralisation and fight on, saying: “Even when we sometimes lose, the effort that we put in, and the resilience shown, sows the seeds for future victories.

“It’s our moral responsibility to get ready to win the next general election. I believe we can do it.”

Richard Burgon insisted that he would “make no apologies for fighting the Establishment,” though he conceded that “just as we all accepted the collective praise” in the 2017 general election, “so must we accept the collective criticism at the same time.”

This is the sort of deputy leader the Labour Party needs one that is prepared to put party before personality and people before party.

Mr Burgon wrote: “Labour has always been a broad coalition of socialists, social democrats and trade unions.

“For me, that unity is our strength and is more necessary than ever in the aftermath of our devastating election defeat.

“My focus as deputy leader will be to build on that unity as we take the fight to the new Boris Johnson government and try to limit the damage it will do to our communities.”

He stated that Labour should avoid veering away from socialist policies published in the last two manifestos under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn and vowed that as deputy leader he would ensure anti-austerity messages to the public are “sharpened” up.

Open selection

Labour heartlands have been a long time advocates of Open selection, we were very pleased to see last week Richard Burgon be the first candidate to back #OpenSelection so that Labour members and trade unions can select the candidate they want. Politicians accountable to their members.

Inclusive not exclusive

Burgon as also show great strength of character in not bowing down to the Board of Deputies outsourced demands on anti-semitisem 

Mr Burgon told a hustings in Liverpool: “I will support the leader in fighting anti-Semitism in our party and fighting anti-Semitism in society. I do believe, obviously, in working with the Board of Deputies in the fight against anti-Semitism. I have not signed and won’t be signing the 10 pledges however, because of some concerns I have.

“Firstly, I’m concerned about outsourcing our complaints procedure and how that would work in practice, so I think that needs clarifying.

“But secondly I want to work with the Board of Deputies and all Jewish organisations against discrimination.

“I’m concerned that the minorities within a minority, whether it be LGBT Jewish people, black Jewish people, Jewish people who are religious minority within that minority, their voices need to be heard as well. We need to listen and act with the whole Jewish community.”

Mr Burgon added there was “no place for anti-Semitism or anti-Semites in our party”.

Richard Burgon, a former employment solicitor at trade union firm Thompsons who was only elected as an MP last year was yesterday named the Shadow Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, as Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn replaced most of this shadow cabinet after the unprecedented string of resignations.

Richard Burgon, MP for Leeds East, worked in the employment rights unit at Thompsons in Leeds for a decade, representing trade union members. Previously shadow City minister, he replaced Lord Falconer.

A self-proclaimed socialist and one of the MPs who nominated Jeremy Corbyn for the Labour leadership, Mr Burgon, who is 39, caused a stir when he was sworn in as an MP by prefacing his oath of loyalty to the Queen with a call for the monarchy’s abolition. “As someone that believes that the head of state should be elected I make this oath in order to serve my constituents,” he said.

Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union

Richard Burgon first received the backing of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union (BFAWU)

Shadow justice secretary Mr Burgon, a former trade-union lawyer, has been referred to as the “first BFAWU member to be elected as an MP.” The union said he had joined BFAWU while working at Thompsons Solicitors.

The union said the nominating decisions had been made “following consultations with regional and branch activists.”

BFAWU supported Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership and, with its one representative on the party’s National Executive Committee, opposed attempts to impose the full IHRA definition of anti-semitism in 2018 on the basis that it would be used to conflate anti-semitism with criticism of Israeli government policy.

Unite decides on Labour leadership candidates

“Unite’s Executive Council has voted overwhelmingly to back Rebecca Long-Bailey to become the next leader of the Labour party, and Richard Burgon to become the deputy leader.

“This has been a day of vibrant discussion by the chief decision-making body in the union, the Labour party’s biggest affiliate, about where next for the party.

“The conclusion of this thorough debate was that Rebecca Long Bailey is the candidate best placed to take the fight to the Tory party on behalf of Unite members and their communities looking for a leader who is one hundred per cent on their side.

“Above all, Becky has the brains and the brilliance to beat Boris Johnson. She is standing for unity, socialism and the determination to make Johnson’s term in office short-lived.

“Unite is also confident that Richard will make a superb deputy to Becky, displaying the qualities that have long been absent from that post – pride in our values, a passion for our party to succeed and, above all, loyalty to their leader.

Labour Heartlands members fully endorse Richard Burgon as Deputy leader of the Labour Party offering our full support.

#OPENSELECTION #Richard4Deputy

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