"Labour no longer represents me"

By: James Edwards

I believe in supporting working people and supporting aspiration, and that is why I shall be joining the Conservative Party

What does the Labour party stand for? It seems like a simple enough question but I’ve been asking myself this since Corbyn took over in September. Now before I go any further let me make one thing clear this is not some attack on Labour by a closet conservative. I have worked for the Labour Party as a student vote activator and most recently have been the President of the Labour society at Southampton for the last year, during this time I have constantly on the doorstep tried to defend the absurd actions of my own party. However I’m tired of defending the abduction of my party and what it stands for by radicals, led by Jeremy Corbyn.

When I began supporting the Labour party back when I was 13, Labour was the party that introduced the minimum wage, the party that introduced civil partnerships, the party that lifted millions out of poverty, to put it simply it was a party that changed not just millions of lives for the better but changed the very fabric of our nation for the better. But look at how far this party has fallen.

Labour is now little more than a protest movement, thanks to support from groups like Momentum the focus of Labour is to be the leading agitators in the nation, it does not aim to govern the country or change it. Corbyn and his many loud mouthed supporters continue to shout themselves hoarse about the many 'atrocities' they see in the UK at the moment, but this will not fix anything only a party in government can make real change and under Corbyn the Labour Party will never be that. Corbyn's Labour will be the loudest footnote in history, but a footnote nevertheless and you get the feeling he wouldn't have it any other way.

But while Labour has been bickering among itself look at what the Conservative government has done over the last 6 years, one of the greatest social changes in the last 50 years with the legalisation of Gay marriage. There has been a singular desire to put education first, with the success of the academies scheme. This is not even to touch on their financial success, cutting government waste but more importantly protecting the key government areas of spending such as the NHS, not to mention the introduction of the living wage. The contrast between the two parties is unflattering in the extreme to Labour, and shows what Corbyn and his Labour party will never understand, you cannot make real change and real improvement to people’s lives unless you are able to be the party of government.

Yes I'm angry, not just at the direction my party has taken as it lurches to the left and to another four years of being unelectable, I'm more angry that Labour is failing the country in the same way the Conservative party did in the early 2000s. The job of the opposition is to hold the government to account, to make sure all voices are heard and to help shape the public discourse, our parliamentary system relies on this. Yet this role is ignored in Corbyn's labour as he spends his time dealing with the opposition in his own party. Take for instance at the Budget 2016 where he should have been trying to hold the government to account, however rather than doing this within a couple of weeks there was the publication of the Corbyn loyalty list, another embarrassing display.

This sort of screw up is usually just embarrassing but there has now been seven months of these screw ups, and it is getting downright depressing. In September it was the appointment of John McDonnell, December it was Syria, January it was his suggestion of Trident without nukes, and that’s before even mentioning the anti-Semitism row engulfing the party this week. Even though his policies were against the interest of the people I could at least accept he was opposed to leaving the 1980s on principle and yet where did his principles and backbone go when it came to the EU question? For his entire parliamentary career he had opposed the EU, yet now he has decided to support it, for a man trying to claim to be part of a ‘new kind of politics’ this certainly reeks of traditional chameleon like behaviour.

Yet my greatest concern is not just Corbyn’s leadership, or lack of it, no my great concern is those who are best described as ‘Corbyn’s foot soldiers’ I am talking of course about groups like Momentum and Left Unity. They are everything that is wrong with the Labour party, this can be demonstrated by their actions regarding the Syria debate back in September. Within minutes of the vote there were calls from these insurgent groups to deselect the 66 Labour MPs who voted in favour of extending airstrikes. Whether you agree with how they voted it is frankly abhorrent to threaten them and actions taken such as the posting of a photo of a dead baby through Peter Kyle MP door because he voted in favour of airstrikes are the acts of impudent thugs and bullies. These are the organisations which now control the Labour party, but thankfully not government.

I care about the future of our nation. As a student, when I finish my degree I want to leave knowing there are job opportunities out there, knowing the NHS will be protected, and knowing I will be able to buy a house for a fair price one day. None of this can be or will be guaranteed by the loud mouthed protest movement Labour has become.

The Labour Party is no longer the party I joined, the party I supported, and the party I worked so hard to try to get into government. With the influx of groups like Momentum, like Left Unity, it no longer represents me and that is why I am resigning as Labour society President. I believe in supporting working people and supporting aspiration, and that is why I shall be joining the Conservative Party.
"Labour no longer represents me" "Labour no longer represents me" Reviewed by Student Voices on 20:40 Rating: 5


  1. I suppose this shows how the Conservative party is no longer about conservative or capitalist values.

  2. Yes, of course the Labour Party is no longer the one you joined James Edwards. You joined the labour party under in the Blairite years as it was the status quo. You fought for the right wing of Labour from 2010 - 2015 as it represented the lack of change you longed for. You and you family stood to gain from the inequality of the current way things are. Now Labour stands for actual change (albeit relatively minor in the large scheme of things), no wonder you feel alienated, YOU WHERE ALWAYS A CONSERVATIVE albeit with a small c. There was never any want for social change from you James Edwards - you always wanted things to remain the way they where. Under you the Labour society attracted few members and achieved even less. You are a careerist through and through - the LABOUR party is for workers - not bourgies like you.

    Listen to this man, who actually says academies are good for education. Do you know why he thinks that? Because he spent his whole life in private education! He will never know what it is like to be in an oversized class taught by an underpaid teacher. James was an anethema to social progress the labour party should represent and I am glad to see him go. We need more Blairites to follow his lead in fact! The Labour party stands for those who are trodden on, not those who do the treading! BE GLAD YOU ARE NOT IN REVOLUTIONARY FRANCE James Edwards, your head would have been on the chopping block

    1. You summarise the exact disgusting flair in the Labour Party. This organisation where if you don't toe the party line you are out! And for declaring "Blue Labour" or Blairrites as fake is abhorrent. I am from a deprived South East London background, went to a local state primary and secondary, with "over-sized" classrooms and I am a loyal Conservative Party member and have been since I was 16 (now 20). We are the party which only ever push for change, strive for it, create opportunities and succeed - if you look over the past 40 years most changes have been by the Conservative party, and Blair, and if you think you are going to get elected in 2020, you are greatly mistaken.

      -- Freddie Saunders (Writer @StudentVoices)

    2. Yeah the Conservatives push for change, no one doubts that, they just push for change in the wrong direction. The years of progress under Blair occurred during a time of plenty, but now the global economic community is in crisis - we can't keep the old social order, conventional solutions will not work for new problems. Ultimately time will reveal what the "progress" of this conservative government really is, lavish support for the rich and breadcrumbs for the poor and middle class - by the time 2020 rolls around people will think very differently about politics.

  3. Welcome to The Conservative Party - the party for success, progression and change. Fantastic article by the way.

    -- Freddie Saunders (Writer @StudentVoices)

  4. Absolutely incredible that you've been a part of the political process for this long and genuinely think the Conservative party is concerned with things like protecting the NHS.

    You don't like the way Labour works at the moment, so your brilliant solution is to shirk the hard job of changing that and opt for the easy choice of throwing a tantrum (yes, that's what this is) by joining an opposition that is actively and demonstrably destroying people's lives.

  5. So the Labour party moves away from its muddy centrism and a rat jumps ship to another muddy centrist party. This isn't surprising. The Conservative party is Blairite; it is "progressive" Fabian socialism.

    Anyone who considers themselves a conservative should not see this as a victory, all this shows is that the Conservative party isn't conservative.

  6. Okay fella. Jeez. I understand how you might not want to support Jeremy Corbyn anymore.

    But don't be so naive to say the Conservatives are the party of the working people, and to use their 'living wage', the forced academisation, and the idea that they'll be protecting the NHS as proof that they'll be doing that.

    The Living Wage Foundation have ultimately and completely rejected Osborne's Living Wage, saying it is not enough for a worker to live on.

    All teachers are rallying against the idea of forced academisation, while it may work in some areas, a one size fits all policy is simply damaging to the education of our country's future.

    And the fact that something like 98% of junior doctors are against Hunt on this, and they have been lying about the statistics of people taking up the new contract, and how Hunt has led to massive Junior Doctor strikes, something I can't remember in my lifetime, saying they care about the NHS when if you look at statistics from the Economist, every NHS franchise was making a profit until the Tories took over and they are all making differing amounts of heavy losses. That is not protecting the NHS that is destroying it.

    They want to bring Nuclear Power to the UK (yay!) but they're making Chinese Companies build it, instead of British Companies... They don't care about British Workers, fella!

    Sorry for the people in these comments insulting you for leaving calling you a rat or whatever, but christ mate, the Tories are as much the party of the hardworking people as Corbyn is a nuclear Sub Commander.

  7. Fair enough. But the Labour party is only a mess at present because the MPs are failing to support their leader, elected by a vast majority by the members who fund the party. Yes, the Labour party is supported by the Unions, but I'd prefer that than being propped up by high net-worth individuals who made it big when Maggie was flogging off council houses and British industry. Obviously you've made your decision; to leave a Labour party truer to its founding principles than it has been since the 1980s (arguably, even the 1970s) to join an increasingly conservative Conservative party (who knew there could be such a thing). What I object to is you using your position as President of the Labour society to lead an inflammatory attack on Corbyn's leadership. On the membership card that I proudly carry with me wherever I go it says, 'by the strength of our common endeavour we achieve more than we achieve alone'. If an increasingly socialist party, with massive union support (anyone can set up or join union, lest we forget) is something that you are so opposed to then why were you ever a member?


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