The Communist Party reaffirms its commitment of September 23 to work for the election of a left-led Labour government in the forthcoming General Election. This is the only attainable outcome that would serve the interests of the working class and peoples of Britain. Thus we are calling for a clear-cut victory for Labour led by Jeremy Corbyn and for its left and progressive policies.
After nine years of Tory rule, assisted for the first five by their LibDem collaborators, the working class and people generally are desperate for an end to austerity, privatisation, militarism and imperialist war. They need what only Labour is proposing in this General Election and could deliver in office – policies to promote full employment; public ownership of key industries and utilities; a reinvigorated strategy for regional economic development; a more progressive tax system and a major redistribution of wealth and power in favour of working people and their families. We welcome Labour’s commitment to a massive public sector housebuilding programme; renationalisation of the railways and other privatised industries and services; large-scale investment in public services; a ‘Green New Deal’ for environmental security including a universal home insulation programme; new rights for workers and unions, including the revival of sectoral collective bargaining; comprehensive social care for the elderly; and substantial increases in pensions and social benefits.
However, an influential faction of the Parliamentary Labour Party has long represented the interests of monopoly capital and British imperialism and will continue to seek ways of frustrating and undermining their own party’s bold, radical platform. These MPs understand that the neoliberal treaties and rules of the EU have been designed to limit or block policies for progressive advance. Everything therefore needs to be done to halt further advances by this anti-democratic, anti-socialist faction which prioritises EU membership above winning a Corbyn-led Labour government. In particular, the Communist Party calls for resistance to a second EU referendum and to the attempts to commit Labour in advance to campaigning for a ‘Remain’ option should such a referendum take place.
For the labour movement in Britain, the absolute priority beyond the election of a left-led Labour government must be the struggle to ensure that Labour’s programme is implemented. Communists understand that all kinds of obstacles will be placed in the way of a left-led government and its policies by the capitalist class, the state apparatus and the EU. This makes it all the more important to continue building, mobilising and politicising extra-parliamentary mass movements, not least the campaign for a left and people’s Brexit.
In particular, an incoming Labour government should seek to negotiate a fresh Withdrawal Agreement which ensures that EU rules on state aid, public procurement and the right of establishment cannot be used to impede the implementation of Labour’s manifesto.
Calling for any vote other than a vote for Labour on December 12 jeopardises the prospect of securing a Labour government. If implemented, its programme will improve the lives of many millions of people to an extent way beyond the intention or capacity of any other programme in this election. Accordingly, Britain’s Communists will not be standing candidates of our own in this General Election. Instead, our activists and branch organisations will be approaching their allies in the labour movement and local Labour Party bodies to volunteer practical assistance in the forthcoming campaign.
Of course, the Communist Party will continue to make the case for its own distinctive policies such as the introduction of a wealth tax, public ownership of the steel, banking, pharmaceuticals and armaments industries, the transition to a federation of England, Scotland and Wales, renunciation of Britain’s nuclear weapons and withdrawal at the earliest opportunity from NATO as well as the EU.
At the same time, our General Election stance is clear and unambiguous:
- VOTE LABOUR EVERYWHERE!
- FOR A LEFT-LED GOVERNMENT!
- BUILD THE MASS MOVEMENT FOR LEFT AND PROGRESSIVE POLICIES!