MIL-OSI UK: Best Labour leader of last decade? Corbyn, say 59% of LabourList readers

Source: Labour List UK

Nearly 60% of LabourList readers think Jeremy Corbyn is the best Labour leader of the last ten years, a recent survey has found.

Responding to a poll celebrating LabourList’s tenth anniversary, 2,885 readers gave their views on Labour leaders, events and campaigns since the website’s launch in January 2009.

59.5% of all those surveyed believed Corbyn to be the best leader of the last ten years, while almost 30% preferred Gordon Brown and only 10.6% opted for the incumbent’s predecessor, Ed Miliband.

The LabourList poll also found a majority of readers favoured the 2017 general election over other campaigns held since 2009, with Corbyn’s 2015 and 2016 leadership campaigns taking second and third place in their ranking.

The outcome of the snap election in 2017, which saw Labour win 40% of the vote, came third in the poll on Labour Party events, as Corbyn’s leadership election victories topped the list.

Below is a detailed breakdown of the questions and readers’ responses.

Who has been the best UK Labour Party leader of the last ten years?

  1. Jeremy Corbyn – 59.5% (1,718)
  2. Gordon Brown – 29.9% (862)
  3. Ed Miliband – 10.6% (305)

What has been your favourite Labour Party event of the last ten years?

  1. Jeremy Corbyn winning the 2015 leadership election – 31.8% (910)
  2. Jeremy Corbyn winning the 2016 leadership election – 31.6% (904)
  3. Winning 40% share of the vote in 2017 – 30.2% (863)
  4. Becoming the largest party in Western Europe – 22.3% (639)
  5. The 50% top tax rate introduced in 2010 – 20.6% (588)
  6. Replacing the electoral college with one-member-one-vote – 19.7% (564)
  7. Gordon Brown withdrawing forces from Iraq – 16.5% (472)
  8. “Ed Balls” tweet – 6.2% (177)
  9. Sheila from Bolton West inviting thousands from across the UK to her CLP meeting – 5.2% (148)
  10. Jennie Formby becoming general secretary – 4.7% (133)
  11. Iain McNicol becoming general secretary – 4.4% (125)
  12. Ed Miliband winning the 2010 leadership election – 4% (115)
  13. Allowing registered supporters to join – 2.8% (79)
  14. “Hell yes, I’m tough enough.” – 2.8% (79)
  15. The EdStone unveiling – 1.4% (39)

What was your favourite campaign of the last ten years?

  1. 2017 general election – 39% (1,091)
  2. Jeremy Corbyn’s 2015 leadership campaign – 16.4% (457)
  3. Jeremy Corbyn’s 2016 leadership campaign – 15.7% (440)
  4. Yvette Cooper’s 2015 leadership campaign – 4.9% (136)
  5. David Miliband’s 2010 leadership campaign – 4% (111)
  6. 2014 Scottish independence referendum – 3.8% (106)
  7. Owen Smith’s 2016 leadership campaign – 3.2% (89)
  8. Liz Kendall’s 2015 leadership campaign – 2.8% (78)
  9. Ed Miliband’s 2010 leadership campaign – 2.4% (66)
  10. 2016 EU referendum – 2.1% (60)
  11. Andy Burnham’s 2015 leadership campaign – 1.7% (48)
  12. 2011 AV referendum – 1.3% (37)
  13. Andy Burnham’s 2010 leadership campaign – 1.3% (35)
  14. Ed Balls’ 2010 leadership campaign – 0.9% (24)
  15. Diane Abbott’s 2010 leadership campaign – 0.6% (16)

Thank you to all 2,885 readers who took part in our anniversary survey.

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MIL-OSI UK: Could a workers’ rights amendment win Labour backing for May’s deal?

Source: Labour List UK

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Today is the tenth birthday of LabourList, which launched on 10th January 2009. First edited by Derek Draper, whose dramatic entry and exit from the project remains unrivalled (so far), the site was then under the helm of Alex Smith, Mark Ferguson and Peter Edwards, all of whom contributed brilliant reporting and helped grow this mailing list, which now has over 37,000 subscribers. I’ve only been in post less than a year, but hope I have provided some clarity and useful analysis in these interesting times. To mark the occasion, I’ve rounded up the most-read comment pieces of the last ten years and made an anniversary survey, where you can quickly offer your views on the last decade of Labour leaders, events and campaigns.

Also in celebration of our birthday I’m sure, Jeremy Corbyn will make a speech on Brexit in Wakefield, Yorkshire, this morning. The Labour leader is expected to argue that a general election is the best way to break the Brexit deadlock, insisting that a government with a fresh mandate would be able to “negotiate a better deal for Britain and secure support for it in parliament and in the country”. Corbyn will pair this demand with his take on what really divides the UK: whether you’re living in Tottenham or Mansfield (marginal seat klaxon), he will say, “you’re up against it”. The split is not between Leavers and Remains, according to Corbyn, but “between the many, who do the work, create the wealth and pay taxes, and the few, who set the rules, reap the rewards and so often dodge taxes”.

This speech normalises the idea of a general election and effectively communicates it as Labour’s top priority to the public. It also establishes a narrative that our two irreconcilable electoral camps – pro-EU metropolitan seats and Leave-voting marginals that need to be won back – have more in common than often assumed during this all-consuming Brexit crisis. More generally, it shifts the focus from Brexit, i.e. tricky ground for the party, to Corbyn’s comfort zone, which is talking about the need to oppose “the entrenched power of a privileged elite”. In sum, it works on many levels – but Labour still needs to work out a way to actually force that election.

The government was defeated for a second time in 24 hours yesterday: the (latest) Grieve amendment forces the Prime Minister, after losing her meaningful vote on Tuesday, to return with a ‘Plan B’ within three sitting days. (This involved dramatic scenes in the Commons – if you missed the afternoon’s events, read my explainer.) This is crunch time. Most likely to happen over the next week: the deal is voted down; Theresa May secures some assurances from the EU on the backstop; she returns with a slightly modified plan. Unless the backstop is scrapped, the DUP won’t be having it. But the government could win support from opposition MPs.

Such efforts have already begun: although Gareth Snell wrote a piece for LabourList in November pledging to vote against May’s deal, he has now proposed an amendment with Caroline Flint, Lisa Nandy and John Mann that would guarantee workers’ rights and environmental protections. It is expected that the government will back this helpful move. And the talk is now of May ultimately conceding on customs union membership. Could that see the Labour leadership abstain or support a revised Tory deal? Remember that the only way to get the DUP to vote with Labour in a vote of no confidence is for May’s deal to pass. If a general election is Corbyn’s first preference, letting a Plan B gain Commons approval could be the next step.

Sienna @siennamarla

Update, 11amLabourList has been told by Snell’s office that the MP still intends to vote against May’s deal, and the amendment relates to “the conversation about future domestic legislation” – not getting her deal passed.

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