The great purge: PCS Union leader Mark Serwotka has Labour vote rejected

The Labour leadership election is getting messy

Labour’s leadership election is not going to be the smoothest power transfer the party has ever seen, and with three weeks to go until the result is announced, there’s still plenty of time for a few major cock-ups.

One of the key issues has been the introduction of new voting rules that have allowed Labour party “supporters” to sign up for £3 to have a vote in the election. Meanwhile, due to concerns over “infiltration”, the Labour Party has reacted by becoming increasingly strict on who is eligible to vote.

The party has said around 3,200 people have been prevented from voting.

The latest figure to fall foul of the party’s stricter rules is Mark Serwotka, leader of the PCS Union, who has had his vote rejected.

Serwotka, who has spoken at Jeremy Corbyn’s rallies, said he had voted for the Labour frontrunner, but it has since emerged that his vote has been disallowed.

His wife Ruth tweeted yesterday: “Mark been prevented from voting in a Labour Movement election as an affiliated member. I’m very interested to hear the reasons. #LabourPurge

The BBC points out that in a 2011 interview, Serwotka admitted that since the Labour Party’s “move rightwards” in recent years, he had voted for the Green Party in the 2010 election. Is this why his vote was discounted?

“Growing up in Wales, it was Labour, Labour, Labour. But [since] its move rightwards and embrace of the markets, Labour doesn’t speak for me,” he said at the time.

However, Serwotka is hardly an opponent of the Labour party. If the rules are that only those who have never criticised the party are allowed a vote, then only those loyal to the party’s past will be allowed a say in its future. This is hardly a good method of attracting new members to any political party.

Meanwhile, conservatives are rubbing their hands with glee as Labour lurches from one debacle to another. And at the top, the Conservative Party has never been so quiet. Since taking office in May, there’s hardly been a peep out of them. Perhaps because there isn’t a functioning opposition party to challenge them.

Now read

Readers' comments (1)

  • The trouble is whatever labour do, they are going to get flak over their voting policy. Perhaps the only people who should be allowed to vote are fully paid up members who have been registered as such for 6 months or more.

    Not a great labour supporter now, but very uncomfortable that we don't have an effective opposition party - its essential for any democracy.

    Think the real people rubbing hands in glee must be the Lib-Dems as a potential alternative to Labour.

    Google Lib-Dem if you can't remember who they are!

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Social Bookmarks