Corbyn rejects electoral pact with Greens
Jeremy Corbyn has said that he does not currently want an electoral pact with the Greens.
When asked if he was in favour of an electoral pact to stop the Conservatives winning seats in Brighton, he told the local Argus newspaper:
“At the moment no. What we are doing as a party committed to the Labour cause and position, in opposition in parliament in order to maximise votes against the government, obviously we cooperate with other opposition parties. Does this translate into electoral pacts? No.”
According to the Argus, he made a similar promise in September 2015.
Green MP and leadership candidate Caroline Lucas has been arguing that an electoral pact between Labour, the Lib Dems and Plaid Cymru is necessary to stop the Conservatives winning power. In this, she has been supported by Labour’s shadow defence secretary and Corbyn loyalist Clive Lewis.
The argument for an electoral pact is strongest in Brighton’s two constituencies. Brighton Pavillion has been won by Caroline Lucas in the last two elections while Labour have finished second on both occasions.
In Brighton Kemptown, the Conservatives have narrowly beaten Labour in the last two elections. On both occasions, if Green voters had voted Labour then Labour would have won the seat.
The idea of an electoral pact has been controversial among both Green and Labour supporters. A motion to the Green Party’s conference is currently circulating which calls for any pact to be voted on at conference before party leaders publicly praise the idea. Another motion asks the party not to have an electoral pact with the Liberal Democrats.
If the leader of the Labour Party does not support the idea though, it may be a non-starter.
As a socialist originally from North Cornwall where for years we were told to vote Liberal to keep the Tories out, I should welcome the chance now, wherever I lived, that with a growing and now socialist Labour party, I can vote for what I believe in. I want a party that sees the environment as an integral part of a better life for all, not one who separates it off as the sple defining issue. So I am thankful we are not going down the road of electoral pacts. Lets have some principle and vote for what we believe.
i think this means we need to pick one of the other candidates for leader other than the job share. caroline lucas is an excellent mp but should probably concentrate on that. the choice is really between carolines job share partner bartley and the other candidates and an endorsement for bartley will keep the issue of an alliance in the public eye and cause further amabarrasment. do people really think a party that is heavily devided and has an interest in wiping us out in areas like lancaster, oxford, brighton, norwich, bristol eg is someone we can work with.
i am not opposed to our representatives working with other parties in parlaiment and council and on the streets but when it comes to elections we dont stand down for no one.
No way should we (the Greens) ever go for an electoral pact! It would pollute the purity of our beliefs to cooperate with anyone, no matter how socialistically positive, whose party believes in continued growth of the British industrial engine.
It may take us another decade, but if we stay clean of hand-holding with the polluting parties the British public will eventually have no choice but to accept our case.
“At the moment no” is hardly a definitive statement, especially in the context of an interview with one of the most reactionary local newspapers in the country, in a city where he is addressing the most tribal of local Labour parties in the course of a leadership context.
Furthermore, in the The Argus story, “Does this translate into electoral pacts?” is a question put by the journalist, not a rhetorical question he is asking himself, as implied by your piece.
Under the circumstances, the fact that he even mentions cooperation with other parties is as close as you are likely to get to an acknowledgment that a progressive alliance might be a good idea.
Agreed. it aslo would be a bad time for him to talk about the future when he is dealing with his own future. the newspapers would have a field day.
I think the headline is misleading. JC’s answer was a holding one: “At the moment, no”. He has very carefully NOT ruled out pacts: he’s just said no for the moment. As old a political phrasing as “we have no plans at this time” which often implies “but just wait till we’ve won the election …”
What a relief the Green Party is no longer to be dragged down by wishful thinking about a Progressive Alliance with electorally unpopular and ungreen Labour.
Jeremy Corbyn has had to “rule it out ” for the sake of maintaining support for his leadership bid for the Labour Party. That tells us that the Progressive Alliance idea is far from flavour of the month with many in Labour.The Unions are against it as are many members. Thank you Jeremy for revealing once again how reactionary and unimaginative Labour is.
But good news for Green Party as it escapes the Progressive Alliance trap. We can get on and continue to grow the Party that people and the environment need.
Labour electoral unpopularity especially with big swathes of 2015 Labour voters is a big opportunity for Greens. this electoral unpopularity will likely grow as Labour activists continue with displays of falling out. It going to be somewhat like the 19080s. The Green Party did well in the 1989 Euros because voters had a very low opinion of both Labour and Conservatives. Bristol West should be ours for the taking and big inroads , if not victories, can now be made elsewhere.
And I do not think the Green Party should support any electoral pacts with Labour, especially when they will come off second-best. We have our own distinct political stance and we can defeat the Conservatives without Labour’s help; in fact some of our very first council seat gains were from the Conservatives (Stroud, 1986; Malvern Hills, 1987).
Also, Brighton Pavilion which we currently hold was a safe Conservative seat from 1950 to 1997. The same goes for Bristol West which we made a very good effort at winning last year.