Climate change needs a socialist solution. That means voting Labour.
Social media is already awash with bogus tactical voting sites, before parliament has even dissolved for the 2019 General Election. These tools cynically push voters to support the Liberal Democrats even in constituencies where they finished a distant third in 2017. One such website, Best for Britain, has bizarrely recommended voting Lib Dem in Labour held seats like Emma Dent Coad’s Kensington constituency and Tory-Labour marginals like Putney. It’s understood that they are using data of the 2019 European Election results where the Lib Dems overperformed. The national government was not at stake and many registered a protest vote amid Brexit inertia. This time it’s serious, the only vote that makes sense is a vote for Labour.
Labour is the only party offering a socialist response to the urgent crises of our time: climate change, poverty & inequality, insecure housing. In September, Labour Conference voted overwhelmingly to support a Green New Deal to transform the whole economy to build economic justice and decarbonise society by 2030. To put this ambitious plan into action from government, Labour needs every vote it can get in every seat possible. Labour will be stronger in power and more likely to form a government with every single vote it receives at this election.
Many are already arguing for tactically voting for Lib Dem to keep Tories out as a necessary compromise. This logic may have had some purchase in 2017 when we were up against a Tory majority government. Oxford West & Abingdon is one constituency where a campaigning coalition elected Lib Dem Layla Moran in place of the Tory incumbent with a slim majority. Now, we are up against a weak, dying Tory minority government and we should go in for the kill.
Jo Swinson, the Lib Dems’ leader voted with the Tory whip more regularly than many of her Tory colleagues when she was a minister in David Cameron’s cruel coalition government. After a wave of defections, the Lib Dems now host four MPs who were literally Tories just months ago. On policy, the Lib Dems have nothing to say on anything but Brexit. On climate, their decarbonisation target of net-zero by 2045 guarantees the most devastating effects of climate breakdown. Jo Swinson has already confirmed they won’t prop up a Corbyn-led Labour government. Unequivocally, a vote for the Lib Dems is a vote for Tory barbarism.
This election voters can break the deadlock of certain seats flipping between Tories and Lib Dems. Labour’s message and policies can appeal to anyone in this country and will materially advantage everyone. Some may end up paying more tax, but all will benefit from tackling the climate crisis and expanding public services. By tactically voting for Labour everywhere in this election, we create a greater sense of possibility around a Labour win, even in those seats where it seems impossible right now. We can give people the genuine choice of socialism over barbarism. Voters should look to make Tory-Lib Dem seats three-way marginals in the understanding that others of all backgrounds will be persuaded by Labour’s offer. If either the Tory or Lib Dem vote significantly drops off and Labour becomes second in the race: game on.
Labour and party activists should still distribute resources strategically during a general election. Of course we should hammer the tightest of marginals per Momentum’s ambitious plan to win. But if you’re a voter, wherever you are, don’t overthink it. Voting Labour is the most tactical thing you can do to deliver a Labour government this December. Socialism is for life, not just for Christmas. We need to think in the medium-term to secure a Labour government this time round while creating the conditions for Labour to win again and again, including in seats they’ve never won before.
So withstanding the North of Ireland, where Labour do not stand candidates, absolutely everyone should put a cross next to your Labour candidate on 12 December. This election is socialism versus barbarism. Its climate justice versus climate apartheid. Voting Labour puts you on the right side of history. A vote for anyone else is a vote for barbaric, apocalyptic extinction.
Header image credit: Max Montagut – Creative Commons