Labour membership decline blamed on factionalism and shift to the right
The Labour Party lost over 25,000 members in 2022, new figures have shown. The latest numbers are part of a wider trend since Keir Starmer took over as Labour leader, with party membership down over 125,000 since the 2019 general election.
Momentum – the major left wing faction in the Labour Party has argued the drop in membership is “worrying”. A spokesperson for the group said: “It is both saddening and worrying to see Labour’s membership decline for the third consecutive year.”
Alongside this, the group has given its assessment of what is underpinning the decline in membership. According to Momentum, the party’s shift to the right under Starmer, alongside a factional approach to democratic processes within the Labour Party are to blame.
A spokesperson said: “When Keir Starmer ran for leader he celebrated Labour’s mass membership and pledged to build on the people-powered party built after 2015. Yet since then he has turned Labour back towards corporate donors and interests, rejecting member and union demands for popular, urgent policies like public ownership, while undermining their rights by stitching up parliamentary selections for loyalists.
“Britain already has a party funded by the few and serving the few: the Tories. We need a Labour Party funded by and run for the many, one that is true to its trade union roots and its founding mission.”
When standing for the party leadership, Keir Starmer said: “Our distinctive strength is our mass membership” and “I am immensely proud of the size and energy of the party. People were inspired in their thousands by Jeremy Corbyn to join Labour, and we must not lose that idealism and radicalism.”
Image credit: Jessica Taylor / UK Parliament – Creative Commons