Palatinate spoke to the Durham University Labour Club (DULC) about their view on the current leadership race.
In your own words, who is the strongest candidate in the Labour leadership contest? Equally, who is the weakest?
Five candidates have managed to get through the first stage of the process at this point, so it’s looking like a crowded field so far. What’s interesting about this election is the diversity of the candidates’ political positions, and it’s good to see so many women standing for both the leadership and deputy leadership this time. The Club can’t support any candidates at this point, it’ll be up to our members to vote for who we should endorse at a meeting next month.
Which candidate is most likely to change the direction of the Labour Party?
Arguably Rebecca Long-Bailey would represent the most similar positions to the last five years of leadership, being from the left of the party and the architect of much of the party’s industrial policies. At the other end Jess Phillips would be the candidate most aligned with the right of the party, so she would probably change the direction the most, with the other three candidates (Starmer, Nandy and Thornberry) representing different levels of agreement with the last five years.
How important a role will Brexit pose in the leadership contest?
It won’t necessarily be about Brexit itself, but rather more about how much of a role Brexit played in our defeat at the General Election, and what should be done to win back the particular voters we lost. There might be some debate about our continued opposition to the government’s Brexit approach and our possible position on the EU in the future, but at this point it seems likely the focus will be on winning back support.
Image: steven.eason via Creative Commons