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Whatever silence they may be keeping in public, the majority of Labour Party backbenchers harbour a fierce resentment of the Corbyn revolution, the results of a parliamentary ballot indicate.
The Parliamentary Labour Party committee, which regularly meets the leader of the opposition, is supposed to allow Labour MPs to inform the shadow leadership team of the prevailing mood on the backbenches each week.
The committee elected today, by secret ballot, saw Labour’s backbench MPs choose openly hostile figures like Graham Jones, Neil Coyle and Ruth Smeeth, instead of excellent candidates like Ian Mearns or Clive Lewis.
Graham Jones stood for the position on the absurd platform ‘that the leadership is not patriotic and does not support the deployment of nuclear weapons’.
When there’s no public accountability, it seems, Labour MPs are still prepared to secretly voice their discontent – even as Labour’s rating rises to a huge 46 per cent in the latest YouGov poll, an eight-point lead.
The committee itself is limited in the power it can exert. We should also note that it doesn’t represent the parliamentary party as a whole, as frontbenchers (shadow ministers) can’t vote – and perhaps some backbench MPs used it as a protest vote against their lack of a frontbench position.
But if party members were hoping that the bulk of Labour MPs would reconcile themselves to Corbyn’s leadership after the surge in the general election and further rise in the polls since, it seems they might be in for a disappointment.
Keeping the party united is important, particularly with the chance of a second general election being fairly high. But it can’t be unity at any price.
Corbyn must show that he’s prepared to face down any demand to water down the manifesto – or to deprive party members of their democratic right to determine who stands for Labour in the next election.
David Scott argues that our prison system represents a human rights disaster, and reformist solutions can't tackle the root problems.
A deeper engagement with culture can strengthen our democracy, taking political projects beyond electoral impact and festival memes into a whole new world of radical, lasting change.
Ruth Tanner writes that revelations about Oxfam's behaviour in Haiti are shocking, but not surprising.
The actions of Oxfam officials are horrendous - but gutting foreign aid funding just puts more people at risk, writes Daniel Gibson.
Dr Laura Basu explains that the media allowed politicians to re-write history, erasing the true causes of the economic crisis.
Outsourced cleaners are on the front lines of the battle for workers' rights. By Emiliano Mellino
Power to our beloved comrade and friend, Mehmet Aksoy, a hero of Kurdistan and the internationalist struggles against capitalism, colonialism and fascism. This tribute was authored by Mehmet’s family and friends.
Trade deals effect every area of our lives - from our public services to the water we drink to the air we breathe. Marienna Pope-Weidemann from War on Want argues that we need greater public scrutiny over potentially disastrous post-Brexit trade deals.
Eva Tutchell and John Edmonds tell the story of two demonstrations from the women's movement.
The women's movement is not done here. By Eva Tutchell and John Edmonds
For All, By All
The latest issue of Red Pepper asks - how do we invite, support and nurture greater public participation so that our cultural capabilities are empowered beyond the crushing logic of market fundamentalism?
‘We are hungry in three languages’: The forgotten promise of the Bosnian Spring
Ruth Tanner looks back at a wave of protests which swept through Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2014.
It’s time for a cultural renewal of the left
Andrew Dolan writes that we need to integrate art, music, films and poetry into our movement, creating spaces where political ideas are given further room to breathe.
Jeremy Hunt is poised to flog the last of the NHS
Peter Roderick sounds the alarm on an 'attack on the fundamental principles of the NHS'.
Viva Siva, 1923-2018
A. Sivanandan, who died this week, was a hugely important figure in the politics of race and class. As part of our tributes, Red Pepper is republishing this 2009 profile of him by Arun Kundnani
Sivanandan: When memory forgets a giant
Daniel Renwick calls for the whole movement to discover and remember the vital work of A. Sivanandan, who died this week
A master-work of graphic satire
American Jewish cartoonist Eli Valley’s comic commentary on America, the US Jewish diaspora and Israel is nothing if not near the knuckle, Richard Kuper writes
Meet the frontline activists facing down the global mining industry
Activists are defending land, life and water from the global mining industry. Tatiana Garavito, Sebastian Ordoñez and Hannibal Rhoades investigate.
Transition or succession? Zimbabwe’s future looks uncertain
The fall of Mugabe doesn't necessarily spell freedom for the people of Zimbabwe, writes Farai Maguwu