Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Labour for Independence.



Thanks to maen_tramgwydd for the comment that pointed me to this report on Newsnet Scotland
The Scottish Labour party is today facing the prospect of a split within its ranks over its stance on the independence debate.
A new website, Labour for Independence, has been created by party member Allan Grogan who has become disillusioned over the party’s attitude to independence. Mr Grogan says that there are others within the party who share his views.
Mr Grogan’s Facebook page has been visited by 24,000 people in its first week and has 334 indications of approval from visitors – more than Scottish Labour’s own site.
The Labour party member, who has been an active supporter of Labour for many years, said he had spoken to others within the party in Scotland and was convinced there was a genuine appetite for independence, claiming that many were becoming disillusioned with the party overall.
 On the website Mr Grogragan writes
"As a Labour party member, this page was made in regards to a Labour Junior Minister telling me, that if I wanted independence, to vote for the SNP. On what mandate were the upper echelon given to say that the Labour Party should be anti independence?
There are many in the Labour party, who seek and support an independent Scotland. There are also many supporters who once were Labour but have lost faith or moved political ideology because of a Labour party more concerned with middle England than their core bases, especially Scotland.There are many in the Labour party, who seek and support an independent Scotland.

There are also many supporters who once were Labour but have lost faith or moved political ideology because of a Labour party more concerned with middle England than their core bases, especially Scotland.There are many in the Labour party, who seek and support an independent Scotland.
There are also many supporters who once were Labour but have lost faith or moved political ideology because of a Labour party more concerned with middle England than their core bases, especially Scotland.
An interesting development and until we see to what extent there is support outside the facebook page which may have some SNP supporters clicking on it. It is far to early to see a major change in Scottish Politics

Of course  we have been here before n 1976 Jim Sillars then  the Labour MP for  South Ayreshire frustrated by Labours lukewarm proposals then failure to secure a Scottish Assembly.led a breakaway Scottish Labour Party (SLP). Sillars threw himself into establishing the SLP as a political force, but ultimately it would collapse following the 1979 General Election. At that election the SLP had nominated a mere three candidates (including Sillars who was attempting to hold on to his South Ayrshire seat). However only Sillars came remotely close to winning and it was this failure to secure a meaningful share of the vote that prompted the decision to disband.

He then of course joined the SNP wining a spectacular By-by-election in Goven in  1988.

It will be interesting to see if the Labour for Independence group are treated any differently than Labour members who oppose Party policy on further devolution.

In his blog  Gareth Hughes comments on the likely hood of a similar group happening in Wales although he says this likely he does say....

 But if there was a referendum on independence for Wales all bets would be off. There are a number of Labour members that would likely campaign for a “yes” vote.
Indeed if a group was established by Labour members it would cause real problems to Plaid Cymru. Under Leanne Wood’s leadership Plaid has positioning itself on the left of Welsh politics.
If a large group of Labour members were pushing for independence, where would that leave Plaid Cymru. Those left wing members of Plaid Cymru who left Labour primarily because it refused to consider independence might be tempted back to their natural political home. 

There were never many members who left Labour for Plaid . The left in Plaid come from a more libertarianism tradition than Labour supporting peace movements and disliking Labours often anti-liberal .
agenda.and its mis use of its hegemony in Wales

In reality the left in Plaid haven't come from Labour but largely grew within the party itself.

At any rate I suspect any Welsh Labour would last about as long as the hierarchy to find out and squash it.

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