When I was at the recent Miners’ Gala, held annually on Durham’s old racecourse, it was noticeable that of all the Labour leadership candidates only Jeremy Corbyn had been invited to make a speech to the tens of thousands present.
Surely the reason for this is that neither Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper nor Liz Kendall would have had anything to say to men and women in low-paid jobs supplemented by (soon-to-be-slashed) tax credits, or those penalised for not being able to work and therefore reliant upon (soon-to-be-slashed) welfare benefits.
The fact is that whoever is pronounced leader after the ballot closes on 10 September will be empowered to either pursue policies which serve to reinforce Labour’s current Tory-lite trajectory, or ones which will steer it back towards being a party intent upon fighting for the kind of men, women and children gathered at the gala.
As a voting Unite union member, my decision about which candidate to choose, ergo what Labour Party is needed, was made well before I went to Durham.
Hamish Wilson (Letters, 23 July), in slavishly believing the party line as quoted by Ian Murray on voting on the Welfare Reform Bill, displays a woeful ignorance and naivety of parliamentary tactics.
As the 48 Labour MPs who voted against it knew, the time was right to defeat the government and give it cause to rethink its proposals. It is clear that these MPs and the Scottish MPs whom Mr Wilson ridicules have considerably more political nous than he has. Watch this space, Mr Wilson, but although I would be delighted to be proved wrong, I think when it comes to the committee stage, you will see how hollow and inept your preferred strategy will become as amendment after amendment is voted down by a forewarned government.