Labour must work with progressives like Liberal Democrats and Greens - Yorkshire Post Letters

From: James Bovington, Church Grove, Horsforth, Leeds.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer. Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer. Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images.

Mark Stuart (The Yorkshire Post July 3) is correct that there are questions to answer before Labour can form a government but concentrating on personalities ignores the underlying but evolving demographic and constitutional context of British politics.

Labour has to learn to manage these and accept that younger people have new and different aspirations.

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Hence many are appalled at the tacit support given by Labour as the Tories callously and casually ended freedom of movement.

Unless the Conservatives implode, it is unlikely that there will ever again be a Labour landslide like those of 1945 or 1997, irrespective of leader.

To win a UK parliamentary majority without a revival in Scotland, Labour has to win about 90 English seats. Unpalatable as traditionalists may find this, the best hope of forming a Labour-led government is to adopt electoral reform and collaborate with progressives like Liberal Democrats and Greens.

Both main parties behave as the political equivalent of apocalyptic religious sects for whom co-operation with other churches is heretical anathema. For the Tories, such tribalism doesn’t matter, protected as they are by the inbuilt bias of the anachronistic first past the post electoral system. Yet when threatened, Tories don’t hesitate to form alliances or coalitions.

I urge Labour to embrace electoral reform using the single transferable vote, which gives voters genuine democratic choice between candidates within a single party.

Work with other progressive parties – form alliances in marginal seats to unseat Tories, and even in Scotland there needs to be just one progressive candidate in Tory- held constituencies.

Elsewhere Labour should not run against sitting Liberal Democrat, Green or Plaid Cymru MPs.

Labour must promote a new structure for the countries in these islands and ask Scotland to delay an independence referendum but promise one very soon under a Labour government, accepting that independence could be the choice.

Scotland can never be imprisoned in a union just so as to help UK Labour retain power.

Policy debate is only relevant if the evolving demographic and constitutional context is fully understood and managed.

Do both leadership and membership have sufficient courage to abandon a traditional but outdated tribal approach?