No new bible

Vote-labour-boardLabour’s 2017 manifesto best bits will feature in Labour’s next winning manifesto, but suggesting changes cannot be seen as heretical, writes Richard Angell

First published on ProgressOnline

Never before have the manifestos of both major parties been – both simultaneously and so obviously – written for audiences other than the public. The Conservative party’s programme was written for the House of Lords so the revising chamber could not block its ‘tough’ reforms. Labour’s was for the post-2015 members of the Labour party anticipating a huge loss and then an epic battle over the soul of the party. (more…)

The Last Word: IDS Out

iain-duncan-smithTurning Chingford and Woodford Green red, Pride in London and the tragic cost of a Tory government – Progress director Richard Angell has this week’s Last Word

First published on ProgressOnline

Something is happening in north-east London. The area is going Labour. Wes Streeting won the 5,000-Tory majority seat of Ilford North in 2015 with the slimmest majorities. In 2017 his majority went up by 16 times. But next door, in Iain Duncan Smith’s seat something was also afoot. Two years ago, Labour candidate Bilal Mahmood worked tirelessly, assiduously getting around all of the local community groups and putting out as many Labour leaflets as he could get printed or passed on from neighbouring seats. He made a massive, but largely unnoticed, dent in Duncan Smith’s majority. This year the same candidate, Mahmood, got the Tory’s majority down to just 2,438.  (more…)

The Last Word: Correcting a historic injustice

stella-creasy-768x576.pngA big win for Stella Creasy, fighting for single market membership, cracks in Labour’s newfound unity, and a thank you – Progress director Richard Angell has this week’s Last Word

First published on ProgressOnline

I am proud to know Stella Creasy on most days, but yesterday she showed politics and our movement at its best. She spoke with power and spoke for those whose voices rarely appear in our politics. The #MyPlegdeHerChoice campaign, its parliamentary champions, and a gentle nudge from the Speaker John Bercow, corrected an historic injustice. Women from Northern Ireland will no longer have to pay for terminations in England – previously they were met with a £900 bill on top of their travel, any accommodation and personal costs associated with leaving their own country to access a basic human right.  (more…)

The next step for Progress

progress-and-proud

We are adopting a new funding model for Progress – and we need your help, writes Richard Angell

First published on ProgressOnline

After 21 years of generous support, I know you will want to join me as we thank Lord Sainsbury for his generous and ongoing support for Progress and our centre-left politics, as he prepares to step back from funding party political causes. He is not just Labour’s biggest ever donor and an excellent former science minister, he – more than anyone – went above and beyond to try and keep the United Kingdom in the European Union. (more…)

The Last Word: More in common

jo-cox

Remembering Jo Cox, Labour’s post-election unity, the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower, and #TipLondon – Progress director Richard Angell has this week’s Last Word

First published on ProgressOnline

The anniversary of Jo Cox’s brutal murder brings mixed emotions. For all of us that knew Jo there is the obvious loss and sense of pain. Each of us who did get to meet her and hear her insight firsthand will take some time today to reflect, think or pray. We grieve for the fact we will not see her again but our hearts break for her husband Brendan and her two beautiful kids. I have no comprehension of what they must be going through.  (more…)

Downing Street squatter

 

theresa-may-election-768x576.pngTheresa May has unified not just the Labour party, but the whole country, writes Progress director Richard Angell

 

Stunned that Labour gained 30 seats and the Tories have lost a majority, the Labour family is applauding its leader for a better-than-expected personal performance, 40 per cent of the vote and the first net gain in seats since 1997. Great members of parliament that I feared were lost have been returned – with five sad exceptions – and they are joined by exciting new MPs who will contribute to Labour’s renewal and parliament’s resolve.  (more…)

The Last Word: Bad enough to lose

may-leaving-768x576.pngA Tory party bad enough to lose, the return of two-party politics and measuring #GE2017 success the right way – Progress director Richard Angell has this week’s Last Word

The Tories have been bad enough to lose a general election since their first few days in office. Pulling £6bn from the economy was one of the Tory-Liberal Democrat coalition’s first decisions. To panic such a fragile recovery at that time has had such tragic consequences. It was made for political, not economic, reasons and started a trend that saw the government preside over increasing VAT, deep, deep cuts to public services and missing each of their own deficit reduction (let alone debt) targets. George Osborne might be a master at dividing Labour from its members and would-be supporters, but his economics left much to be improved upon. (more…)

The Last Word: No excuses for terrorism

34050241733_8a26b98ca6_z-1Taking the Stop the War coalition’s warped world view head on, keeping up the pressure on social care, and a special nine seat challenge – Progress director Richard Angell has this week’s Last Word

We are all Mancunians. It was true on Tuesday when we woke up to the heartbreaking news that a pop concert was the focus of a Isis-inspired suicide bomber, and it remains true now. (more…)