Over the weekend Len McCluskey gave an interview on Pienaar in which he talked a lot about the importance of workers’ rights being protected during and after the Brexit process, the need for stronger unions in order to battle coming mechanisation, how key it is to return Britain to full employment…..I’m kidding, of course, he actually complained about Tom Watson for ten minutes.
But he did reveal something of interest to those watching the (not so) slow death of the Labour Party: he dropped a hint that Corbyn may only have until the summer of 2018 to turn things around.
“The reality is that I’m hoping he’s given the opportunity to put the alternative that Labour are building to the British electorate and hopefully we’ll see, if he can break through, the opinion polls begin to change. I would suggest that the next 15 months or so will give us the answer to that.”
This begs the following question: if Len McCluskey manages to get elected to continue running Britain’s largest trade union as a hard-left student socialist cabal, what happens in fifteen months time when Labour’s poll ratings are even worse than they are now? My guess is nothing at all. This is a bit like when cults who foretell the end of the world on a specific date see that day come and go, and then simply say they had one rune out of place and the real apocalypse is actually eighteen months hence. McCluskey and pals aren’t going to chuck Corbyn aside when that gives the PLP the chance to get someone sane into the leadership chair once again. They are stuck with Corbyn in the same way everyone else is, albeit for the opposite reason. My guess is that being in the midst of an election, McCluskey doesn’t want to make it seem like his support for Corbyn is unconditional – when it most certain is.
Corbynistas can only be hoping that the Conservative chickens start to come home to roost as the truth of the Brexit negotiations becomes apparent and Labour are more credible than UKIP (who are on the right trajectory for this scenario). UKIP will not take any seats, whatever happens, but their 12.6% of the 2015 GE will go down, probably by 50% and those votes will go somewhere.