The European elections have been a disaster for Labour. We are particularly disappointed for the republican candidates who failed to get elected, but we have the consolation of being able to congratulate Seb Dance on retaining his seat in London region.
Labour for a Republic does not take a view on Brexit (although we all have strong opinions!). However the Brexit debate is resolved, there will be people unhappy at the outcome, and it is therefore necessary for Labour to be able to offer something that goes some way towards meeting everyone’s concerns. What better time for a Republican Constitution?
Surveys have shown that many supported UKIP, and now support the Brexit Party, because of a sense that they have been left out of politics. Politicians seem remote and unaccountable, and the mainstream parties do not appear to be addressing their concerns. A written constitution which affirms that citizens are the ultimate authority in the country and which strengthens their democratic rights might not on its own be a complete solution, but it would surely send a strong message that in future politics will be done differently.
At our AGM in May, we agreed a submission to Labour’s policy consultation. In it, we called for a constitution based on the principle of ‘popular sovereignty’ – and, of course, if the people are sovereign we have no need for a ‘sovereign monarch’. A copy of our submission is attached – we hope that you will be able to make your own submissions making similar arguments: submissions can be made online at https://www.policyforum.labour.org.uk/commissions/home-affairs (where you can also comment on Labour for a Republic’s submission).
At our AGM the following Officers were elected:
Chair: Theo Morgan
Vice Chair: Lionel Openshaw
Secretary: Ken Ritchie
Treasurer: Kes Evoy
Social Media Officer: Stevie Hayes
We want to make our Committee more diverse. We therefore want to add others, particularly women, to make us more representative of our members and those we wish to influence. If you would be interested in assisting our work, please get in touch.
Next week Donald Trump will, at the invitation of the Queen, be having tea at Buckingham Palace. Do we really want our head of state to be entertaining someone with such repugnant views, or is this just an unfortunate but necessary diplomatic nicety? Let us know what you think.
With best wishes,
The Labour for a Republic team