Monday, August 22, 2016

60 Years of Labour Leadership Contests.

I give below the results of Labour Leadership elections which I have been aware of in my lifetime. I hope that I have not missed any. From 1955 to 1980 only Labour parliamentarians were entitled to vote. The system has varied since then . There have been 13 elections in all. 31 Candidates (some standing more than once) make up a total of 39 contestants.

A strange characteristic for me of the present contest is that at its announcement I found that I knew less about Owen Smith than I had of any of the candidates on this list. On the other hand, I know more about Jeremy Corbyn than about any of the others, as I met him regularly during my 18 year period as an MP as we were both members of the Socialist Campaign Group. But I still have not made up my mind on how (or whether) to vote this time. For I would like to know how the contestants propose to bring about peace and reconciliation within the Labour Party should they be elected. Has anyone heard them say anything on this matter?

 Vicky, cartoon showing Harold Wilson, Aneurin Bevan, Michael Foot, Ian Mikardo attacking Herbert Morrison, Clement Attlee and Hugh Gaitskell (July, 1951)

1955 Gaitskell 157 Bevan 70 Morrison 40.

1960 Gaitskell 166 Wilson 81

1961 Gaitskell 171 Greenwood 59

1963 Wilson 115 Brown 88 Callaghan 41
                        144           103

1978 Callaghan 84 Foot 90 Jenkins 56 Benn 37 Healy 30 Crosland 17
                            141       133                                            38
                            178       137

1980 Foot 83 Healy 112 Silkin 38 Shore 32
                 139            129

1983 Kinnock 71.2% Hattersley 19.29%

1988 Kinnock 88.6% Benn 11.4%

1992 Smith 91.0% Gould 9.0%

1994 Blair 57.0% Prescott 24.13% Beckett 18.87%

2007 Brown unopposed

2010 E Miliband 34.33% D Miliband 37.78%
                               50.65%                     49.35% 
Also -  (Balls 11.8% Burnham 8.7% Abbott 7.4%)

2015 Corbyn 59.5% Burnham 19.0% Cooper 17.0% Kendall 4.5%


Unknown said...

The only time Labour’s right wing (its neoliberal fraction) will consider peace and reconciliation is when one-member-one vote is history, the top-down status quo and Westminster gravy train is safe from the crude mechanical's, the membership bugger-off and Labour can be re-branded as business, big money friendly.

So Harry, if it’s the peace vote you want (but not the end of Trident, weapons of mass destruction or Nato) then it must be Owen Smith who is corporate spin personified.

Harry Barnes said...

Ernie : But what if the majority of MPs and the majority of rank and file Corbyn supporters are not the stereotypes they are painted as ? Most of those I have come across do not fit what is generally said about them. Perhaps an acceptable third way can be worked out after the result is announced, which will keep the show on the road and open the road for improvements. (I have more in the comment box of the current leading ILP item, when it has been monitored).