Jennie Formby for Labour Party Gen Sec
The LRC says:
The LRC endorses the candidature of Jennie Formby to become the next General Secretary of the Labour Party. We have already publicised her statement, which makes it clear that she is fully supportive of the present Corbyn leadership. She is believed to be the favoured candidate of Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell and has the support of at least 17 NEC members and 15 Labour MPs so far.
The LRC is perturbed to hear of a bid by Jon Lansman to be a candidate for the same post. This would be a huge mistake on his part and we urge him to withdraw. Most obviously it would be seen as a contest between two left wing candidates, which could allow the right to gain the post by default and damage the leftward move within the Labour party since Jeremy became leader.
Jon has only just been elected as a member of our NEC. If selected as Gen Sec he would have to resign his place, threatening the fragile left wing majority on that body. By the rules of the NEC election process, his place would be taken by the right wing runner up, Eddie izzard.
In his statement Jon claims, “I would especially encourage more women to apply.” This is bizarre. Has he not noticed that Jennie qualifies in this respect, and he does not?
Jon is seen as the head of Momentum, a powerful force for the left within the Labour Party. However his leadership of Momentum has also raised questions about his belief in the very democratic structures that members are hoping will be increasingly democratised under a new General Secretary.
His friends and supporters should urge him to withdraw.
Jennie's full statement:
I have today decided to apply for the post of General Secretary of the Labour Party. Before setting out my reasons for doing so let me pay tribute to the work done by Iain McNicol in that role and to join every Party member in thanking him for his service and wishing him well for the future.
Our Party is now united, as it has not been for years, under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership. The General Secretary of the Party needs to be someone who can build on that unity to mobilise and organise the entire party and the wider labour movement behind a Labour victory at the next general election whenever this callous and crumbling government decides to call it. Labour’s strength rests on three pillars – the support of millions of voters, an individual membership far larger than that in any other British political party, and our link with our affiliated trade unions. I believe I am well-placed to help our party build on all three.
My service as a party member for forty years, as a member of the National Executive Committee for the last seven, and as a senior official of my union in industrial, political and administrative posts has given me the breadth of experience to lead the whole party in meeting the challenges and seizing the opportunities ahead. I will work with all parts of the movement to ensure that the Party democracy review empowers the party membership, opens up policy-making, and ensures democratic best-practice throughout. I will ensure our exciting new community organising initiative is developed to help entrench Labour in the communities we serve and win the seats we need at the next general election.
I stand for a tolerant and welcoming party, with no place for anti-Semitism, racism and misogyny or any form of abuse or intimidation; a party in which complaints are handled both fairly and speedily. I value the commitment and hard work of party staff and will ensure the whole party machine is working in support of our Leader and our policies, embracing the new campaigning tools and methods which we used to such effect in the 2017 election.
I would be proud to be the first woman to serve as Labour Party General Secretary in a generation and only the second ever. I have fought for gender equality – often the hard way – throughout my lifetime in the labour movement. Labour has only one objective – to bring to Britain the socialist change it desperately needs. And it has only one means of delivering that – electoral victory at all levels, and above all in a General Election. As General Secretary, I will devote all my time and energy to ensuring that we grasp the historic opportunity before us.