Labour party reform

Voting with their feet

Felicity Slater  |  27 February 2014

Fewer members take part in longer selection contests —Barely one in two Labour party members have voted in selection contests for the party’s candidates in its top 106 target seats, according to new research carried out by Progress. The findings suggest that we can at last put to bed the much-touted myth that members join …

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Rage against the machine

Robert Philpot  |  26 February 2014

The Collins reforms are welcome but machine politics may yet strike back When Ed Miliband launched his attempt to reform Labour’s relationship with the trade unions last July, he set himself a huge challenge: to put an end to the closed, machine politics that had been exposed in Falkirk. With this month’s special conference that …

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History in the making

Stephen Twigg MP  |  26 February 2014

Collins helps make Labour fit for the 21st century I attended my first Labour party annual conference 30 years ago. I was the 17-year-old delegate from Enfield Southgate CLP, conference was in Blackpool, and Neil Kinnock had been party leader for just a year. At that conference, he proposed the adoption of One Member, One …

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Harry Potter and the question of party reform

Stephen Bush  |  4 February 2014

As is often the case with leftwingers, JK Rowling did a better job of finding the enemy than the answer. She was right to say last week that the brilliant Hermione Granger – the real hero of the Harry Potter books, as any fool knows – was cruelly ill-suited to Ron Weasley; a perpetual sidekick …

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A new year’s resolution for Labour

Robert Philpot  |  23 December 2013

Six months ago, Ed Miliband pledged to end the machine politics that had disfigured the selection of Labour’s candidate in Falkirk, one of the party’s safest seats. Tomorrow, with the passing of the deadline for submissions, the review which Miliband established at the time under Labour’s former general secretary, Ray Collins, draws to a close. …

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Get the party debate started

Editorial  |  3 December 2013

The special conference which will meet to debate Ed Miliband’s proposed party reforms in March is potentially the most significant gathering of the Labour party since it met in Wembley in January 1981 and adopted a series of measures which triggered the departure of four former cabinet ministers and the formation of the Social Democratic …

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Tackling the democratic crisis

Kay Page  |  19 November 2013

Currently in the UK there is a crisis of democracy, but with that comes an exciting opportunity to reinvent the political landscape. Britain, like many other countries, is facing an increasing number of people that have simply turned off politics altogether, while others are choosing to throw their support behind smaller and less institutionalised political …

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No comparison

Ann Black  |  11 November 2013

Miliband’s party reforms differ from Clause IV —In the October edition of Progress, the Progressive column set out the story of the new Clause IV campaign accurately: few remember that Tony Blair might have lost unless local parties had balloted their members. But there are differences as well as parallels with the current debate on …

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Giving primaries a go

Simon Darvill  |  7 November 2013

As someone who has yet to be fully won over by the idea of primaries to choose Labour candidates, I was very interested in Marcus Roberts’ article in the latest edition of Progress magazine on how a primary for our London mayoral candidate might work. I have two main worries about primaries within the Labour …

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Changing for good

John Mann MP  |  26 September 2013

Labour has nothing to lose but its bureaucracy —One of my local members has been out to Germany to help the Social Democrats with the general election. His reports back make sobering reading. But it is not just Germany where there are problems. In the last month the Norwegian Labour party has been swept from …

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