Hours before the Labor Party’s annual conference, Party leader Keir Starmer abandoned Labour’s plans to overhaul the rulebook, which seeks to change the way future leaders are elected. SurgeZirc UK can confirm.
The announcement came just after a car accident involving Starmer on his way to a meeting with union chiefs on Friday afternoon.
The party leader wanted to rewrite the regulations for his party’s internal elections; it was a move that was heavily criticized as an attempt to “make a reality” future leadership elections at the expense of the left.
A proposal to return to the electoral board system, which would give lawmakers a greater role in leadership contests, was rejected, according to a senior source. The source said Sir Keir will come forward with different changes at the party conference.
What alternative changes Sir Keir is pursuing in the Labor rulebook is currently murky, although it has been speculated that it may be an attempt to increase the number of parliamentary nomination thresholds a potential leadership candidate must reach before entering the contest.
The National Executive Committee (NEC), the ruling arm of the Labor Party, will meet again on Saturday morning to discuss pressing concerns.
Angela Rayner, vice-president of the Labor Party, who openly opposed Starmer’s rule change, said: BBC Radio today he said: “My understanding is that the electoral college is not coming to the NEC, so this wouldn’t have happened. [voted on]”.
Asked whether the proposed changes are on or off, Rayner said, “A conference is a time when we discuss things like rules… these are things the conference does year after year, year after year.”
Labor’s NEC member, Mish Rahman, lamented Starmer out, accusing him of trying to cheat democracy: “The central measure of Keir Starmer’s attack on democracy has failed comprehensively.”
“The electoral college is dead. Now to make sure that all other reactionary rule changes prepared by the leadership suffer the same fate. From trigger voting changes to increases in the upcoming parliamentary nomination threshold, they all have to go to waste.
“Starmer won’t stop cheating democracy, so we can’t stop defending it.”
Following Friday’s meeting, Unison, the nation’s largest union, said it opposed the plan after several members of the Workers Connection committee, which regulates its affiliation with the party, issued a statement rejecting the rule change.
Starmer could have won a majority in the party’s NEC if he had the support of the moderate unions, but reportedly failed to win them over for bids on this occasion.