Britain: Corbyn campaigners to launch new mass movement

October 11, 2015

Jeremy Corbyn's successful leadership campaign team launched a new group of the left on October 7 to transform Labour into a “mass movement.”

Called Momentum, it will be independent of the party leadership, but was welcomed by Corbyn as offering to “put the people's values back into politics”.

It will hold mass rallies and seek to organise activists inspired by Corbyn both inside and outside the Labour Party.

Momentum's launch follows years of discussions about bringing together activists from different groups on the Labour left.
Existing groups, including the Campaign for Labour Party Democracy and Red Labour, are known to have been involved in pre-launch discussions.

But activists hope that Momentum will become an outward-looking mass organisation rather than the sum of several internal pressure groups.

It will not initially be a membership organisation and has been incorporated as a director-led company until democratic structures can be established.

Momentum will be seen as a challenge to Blairite lobby group Progress, itself formed after Tony Blair's successful 1994 leadership campaign.

Though it has always had limited support in the grassroots, Progress's formidable organising machine has resulted in its supporters dominating parliamentary selections and Labour's ideological debate.

Labour MP Clive Lewis, who is set to play a key role, said that Momentum would turn Labour “into a democratic institution worthy of its founders' original aspirations”.

In an article for the New Statesman, he wrote: “The array of vested interests confronting us cannot be taken on by one man or even a single political party in Westminster. Instead, we need a bigger, broader, deeper alliance.”

[Abridged from Morning Star.]

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