As for who I wanted to win during the Tory Leadership race, I did have the odd reservation about having someone who had been a pro-remain campaigner lead the country out of the European Union and I certainly had been impressed by Andrea Leadsome when watching her at Wembley Stadium, even though, as you can see from my previous blogs I was/am in thorough disagreement with the Brexiters. Nevertheless, when it was reported that she had used the fact that she had children and her opponent didn't. I immediately shifted my support to Theresa May.
Theresa May herself has many admirable qualities. She has served as Home Secretary for six years and has built up a reputation for being competent and was described by the Financial Times as being a 'non-ideological politician who gets on with the job'. Efficiency can only be a good quality in a Prime Minister. As for some of her political stances, I agree with her support of marriage equality and her support of a remain vote ahead of the referendum; she also identifies herself as a liberal, One Nation Conservative and this is the side of the Tory Party I have the most understanding for. I also now feel that, as someone who was a remainer, that she will not let Britain get too carried away in its Brexit journey; yes she will trigger article 50, and has pledged to do so after the end of 2016, but that she might be better at negotiating an amicable deal with the EU on the best possible terms than someone who had actually supported Brexit. Sure she has been criticised for her immigration policies, including those towards foreign students, and I sympathise with that criticism, but at least she's better than someone from the Europhobic right of the party or someone like Boris Johnson.
I also feel that it was extremely courageous of her to decide to run for a post which may well be, and in my opinion probably is, a poisoned chalice; particularly so since she now has to take her country down a road she wouldn't have wanted it to take. How will she handle the recession that has been predicted, and the withdrawal of large employers from the United Kingdom so that they can be inside the European Union? At least if the new Prime Minister were a true Brexiter, the only people to blame for such economic woes would be the Europhobic right of the party and of course UKIP, and perhaps British Ultra-Nationalism itself. If such a recession does happen, to what extent will all the blame fall on those shoulders, or will she inevitably take some of that blame simply for being at the top if and when it comes?
At least for her she will be facing an opposition that will have little energy to for fill its role. The Labour Party, after being hit by the reality that its internationalism has been rejected in its working class heartlands, is tearing itself to pieces. In short, the party membership appears to be at war with the MPs even though they are both overwhelmingly internationalist and Pro-European. My view is that Corbyn should have resigned once he had blatantly lost the confidence of his MPs. How on earth can you function as an opposition, let alone govern, if most of the MPs within your own party don't even support you? Even Angus Robertson, leader of the SNP in the House of Commons has more MPs supporting him than Corbyn and so technically, should the SNP should be given the title of leader of the opposition?
If Corbyn does win the leadership election within the Labour Party, I definitely believe that the Labour MPs should break away and form their own left-of-centre party. As left wing collumnist Owen Jones argued in one of his youtube videos, both the Tories and Labour should split in two, and many comments argued that UKIP could join with what has been the Eurosceptic wing of the Tory Party, for example. I am strongly in favour of at least a four party system, and Germany is an example of a country where there on the left there is a moderate and a more hardline party, the SPD and Linke, respectively. There is however little such evidence that the Eurosceptic Tories will join with UKIP or that there will be any fracture on the right, May's election and promise to proceed with Brexit healing many wounds there, and so a split on the left would definitely be problematic under our First Past the Post electoral system. Whether or not the Labour Party survives, I definitely believe that Socialism is becoming, at least in the mean while, an irrelevant element in British Politics; the main conflicting ideologies are those of Nationalism and Internationalism while a key centre of attention will be the future of our Union, in particular Scotland as Sturgeon no doubt plans for a Second referendum after the Scots voted against Brexit. Effectively, Labour has been driven of the stage of British Politics, both in Scotland and south of the border, whether due its own fault or not. Perhaps its time for a new, liberal internationalism to enter stage and for the Lib-Dems to shine as the chief progressive force.