Jeremy Corbyn easily defeated that New Labour challenge and the Labour Party under Jeremy's leadership gained 3 million extra votes in the June 2017 General Election that was called by May and the Tories, calculating that the Labour Party would be destroyed as the Opposition. Doh! The Tories lost their overall majority and Labour are now 6 percentage points ahead of the Tories in the latest opinion poll. What a miscalculation!
|To Lindsay and to Jack - all the best - Jeremy Corbyn
Jeremy returned to Heartlands then with even more spring in his step. Mixing my metaphors, he is - as his deputy, Tom Watson, has said: 'walking on water'. After he had delivered his speech, our next prime minister came down from the rostrum and spoke with the people close to the stage and signed autographs. Lindsay Smith, one of the St Ives Labour Party activists from the Penbeagle estate who
together did so much to help boost Labour Party votes in that area and elsewhere, campaigning door-to-door and online, had her son, Jack, with her and Jeremy signed a copy of 'The Road to Corbyn' that they had brought to the rally. They were pretty chuffed - and so was I! Here's a link to the book, if you want to know more:
|Our next Prime Minister, Jeremy Corbyn, on the rostrum delivering his speech
Jeremy's focus this time in his Cornwall rally at Heartlands was the NHS. He spoke with Jon Ashworth, the shadow secretary for Health, and between them the iniquitous treatment of our National Health Service was laid bare. The Tories are deliberately taking the 'National' out of the provision. It will be a privatised service, no longer free at the point of contact and need. Jeremy pointed out that NHS patients cannot afford another year of Theresa May. "She has said she is 'proud' of the conservative record on the NHS, but after a year in office, patients are waiting longer to be seen in A & E, longer for treatment and longer to be discharged. That is nothing to be proud of."
He went on to warn that:
"The NHS is under threat from underfunding. It is under threat from privatisation. It's under threat from an internal market and it's under threat from contracting out." The Tory mismanagement of the NHS was "not down to the financial constraints of the economy but the dogmatic constraints of their ideology." Austerity was a political choice, it has never been an economic necessity.
|Me with Keith and Alana at the stall - Heartlands yesterday
Back in 2016, I produced a couple of blog-posts that were inspired by a London doctor's excellent analysis of the Tory plan to dismantle the NHS. Do read them again or have a look for the first time. Dr Youssef El-Gingihy's short book needs wider circulation. Here are the two links:
|Jeremy mounts the rostrum
Jeremy Corbyn's visit to Pool and Heartlands in the afternoon followed a visit to the Royal Cornwall hospital in Truro in the morning. Our Labour leader was starting a nationwide tour of Tory-held marginal seats. Analysis by the London School of Economics revealed earlier this week that seats visited by Jeremy Corbyn saw a vote share change of 19% compared with 10% in seats with no visit. As Jeremy himself said yesterday he will be back in Cornwall when that General Election is called. There are now two marginal constituencies that will swing from Conservative to Labour at that next election - and others such as St Ives where activists, including myself, will do all they can to bring about an 'upset' and the return of a Labour MP.