Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper

2015 Labour leadership campaign

Yvette Cooper: refreshing and renewing Labour

Labour Party Leadership Election 2015: On behalf of Hastings Online Times, Sean O’Shea asked all four of the Labour Party leadership candidates for their views on the role of the Labour Party in the twenty first century, the disillusionment with politics, the democratic deficit and the EU. He also enquired about their vision of the good society and what they would do to help people with their everyday struggles and problems.

Here follows the response from Yvette Cooper, MP for Leigh and shadow home secretary. Separately we have received responses from Andy Burnham and Jeremy Corbyn, but not, so far, Liz Kendall.

ayvetteI want to build a strong Labour Party that can win the next election, so that we can make a real difference to people’s lives. I hate what the Tories are doing to our country – pushing children into poverty, stretching our NHS to breaking point and rolling back workers’ rights.

Some people seem to have written Labour off in 2020 – I refuse to. There are too many people depending on us. That’s why I want to restore the fight for equality and social justice to the heart of the Labour Party – with new laws and action against discrimination and prejudice. I want to rebuild our relationship with business and invest in research and development to create millions of new high-tech jobs. I want to champion ambitious house building plans, so we can build two million homes in the next decade. And I want to make ending child poverty in a generation a core part of Labour’s mission once again.

I am committed to refreshing and renewing the Labour Party. I will continue to reach out to all parts of the country, drawing on the views of all parts of our Party and listening to those who have turned away from Labour, as well as those who stayed with us. Renewal won’t be driven by abstract Westminster speeches but by the new ideas and innovation from our party and beyond across the country, and from the energy of our activists, members and supporters who worked so hard before this election and have so many ideas to offer.

The unwritten constitution in Great Britain is creaking at the seams. We need a constitutional convention where we discuss electoral reform and devolution and agree a written constitution. While I understand that electoral reform is an important issue and am supportive in principle, I also recognise that the public rejected AV in a referendum and it would be unwise for a Labour opposition to push for a change in the electoral system right after losing an election.

I am standing for leader because I believe it’s unacceptable that people are working really hard but not getting a fair deal, that families feel so stretched, that so many people feel worried or pessimistic about the future, and that Britain just isn’t seizing the brilliant opportunities that the future could bring.

I believe that being part of Europe is immensely important because of the jobs and trade it provides Britain. But I want to see reform in Europe. We should be arguing for reform before the referendum, during the referendum and after the referendum because some of it will take time.


Andy Burnham speaks

Jeremy Corbyn speaks


Posted 21:24 Sunday, Aug 16, 2015 In: Politics

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