Jeremy Corbyn’s response to Trump’s victory is a welcome dose of reality [OPINION]

Support us and go ad-free

Jeremy Corbyn has summed up what many people are thinking in a statement on Donald Trump’s victory.

When a country elects a new leader, senior politicians from around the world generally offer their congratulations. Normally, they trot out the same hollow phrases as the last time and pledge to ‘work together’.

Corbyn’s message is different. It’s not a vacuous ‘well done’ to the new President-elect. It’s a statement of solidarity with many of the people who voted against Trump and are now fearful of what the future might hold. But it’s also an invitation to those who saw Trump as the man to bring change.

A welcome dose of reality

Corbyn recognises that part of Trump’s appeal is his lack of political background. Trump has repeatedly positioned himself as the anti-establishment candidate and painted Hillary Clinton as a stooge of Washington and Wall Street. Regardless of how accurate or inaccurate this may be, America has shown it wants change.

The exit polls in The New York Times are very telling. Clinton did very well among voters who feel that things are going OK. But voters who felt that the economy is in a bad way and their prospects are declining overwhelmingly opted for Trump. Those who were ‘angry’ with the government were vastly more likely to vote Trump. Such sentiments aren’t unique to the US; they’re a global phenomenon.

But there is another side to this global unease with political elites. Many countries have fringe politicians ready to harness public discontent for divisive purposes. And some of these disturbing figures have been positively gleeful about Trump’s success. They will see his elevation to ‘leader of the free world’ as a green light to push their hateful agendas. Corbyn tackles this slightly obliquely, saying:

But some of Trump’s answers to the big questions facing America, and the divisive rhetoric around them, are clearly wrong.

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

He then zones in on the issue, and seeks to isolate Trump at the same time:

I have no doubt, however, that the decency and common sense of the American people will prevail, and we send our solidarity to a nation of migrants, innovators and democrats.

According to Corbyn, it won’t be Trump who solves America’s problems. It will be its people. And it will be those people who recognise the role the US has long played as a haven for migrants, not those seeking to throw up walls, who’ll genuinely help to make America ‘great’.

The message

Here is Corbyn’s statement in full:

Many in Britain and elsewhere will be understandably shocked by Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election, the rhetoric around it and what the election result means for the rest of the world, as well as America.

Trump’s election is an unmistakable rejection of a political establishment and an economic system that simply isn’t working for most people. It is one that has delivered escalating inequality and stagnating or falling living standards for the majority, both in the US and Britain.

This is a rejection of a failed economic consensus and a governing elite that has been seen not to have listened. And the public anger that has propelled Trump to office has been reflected in political upheavals across the world.

But some of Trump’s answers to the big questions facing America, and the divisive rhetoric around them, are clearly wrong.

I have no doubt, however, that the decency and common sense of the American people will prevail, and we send our solidarity to a nation of migrants, innovators and democrats.

After this latest global wake up call, the need for a real alternative to a failed economic and political system could not be clearer.

That alternative must be based on working together, social justice and economic renewal, rather than sowing fear and division. And the solutions we offer have to improve the lives of everyone, not pit one group of people against another.

Americans have made their choice. The urgent necessity is now for us all to work across continents to tackle our common global challenges: to secure peace, take action on climate change and deliver economic prosperity and justice.

Get Involved!

– See more on Donald Trump at The Canary Global.

Support The Canary so we can keep holding the powerful to account.

Featured image via John Ranson for The Canary / Flickr

Support us and go ad-free

We need your help to keep speaking the truth

Every story that you have come to us with; each injustice you have asked us to investigate; every campaign we have fought; each of your unheard voices we amplified; we do this for you. We are making a difference on your behalf.

Our fight is your fight. You’ve supported our collective struggle every time you gave us a like; and every time you shared our work across social media. Now we need you to support us with a monthly donation.

We have published nearly 2,000 articles and over 50 films in 2021. And we want to do this and more in 2022 but we don’t have enough money to go on at this pace. So, if you value our work and want us to continue then please join us and be part of The Canary family.

In return, you get:

* Advert free reading experience
* Quarterly group video call with the Editor-in-Chief
* Behind the scenes monthly e-newsletter
* 20% discount in our shop

Almost all of our spending goes to the people who make The Canary’s content. So your contribution directly supports our writers and enables us to continue to do what we do: speaking truth, powered by you. We have weathered many attempts to shut us down and silence our vital opposition to an increasingly fascist government and right-wing mainstream media.

With your help we can continue:

* Holding political and state power to account
* Advocating for the people the system marginalises
* Being a media outlet that upholds the highest standards
* Campaigning on the issues others won’t
* Putting your lives central to everything we do

We are a drop of truth in an ocean of deceit. But we can’t do this without your support. So please, can you help us continue the fight?

The Canary Support us

Comments are closed