The Shadow Trade Secretary kicks off the election with the perfect response to Labour’s polling [AUDIO]

Support us and go ad-free

Kicking off the election campaign, Shadow Secretary for International Trade Barry Gardiner had the perfect response to Labour’s polling.

Prime Minister Theresa May has called for a general election on 8 June.

Citing the Conservatives’ 21-point lead, Talk Radio host Julia Hartley-Brewer asked Gardiner what percentage chance Labour has of winning. The MP for Brent North responded:

Probably the same percentage chance that you would have given Jeremy to have won the first leadership election, that you would have given Jeremy to win the second leadership election, that you might have even given Donald Trump to win the American election. Politics, Julia, you and I both know is down to the electorate… On the day, they will vote on who is going to make their life better and that will depend on the policies that we put forward.

The 2007-8 financial crash rocked the neoliberal economic orthodoxy of privatisation, financial deregulation and reduced public spending. Trump, Brexit and the rise of candidates like Jean-Luc Mélenchon in France show that the tide is turning against that establishment. Whoever can ride that wave successfully has the chance to win big.

Brexit clash

Gardiner went on to criticise Theresa May for invoking Article 50 before calling for a snap general election. Article 50, the process for leaving the EU, has a two-year deadline. So the MP argues that the election will now encroach upon the negotiation period:

What we know very clearly is that she is now taking two months minimum out of the period where those negotiations should be going on. Now how, in a two-year fixed negotiation period, do you take two months out of those negotiations at a critical time and then seriously think you will be able to do a deal that is good enough?

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

Three questions for Tories

Gardiner, who is also Shadow Minister for International Climate Change, put forward three key questions:

Why are people earning 10% less today in real terms than they were in 2007? Why are there 200,000 fewer home owners today than in 2010? Why are there 1.8 million people waiting more than four hours in accident and emergency?

UK real wages (income adjusted for inflation) have plummeted by 10.4% since the financial crash in 2007-8. And a Conservative hard Brexit looks set to make them fall even further. Figures hidden in the latest Tory budget from the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) project RPI inflation will rise to 4.1% in the final quarter of the 2017 financial year. So the cost of living will greatly increase. Meanwhile, nominal wage growth will actually fall. Coupled together, and we have a record-breaking fall in our standard of living.

Gardiner argues that a vote for Labour, which has pledged a £10 minimum wage, can remedy this. Recent shock elections like Trump, Brexit and the ongoing French election show that Labour can defy the polls and win. With the second biggest membership in Europe, it now needs to launch a strong grassroots campaign.

You can listen to the interview here:

Get Involved!

– Read more from The Canary on the 2017 general election.

Featured image via Policy Exchange

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