Hard-left, veteran MP Jeremy Corbyn was announced the new leader of the Labour party this morning at a conference in central London.
The former long-standing party rebel, who has never before sat in either cabinet or shadow cabinet experienced an unexpected rise to fame in the aftermath of Britain’s general election in May of this year.
The surprise result, which gave the Conservative party enough seats to break out of the previous coalition and rule alone as a majority force gave Labour confidence a hard knock.
Corbyn won 251,417 of an estimated 422,000 votes cast, taking 59-per-cent of the first round votes.
— Robin Brant (@robindbrant) September 12, 2015
The MP is perhaps best known for his pro-union, anti-business stance. Media sources across the UK have compared the victory to the rise of the anti-austerity Syriza Party in Greece.
But he’s also known for being virulently anti-Israel, and calling terrorists and extremists from the likes of Hamas and Hezbollah, “friends”.
The Labour leadership election has been just as much about a battle of personalities has it has a plebiscite on why exactly they lost an election they fully expected to win.
Corbyn’s campaign to lead the party resembles a ‘Back to the Future’ gambit, in which he hopes to take the party to victory in 2020 by taking them back to good, old fashioned, 20th century values.
Labour activists greeting Mr. Corbyn as he arrived at the Queen Elizabeth hall this morning were heard to be singing the ‘Red Flag’, a traditional socialist anthem which fell out of favour with the party during the Blair years of New Labour.
In his acceptance speech, Mr. Corbyn said his first act as leader of the party would be to go to a demonstration in support of opening Europe’s borders to unlimited migration in London.
Fellow veteran left-winger Tom Watson was selected as the deputy leader of the party on a slim majority of 50.7-per-cent in the third round.
In his acceptance speech, Watson made a particular point of thanking his friends in the unions for helping him on his way, and claimed that Britain had never been a conservative country – perhaps despite all evidence to the contrary.