Last week, another member of the Labour party, Caroline Flint, said parliamentarians who ardently supported Remain in the Brexit referendum and meted out disrespect towards voters who wanted the UK to leave the European Union had contributed to the party’s historical loss.
A former UK Labour MP put the blame for her party’s crushing defeat during the recent election on former Prime Minister Tony Blair, who headed Labour from 1994 until 2007. Taking to Twitter, Laura Pidcock, who is a close ally of incumbent leader Jeremy Corbyn and was touted to replace the 70-year-old, said Tony Blair’s legacy hangs around the Labour party like a millstone.
Ms. Pidcock represented the North East Durham constituency, which had been a traditional Labour heartland since 1950 and was defending a majority of 8,792, but lost her seat after a major swing to the Conservative party during the 12 December election. The lowest majority held by a Labour parliamentarian in the constituency when Tony Blair was party leader was 13,443.
Laura Pidcock’s post was a reaction to a recent article penned by Britain’s former Prime Minister, in which Mr. Blair warned Labour that it must “renew itself as the serious, progressive, non-conservative competitor for power in British politics” or face threat of being replaced by other parties.
Ms. Pidcock’s fellow parliamentarians were divided by her post. Her former chief of staff retweeted her post and also put the blame for the party’s defeat on Tony Blair. He wrote:
However, in a later post, he admitted that among other things the party lost due to mistakes it made during the past four years.
Tom Blenkinsop, a former member of Labour for Middleborough South and East Cleveland until 2017, noted that the party suffered losses when Jeremy Corbyn was in power. “Safe Parliamentary seat lost 2019. Safe Northumberland council seat lost 2017. All under Corbyn’s period of leadership….bloody Tony Blair!”, Blenkinsop wrote.
Another former Labour MP, Jamie Reed, tweeted: “Have you learned nothing Laura?”
Polls suggest that Jeremy Corbyn was the biggest reason for Labour’s worst election performance since 1930s with another parliamentarian, Caroline Flint, who lost her seat after 12 December vote, claiming that long-time supporters found it hard to back the party “whilst that man is your leader”.