In the past, one popular criticism of Labour was that they were too left-wing; considered by some to be unreasonable, socialist and radical, especially under Jeremy Corbyn. Now the opposite seems to be true, with Sir Keir Starmer’s politics so central and noncommittal that many people are unsure what Labour stands for anymore. The Conservatives seem to have taken over the mantle of controversy and unpopularity, especially in recents comments made by Rishi and the questionable appointment of their latest Foreign Secretary. The real question is what does this mean for voters? We seem to have we been left with a Tory Party that has an unfortunate tendency to open their mouths before thinking, and a Labour Party so afraid of controversy they refuse to say anything.
Some have viewed Labour’s loss of its previous left-wing enthusiasm as a tactic to become more popular and appeal to a larger proportion of voters, which at the moment seems to be working. The Electoral Calculus has predicted with a 93% probability that Labour will win the next election, which is good for those hoping to leave the Tories in the past, but slightly disconcerting since it isn’t entirely clear what we could be replacing them with. The issue of Labour not being “bold” or revolutionary is not seen as a criticism by all, some voters have praised this and reasserted that we need to stabilise our economy and focus on rebuilding after the damage done by the Tories to the NHS, the integrity of the government and the cost of living. This prospect of “the only remedy: Labour stability” doesn’t have the same the excitement of past Labour governments but is a sensible step to strengthen the U.K’s socioeconomic condition.
Sir Keir Starmer’s speech at the Labour Party Conference last month was criticised by the Conservative Party chairman as “all glitter, no substance”, who clearly didn’t find any true value or meaning in Kier’s words but was dazzled by him being showered in glitter by a protest group, who demanded electoral reform and proportional representation. There were mixed opinions on his speech which some found either “dull but determined”, “heartwarming” or “quietly ambitious”. Clearly not the sparkling, revolution inspiring event some had hoped for; even The Guardian were excited by the glitter to “finally have some drama” to report on.
While Labour’s socialist sparkle may have faded recently, there is a chance that is might return if they gain enough support and momentum to be more bold in their policies in the future, although I doubt it will return to the controversial heights of Corbyn’s party any time soon.