Is this the face of Labour’s future?

Colin Burgon MP

“You’re a fucking cunt, Denis!” The words of Colin Burgon MP, memeber of the Socialist Campaign Group, to his more mainstream colleague Denis MacShane, as reported by Tom Copley, chair of London Young Labour. Burgon was behind him at the time and cringed, but didn’t deny it so I guess it’s not in question.

This remark drew some cheers and laughter when it was made at the Young Labour reception last night, cramed into a bar just off Brighton seafront. Burgon, a staunch lefty, was one of the speakers at the event, along with Jon Cruddas and Chuka “British Obama” Ummuna, parliamentary candidate for Streatham.

That’s one lefty and two centre-lefties, not including Nancy Platts, the local candidate for Brighton Pavilion (see below). And the YL chair is Sam Tarry, also chair of the youth wing of centre-left Labour pressure group Compass. Young Labour is, it seems, a lefty outfit. Because they’re young and idealistic, you might say. Well, no; Labour Students is far more in line with government policy. Members of the audience confirmed to me that they thought the speakers were pretty on-message as far as they were concerned.

Will these fresh young faces (possibly slightly less fresh after last night’s drinking exploits) be taking over control of the Labour Party? If so, expect a leftward swing. That’s what they’re planning. But having a few parliamentary candidates, who, let’s face it, are unlikely to win (m)any seats at the next election, won’t be enough.


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