14 Nov 2009

Respect Conference in Birmingham today

Well I am told that George Galloway made a point of backing Peter Tatchell at the General Election. That will be news to some people.

An emergency motion to debate supporting a new left coalition, nick named 'Son of NO2EU' currently supported by the CPB and the Socialist Party and Bob Crow was defeated.

More when I get it, I am very much looking forward to getting to Birmingham at some point and supporting Salma Yaqoob, while I am famously not an advocate of 'a leader', its great to be able to work with two impressive women leaders of two progressive political parties.

Here is some more, at least two Green Left/Green Party members attended as observers, they will give a full report but here is a snippet.

'Overall all speakers were very very positive towards the Green Party, George Galloway, Salma Yaqoob, Ger Francis and a number of other members made a very big deal of supporting the Green Party in various different ways and how we work mutually as two different parties.I think it is important to note that George Galloway called for people to vote for Peter Tatchell if they are able too and gave a stong endorsement of Peters politics, so fair play to George. They were obviously very positive about our decision to stand down for Salma but also talked often about Salmas support for us in the Euros and used it as an example about the right way to go about left unity. There was a lot of talk from George and others that Respect should not look to small far left cults for coalitions but to organisations like the ourselves

What i found really interesting was an emergency motion put forward by various members ( in particular a former member of the SWP who shall remain nameless) to support the son of No 2 EU. Galloway absoultely hammered No2EU and in particuluar for standing against Peter Cranie in the North West (Indeed he even began shaking with anger) and refused to entertain any talk of coalition with the son of NO2EU. The emergency motion was defeated by 79-34 votes to be discussed at conference, however a very similar motion was debated. Ger Francis was very scathing of those who supported NO2EU and there were a fair few cat calls between the two sides of the debate.


Anonymous said...

Good that Galloway backs Tatchell. (Galloway has been unfairly called a homophobe, just as Tatchell has unfairly been called an islamophobe!) Good to see some clarity and sense here from Respect leaders. But also fingers crossed for more chances of some sort of left unity between respect and 'son of no2eu' and others (despite the mistakes of no2eu). Surely each group - around Greens, Respect and RMT/SPEW/CP+co, etc - can arrange a general election truce where they each target certain seats. There are an awful lot of communities betrayed by Labour, making lot of constituencies to stand in - more than we can cover combined. madness for them to stand against each other. All power to your elbow to all those trying to create this unity.


Derek Wall said...

well said and I am hoping Barry you can add to the call for people to go and canvass and leaflet for strong left candidates, their number is slowly increasing.

Dai Davies in Blaneau Gwent is already an MP.

James said...

George Galloway made it clear that making alliances with new left parties and leftist organisations would not benefit the party, rather making alliances with those on the right of the left like the Greens.

galloway has never been a homophobe. Galloway and Salma Yaqoob have backed Lucas and Thatchell.

This story surprised me http://www.gscene.com/national/Muslim_homophobe_backs_Tatchell_s_bid_to_be_MP.shtml

what I'd really like to know is whether Peter tatchell will ever say anything positive about Respect?

ModernityBlog said...

I am glad that Galloway is supportive of Peter.

Derek, I hope that you can convey to George to avoid using the Khazar thesis, to delegitimise Jews.

That line of argumentation has been around for years, mostly used by the Far Right, and it is best avoid by those on the Left.

Derek Wall said...

The Khazer thesis is indeed pretty standard far right myth making and I agree nobody on the left should give it credit.

Its a standard trope of anti-semites. thanks for taking the trouble to comment.