Labour should take a lead against Tories

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Socialists should support John McDonnell’s call for a general election

A general election now is the best response to the Tories’ crisis, so it’s unfortunate that Jeremy Corbyn and his close allies did not clearly make that call as soon as Theresa May delivered the draft treaty.

They are entangled in a row with Labour Party right wingers and many of the country’s major trade union leaders about the EU, and the call for a “people’s vote”.

However, John McDonnell did go on to call for a general election, and socialists must get behind that call and campaign to oust the Tories.

May has done a deal which guarantees the worst of both worlds — it ties Britain to the neoliberal framework of the EU while also closing the borders and making life harder for EU nationals who want to come here.

Corbyn and McDonnell could fight for a different vision, which would allow them to campaign on renationalisation, freedom of movement for people, an end to austerity and all those things the Labour Party manifesto of 2017 called for.

However, this will only happen if there is a much bigger fight on the ground and with the backing of the unions and Labour.

It is crucial that there are left wing voices calling for a different vision to the EU if we are to fight off the threat of Tommy Robinson and other far-right forces who want to capitalise on the Brexit row to stir up racism.

Any campaign for a general election must also involve a strong and rooted anti-racist movement on the ground.