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LABOUR needs an even more radical political programme than it put forward at the 2017 general election, Derby North MP Chris Williamson told a packed meeting in West Yorkshire today.
He said that it should involve permanently democratising the economy, turning the Houses of Parliament into a museum and moving the seat of power to the north.
A single parliamentary Bill to repeal all anti-union laws was also needed, he said.
Mr Williamson was speaking at a meeting organised by the Calderdale trade union council in the Trades Club, Hebden Bridge.
He attacked Labour’s establishment and the Parliamentary Labour Party for obstructing radical change — and said democratisation should start within the party.
Williamson, a former bricklayer, said that the current Labour Party should be going into communities and becoming part of them.
“The biggest cohort at any election is the number of people who do not vote,” he said.
“When I lost my seat in 2015 there were 25,000 people in my constituency who did not vote. I lost by 41 votes.”
Williamson regained his seat in 2017 with a majority of 2,015.
“The road to power is to get people to vote who do not vote. Our job is to inspire people to vote,” he said.
“What we need is a more radical manifesto than in 2017, which is going to go down to the grassroots members, and we need to be in a place where we do politics with people, not to people.
“The smallest turnouts are in working-class communities, and it is not their fault — it is our fault.”
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