The annual conference of the National Union of Students (NUS), which took place last week, was undoubtedly a difficult one for the left.
The collapse of the Labour Students bloc, which had controlled the union for many years, has allowed a range of right wing “independent” forces an increased influence. With the exception of Respect, much of the student left is in serious decline.
As a result the conference failed to support calls for a national demonstration against tuition fees. It also passed support for a no platform policy that equates anti-Zionism with anti-Semitism.
The Respect delegation was the main source of opposition on the conference floor.
As a result Respect did very well in the elections that it fought – coming second in the contests for president, secretary and vice-president further education.
Respect also won a place on the part-time executive.