A HEAD of steam is building up over creating a left electoral coalition to challenge New Labour at the polls next June. The speakers at a 1,300-strong meeting in London, which called for such a coalition, have now called a national convention to agree and launch it on 25 January next year.
The convention, like the London meeting, aims to draw together the forces that are sickened with New Labour and want to see a left wing alternative at the polls.
Thursday 10 June next year sees elections to the European Parliament and London Assembly on a proportional vote system, as well as council elections across much of Britain.
There was strong support at the 300,000-strong protest against George Bush's visit to Britain for a challenge to New Labour next June. There is already unprecedented backing for the Convention of the Trade Union Left conference taking place on 7 February (for details see page 2).
It will provide an opportunity for delegates to debate the questions that are raging in union after union-should we fund only the Labour Party? Can we resist under this Labour government? Is there an alternative?
So there will be two major focuses just a couple of weeks into the new year for turning the widespread feeling for a left election challenge into a movement that can hit Blair hard next summer.