RESPECT: THE Unity Coalition got a brilliant launch in Canterbury in Kent last weekend. Up to 50 people came to a mock trial of Tony Blair and afterwards we spoke about the new Respect coalition.
This was the biggest political meeting in Kent since the Stop the War Coalition meetings we have had. It was a very broad meeting. The film-maker who made Not In My Name and Why War? came from Broadstairs Stop the War Coalition.
A doctor came from Dover. She is going to set up a Dover/Deal Respect. A pensioner who supports the Morning Star left wing newspaper turned up. He spoke about how the left have to unite to challenge Blair, and joined Respect. He has written a letter to the Morning Star criticising the Communist Party of Britain's failure to support the Respect coalition.
There were a lot of people we didn't know there. We were all really pleased. A number of people are thinking about putting their names forward as candidates for the European elections. We also discussed how we are going to take Respect forward in Kent.
We are now going to have organising meetings in different places around Kent in the run-up to our South East Convention of the Left on 14 March.