Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn hints at not leading party in future election
LONDON: Jeremy Corbyn on Friday said he would not lead Britain’s main opposition Labour party at the next general election, after predictions of a crushing defeat at nationwide polls.
“I will not lead the party in any future general election campaign,” the veteran socialist, 70, said after winning his north London seat for the 10th time.
Corbyn took over Britain’s main opposition Labour party with a vision to remodel the country along socialist lines, but looks to have led his party to its worst defeat since 1935.
To his supporters, the 70-year-old offered a chance to deliver a radical leftist agenda, shaking up the economy and reversing a decade of Conservative public spending cuts.
But the wider public failed to warm to him, a situation made worse by his refusal to take a position on Brexit and accusations of anti-Semitism and sympathising with terrorists.
According to an exit poll from Thursday’s election, Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s Conservatives inflicted a resounding defeat on Labour — projected to be its worst loss since 1935.
One of the first results emphasised Labour’s woes, with former safe seat Blyth Valley, a one-time mining area in northeastern England, voting Tory for the first time ever.
Corbyn’s team blamed “Brexit fatigue”, saying voters were won over by Johnson’s promise to end years of debate about Britain’s EU exit.
But critics from the more centrist side of Labour rounded on the leader, while the hashtag #Corbynout was quickly trending on social media.
“Essentially the election was a referendum on Corbyn,” said Andrew Adonis, who served as a minister under former Labour premier Tony Blair.