British Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn continues to have a rough time. Labour’s lost at the recent by-election in Copeland to the Tories was the bluntest of rebukes for Corbyn.
Corbyn is fire fighting on so many fronts whether from his own MPs, senior Labour members, the media and the public. Prime Minister Theresa May is the least of his troubles. Corbyn has yet to make inroads on May’s lukewarm performance so far as PM.
The recent passing of Labour MP Gerald Kaufman means another by-election looms. A by-election Corbyn cannot afford to lose or win with a slim majority. (At the last general elections in 2015 Kaufman won 67% of the vote in the constituency of Manchester Gorton).
Today the Jeremy Corbyn-run Labour Party looks out of sorts, amateurish and disjointed.
Labour’s Shadow Cabinet needs a revamp. But making new appointments is not easy given the number of resignations Corbyn’s had since 2015.
Corbyn has to reverse his flagging leadership immediately.
How can Corbyn can reverse his slide?
1. Corbyn needs to appear on political debating shows – such as BBC’s weekly Question Time (TV) and Any Questions (Radio) – on a regular basis. Since he became leader in 2015 I cannot recall Corbyn appearing on such programmes – outside the Labour leadership debates.
2. Corbyn should call out some of those Labour MPs and senior members who continue to undermine his leadership. But do so in an constructive witty manner.
[Corbyn should publicly accept that he cannot expect 100% loyalty from all Labour MPs on any given policy. Given he was one of Labour’s most rebellious MPs during his 30+ years as a backbencher.]
3. Corbyn needs to replace his support team with more pragmatic, positive minded and streetwise individuals. Corbyn’s inner circle is too trade union centric. He needs staff with proven experience of modern effective communications strategies and reputation building.
4. Corbyn must have a more aspirational approach to his policies on post-BREXIT economy, Housing, NHS, Education and Immigration.
5. Corbyn must move Labour’s economic policy to the centre-left. This would mean ditching his current shadow chancellor and friend John McDonnell whose ideas do not appeal the middle class vote.
6. Corbyn should travel to EU countries, US and other G20 nations to learn about their approach to effective policies and good governance. Corbyn should work on building networks with politicians in these countries.
He needs to build his profile as a statesman beyond the comfort zone of the British Isles. E.g. Corbyn should be visiting Canada to develop good working relationships with the current Liberal government.
7. During the recent US election campaign Corbyn should have visited there regularly to observe first hand the approach taken by both leading Democratic and Republican candidates.
Corbyn and his team should now be analysing and learning from the communication/campaign strategies of both Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders. But also learn from the mistakes made by Hillary Clinton.
8. Corbyn needs to bring a personal touch to his social media messaging. Corbyn’s twitter account at times is too formal and too political. It lacks any flair or humour and views away from politics.
Why doesn’t Corbyn comment on his beloved Arsenal football club? Especially after Arsenal’s 2 recent humiliating losses to Bayern Munich. 10-2!
9. Donald Trump constantly complains about the negative media coverage he has received over the past 18 months. But he still has Fox News, Piers Morgan, Nigel Farage and Rush Limbaugh in his corner.
Jeremy Corbyn has no media support in the UK. Even the Guardian is showing signs of completely giving up on him.
Daily Mail and Daily Telegraph are not likely to ever publish a single positive article on the Labour leader. But Corbyn can turn such negative articles to his advantage.
Corbyn could use his twitter account to counter some of the negative coverage. Corbyn should occasionally even retweet some of negative articles with a witty defence.
The UK needs a resurgent Labour Party that is challenging Theresa May and proving itself as a viable government in waiting.
If Corbyn feels he is not up to the challenge then he should move on for the sake of non-Tory voters.