Labour crisis: Momentum is only trying to right the wrongs of Tony Blair, says Ken Livingstone

'The root of Labour's current problems is Tony Blair's leadership', says Ken Livingstone

Ken Livingstone gave his views on Momentum and the Labour Party

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Former London Mayor Ken Livingstone has rubbished the criticism of Momentum and said the left-wing campaign group is only trying to correct the "unfair" membership changes put in place by Tony Blair.

Momentum leader Jon Lansman has sparked fury among moderate members of the Labour party by expressing a wish to join forces with the Unite union and change Labour's rules to make it easier for Momentum-backed candidates to stand in future party elections.

Lansman's comments sparked strong criticism from Labour's deputy leader Tom Watson, who has warned that Momentum is plotting to take over the party. but Momentum has hit back, with national organiser Rachel Godfrey Wood describing his comments as "laughable" in an interview with talkRADIO.

Livingstone, who is currently attempting to rejoin the Labour Party after being suspended over allegedly anti-semitic remarks last year, told Sam Delaney: “It’s complete hysterical nonsense [to say it's a plot]. 

"All that Momentum are pressing for is to bring back the democratic structures we had in our party until Blair came along."

Before Blair won the Labour leadership in 1994, Livingstone said, “a local Labour Party could select any candidate it wanted" for an election. But then Blair change the rules to ensure you "had to choose from an approved list."

Livingstone believes "we wouldn't have this [infighting] problem if that unfairness hadn’t happened."

The veteran left-winger added that, while "most people have not heard of our economic policy," Labour's "huge programme of increased investment" would "open the way for a good economy."

Listen to the full interview above