James Clarke, one of the founders of the political party Renew, has said that people feel the traditional parties are “not fit for purpose”, as Ian Austin became the ninth MP to leave the Labour party this week.
Mr Clarke said Renew became a political party officially in 2018 after its founders felt “politically homeless” among the traditional Westminster parties.
Mr Austin accused the party of a "culture of extremism, antisemitism and intolerance", but did not join the The Independent Group formed by seven former Labour MPs on Monday.
The Principal of Renew told talkRADIO’s Daisy McAndrew: “We were upset at the divisiveness and the polarisation of politics so stood as independents.
“We decided the best thing to do was to start a party because if you did manage to stop Brexit tomorrow, the causes that brought it about would still be there.
The answer was really a renewal of the system and reform. It is about much more than Brexit.”
'Politics is broken'
Mr Clarke said that the breakaway Independent Group is “extremely encouraging” to him and his party.
“It is quite funny that they came out on the first anniversary to the day of Renew’s launch in 2018,” he said.
“It was extremely encouraging to see that the messages of The Independent Group echoed those closely of those of Renew.
“‘Politics is broken’ and ‘the electorate deserves an alternative’ - we were over the moon that members of the parties in Westminster were coming around to what we have been saying for a year and a half now.”
He added that the UK was “a completely new political landscape”, with parties no longer guaranteed votes.
“The mainstream parties no longer have a lock on the Labour or Conservative vote,” he said.
“I think at least seven out of ten votes are up for grabs at the next election because people don’t want to hold their noses and vote for one party to keep the other one out.”