Latest Issue

Labour’s real leadership problem

Tony Blair is not the cause of the Labour party's fundamental problems. Their roots go back to constitutional changes made in 1981

By Hugh Roberts   October 2006

The difficulties the Labour party is having in managing the succession to Tony Blair are symptomatic of a fundamental feature of the entire New Labour project. The proclamation of this project following Blair’s accession to the party leadership in 1994 simultaneously defined and condemned everything that went before it as “old Labour.” This manoeuvre not only disqualified and disfranchised all other points of view, but made radical amnesia the mandatory medium of political argument within the party. It thereby disabled the party from thinking purposefully about the origins and nature of its own internal problems, which can only be understood…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect