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Nessa Childers MEP with Labour Party leader Eamon Gilmore
Nessa Childers MEP with Labour Party leader Eamon Gilmore
Image: The Labour Party via Flickr

Labour must return to core beliefs - or pull out of government, says Labour MEP

In an opinion piece for TheJournal.ie this morning, Nessa Childers says Labour needs to
Apr 13th 2012, 7:00 AM 2,590 24

THE LABOUR PARTY must start bringing in policies based on Labour values or else pull out of the coalition, Labour MEP Nessa Childers has warned.

In an opinion piece for TheJournal.ie this morning the Ireland East MEP writes that Labour must start to behave as though it is not just the junior partner in a coalition.

“We hold the government together and can cause it to fall, and we may eventually have to do this if we cannot bring about real reform, rather than hold up a flawed notion that austerity alone will bring security,” writes Childers.

The Labour MEP also says that the internal fights in the highest ranks of the party are ‘not appropriate’ and hints at a leadership struggle for control of the party:

Recently there have been many proxy battles and internal skirmishes which are not appropriate in these times. If a power struggle is to take place in the Party it should not sputter on for years, it should end soon and decisively.

Childers writes that while it would be easy for the party to say that the government must continue in its current form, that cannot be the case.

Labour must only stay in government if we are shaping policy according to Labour values.

The Ireland East MEP said she had seen governments failing across Europe as they tried to push through policies of austerity and called on Labour to try a different approach.

“I believe there is no excuse not to seek more progressive solutions,” writes Childers.

She called on the party to use its national conference this weekend to discuss what the first year in government has meant for Labour and for the country.

Party convention

Separately, party colleague Patrick Nulty TD called on party leadership to listen to members at the Labour conference in Galway this weekend.

Nulty, who lost the whip when he voted against the government over December’s Budget, said that the party can only begin to more forcibly make its presence felt in government by listening to the motions set down by members.

The Dublin West TD said that Labour’s identity as a party championing a radical agenda has been eroded.

Read the full opinion piece by Nessa Childers >

Labour needs to assert itself in Coalition, warns MEP >

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Christine Bohan

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