Sunday Caroline Lucas, Green Party, shared her thoughts on the misuse of her NHS reinstatement bill by anti-Corbyn MPs, in particular Heidi Alexander, in an open letter published by the guardian.
Titled Corbyn’s support for my NHS reinstatement bill was not inept Caroline writes:
I have no wish to intrude on the Labour leadership debates and I have no idea whether former shadow health minister Heidi Alexander is right in her critique of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership style, but for her aides to pick out Corbyn’s support for my NHS reinstatement bill as evidence both of his “ineptitude” and of his shadow chancellor’s “undermining” her strikes me as both desperate and depressing (Shadow cabinet inept and shoddy, says MP, 20 August).
My private members’ bill, drawn up after extensive consultation with health experts and health service users, would have reversed the creeping marketisation of the NHS – under both New Labour and the Conservatives – and stripped away the costly market mechanisms that waste NHS money and lead to inefficiencies and the fragmentation of services.
Perhaps a more interesting question is why the rest of the Labour party didn’t join their SNP, Plaid and Lib Dem colleagues in giving it their backing too.
With a few honourable exceptions, they chose to abstain instead.
Yet this is precisely the kind of policy a successful Labour party would surely be expected to promote – as well as demonstrating a greater willingness to work alongside colleagues from other parties on those areas where there is common ground between us.
Overcoming party tribalism and finding practical ways of working together will be crucial to any hope of progressive policies finding a majority at the next election – whether that be on the NHS, tackling inequality, putting rail in public hands, or seriously addressing the climate crisis. Real leadership means being bold and honest enough to recognise that there’s far too much at stake to refuse to cooperate for the common good.
Caroline Lucas MP
[Ms Alexander has responded in the usual way, on Twitter, and her response is posted below]
[On Twitter Monday Ms Lucas has tweeted "It's in hope that Labour MPs will support it if it's sponsored by a Labour MP (in a way they didn't when it was a Green MP :("]
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