What does Sir Keir Starmer stand for? A question many of us ask.
So far this year he has been pro cullingGeronimo the alpaca, against changing the party position on“women-only” spaces, and pretty neutral on the big issues, such as the global pandemic and the western coalition’s withdrawal from Afghanistan.
He has also been accused of mimicking prime minister Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party after leaked internal strategy documents suggested the party might make more use of the union flag, veterans and “dressing smartly”.
The MP for Holborn and St Pancras even bigged-up Labour’s patriotic credentials in a bid to win back Red Wall voters ‘borrowed’ to the Tories in 2019.
Not that it has shown any sign of working.
So what else does he stand for?
Well, if you can wait until Wednesday he will make his first in-person speech to members at the Labour Party conference to tell all.
The speech will be based on a newly-released 14,000-word essay called ‘The Road Ahead’, which was published last night by thinktank the Fabian Society.
In it, Sir Keir said Labour cannot “wait around for the public to decide we are right” and must instead grasp the opportunities the current political atmosphere provides.
He admitted: “The Conservatives are not an easy opponent to pin down – and even less so when Labour has tied its own arms behind its back.
“People are no longer prepared to sit back while politicians shrug their shoulders.
“The future will belong to those who do not just mitigate against change but grasp the opportunities it provides.”
The opportunity is now
According to Sir Keir, now is the time for that opportunity, adding: “It is impossible to live in this moment and not feel the winds of changes blowing, just as they did in 1945 and 1997.”
He added: “I want Labour to once again be Britain’s bricks and mortar – a symbol of solidity, reliability, shelter and the prospect of building something new and better.
“To do that, our party must have a relentless focus on the challenges and opportunities of the future and how they can be shaped to the interest of working people.”
He wrote: “When we win, it is not because the country has come around to our way of thinking but because we have seized the future and moulded it.”
People have been quick to react on social media, with comments primarily focussed on the length of the document.
Here’s what people had to say: