Statement on Richard Leonard

03 September 2020

ASLEF, the train drivers’ union, has today issued a statement in support of Richard Leonard, leader of the Scottish Labour Party, after an attempted palace putsch by disaffected Blairites.


Kevin Lindsay, ASLEF’s organiser in Scotland, said: ‘We backed Richard Leonard when he stood for the Labour leadership in Scotland in 2017 and we back Richard today.


‘I have known Richard for many years, as a labour movement activist, trade union organiser, MSP, and now, for the last three years, as leader of our party in this country. He is a man of great integrity, and high ideals, who is steeped in both the Labour Party and the labour movement.


‘He has a difficult job on his hands here, as we all know, but it is a job he is doing extremely well. And it is a job not helped by the whingers and the moaners who snipe from the sidelines instead of trying to help rebuild the party on behalf of the people of Scotland. James Kelly, who has resigned, was Jim Murphy’s campaign manager, never wanted Richard as leader, and has done everything in his power to undermine him.


‘They are trying to topple Richard ahead of the Scottish executive committee, which meets a week on Saturday. They want him out of the way before the list selection for the election is drawn up. It’s a pretty shabby – and entirely self-interested – thing to do. Not for the party, or the people, but for a few old Blairites trying to get their way.


‘That is why we are today calling for the bampots and the naysayers to shut up and let Richard do what he was elected to do – rebuild Labour ready for the elections at Holyrood next year so we can build a Scotland that works for everyone.’

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