Jeremy Corbyn was re-elected leader of Britain’s opposition Labour Party on Saturday, ending a “coup” attempt by more moderate lawmakers who say his left-wing agenda can never deliver victory at the polls.
The veteran campaigner’s triumph, by 313,209 to 193,229 votes, cements his authority over the divided party and will fuel his drive to turn Labour further left – a move many of his colleagues say will see them out of power and allow the ruling Conservatives free rein to set Britain’s divorce from the EU.Welcoming the result, which hands him more votes than when he first won the leadership last year, Corbyn called on lawmakers and members at the party’s annual conference in the northwestern city of Liverpool to come together to fight the Conservatives and bring “real change” to Britain.
“Elections are passionate and often partisan affairs, things are sometimes said in the heat of the debate … which we sometimes later come to regret. But always remember in our party we have much more in common than that which divides us,” he said to roars from the crowd of mainly his supporters.
“Let’s wipe that slate clean and get on with the work we have got to do as a party together,” he said, moving to ease fears that his re-election will widen the divide between the Labour Party’s left and right wings and that he may trigger moves to force centrist lawmakers from the party.