Sir Keir Starmer calls Labour to modernise if it wants to win election

Sir Keir Starmer calls on Labour to modernise and become ‘the party of the next 20 years’ if it wants to win next general election

  • Labour Leader, 58, speaking ahead of party’s forthcoming annual conference
  • Said top priority was to win government after fifth consecutive loss to the Tories
  • He plans to relaunch leadership to prove the party is a credible option for voters

Sir Keir Starmer has called on Labour to modernise and become ‘the party of the next 10 or 20 years’ if it wants to win the next general election.

Speaking ahead of the the party’s forthcoming annual conference, the Labour leader, 58, also said his ‘top priority’ was to win government. 

‘In order to win that election, we have to win the future,’ Sir Keir said in an interview with The Observer. 

Sir Keir Starmer, 58, has called on Labour to modernise and become ‘the party of the next 10 or 20 years’ if it wants to win the next general election

‘We have to modernise and we have to be the party of the next 10 or 20 years, not the party that simply looks back at the last 10 years and says: “You could have had something else if you’d voted Labour”.’

Earlier in August, he revealed he was planning to relaunch his leadership of Labour in the autumn in a bid to prove the party is a credible option for voters at the next election.

In an interview with the Financial Times on August 6, he said he would ‘turn the Labour Party inside out’ to show it was serious about winning power.

 Sir Keir added that members of the party had to ‘get real’ about damaging internal rows.

His leadership has been questioned by some on the left of the party since he took over from Jeremy Corbyn in April last year.

Factional disputes within the party have often been blamed for distracting from the task of opposing the Conservatives and have prompted multiple calls for unity.

Labour’s annual conference is scheduled to take place in Brighton from September 25 to 29.

This comes after Sir Keir has been warned that victory at the 2024 General Election will be impossible unless Labour can find a way of luring back millions of voters who defected to Boris Johnson’s Tories in 2019.

He was briefed by Deborah Mattinson, his Director of Strategy and a former pollster, on the huge challenge Labour faces if it is to win back trust avoid a fifth consecutive loss to the Conservatives.

Senior party figures told the Observer that Labour must adopt clearer, sharper, more uplifting messaging about the party’s values and Sir Keir’s vision, rather than throwing too many policy commitments at voters

Senior party figures told the Observer that Labour must adopt clearer, sharper, more uplifting messaging about the party’s values and Sir Keir’s vision, rather than throwing too many policy commitments at voters.

One insider told the newspaper: ‘The message was that many people do not know what we represent. They think we have given them too much policy rather than telling them in simple terms how we’d improve their lives.’

Some in Sir Keir’s team believe Labour is still suffering damage from the era of Jeremy Corbyn.

This was mired in allegations of anti-Semitism and support for Islamist terrorists, which ended in defeat in 2019.

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