Veteran Labour MP says his party is 'out of touch with ordinary people'

Posted On: 
9th December 2016

One of Labour’s longest-serving MPs has issued a damning verdict on his party’s performance, warning they are “out of touch with ordinary people”.

David Winnick appearing on the Daily Politics
Credit: 
BBC Two

David Winnick, who first entered the House of Commons in 1966, said Labour were heading for “electoral disaster” with Jeremy Corbyn at the helm.

The 83-year-old Walsall North MP was speaking after the party was pushed into fourth place at the by-election in Sleaford and North Hykeham – a seat where the party had come second in the 2015 general election.

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A poll out this morning also put the party 17 points behind the Tories – its worst performance in opposition since 1983, the year when their election manifesto was branded “the longest suicide note in history”.

Speaking this morning, Mr Winnick said Mr Corbyn and his team were not in touch with the “real world”.

“There are those who don’t seem to grasp that if you have rallies of the faithful, loyalists, activists and the rest of it, that’s fine, but you can lose touch with the real world.

“And my fear is we’re not in touch with ordinary people anywhere to the extent that is necessary to make a real impact in the country,” he told the BBC's Daily Politics.

“We’re not in touch because though day in and day out…Labour MPs put the case what is happening in the country, how many people, millions, are suffering as a result of the cuts. Labour councillors up and down the country do their duty and [that’s’] the reason why they were elected in the first place, but we’re not perceived by so many people as acting in their interest.”

‘ELECTORAL DISASTER’

In a separate interview with the Press Association Mr Winnick said Labour were heading for an “electoral disaster” in 2020.

“If we were to continue in this way then the indications are 2020 will be an electoral disaster and the possibility of a Labour government very remote indeed,” he said.