Tony Blair has launched a scathing attack on the “woke left” and warned the Labour Party faced electoral oblivion if it did not start ‘cutting through’ to voters.
Blair, a former Labour prime minister, said May’s dismal election results showed the party needed a “total deconstruction and reconstruction. Nothing less will do.”
Writing in the New Statesman, Blair said: “Keir seems sensible but not radical. He lacks a compelling economic message. And the cultural message, because he is not clarifying it, is being defined by the ‘woke’ left, whose every statement gets cut-through courtesy of the right.”
He said Sir Keir Starmer was “struggling to break through with the public” and that last week’s poor election results left some in the party wondering whether “Keir is the right leader”.
Blair, who nows runs his own think tank, also warned that Labour “won’t revive simply by a change of leader”.
He said political parties “have no divine right to exist” and that progressive parties are facing “extinction across the Western world”.
He also fired off some of the most hard-hitting criticism of the “woke” left by any prominent political figure on the liberal left in Britain or America.
“A progressive party seeking power which looks askance at the likes of Trevor Phillips, Sara Khan, or JK Rowling, is not going to win,” he warned.
“People are suspicious that behind the agenda of many of the culture warriors on the left lies an ideology they find alien and extreme.”
Blair’s comments came as Labour launches an inquest over why it performed so poorly in the May elections.
In the final results of Thursday’s English council elections, the Tories gained 294 councillors across the nation, while Labour lost 267.
It also suffered another significant setback in the loss of the Hartlepool parliamentary seat, which it had held since its creation 47 years ago.