Keir Starmer quietly takes down ‘10 pledges’ webpage promoted during leadership campaign

Keir Starmer quietly takes down ‘10 pledges’ webpage promoted during leadership campaign

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Back when Sir Keir Starmer was vying to be Jeremy Corbyn’s successor as leader of the Labour Party in 2020, he unveiled 10 pledges “based on the moral case for socialism” and made the promise to maintain the party’s “radical values” – except now, the webpage on Starmer’s website has been quietly taken down.

Covering issues such as economic, social and climate justice, peace and human rights, common ownership and migrants’ and workers’ rights, the commitments covered plans for the abolition of tuition fees, public ownership of “rail, mail, energy and water”, and an end to illegal wars.

The pledges were:

  • Under pledge one, he said he would “increase income tax for the top five per cent of earners”. He would go on to vow not to raise the tax in September this year.
  • Under pledge two, he said he would “support the abolition of tuition fees”. In May he said he was preparing to “move on” from this commitment.
  • Under pledge three, Starmer said he would “put the Green New Deal at the heart of everything we do”. Just last month Labour denied its leader was pushing to water down more than £28 billion a year of funding on green initiatives.
  • Under pledge four, Starmer expressed his desire to “make us a force for international peace and justice”. He ordered his MPs to abstain on a vote calling for a ceasefire in Gaza last month.
  • Under pledge five, the Labour leader said he would “support common [public] ownership of rail, mail, energy and water”. In September 2021, he ruled out nationalising the so-called ‘Big Six’ energy companies.
  • Under pledge six, there was a plan to “defend free movement as we leave the EU”. In July 2022, he vowed not to restore the EU principle in his plan to “make Brexit work”.
  • Under pledge seven (and also mentioned in pledge 10), there is the pledge to “work shoulder-to-shoulder with trade unions”. He would go on to order his frontbench not to join picket lines in July last year, and refuse to back striking nurses just a few months after that.
  • Under pledge eight, Starmer vowed to “abolish the House of Lords”. It was reported in October that Labour is looking to “scale back” its plans on reform of the upper chamber “during a first term in office”.
  • Under the final pledge, Starmer pledged to “promote pluralism” and “unite” the Labour Party. He would go on to strip his predecessor of the party whip in 2020 (and make further comments about how Corbyn’s “days as a Labour MP [being] over”), and see the party’s North of Tyne Mayor Jamie Driscoll – a self-described “socialist” - resign from the party due to being “barred” from standing for re-election on a Labour ticket.


And so, when Starmer decided to do away with the online reminder of commitments he hasn’t done very well to keep this week (the Wayback Machine has a capture as recently as Friday), the quiet takedown hasn’t gone unnoticed by his critics:

Back in February, Starmer insisted the pledges “haven’t all been abandoned by any stretch of the imagination”, but rather he had to “adapt some of them to the circumstances we find ourselves in”.

indy100 has approached the Labour Party for comment.

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