Christopher Stalford: Owen Smith is out of touch with his working class base

Letter to the editor
Letter to the editor

I was disappointed by the comments of Labour leadership pretender, Owen Smith MP regarding his plan to frustrate the recent outcome of the European Union referendum.

It must be noted that Owen Smith is seeking to be leader of the party which historically has classed itself as the voice of working-class communities.

Yet never has he been so out of touch with his base: research subsequent to the referendum has shown that a majority of working-class folk supported the Leave campaign.

For a man who wants to surf the wave of popular opinion into 10 Downing Street, this strategy is only to sail into still waters.

It is discouraging that a politician who is promising new hope for his party and his country should so obviously display the dated methods of high handed Eurocrats; if and when the people disagree, ask them again and again until they give the answer that you want.

Though very much the underdog in the Labour leadership contest, if we imagine that he does against all the odds oust Jeremy Corbyn, defeat Theresa May and make it to be Prime Minister, I wonder if then he will ask for re-run elections or will he ask us to respect those democratic votes?

I have no sympathy for Corbyn or his politics but clearly an Owen Smith Labour Party would serve only to widen the already large gulf between political elites and the wider electorate.

In treating the electorate with contempt, questioning their judgement and seeking to frustrate their democratically expressed will, Mr Smith displays all the traits of the modern European statesman.

Christopher Stalford, DUP MLA, South Belfast