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Support floods in for the Cardiff No-Cuts Three

A flood of support from Labour Party members and trade unionists has greeted the appeal of the Cardiff No-Cuts Three against their expulsion from the Labour Party. John Williams, Joao Felix and Rich Edwards were expelled at the end of January shortly after proposing a motion calling on councillors to refuse to make more cuts to jobs and services.
Judith wrote: “Good for you for standing up for your principles.”
Geoff said: “You comrades are in the right. Keep up the fight!”
Tony argued: “No Labour councillor should ever support vicious attacks on people, especially vicious Tory attacks. I stand with you in solidarity! How dare the party suspend you for standing up for vulnerable people in your area!”
Jean pointed out: “The party and the country have better things to do than the divisive and vindictive campaign of expulsions and suspensions going on.”
A solidarity meeting packed out the upstairs of a local pub in Cardiff last Thursday. Messages of support have come from every corner of Britain – Aberdeen, East London, Liverpool and many other places. Even a message from Tony Blair’s own Sedgefield constituency came in!
Unfortunately, support has not been forthcoming from all quarters. We’ve discovered that a Cardiff councillor and NEC member issued a call to other Labour members on a secret group on social media for the three to be expelled from Welsh Labour Grassroots (Momentum in Wales), which may have given the green light to the bureaucracy to move against them.
The Labour left is very short-sighted if it is backing this witch-hunt. The Labour Party doesn’t stand a chance of being transformed into a party capable of fighting austerity without building a united front of all socialists who are willing to combat the Blairites and Tories who want to wreck the project.
If that is going to happen, Welsh Labour Grassroots (WLG) must adopt a different course. Rich says: “We appealed to WLG for support. Their answer – without meeting with us so we could put our case – was to expel us from WLG as well as Labour! We were blocked from attending the next meeting and they wouldn’t even read out the written appeal we drafted. We understand that our motion calling on councillors to fight the cuts was overturned in our absence – despite having been adopted at the annual general meeting only a month ago. Unfortunately, it looks as though WLG/Momentum is determined to assist right-wing Labour councillors to carry out more cuts this year, and is willing to trample on democracy and turn a deaf ear to the pleas for support from Labour members who have been victimised by the pro-Blairite bureaucracy which still runs Labour.”
It’s increasingly clear that in the upcoming council elections, Welsh Labour is not going to fight on a platform of defending jobs and services, and that the leadership of WLG isn’t going to organise a serious fight that could give people hope that Labour could be made to fight austerity. The danger is that, in that context, support grows for the Liberals and Plaid – who will also not lead a fight against cuts – and even Ukip.
The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) agreed at its conference last month to keep the option open of standing election candidates for just the eventuality we’re facing in Wales. TUSC supporters who have taken part in building the coalition in Cardiff plan to discuss standing candidates in wards which include the worst of the Blairite councillors.