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Tuesday 11 June 2013

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TUSC discusses 2014 election plans

THE Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) national steering committee met last week to begin the discussion on what intervention could be made in next year's scheduled elections.

Thursday May 22nd 2014 will see elections being held in 160 local councils in England, including mayoral contests in Watford and the London boroughs of Hackney, Lewisham, Newham and Tower Hamlets. The full list of councils with elections next year is available at 2014 council profiles

Labour controls 76 of these councils - with 54 Tory-controlled, 22 under no overall control, and eight Lib Dem-led - covering all the metropolitan areas of England, including the 32 London boroughs.

These councils will be attempting to push through a fourth round of austerity budgets, including by that stage, no doubt, bedroom tax evictions.

Liverpool TUSC 2014 appeal - click for PDF

Liverpool TUSC 2014 appeal - click for PDF

The case for the widest possible challenge around TUSC's 'don't implement the cuts' anti-austerity platform couldn't be clearer.

To guarantee what the TV broadcasting authorities call 'balanced media coverage', parties need to contest 15% of the seats up for election - 624 in the 2014 local elections.

The steering committee agreed to publicise this threshold target and produce an early 'appeal for candidates' broadsheet.

RMT national executive committee member Daren Ireland reported that Liverpool TUSC had already produced a local leaflet - click here for a PDF copy - with the aim to find a candidate for all 30 seats up for election next year.

The 2014 European elections will also take place on May 22nd and TUSC had received a letter from the RMT inviting representatives to attend a meeting to "see if an electoral challenge at the European elections would be feasible on the basis of a pro-worker, anti-austerity platform".

The steering committee agreed to send representatives to the meeting - reflecting the different components of TUSC - with belief that TUSC itself, as a coalition, would be the best electoral 'umbrella' for both the local and the European elections.

The outcome of these talks will be discussed at the next TUSC steering committee in July.