Open Letter to Jeremy Corbyn

Dear Mr. Corbyn,

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Some time ago, I addressed that tweet to you when I heard you were running for the Labour Leadership. I’d never heard of you before, except probably in passing. Even then so many were expressing their disapproval of you (most of them people I disapprove of), that I was certain you were worthy of further investigation.

In one way I was disappointed. You didn’t impress me to vote for you. Like Clement Attlee’s quote about charity, in some ways voting is a cold, grey and loveless thing. Voting, if we’re honest, mostly involves passing responsibility onto someone else. Instead, you did something amazing that I never expected and had forgotten to hope for – you inspired and encouraged me to actually join in and get involved.

So we had the Welfare Reform and Work Bill, and you made a stand. With that you announced your determination not only to properly oppose the Conservatives’ plans, but also to represent people instead of opinion. How refreshing! I dared to imagine a Labour Party that stood its ground; that no longer followed, that did not act like a member of the electorate, that didn’t allow the Tories to set the terms of debate. I was angry with abstaining MPs, but I tweeted them with a view to encouraging them to support you.

You released policy documents that I read and re-read, finding ways to edit your sentences so that they’d fit into tweets I could share with others. I changed my name temporarily to Corbynette, to reflect my cheer-leading.

I was there when you visited Doncaster. I was listening carefully when you talked with us, rather than merely to us. The Jeremy Corbyn campaign is our campaign. The ideas are there for us to debate and discuss, and take forward. How wonderful!

We made endless blog posts, made videos, tweeted, shared statuses, talked to people every day about policies and ideas and what we really want for each other. Do we want austerity? No! Do we want everyone to share in the success of this country? Yes. And what we want most is for our campaign, the Jeremy Corbyn campaign, to win.

I donated to our campaign with countless others, as much as I could afford. I volunteered to help in any way I could, along with many others. So I was there when you came to Sheffield. And while you spoke with the hundreds of people outside, I was behind the ticketing desk, working together with someone I’d never met before, but with whom I shared an enthusiasm for this new politics which involves us all.

And now, if we should win, what then? You will have your own part to play, just as we have ours, and the campaign will continue. I hope you give that speech on Saturday, Mr. Corbyn, I really do, because we are all about the aims and values of the Labour Party: peace, hope, equality, democracy and prosperity. But most of all, solidarity.

Remember us. We stand with you on Saturday, and every day. We stand with you at PMQs. We stand with you in your efforts to unite the parliamentary party. We stand with you against opposition. If you represent us, we shall represent you on every doorstep, in every town, every public house, every workplace, every constituency Labour Party meeting that will have us.

You did so much more than impress me, and I did more than vote for you. Should all we hope for come to pass, we have five years, and we will pick up many others along the way as our movement grows. Then, together, we will all win in 2020.

Thank you so much for standing as Leader, and for inspiring and including so many of us. Thank you for uniting us. Thank you for not allowing all of our praise to go to your head. You are the same man who began this contest, and we can rely on you to remain constant going forward. With hope, I say: lead on! We are with you!

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