UK Labour’s special conference yesterday changed the Party’s rules for leadership selection, and the basis for affiliate involvement. One-person-one-vote is the general rule, and block voting for leadership and selection by affiliates including unions is replaced by individual and intentional involvement.
The vote for change was 86% in favour, although those who voted for it were not entirely uncritical. The change is seen as a triumph for Ed Miliband, whose speech is here.
The change goes along with a programme of community engagement by Labour, led by American Arnie Graf. UK Labour has understood that the Obama campaigns were more about community involvement than technological innovation; more accurately the technology was used to support the community organisation. Obama was of course a community organiser; as was Howard Dean, the Decocratic Party president who set up the national organising framework in 2006.
I’m off to London tomorrow, and will watch with interest how this plays out in Walthamstow. Local MP Stella Creasy certainly looks like she knows how to organise.