A group of left-wing British MPs have formed a “Love Socialism” caucus as part of an effort to reclaim the term socialism and promote what it describes as “radical” policies to “transform” the United Kingdom.
Its Twitter page says it is “a group of Labour MPs promoting radical socialist policies to transform [the] UK.”
LabourList reported that the group had previously taken a strong focus on pushing Labour to reject Brexit and keep the U.K. in the European Union. It had previously been known as “Love Socialism Hate Brexit,” and later “Love Socialism Rebuild Britain Transform Europe.”
“The emergence of Love Socialism is not about creating a new Labour faction, nor is our analysis of political culture done to deepen division or suggest intellectual superiority,”the lawmakers say. “Rather it seeks to shape 21st century socialism and create unity.”
The effort marks an attempt by the left of the Labour Party to regroup after the party last year marked its worst-ever election performances since before World War II under Jeremy Corbyn -- an avowed socialist and a champion of the party's left flank.
That drubbing led to Corbyn stepping down and being replaced by the more moderate Keir Starmer -- but the socialist wing of the Labour Party remains influential.
In a statement in July, the Love Socialism group lists a number of beliefs including “a truly internationalist agenda on the principles of global cooperation, fair trade, anti-racism, sustainability, peace and human rights” and a belief that “centuries of structural racism and patriarchy has created power structures locking out working class people, women, black asian and ethnic minorities or people of colour, disabled people, LGBT+ people and other sections of society.”
The group also calls “to rebuild a sustainable planet through an ambitious climate and ecological agenda.”
While the tag of socialism is less toxic in the U.K. than the U.S., the effort reflects a similar move by left-wing lawmakers in the U.S. to bring the term back into the political mainstream.
Politicians like Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Alexandria Ocasi-Cortez, D-NY, have become some of the most popular lawmakers on the left, especially among young people -- and have normalized terms like “democratic socialism” just as Republicans have cautioned against embracing the ideology.
Former President Barack Obama, however, warned that it is still a “loaded” term for many.
“Socialism is still a loaded term for a lot of folks,” Obama said in an interview Wednesday. “Once again, instead of talking labels and ideology, we should focus on talking about getting certain things done.”