Jeremy Corbyn MP, Leader of the Labour Party, will accuse the Prime Minister, Theresa May, of being “too weak” to stand up to US President Donald Trump in a speech to the GMB trade union conference in Brighton today (Tuesday 5 May).
The Labour Leader will criticise the UK Government’s “timid response” to Trump’s unilateral increase in US steel tariffs and call it the latest in a long line of Tory failures to stand up to Trump. He will declare that “the Tories are simply too weak to stand up to the powerful.”
Jeremy Corbyn will accuse Theresa May of trying to “appease Donald Trump in the hope of getting a race-to-the-bottom trade deal with the US” after Brexit, and say that “the Trump trade tariffs show that’s a Tory pipe-dream”.
Corbyn will call the move to impose further steel tariffs “wrong”, risking “hurting workers” in the US and around the world. Suggesting he understands why some US workers welcome the tariff intervention, he will say that “trying to hold back the tide is no substitute” for a “proactive” government role in “modernising and upgrading industry so that it’s cleaner, more efficient and works for the many, not the few.”
The speech will lay out how workers, trade unions, and communities will play a vital and active role with the next Labour government to “upgrade our economy by taking on the power of the tiny elite that’s holding us back with their failed free market fundamentalism.”
He will announce Labour’s support for the GMB’s six pledges for the water industry once it has been brought into public ownership, ending the “failed and unpopular privatisation experiment”. He will praise the GMB for its campaigning against the Tories sending a billion pound military ship building contract for three new Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessels overseas.
He will also announce that the Labour Party, which was already a living wage employer, will now pay all staff at least £10 per hour and pay tribute to the GMB and UNITE, who are the Labour Party staff recognised unions.
Jeremy Corbyn MP, Leader of the Labour Party, is expected to say:
“US President Donald Trump’s latest unilateral steel tariffs are wrong. The Trump tariffs risk hurting workers in the United States and around the world by sparking tit-for-tat retaliation.
“But US workers, whether in steel or any other industry, are not wrong to want a government that actively supports them and the real, everyday economy. For forty years, they’ve seen a completely rigged system shift more and more power and wealth to a tiny financial and political elite.
“Donald Trump’s government doesn’t support workers. Trying to hold back the tide with one hand and giving eye-watering handouts to the super rich with the other is no substitute for a government taking a proactive role in modernising and upgrading industry so that it’s cleaner, more efficient and works for the many not the few.
“The next Labour government will work with the real experts – workers, technicians, engineers and designers, their unions, consumers and communities – to upgrade our economy by taking on the power of the tiny elite that’s holding us back with their failed free market fundamentalism.
“Empowering people and standing up for the many, not the few is what the labour movement is all about. But the Tory Government’s timid response shamefully fails to stand up to Trump. We’ve now seen it time and time again. Theresa May and her government were too weak to stand up to Trump over the Muslim ban, or his promotion of the disgusting Britain First, or his plunging the future of the planet into ever greater danger by pulling out of the Paris Climate Change Accord, or his punitive tariffs on Bombardier, or his ripping up of the Iran nuclear deal, or his reckless threat to peace by recognising Jerusalem, including occupied Palestinian territory, as Israel’s capital.
“The Tories are too weak to stand up to the powerful, and too in hock to them even if they wanted to. Theresa May is appeasing Donald Trump in the hope of getting a race-to-the-bottom trade deal with the US after we leave the European Union. The Trump trade tariffs show that’s a Tory pipe-dream.”