Britain's opposition Labour Party this week holds its annual conference in Blackpool - the first since its shock defeat by the Conservatives in the June General Election.
Britain's opposition Labour Party this week holds its annual conference in Blackpool - the first since its shock defeat by the Conservatives in the June General Election. Today (Sunday) party leader and former Prime Minister Harold Wilson was joined by several of his senior colleagues for the traditional pre-conference church service.
Political observers believe there's unlikely to be any challenge to Mr. Wilson's leadership of the party. But there are signs that resistance to membership of the European Common Market may prove a major factor at the conference.
With the restraints of office remove, Labour opponents of the European option are becoming more outspoken. Block votes wielded by left-wing union leaders could bring a negative result in balloting following the Common Market debate on Wednesday (September 30). This in turn might produce pressure for a change in Labour policy and ultimately break the solid front of official approval for Market entry which has been maintained by the three major British political parties.
Observers say that an open Labour split on Europe could prove embarrassing to the Conservative Government.
Deputy Labour party leader Roy Jenkins, former Chancellor of the Exchange( Finance Minister) and a strong supporter of British membership of the Common Market, today dismissed fears of his party turning against European entry. He said in a radio interview that the didn't look forward to any difficulties. He had strong, positive ideas on the Common Market and was ready to fight hard on the issue.