After thinking long and hard about it, Diane Abbott will be receiving my first preference for Labour leader (despite Paul making a compelling case for Ed Balls). But this is not a ringing endorsement: I'll be voting for Abbott because of her policy platform. I think the powers that be in the Labour party need reminding that not only are socialist politics alive, but that they command wide support in and outside the party. Here's her final electoral email:
I hope you had a good bank holiday.
It's coming to the end of the Leadership campaign and our party will announce its new leader on September 25.
Ballots will start going out tomorrow (September 1) and you will finally be able to cast your vote to decide who will lead your party.
I want to ask you for your support one last time.
It’s been a great campaign and I want to thank all of the party members I have met over the weeks and months, who have shown me incredible support and have reminded me of what a great party we are.
My campaign is going extremely well.
I do not have the financial capacity of my comrades, but what I do have is the will to succeed.
Polls suggest Labour would do well with me as Party Leader
Polls have indicated that I am a popular choice with voters.
I also have strong backing from those who did not vote Labour at the last election – so I am well placed to help us win back the trust we have lost.
The July poll of those who will vote in our Leadership election also put me in a strong third place position.
It showed that I have the support of party members and trade unionists, who will make up two thirds of this vote.
Since that poll more party members have had the opportunity to assess all the candidates and judge who is best able to correct the mistakes that have been made and rebuild our support.
I have a real chance of becoming your leader. Your vote will make all the difference.
No vote for me is a wasted vote.
Where I’ve been
Over the summer, I have spent time visiting members up and down the country.
I’ve been to Scotland, Nottingham, Luton, Birmingham, to name just a few, and have seen phenomenal support for my bid.
I’m heading to Liverpool, Exeter, Bristol, Norwich and Manchester over the final weeks and hope to meet as many of you as I can. Please email my team if you want to meet up firstname.lastname@example.org
If you haven’t as yet made your mind up, there’s still time.
This week I sent out thousands of copies of my brand new leaflet to CLPs around the country, setting out my vision for leadership of the party.
You can see the leaflet here or by contacting your CLP secretary who has several copies available.
But that’s not all.
Over the next few days there will be televised debates on Channel 4 and Sky, culminating in a special Question Time on September 16.
I hope to be able to show you in these debates why I stand apart from the other candidates.
What I stand for
One way is in my response to the Coalition’s budget.
The Lib-Cons have made an unprecedented attack on the welfare State.
Even independent researchers such as the Institute of Fiscal studies agree that their budget will hit some of the poorest in our society the hardest
This is unacceptable and we need a strong leader, like me, who will ensure Cameron and Clegg's attacks are opposed by Labour.
What will I do as your Leader?
I want to stand up for the most vulnerable and protect those in need.
I want make changes that new and old members want to see.
I want to:
* PROTECT THE PUBLIC SECTOR
* SCRAP TRIDENT
* BRING TROOPS BACK FROM AFGHANISTAN
* STAND UP FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES
* RESTORE FAITH AND TRUE DEMOCRACY IN THIS PARTY
If you want to see these changes, I hope that you will be able to put me as your first preference
If you want to know more about the final stages of the campaign, you can visit my website www.diane4leader.co.uk
Or email me on email@example.com
Follow me on Twitter http://twitter.com/dianeforleader
Join my facebook group http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=105235839522326
Please forward this email to everyone you know
Yours in comradeship
Diane Abbott MP
UPDATE Those canny folk at The Third Estate have scooped an exclusive interview with Diane Abbott. Read it here.