#035 Starmer’s Rhetoric Meets Reality

How Will Keir Starmer’s Leadership Pledges Compare to Labour’s 2024 Manifesto?

Progressive Primers
2 min readFeb 23, 2023


In early 2020 Keir Starmer made ten leadership pledges, which formed the basis of his ultimately successful Labour Party leadership campaign.

These ten pledges can be boiled down to roughly seventeen concrete policy promises, listed below.

1) “Increase income tax for the top 5% of earners”

[Worth also noting regarding corporation tax, the Conservatives have already reversed (their own earlier ) cuts to corporation tax, it now currently stands at 25%]

2) “Public services should be in public hands, not making profits for shareholders. Support common ownership of rail, mail, energy and water”

3) “Abolish the House of Lords - replace it with an elected chamber of regions and nations”

4) “Green New Deal at the heart of everything we do”

5) “A Clean Air Act”

6) “Repeal the Trade Union Act”

7) “Clamp down on tax avoidance, particularly of large corporations”

8) “Abolish Universal Credit and end the Tories’ cruel sanctions regime”

9) “Tackle insecure work and low pay”

10) “End outsourcing in our NHS, local government and justice system”

11) “Support the abolition of tuition fees and invest in lifelong learning”

12) “Review all UK arms sales”

13) “Prevention of Military Intervention Act”

14) “Full voting rights for EU nationals”

15) “Defend Free Movement”

16) “End indefinite detention and call for the closure of centres such as Yarl’s Wood”

17) “A federal system to devolve powers - including through regional investment banks and control over regional industrial strategy”

Keir Starmer’s Ten Pledges (2020)

[This website was put up in early 2020 & subsequently taken down and replaced in late 2023]

Keir Starmer on BBC Breakfast (2023)
Keir Starmer on Andrew Marr’s LBC Show (2022)

How then will these policy promises compare to the contents of Labour’s 2024 Manifesto? and to how a future elected Labour government legislates in power?

And to what extent will these concrete pledges & policy promises be ditched, dumped and discarded, in favour of the interests of the rich and big business?

Here are some clues…



Owen Jones Video (28th April 2023)