Some 900 people turned out to see Corbyn speak at a rally in Leicester last Saturday. Many more were turned away at the door, even though the rally hadn’t been widely advertised.
Corbyn acknowledged that Labour faced a “huge challenge” over the next few weeks in its campaign to win the general election on 8 June.
But he got enthusiastic cheers as he tore into “greedy bankers” and “tax dodgers”, who have rigged the system and would hate to see a Labour win.
Corbyn said the election was “a chance to break free, to create a society in which people are no longer held back by a system that is rigged for the rich”.
And he described growing resentment at years of Tory rule.
“This Tory leader sat alongside David Cameron in government for six years,” he said.
“Does she think people will forget what the Tories have done to this country, how they’ve actually treated working people?”
Corbyn’s speech in Leicester came ahead of a similar event in Leamington Spa on Monday of this week. And it came after another rally in Manchester celebrating Labour’s victory in the mayoral election.
John Lockwood in Leamington told Socialist Worker, “I’d say there were over 700 people who turned up to see Corbyn.
“That’s very significant with only a day’s notice and the timing being the middle of the afternoon.
“At times the police had trouble trying to keep the road open. It was quite remarkable.
“He got a very enthusiastic reception and cheers.”
Right wing Labour Party members have sneered at the rallies. But Labour can only win with a campaign that enthuses and inspires supporters—and builds a sense of a real popular fightback against the Tories.
And it has to be linked with broader fights against austerity and racism.
As Labour’s shadow chancellor John McDonnell said last week, Labour has to “come out fighting”.
In some towns Labour members have joined other activists—including people outside of Labour—for campaign days of action against austerity and racism.