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Tony who? The UK’s socialist opposition is still split over its longest-serving prime minister

After a highly divisive leadership election, the U.K.'s left-wing opposition Labour Party are fighting over the legacy of its most successful leader: Controversial three-term prime minister Tony Blair.

Speaking to CNBC at the Labour Party's annual conference in Liverpool, high-profile Labour MP Chuka Umunna said: "There are no Blairites, Brownites, whatever-ites. We're all Labour people in the Labour Party (...) Ultimately, if we're to come together, we've got to chuck away those labels."


Current leader Jeremy Corbyn, who has fended off a leadership challenge and a vote of no-confidence in his parliamentary party, has also been keen to show a united Labour Party. Talking to party delegates Saturday after being re-elected party leader with 61.8 percent of the vote, Corbyn said those in the Labour Party have "much more in common" than that which divides them.

Nonetheless, the party has taken a hard turn to the left and appears keen to overturn the policies of Blair's New Labour. Posters showing Clause IV -- a founding policy of the Labour Party that committed it to public ownership that was famously amended by Blair in 1995 - were are among the official merchandise on sale at this year's Labour Party conference. Jeremy Corbyn has since hinted that he might reinstate the old Clause IV, if elected prime minister.


While some MPs are distancing themselves from the "Blairite" label, others are warning the Labour Party not to walk away from the brand of politics than won it three general elections. Speaking to CNBC on Sunday, former cabinet minister Caroline Flint said: "A Labour leader, whoever that is, needs to look to the future but not decry the achievements of past Labour governments - the achievements of leaders like Tony Blair and Gordon Brown."

Some of the best known politicians of the Blair era - including John Prescott - are attending this year's Labour Party conference. But they're outnumbered by dissenters, such as David Blunkett and David Miliband, who've opted to criticize Labour's new leadership from afar.

Even MPs loyal to Jeremy Corbyn admit their party is deeply divided. However they say now is the time to stop squabbling over the past and to start looking forwards. Speaking to CNBC on Sunday, veteran Labour MP Dennis Skinner said: "Jeremy is here to stay. He's got the biggest majority of anybody since the Second World War. Tedious Theresa is worse than Dodgy Dave. Believe me, taking that election next time will be a relatively easy exercise for a Labour Party that is united."


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