The chapter explores his vain attempts to be elected as a full-time national official of the AEU defeated by the right-wing of the union’s leadership. It also exposes the organisational deficiencies of Reid; a man capable of motivating and inspiring workers but unable to build a mass power base within the political or industrial arenas. It also discusses critically Reid’s narrative concerning the road to leaving the CPGB as well as the reception to his decision both within the media and among the party membership. We contend that international events such as the Prague invasion were secondary influences, rather we argue it was events nearer to home that were more influential. Thus, we discuss how the rejection of the concept of the revolutionary party by the CPGB in favour of broad-based parliamentary alliances narrowed the ideological chasm between communists and the Labour left. Indeed, the only issue dividing them was the continued support by the former for the Soviet Union; something that Reid had begun to reject. The other factor was his dissatisfaction with party democracy. Reid left in 1976 and joined the Labour Party two years later. Fast tracked by the left he stood as Labour candidate in 1979 in Dundee where he suffered the same fate as in 1974.
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