Labour lords’ ‘no confidence’ threat to Corbyn is shooting themselves in the foot

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Anti-Semitic: Lady Hayter.

Whoever thought it would be a good idea for Labour lords to hold a vote of ‘no confidence’ (VONC) in Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership over his handling of anti-Semitism – after he sacked one of them for a blatantly anti-Semitic comment – needs to think again, sharpish.

Lady Dianne Hayter (phonetically-speaking, she is well-named), lost her shadow cabinet post after she compared Mr Corbyn’s leadership to the “bunker mentality” in the “last days of Hitler”.

This clearly an anti-Semitic attack on Jewish members who work for the Labour leadership.

A Labour spokesman said: “To compare the Labour leader and Labour party staff working to elect a Labour government to the Nazi regime is truly contemptible, and grossly insensitive to Jewish staff in particular.” Quite right.

It seems Lady Hayter made her comments in a meeting of Corbyn-hating right-wing subgroup Labour First, on Tuesday.

Now it seems the Labour lords may hold a VONC in Mr Corbyn. It would be nothing more than a statement of opinion – there could be no pressure on Mr Corbyn to resign.

But it seems the ringleaders haven’t considered what they are really saying in supporting an anti-Semite and attacking a move against her.

They’re effectively saying: “We, the Labour lords supporting a ‘no confidence’ vote, are all anti-Semites and we are attacking Mr Corbyn in bad faith.”

In Westminster-speak, the “optics” of this are terrible.

Mr Corbyn is unlikely to take immediate action. But some of us will expect plans for any future Labour government to change the second chamber of Parliament radically.

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