MPs who regularly defy Labour whip should face reselection, says Livingstone

Ken Livingstone.

There’s a fairly big problem with this: Jeremy Corbyn had been defying the Labour whip, on and off, for decades before becoming leader.

Besides, a top-down edict on whether an MP should be deselected or not would be undemocratic. It should always be a matter for constituency parties to decide who they want representing them.

Of course, that should not be too serious an obstacle, considering the size of Mr Corbyn’s victory last month. Constituency parties that are now full of Corbyn supporters would naturally feel unrepresented if their MP consistently voted against him in Parliament.

Labour MPs who repeatedly defy Jeremy Corbyn by voting against the party’s agreed position in the House of Commons should face a reselection challenge in their constituencies, Ken Livingstone has said.

The former London mayor, who has been a close ally of Jeremy Corbyn for three decades, said it was right that the Labour party should be remodelled to take account of the emphatic result in the leadership contest.

The warning by Livingstone, which contrasted with a more emollient tone by the shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, came as the Labour backbencher Simon Danczuk said he was prepared to stand against Corbyn as a stalking horse candidate next summer, if the party suffers setbacks in the May elections.

Source: MPs who regularly defy Labour whip should face reselection, says Livingstone | Politics | The Guardian

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7 thoughts on “MPs who regularly defy Labour whip should face reselection, says Livingstone

  1. philipburdekin

    So they should or be sacked and the entire Tory party are disalusioned and they need the sack too.

  2. Jeffery Davies

    Like above those who are the blair babies should be pushed out when has labour been so far off course othan under blair and brown brought greedinto the party whilst snuggling up to big companies yes those who wont listen to a old labour man will also see how many peasants have signed up now they have a real labour man not a blairite but real labour jeff3

  3. Norma Roberts

    I may be naive, but I think MPs should vote as they wish in order to represent their constituents, or voice their personal opinion, and not be made to toe the party line. In short, I don’t think whips should exist (unless they do something else I am unaware of?)

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      What about the fact that MPs play a major part in formulating party policy? If they have helped set the party line, should they not follow it?

  4. Dominic Bray

    Deselection is not the same as having to face reselection is it? It is not like you to conflate things normally either so why this? Ian said reselection, if someone defies the party whip but retains the support of their CLP then they are safe, as Corbyn would, probably, have been. Forcing MPs to at least defend their opposition to party leadership to their constituent Labour party sounds more democratic to me, not less.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      You’re splitting hairs, I think.
      If an MP is put up for reselection, then deselection is always a possibility and the fact that the leadership had ordered this process to take place would make it clear what outcome is preferred.

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