Labour donor mounts legal challenge over leadership ballot, but is this about Israel?

The application concerning Jeremy Corbyn’s right to be on the ballot paper will be lodged at the high court on Thursday afternoon [Image: Rob Stothard/Getty Images].

The application concerning Jeremy Corbyn’s right to be on the ballot paper will be lodged at the high court on Thursday afternoon [Image: Rob Stothard/Getty Images].


Mr Foster reckons he is only calling on the High Court to give an impartial verdict on the rules, but it seems obvious that this is an opponent of Jeremy Corbyn trying to push the Labour leader off the ballot paper.

To be honest, it seems unlikely this will happen even if he succeeds, because the decision has already been made.

And the impression this gives to the party’s membership is, of course, terribly damaging for the challengers – Angela Eagle and Owen Smith – who cannot win while Mr Corbyn’s name is on the ballot paper.

Protest all he wants, all we see is Mr Foster trying to wheedle Mr Corbyn off the voting slips, even though that battle has already been fought.

And we know that Foster wants to see Corbyn cast down, as The Guardian reports:

“Foster, a former showbiz agent who has given more than £400,000 to the party since 2010, came to prominence during the last Labour party conference, after he confronted Corbyn at a Labour Friends of Israel reception, angered the Labour leader had not mentioned the word “Israel” in his address to the meeting.

“’Say the word ‘Israel’,’” he shouted at Corbyn, who is a longstanding pro-Palestinian campaigner.”

So, again, the spectre of Israel rears its head – or so it seems to This Writer.

Now, why would pro-Israel activists be so desperate to stop a man who so clearly seems to stand up for justice?

A Labour donor is to mount a legal challenge against the party’s national executive committee decision to automatically nominate Jeremy Corbyn in the forthcoming leadership contest.

Michael Foster, a former parliamentary candidate, will lodge the application at the high court on Thursday afternoon.

“The issue raised by my application to the court is the proper interpretation of the rules of the party,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, saying that Corbyn being automatically on the ballot paper for the leadership election was “essentially a legal issue”.

The party’s NEC heard three contradicting pieces of legal advice on Tuesday night, including from Michael Mansfield QC, which found only challengers needed nominations, and another from James Goudie QC which found all candidates should seek nominations from MPs.

Source: Labour donor to mount legal challenge over leadership ballot | Politics | The Guardian

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5 thoughts on “Labour donor mounts legal challenge over leadership ballot, but is this about Israel?

  1. David Woods

    Can we not make this an open and honest ‘test’: Remove all MP’s from the ‘vote’ and ask every member of the Labour Party to vote instead!

    That way 2 votes could be cast on the same day – a vote on who should be Party leader and a vote on who should be deselected from the Labour Party.

    The vote could be singular for Party leader and a multiple selection for deselection!

    Then the Party members get the leader they want and remove all the Labour MP’s that cause internal malaise and malcontent!

  2. roybeiley

    Thses “agentes provocaturs” really need to get a life! If they can not get theirvown way through bullying tactics then they run to the courts to try and overturn democratically determined outcomes. Use your wealth to do something useful not just use it to challenge democracy if you are a true socialist.

  3. shirley frost

    The legal situation is not contrdictory, confusing or ambiguous. The Challengers have to have 20% support. The incumbent Corbyn does not. To say its confusing is confusing.

  4. spirit

    Hi Mike. I see you link to the tweet of the heckle. It’s quite bizarre really. JC (who according to the mudslingers is an anti-semite who never even bothers to attempt meet with groups supportive of Israel or, alternatively never does anything, try to engage or is always on some luxury holiday, etc.) gave this speech. Why would he need to say Israel to a meeting of a group which explicitely has the Israel in its name? That would be odd – perhaps some sort of parlour game?

    Alternatively you can listen to the whole speech here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EcaBWOfl1SY – instead of just shouty rich man and decides who comes across as a fruit loop.

    Interesting too is that he has not just this event in his background, but now this legal challenge. Perhaps he could be persuaded to donate the substantial sum that would be spent on this to some of those who are likely to be disenfranchised this time round. He is a busy boy: (trigger warning; Mail link) http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3055702/Labour-candidate-accused-launching-vile-rant-challenged-1-5-million-home-rival-local-hustings.html

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