He certainly shouldn’t be accusing Jeremy Corbyn and his team of defamation when he is clearly guilty of the transgressions laid out in the so-called ‘deselection list’ accidentally – accidentally? – released yesterday (September 14).
This Blog has already shown that Mr Coyle is indeed guilty of making abusive comments about Mr Corbyn – therefore he cannot complain that mention of him on the list is defamatory.
If you want further evidence, try this, from his Facebook page, published on July 19, and calling for people to join the Labour Party in order to depose Mr Corbyn, who he claims is a “fake” who does not share “Labour values”: “I am a Labour MP, joined Labour as soon as I could and will always be tribal Labour. I voted for a Labour manifesto commitment today based on decades of policy begun by Attlee and was in my manifesto last May. Couldn’t be more ashamed by fake Labour voting against internationalism, collectivism, security and jobs today. Time for a new leader who shares Labour values. Join now.”
Many would say it is Mr Coyle who does not share Labour values.
The comment was brought to my attention by a Vox Political reader who wrote: “He later apologised on the same thread: ‘Neil Coyle MP Apologies for yesterday’s crankiness – the use of “fake” was very unfair and I regret using it. Very fractious environment at the moment and I overstepped the mark on this post.’
“Apology or not, it was his own words meant to cause damage at the time he said them and the fact the status still stands 2 months later.
The status is still there, the apology came the day after, how many people bother to read the comments? How many just see the original status for what it is?”
Yes indeed, and the claim that Mr Corbyn does not share Labour values went unretracted.
Today, Mr Coyle was talking nonsense to The Guardian and anyone else who would listen: “All I know is that the leader of my party has gone out of his way to issue a statement accusing me of abuse with no detail, no forewarning, no explanation of what I’m accused of… I should be out this morning with the CWU in my constituency campaigning to keep a post office. And instead I’m trying to work out what I’m accused of and how to defend myself from defamation by my own party leader.”
It isn’t that hard. If I can find two examples within hours of the story breaking, the man responsible should have no trouble. Note that he lies – the claim that Mr Corbyn went “out of his way” to issue the list is false. The junior press officer responsible has already apologised for the mistake.
Oh, and isn’t it funny to see Mr Coyle complaining about the lack of detail. This Owen Smith supporter never complained about the lack of detail in the letters sent out to disqualify Jeremy Corbyn supporters from voting, based on much flimsier evidence.
He accuses Mr Corbyn of trying to perpetuate a “victim culture” – but isn’t this exactly what he was doing when he made his comments about Mr Corbyn? “The accuser is the abuser”, as the saying goes. And what about the shameless bullying by elements of the Parliamentary Labour Party after the shadow cabinet resignations of June 26, when Mr Corbyn was forced to put up with savage and merciless attacks from members of his own party who should have been uniting behind him to hold the Conservatives to account for the result of the EU referendum?
Look – he even badmouths Mr Corbyn in his statement today: “And Jeremy and his team know they have put a lot of people off through their incompetence over the last year who do not want to vote for them again this time around.”
It seems Mr Coyle is going to have a nasty surprise on September 24.
I’m not even going to dignify his support of Jess Phillips with any kind of response.
It is quite welcome that he said he intends to discuss legal action: “I will be speaking to a lawyer tomorrow.”
I’m willing to bet that Mr Coyle will go very quiet, the day after tomorrow.
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