The facts and the spin around Corbyn’s latest win

Owen Smith congratulates Jeremy Corbyn on his win.

Owen Smith congratulates Jeremy Corbyn on his win.

We all knew Jeremy Corbyn was going to win the Labour leadership election; what’s important now is to make sure the facts don’t get hijacked by the spin.

For example, within minutes of NEC chair Paddy Lillis announcing Mr Corbyn’s victory, right-wing tweeters were claiming that the only reason Mr Corbyn won was because he had the majority of registered supporters. This is a lie.

Out of 506,438 votes cast, Mr Corbyn received 313,209, with Owen Smith taking 193,229. That’s 61.8 per cent of the vote for Mr Corbyn and just 38.2 per cent for Mr Smith, meaning Mr Corbyn increased his mandate (from 59.5 per cent last year).

Mr Corbyn beat Mr Smith in every category of voter: He won the support of 59% of voting members, 70% of registered supporters and 60% of affiliated supporters.

The only category in which Mr Corbyn did not beat Mr Smith was Labour members who joined prior to 2015. Mr Smith took 63 per cent of them.

Among those who joined after Mr Corbyn was elected, he won 83 per cent of the vote. This should not be surprising, though. Hundreds of thousands of people have joined Labour because of Mr Corbyn’s leadership and policies.

Unfortunately, some of Mr Corbyn’s detractors were quick to attack him – on the turnout. Here’s Neil Coyle: “Seems 20% of Labour members haven’t voted. If we can’t enthuse 1/5 of our own members we may have bigger problem engaging wider electorate.”

Perhaps someone should have pointed out to Mr Coyle that turnout this year, at 77 per cent, was higher than last year (76 per cent) or 2010 (71 per cent). Also, it is hard to take him seriously when more than 130,000 members were barred from voting for no very good reason, while Mr Corbyn was outside an NEC meeting, having believed it to have been closed.

All things considered, it seems Mr Coyle’s tweet may be considered a brief resignation letter.

After the announcement, it seems other Labour MPs have been falling over themselves to announce their support for a new era of unity. For example, Corbyn critic Stephen Kinnock tweeted: “Congrats to – time now to unite our Party & set out a vision & agenda that can earn the trust & support of the British people.”

This was a significant change of tune from Mr Kinnock, whose father was demanding Mr Corbyn’s downfall only a few days ago. I challenged him on it: “Many people will doubt your sincerity. How will you demonstrate it?” But I have yet to receive a reply, which tells us pretty much everything we need to know.

Several of the now-former rebels have indicated they will return to the Shadow Cabinet, if asked. This Writer would strongly urge that they not be allowed to shoulder any of the current serving Shadow Cabinet members out of the way, as people like Angela Rayner, Richard Burgon and Debbie Abrahams (to name just a few) actually remained loyal to the Labour Party throughout the summer and deserve recognition for it.

In any case, it seems there are some in the PLP who are still plotting against Mr Corbyn. Look at this: “Labour MPs being told by their colleagues that they won’t get votes in future shad cab elections if they do go into the frontbench now.”

If any Labour MP runs into this kind of threat, they should name the bully publicly. Labour MPs – particularly those who opposed Mr Corbyn, have used claims of intimidation by his supporters against him and should never be allowed to get away with it themselves.

The question of deselection has reared its head again, even though it is not a matter for Mr Corbyn. Constituency Labour Parties may hold a trigger ballot to deselect their MPs if they choose. As the Tories are putting us through the upheaval of constituency boundary reorganisation, based on out-of-date voting figures, a certain amount of re-selection is to take place as it is, so perhaps it is best for those who wish to expel MPs they consider traitors to bide their time.

The future should be about hammering out good policy arguments that are coherent and attractive to the public, meaning no more ‘triangulation’ – attempting to hijack the Tories’ voters by answering Conservative policy issues. That only gives the Tories power over the national debate and shifts the focus of British politics further into the right wing.

Already, policy issues are being highlighted, including this list from David Schneider:

160924-labour-topicsAnd Mr Corbyn himself has called for a day of action next Saturday (October 1) in opposition to the reintroduction of grammar schools and in support of comprehensive education in England.

This Writer fully supports this plan – but I live in Wales. Would anybody in a CLP on the English border fancy an extra campaigner – or several, if I can get fellow branch members to come along?


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15 thoughts on “The facts and the spin around Corbyn’s latest win

  1. joanna

    How out of touch is Owen Smith? In a follow up, he says that Jeremy must win back the peoples trust, He already has 61% of the peoples trust over smith.

    Nice one Jeremy!!!!!!!!

  2. mohandeer

    Is this some kind of joke? Labour stopped 130,000 Corbyn voters from voting and heaven knows how many more not mentioned and many Labour Party members and previous voters were disgusted with what the right wing have done to the party and wouldn’t vote for it because it was a Punch and Judy show and we get ass about face comments like this one highlighted here by Mike Sivier of voxpoliticalonline:
    Unfortunately, some of Mr Corbyn’s detractors were quick to attack him – on the turnout. Here’s Neil Coyle: “Seems 20% of Labour members haven’t voted. If we can’t enthuse 1/5 of our own members we may have bigger problem engaging wider electorate.”
    You bet ya do! Either fall in line and stop trying to break up the party or p**s off and form your own and take whatever voters want you in power with you. – Oh wait, you haven’t succeeded in getting into power in the last two elections because you didn’t have the support of the Labour Party members and affiliates. Oops.

  3. Christine Cullen

    So let’s hope the PLP and NEC members who have so stridently tried to further their own interests will now stop, and look to the interests of the Labour Party and the country.

  4. Linwren

    I believe many more will sign up to Labour now. After the complete farce of the summer they will feel safer at speaking their mind. The boundary changes have to be voted on besides Conservatives didn’t like the fact that it would effect them also. Self serving but in this instance who can really blame them. Cameron’s plan. The deselection is indeed nothing to do with JC. The CLPS do have every right to do what they think is right. Members have been directly betrayed. For myself, who isn’t a Labour member would not trust any of ‘those’ MPS. How could you frankly

  5. I Crawford

    “The only category in which Mr Corbyn did not beat Mr Smith was Labour members who joined prior to 2015. Mr Smith took 63 per cent of them.”

    This could be a little misleading.
    Several people who joined post-2105 were re-joiners who had previously resigned in protest at New Labour policies and Iraq.
    This demographic are really long-term supporters.
    If these are included in the pre-2015 category I suspect the figures may well be pro-Corbyn as well.

  6. yarmouthboy

    Good post Mike. I agree that the new shadow cabinet members should not be shouldered aside. Apart from being loyal to JC throughout this campaign when I have seen them at the despatch box they are really fired up, especially the protegee of John McD who gave a really outstanding speech.

    1. John Spencer-Davis

      Yes, I think in general they have performed a good deal better than their predecessors. And the answer to any long-serving and experienced MP who expects to walk back into a Shadow Cabinet or front bench post should be: “Tough. You resigned. Nobody asked you to do that. Other people have now chosen to serve. They are senior to you now, and get stuffed if you don’t like it.” These people really have amazing effrontery.

  7. Neilth

    So now is the time ( actually June was the time) for the party to get its act together and show a united front and oppose our real opponents who are trying to turn the clock back to the interwar years where medicine was still private and a private education and priveledge came to those who could afford it and the unions were still disorganised (though their membership was higher)

  8. shawn

    We do need to unite for the future of the Labour party. However, we ca not allow PLP can not be allowed to elect members for the shadow cabinet due to their behaviour over the last year. An alternative may be to suspend those that worst offenders for bringing the party into disrepute. An then allow some to be elected by the PLP.

  9. clouty

    Mike, you said “The only category in which Mr Corbyn did not beat Mr Smith was Labour members who joined prior to 2015. Mr Smith took 63 per cent of them” but this is suspect information based on a poll of 0.016% of the membership, not including those purged, many of whom joined Labour pre-2015.

    1. Mike Sivier Post author

      Interesting! On what do you base your information? I thought it was based on official Labour statistics.

  10. Narcy (Mr)

    To make a correct reading of the Labour Leadership result see how the Tories reacted. Within minutes of the announcement, the alleged Stain on Humanity asked for an apology. Surely once she has waited so long to ask for such she could have waited another day. No out with it at the same time to STAIN the staggering victory. Ouch it must really have hurt the toffs.

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