Labour is purging left-wingers from Parliamentary selection lists. Here’s how

Set adrift: how many potentially excellent Labour candidates have been rejected by Keir Starmer’s skewed Parliamentary selection procedure, that seems to contradict democracy and party rules to exclude left-wingers?

Labour Hub has reproduced an important twitter thread by Angus Satow on Keir Starmer’s purge and the implications for Britain’s democracy.

I reproduce it in full below, in view of its importance:

Keir Starmer accused of ‘purging’ Labour Left as Corbynite candidates blocked from standing to be MP

Leader criticised for promoting ‘disunity’ in party, but allies say he is ensuring a high standard

Labour is in the process of selecting its Prospective Parliamentary Candidates for the next General Election, with the NEC signing off batches of seats.

Per Michael Crick’s useful blog, only ONE out of the first FORTY can be classified as left-wing. Why?

In brief, every Left candidate likely to win is being blocked before the race even starts. So far:

– Doina Cornell in Stroud
– @cllr_maya in Hastings
– @LisaForbes_ in Peterborough
– @mowords in Camberwell & Peckham
– @LaurenJTownsend in MK North
– @emmadentcoad in Kensington
and more

How can they do this?

Well, according to Labour’s own rules – they can’t. But….

There are three stages to selections: longlisting, shortlisting and the selection.

Longlisting: NEC Majority, with trade union input
Shortlisting: Local Party and trade union representatives
Selection: Labour members

The Leader of the Opposition’s Office and the Labour machine – working in tandem – are intervening at the longlisting stage, where they have control.

This is when they’re blocking candidates from even being considered or voted on by members – even council leaders, senior council figures and ex-MPs!

The Labour Party leadership are clear about this – they are ensuring that loyalists are selected, figures from the Labour right who will never cause any problems.

They’re stitching it up.

The strategy for this was brazenly revealed to @siennamarla just before Conference: the Heir and the Spare.

They block all left-wingers from the start, and ensure any candidate offered to members is ‘friendly’.

This is no democratic choice at all.

But they face a problem:

Under a rule agreed by Starmer’s NEC, trade union-backed candidates are *automatically longlisted*.

Every left-winger blocked has enjoyed trade union backing, often from Unite and the CWU.

In @LaurenJTownsend‘s case from six unions inc Unite AND Unison.

So they come up with a workaround: ‘due diligence’.

A ‘dossier’ is compiled of ‘concerning evidence’ which has ‘come to light in the course of routine due diligence’ checks on social media.

There are some truly laughable examples of what this evidence consists of.

– Once having liked a Caroline Lucas tweet
– Liking a tweet by Nicola Sturgeon about testing negative for Covid

Equally, there are some truly disturbing examples of ‘evidence’ which is grounds for blocking:

– having mentioned Palestinian refugees (a blatant act of anti-Palestinian racism)
– Liking a tweet calling on Labour to be bolder in its economic policy
– a ‘history of protest’

It’s not hard to disprove the Leadership’s half-baked claim that this is about ‘quality control’.

For example, here’s the Leadership’s ‘heir’ for Milton Keynes North doing the exact same thing as Lauren Townsend.

In Barking, Labour Right NEC members first ignored, then swept under the carpet evidence of Blue Labour figure Darren Rodwell engaging in what have been termed racist jokes.

He was let off and won the selection. ‘Quality control’ ?

Labour councillor who said he had “worst tan for a Black man” cleared of wrongdoing

Exclusive: Labour councillor Darren Rodwell sparked outrage with his comments at Black History Month event and had been subject of an investigationhttps://

Upon receiving the dossier, the candidate is then invited to a meeting at one day’s notice, with the outcome all but certain: blocking.

These amount to nothing less than show trials.

The next day, the candidate receives a perfunctory email, saying only that the panel considered their representations, and they rejected them.

No rules are cited, no judgement given. No due process.

You might wonder – will the trade unions tolerate this blatant abuse of process, blocking their candidates?

The answer is no – earlier this year, trade unions agreed with the NEC a clarification of ‘due diligence’ that it could only be used for things such as serious financial wrongdoing.

But this agreement has been ignored, time and again.

Candidates backed by unions across the board – from USDAW to Unite, UNISON to the CWU – have been blocked on spurious grounds.

Nor is it only left-wingers being blocked.

From Bella Sankey in Hastings to Jack Hemingway in Wakefield, even soft left figures are being blocked.

As Momentum put it, anyone to the left of Tony Blair faces attack.

Starmer allies reject claims leftwingers blocked from standing for Labour

Party figures understood to have urged leader to rein in acolytes after candidates from left excluded from longlists

All this is the polar opposite of what Starmer promised in 2020.

The media shouldn’t have any hesitation in saying this: Starmer lied to get elected.

He did so because this strategy is wholly out of touch with the mood in the Party and the country.

Instead, as reported by @patrickkmaguire, it is a tight coterie of Starmer staffers on the hard-right of the Party leading this purge.

Their desire to reshape the PLP with Starmerite automatons trumps all else, from trade unions to local parties.

Starmer’s quiet purge of his would-be MPs

6am, May Day, 1997. New dawn has broken, has it not, over the Royal Festival Hall. Tony Blair, having won a parliamentary majority that might make Kim Il-su

It’s out of step with the country, because people want their MPs to be local, but from Wakefield to Stroud, the Leadership are happy to exclude popular local champions in favour of loyalist parachutes.

Back to the bad old days.

And polling also shows that from a higher minimum wage to public ownership, people want left-wing economic policies!

But whether it’s deselecting Socialist Campaign Group members or blocking left-wingers, Starmer is intent on wiping these ideas out of the public sphere.

But there are more damaging effects still. As @MichaelLCrick reports, very few candidates are working-class.

Instead, they are from the professional political classes.

In Milton Keynes North, Lauren Townsend, a trade unionist who came to the labour movement by organising her workplace as a waitress, was blocked.

The Leadership’s supposed heir is a pollster.

This is the Starmerite counterrevolution to put working-class interests back in a box.

It gets worse.

In Camberwell & Peckham, @mowords, a prominent anti-racist activist and working-class black man, was blocked. No black man has been elected as a Labour MP since 2011

Meanwhile, Rodwell was let through, despite his ‘black man’ remarks.

Britain’s leading Black newspaper – The Voice – has sounded the alarm on a crisis of anti-black racism within Labour.

All this within the context of the Forde \\Report and criticism from Black MPs.

Yet the Voice has been *ignored* by the Labour Party.

Labour crisis intensifies as ‘racist’ candidate picked

Meanwhile, in another safe London seat, party members resign over blocking of popular black candidate for ‘spurious’ reasons

Meanwhile, in Kensington, the ex-MP, @emmadentcoad, the only person to ever win the seat for Labour, and a passionate advocate for a community scarred by Grenfell was blocked.

Locally there was widespread disgust at the decision.

Left wing ex-Labour MP Emma Dent Coad blocked from standing in Kensington

Left wing ex-Labour MP Emma Dent Coad says she has been blocked by the party from standing as the candidate in Kensington.

As @FisherAndrew79 has remarked, this obsessive purge is also draining Labour’s activist base.

With members disempowered and local councillors and even ex-MPs blocked, why would anyone go out and knock doors? The disrespect is palpable.

Labour’s Cult of Factionalism Is Going Into Overdrive | Novara Media

From Emma Dent Coat to Maurice Mcleod, the Labour right is busy destroying would-be leftwing MPs – and its own electoral prospects in the process, writes Andrew Fisher.

Indeed, when the Party blocked the *deputy leader of the council* in favour of two people who live outside the constituency, the entire Wakefield CLP Executive resigned.

Wakefield Labour executive resigns accusing Starmer of byelection stitch-up

Members quit en masse over ‘arrogant’ handling of candidate selection process

So in sum:

❌ promises broken
❌ rights of trade unions disregarded
❌ local members and parties disrespected
❌ failing on anti-racism
❌ anti-democratic stitch-ups

This is Keir Starmer’s Labour Party.

Source: What’s going on with Labour’s Parliamentary Selections? – Labour Hub

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6 thoughts on “Labour is purging left-wingers from Parliamentary selection lists. Here’s how

  1. Roger Charlesworth

    The demise of the erstwhile Labour Party is long overdue. Bring it on. Start with a clean slate and a clean party. I am a Socialist but I shall NEVER EVER vote for Starmer aka Starmer’s Jewish wife who calls the pro-Zionist shots.

  2. mohandeer

    Starmer is an establishment shill and the best we can hope for is a LibDem margin greater than Labour’s so we end up with a hung parliament and leave Tories out in the cold.

  3. Valerie j Matthews

    Under Starmer’s authoritarian Leadership. we no longer have a Labour Party. Especially with rude loudmouths like Wes Streeting sounding forth. We need to STOP voting for this ‘Tory Lite’ set up!

  4. Martyn Meacham

    We now have not only the tory criminal Cartel to defeat at the next election, but Starmer’s racist, far right, fake labour, tory party as well….God help us all if either party win…..We will all lose if either party is successful.

  5. Grey Swans

    Unlike Labour, the trade union backed Corbynite Left wing Labour that is being purged, is most welcome to start our new Over 50s (policies ages 1 to 100 plus), that already has a published manifesto, which is Corbyn’s 2017 and 2019 manifestos, with the omitted Grey Vote policies learned from the shared experiences of the suffering of us 1950s pension campaigner ladies since 2013.

    Because of discrimination in society of people aged over 50, the greatest urban myth is that the Grey Vote ONLY vote Tory, whereas the truth is that the Grey Vote are the ONLY age group sufficiently turning out to vote, with a 70 per cent voter rate (equivalent 100 per cent, as that is the rate in Australia with compulsory voting) and so are the age group who vote for ALL parties.

    The young below age 40 are not voting for ANY parties, with a quarter of them not even kept up registration on electoral roll, so has no voting rights.

    Parties begin with no knowledge if they can win elections, but when they do run single MP candidates in by-elections, they lose, getting tiny voter rate, as they only have policies for people aged under 40, who don’t sufficiently turn out to vote. Getting as low as 30 down to Zero voting.

    Over 50s party has the Grey Vote policies popular with the public (I’ve tried them on social media, without any reference to politics) and is also the greatest Suffragette party in UK history, unravelling the discrimination against women and women and age in combination.

    We need a Clement Attlee government and the Over 50s party alone delivers that, including to women pensioners, attacked against them having retirement money, in a continuous timeline of governments since late 1970s Prime Minister Callaghan, Tories, Labour, Lib Dems Pension Minister.

    For example the prior version of triple lock was stopped by Tories and Labour alike between 1980 and 2010.

    Manifestos are huge undertakings, but we don’t need to re-invent the wheel. The Over 50s party is oven ready, therefore, for a handful of people to commit to the manifesto, and bring the party into reality with the Electoral Commission. I had the details and estimate from a specialist law firm.

    See past society’s prejudice against women and women and age, and get Over 50s party started, that holds the best chance of beating Tory, Labour and Lib Dems in next election.

    www dot over50sparty dot org dot uk

Comments are closed.