Tag Archives: Evans

Starmer’s shifting story on Corbyn suspension shows he may be a worse liar than Johnson

Keir Starmer and Jeremy Corbyn: Starmer was already lined up to stab Mr Corbyn in the back, even in this image.

Labour leader Keir Starmer is in a pickle, and no mistake! His own words are making him as big a liar as Boris Johnson.

But while Johnson is attempting to break with his government’s recent past by cutting loose some of the most offensive people in his former Cabinet and promoting those he thinks play well with the public, Starmer remains mired in the results of his own actions.

The latest revelations about his shocking mistreatment of former party leader Jeremy Corbyn should sink him altogether. Perhaps it is only the support of a true-blue Tory media, that knows Starmer is the best thing that could have happened to Johnson, that keeps the public from turning on him.

The Labour leader currently stands accused of lying about the way Jeremy Corbyn was suspended from party members – unilaterally, by Starmer, in breach of an agreement he had made with the Equality and Human Rights Commission that very day.

He is also said to have broken an agreement he made to bring Corbyn back into the party on publication of a “clarification” statement by the former leader.

Former Unite General Secretary Len McCluskey explained in a Guardian article a few days ago [boldings mine]:

Labour briefed journalists that Starmer hadn’t personally suspended Corbyn; the party’s general secretary, David Evans, had. This mattered because one of the EHRC’s main lessons was that there must be no political interference in disciplinary cases – that such interference could be unlawful. Starmer was careful to tell the BBC Today programme the following morning: “Appropriate action was taken yesterday by the general secretary in suspending Jeremy Corbyn.”

But that’s not what he told me on the phone. His words were: “He put me in an impossible position and I had no choice.”

The EHRC had made it clear in its report that party representatives like Starmer should not involve themselves in disciplinary matters in any way, as it may appear that they were acting for political reasons. And isn’t this precisely what Starmer was doing, on the very day he had promised to abide by the organisation’s recommendations?

Corbyn had been clear that “anyone claiming there is no antisemitism in the Labour party is wrong” and that “one antisemite is one too many”, but he had also said that the scale of the problem had been “dramatically overstated” by opponents and the media. Corbyn sought to substantiate his claim in a broadcast interview, pointing to polling that suggested a vast gap between the perception of the extent of antisemitism in the party (the public thought complaints had been made against a third of members) and what the former leader said was “the reality” that 0.3% of members had actually been subject to disciplinary investigations.

As a victim of false allegations by the Labour Party who has had to do some research on this, I can confirm that Mr Corbyn’s figures were correct. My opinion is that this disparity had been stoked by Labour MPs who had falsely claimed that the party was “institutionally anti-Semitic” (this claim was firmly squashed by the EHRC) but Starmer has taken no action against the individuals concerned, who have clearly dragged Labour into disrepute. Does he have another agenda, perhaps?

Starmer, in his speech, had said that anyone saying antisemitism was “all exaggerated” was part of the problem. Corbyn, of course, hadn’t said it was all exaggerated, but Starmer now raised the bar. He told me on the phone that Corbyn had deliberately undermined him. “It’s as if he’s gone out of his way to contradict that line in my speech,” he said. “I’m beyond angry with Jeremy.”

Here’s a classic tactic of the false anti-Semitism campaign being used by Starmer himself. He said that Mr Corbyn had undermined his statement that anyone saying anti-Semitism in Labour was “all exaggerated” was part of the problem. But Mr Corbyn had not said that, and it is a lie to imply that he did. He had said the scale of the problem had been “dramatically overstated” by opponents and the media – and provided evidence to support the statement.

Starmer’s false claim was an attempt to make us believe a lie. How sad that nobody in the media at the time was even interested in questioning that claim, but took it at face value and published it to the masses!

The following afternoon, Jon Trickett MP and I went to parliament for a meeting with Starmer, his chief of staff Morgan McSweeney, and deputy leader Angela Rayner. Rayner began by requesting our discussion be confidential. Given what happened subsequently, I no longer feel bound by that.

Damned by her own words. Did Rayner know that Starmer and Evans were already planning to renege on any deal mapped out between their new leadership and representatives of Mr Corbyn?

Trickett and Starmer’s senior adviser Simon Fletcher had worked up a draft statement. I joined a conference call with McSweeney. I said: “As far as we are concerned it is our expectation that if Jeremy agrees to the statement then that is the end of the matter and the suspension will be lifted, after due process, and Jeremy will be back to normal.”

McSweeney’s response was: “Yes, that is our expectation, also.”

“And you speak on behalf of Keir?” I asked.

“Yes,” came his reply.

That was the deal for Corbyn’s reinstatement. A month and a half later, in response to questions from Sky News journalist Tom Rayner, Starmer’s spokesperson would say: “There was no deal on reinstatement, no.”

A bald lie, it seems.

When pressed on whether senior Labour staff had advance sight of Corbyn’s statement (which they had in fact co-written), the spokesperson would respond: “We are not going to comment on private conversations.”

That’s a classic line when people don’t want to admit a fact, of course. Again, damning.

And because Starmer, Rayner, Evans, McSweeney and whoever else was in negotiations on Labour’s side have (allegedly) reneged on their agreement, Mr McCluskey is submitting his observations on those negotiations to be used in Mr Corbyn’s court challenge against Labour’s (then-subsequent) withdrawal of the party whip from him:

The formalities around Corbyn’s readmission were handled by a panel of Labour’s national executive committee, which met on 17 November. Corbyn published the agreed statement that morning. “To be clear, concerns about antisemitism are neither ‘exaggerated’ nor ‘overstated,’” read the key passage. “The point I wished to make was that the vast majority of Labour party members were and remain committed antiracists deeply opposed to antisemitism.”

I was – as were many others who had been wrongly accused, I’m sure – bitterly disappointed by this statement from Mr Corbyn, which denied what had happened to us. Was it really “neither ‘exaggerated’ nor ‘overstated'” when a Labour party officer leaked details of the party’s proceedings against me to The Sunday Times, which then published an entirely untrue claim that I was a Holocaust denier? (The newspaper published a lengthy correction a year later, after a lengthy investigation by newspaper watchdog IPSO.)

The vast majority of those who have been accused of anti-Semitism and expelled because of it are also committed anti-racists, falsely accused by the party they supported and trusted, with claims that certainly were ‘exaggerated’ and ‘overstated’. But I digress.

After Mr Corbyn made his statement and Starmer reinstated him into the Labour Party, the usual suspects piped up to cause trouble:

Margaret Hodge tweeted that it was “a broken outcome from a broken system”. The Jewish Labour Movement blamed a “factionally aligned political committee”.

Well, they would. Both have made it clear, over many years, that they have no interest in the well-being of the Labour Party but are they to undermine it, every chance they get. But Starmer never seems to understand that or act to counter it. Odd, that, don’t you think?

Instead…

it soon became clear he was going to crumble. It was reported he was given an ultimatum by Hodge: she would resign from the party if Corbyn remained a Labour MP.

Good riddance if she had! She should have been booted out years ago.

Starmer reneged on our deal. He withdrew the Labour whip from Corbyn, leaving him in the absurd situation of being an MP and a Labour member, but not a Labour MP. At no time in my discussions had this eventuality been mentioned. The objective of both sides had been to bring matters back to normal.

Corbyn was now told that if he wanted the whip restored he would have to make an apology – which prompted the question: if an apology was so important to the leadership, why didn’t they include one in the statement they co-wrote?

Shifting sands. The evidence suggests that Starmer wasn’t interested in justice; he just wanted an outcome that made him look good. And this shows his political naivete – he was never going to get it. In the anti-Semitism row, the Labour leadership is caught between members who know they are innocent and will fight for it, and activisits both inside and outside the party who know that merely making accusations will cause disruption and disarray in an organisation they hate.

I’m a trade unionist. The one thing you never do is renege on a deal you’ve negotiated… That was when I lost my personal relationship with Starmer. I could no longer trust him. He was not a man of his word.

If this was an isolated example perhaps it could be dismissed. But it increasingly looks like a pattern that extends to policy as well as politics.

Len McCluskey’s article is bad enough for Starmer.

But journalist Alex Nunns has gone further – simply by analysing the Labour leadership’s response and finding that it cannot deny any of the statements of fact.

Instead, Starmer’s office has tried to add new elements to the story, that support him. But in doing so, they undermine his claim that there had been no deal and support Mr McCluskey’s assertion that Starmer lied.

See for yourself:

This is an important point: nobody can trust Starmer or the group within Labour that he leads. Those of us who have fought anti-Semitism accusations know that this is true; if you are accused, your innocence does not matter. It means powerful people in the party want you out and they believe they can smear you with impunity to do it.

Crucially, it seems Starmer – the lawyer – has put himself in a position where he may have perjured himself in court proceedings:

My guess is that, although he has painted himself into a corner, Starmer will try to worm his way out of it on a technicality.

But the British people don’t care about technicalities. They care about how their leaders present themselves.

And Starmer presents himself as a shifty, untrustworthy liar – and certainly not the kind of person we can support into leadership of the UK. If this is how he mistreats Labour members, how badly will he mistreat the rest of us if he gets the chance?

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Labour Conference delegates are urged to oppose David Evans as general secretary

Antidemocratic: Keir Starmer and the general secretary he appointed unilaterally – against Labour Party rules – don’t want party members to take any part in democratic decision-making. Delegates to the annual party conference should therefore use their democratic rights to vote Evans out of office – and Starmer as well, if possible.

Labour Party groups across the country are being urged to ensure that their conference delegates will not endorse Keir Starmer’s choice of David Evans as general secretary.

The Campaign for Labour Party Democracy (CLPD) supported its call simply by referring to Evans’s record in office, since Starmer appointed him to the job last year:

Since the NEC appointed Evans to act as General Secretary in May 2020, various measures have been introduced to curtail the rights of Labour Party members. Unprecedented restrictions have been placed on discussions of party business, with around 70 local party officers suspended from party membership for defending local party democracy.[See Note 1] This has made local party meetings into unwelcoming spaces for many party members and as a result our membership has already suffered a large decline.

None of this has been of electoral benefit, as is evident from: Labour’s significant decline in opinion polls since the summer of 2020; the predominately poor local election results in May; and the appalling loss of Labour support in the Hartlepool and the Chesham and Amersham by-elections.

And recent reports in the media suggest that the party is considering giving the General Secretary new powers to appoint people to make decisions on disciplinary charges – matters that are currently determined by people who are elected. Evidently this would not make the complaints process independent, but instead increase the General Secretary’s role in the prosecution and judgement of complaints – contrary to natural justice.

The risks for the party, if it continues to attack its own members and not put up any serious opposition to the Tories, is that we will be seen as divided, and voters, the majority of whom are being harmed by this government, will continue to look elsewhere when they want to vote for an alternative to Tory policies.

Regrettably, the party has been deterring, not attracting, electoral support. Right-wing factionalism does not deliver victories for Labour. It undermines the party’s functioning, both internally and also in elections.
It has been a mistake, with damaging consequences, that the party recently abandoned its democratic traditions. It is a mistake that Annual Conference can help to correct.

The long standing custom and practice was that party members discussed and adopted positions on matters across the full range of party business and policy. The culture, of encouraging internal debate, helped our party became one of the largest political parties in Europe. It also assisted the leadership, keeping it in touch with our members, who form the backbone of our local campaigns.

Our members are important to our success. The stifling of internal democracy is unfortunately damaging the party and this is benefiting our electoral opponents.

We need a General Secretary who will prioritise uniting the party around an alternative agenda to that of the Tories, to aid Labour in making a much needed electoral advance. It is an important post in the party, which should not be used as a platform for divisive attacks on party members.

Annual Conference needs to shift the party’s focus on to fighting the Tories. Delegates can best assist the party in achieving such a re-orientation by rejecting the NEC’s recommendation on the General Secretary.

Sadly, though, Evans’s own diktats mean party members can’t pass resolutions on the matter or even discuss it at their meetings because – and this is damning – “the current regime in the party is intolerant of democratic discussion on these matters“.

That’s right:

The acting General Secretary has placed significant restrictions on what local parties can discuss in meetings. Misleadingly presented as ‘guidance’, in reality dictates were issued, as became evident when many local party officers were suspended from party membership accused of failing to follow the so called ‘guidance’.

The dictates have effectively proscribed local party meetings from discussing the situation arsing from the political attacks on Labour’s former Leader Jeremy Corbyn. Party members have been barred from discussing their opposition to these attacks and from expressing solidarity with Jeremy.

In addition, severe restrictions have been placed on discussing other important political areas of party business, such as: whether the IHRA definition informs the most effective way to combat antisemitism; the decision of the Labour Party to make substantial payments to former members of party staff who appeared on a BBC Panorama programme; the EHRC’s report on the Labour Party and the party’s response to it; and ‘matters relating to the internal processes of the PLP’.

Presumably Evans is hoping that his order denying party members the opportunity to discuss his election means delegates will do as they are told and obediently nod him in – so he can cause even more damage.

To This Writer’s way of thinking, this should be cause for him to be automatically barred – not just from any position of authority in the Labour Party, but from membership of the organisation in any way at all.

Repressing other members simply isn’t appropriate behaviour for a Labour Party representative.

Also to This Writer’s way of thinking, this should be cause for a vote of “no confidence” in Keir Starmer’s leadership.

Starmer appointed Evans and we must conclude that he not only supported all the anti-democratic restrictions Evans has imposed – he demanded them.

That is not appropriate behaviour for a Labour Party leader so Starmer should get the boot too.

So, Labour delegates – are you up for it? Will you fight for your rights? Or do you actually deserve everything Starmer, Evans, and indeed Boris Johnson are shovelling at you?

Your choice.

Source: Labour Party Delegates Should Oppose the NEC Recommendation to Endorse David Evans – Campaign for Labour Party Democracy

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Young Labour joins ‘Trots Jamboree’ after Starmer’s general secretary cancels their conference

Keir Starmer (left) and his right-wing ACTING general secretary David Evans: they’re doormats to any right-wing organisation that wants to attack Labour, but have no problem attacking left-wing young people.

A new event has been added to the programme of The World Transformed – the left-wing political festival running alongside the Labour Party Conference this year.

Youth Rising for Palestine will take place on September 28, between 3-4.30pm, sponsored by Young Labour and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, in what can only be a bitter humiliation for Keir Starmer and his unelected general secretary David Evans, who – it seems clear – tried to prevent the event from taking place at all.

The event’s blurb states: “May 2021 saw thousands of Palestinians killed by Israeli air strikes in the Gaza strip, in the wake of a wave of protests against violent evictions in Sheikh Jarrar and across occupied Palestine. In response to these attacks, millions mobilised across the world in solidarity with the people of Palestine, including the largest ever UK solidarity demonstration in London attended by overwhelmingly young people. But it is not enough to protest in the streets when thousands of Palestinian lives are lost. As the Israeli state ramps up its regime of apartheid and occupation, while the British political establishment seeks to suppress Palestinian voices and those acting in solidarity with them, how can we build on the explosion of youth-led organising we’ve seen this year to build a long-lasting and cross-generational UK solidarity movement?”

You can see how this would upset Starmer, who has aligned Labour firmly with apartheid Israel through his fawning subservience to the Board of Deputies of British Jews – which has itself just admitted its own strong ties to the Israeli Embassy; apparently it is not a UK organisation but an arm of the Israeli government that is being used to influence UK politics.*

I’m not the only person to see it this way. Consider:

How was Young Labour forced to take its event outside the Labour Conference? It’s quite complicated, but I’ll try to take you through it painlessly.

Events had been unfolding for many months but we only found out about them yesterday (August 31) after Young Labour co-chair Jess Barnard finally gave up trying to reason with Starmer (who never responded anyway) and Evans – who, it seems, was more interested in exercising powers he doesn’t actually have:

Right – so Young Labour were told they would not be allowed to hold their annual event this year, even though the Labour Party is required by its own rules to host it. Already, Evans was breaking party rules.

If he had provided a reason – even one as flimsy as Covid-19 (it wouldn’t work because then he wouldn’t be holding a full conference) – it wouldn’t have been as bad, but he simply didn’t bother.

Okay, so Evans at least promised to provide more resources for a Young Labour presence in the main event. Did he?

No:

You read that right. YL provided all its required information months ago and was ignored until yesterday – August 31 – when Ms Barnard was given the excuse that the party had “no capacity for due diligence checks” until September 20.

To me, it looks like Evans (and Starmer?) found a reason to want YL’s events cancelled – quietly and without any nasty publicity. Why would they want that? Read on…

Is the picture clearer now? YL wanted to host an event with the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, and Evans (and Starmer?) wanted to put a stop to it. But they didn’t want to be seen to be stopping that particular event, so they created an excuse about “due diligence” checks.*

Ms Barnard, at least, is still willing to work with the Labour leadership…

… but I fear any hopes she has are forlorn.

One reason for this feeling is the arrival of a journalist named Oliver Kamm (I had never heard of him either). After Ms Barnard tweeted her thread, he responded with the comment below – claiming that Young Labour is anti-Semitic and wants to see a second Holocaust.

There is, to This Writer’s knowledge, absolutely no evidence to support such a wild claim, so Ms Barnard’s response is entirely understandable.

And take a look at Alex Tiffin’s comment.

Where are Starmer and Rayner (and, for that matter, Evans)? Nowhere to be seen. Now, why on Earth would they not want to defend their elected Labour Party representative? And isn’t it a dereliction of duty that they have said nothing about this?

Fortunately a few other people have chimed in to have their informed say. Personally, I have no knowledge of this Kamm person so must rely on their information:

Fortunately, given all of the above, it seems certain that the following tweet will prove inaccurate:

So that is the reason Young Labour will be co-sponsoring an event at so-called “Trots’ Jamboree” The World Transformed – alongside the PSC. I wonder if Jeremy Corbyn will attend.

This Writer has no doubt that it will be a much more worthwhile use of your time than whatever vapid puff of hot air will be put up by Starmer’s mob at that time. When’s his leader speech?

Meanwhile, I can only agree with the following two tweets…

… and endorse James Foster’s words of encouragement to Young Labour members who will be attending the conference:

*Or so it seems to This Writer.

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Is democracy coming back to the Labour Party at last? And can it overthrow Starmer?

Show them the door: Keir Starmer (left) and his right-wing ACTING general secretary David Evans, are facing the prospect of an apocalyptic party conference after a tenure that has been one failure after another.

Keir Starmer’s grip on the Labour Party is likely to be loosened – if not lost altogether – after left-wingers were elected to the committee that decides what the forthcoming party conference will discuss.

Seema Chandwani and Billy Hayes were re-elected as local party representatives for the third time in succession, in recent internal party elections.

It means they will be able to ensure that votes take place on important subjects like the election of the party’s general secretary.

David Evans was appointed to the role by Keir Starmer last year but party rules demand that his position must be ratified by party members in a conference vote.

After a year in which he has supported Starmer in pursuing a merciless purge of left-wing party members – mostly on the basis of the flimsiest accusations – Evans may now be considered not just to be unpopular, but hated, by the members whose votes he must seek if he wants to keep his job.

The Times has reported that a full vote – rather than a show of hands – is likely to be demanded in the conference.

Perhaps predictably, the paper has claimed that if Evans is ousted, Starmer’s leadership – and the party as a whole – will be thrown into “chaos”. That’s a load of cobblers but I’m sure somebody thought it would make good copy.

Other possible conference motions include a plan to ditch the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s (IHRA) definition of anti-Semitism, that has been used as an excuse to jettison party members who had criticised recent governments of Israel on false claims of anti-Semitism. It would be replaced by the Jerusalem Declaration, which many consider far more appropriate.

And on the same issue, it is also possible that power to expel members would be removed from a subset of the National Executive Committee and passed to rank-and-file party members after a series of highly-controversial and unilateral decisions that have shocked members, including the expulsion of legendary British movie director Ken Loach and a decision to proscribe – ban from membership – members of four groups.

It seems the terms of that decision are being abused by Starmer, Evans and their team:

Worse still: under Starmer, Jewish Labour members are far more likely to be charged with anti-Semitism than Gentiles.

Think about that.

And how else has Starmer distinguished himself lately?

Well, he urged party members to embrace the legacy of triple-election winner Tony Blair. How’s that working for him? It’s working like this:

Starmer himself goes unnoticed at public appearances…

… after former leader Jeremy Corbyn – who Starmer now condemns as a blight on the party – attracted crowds in the tens of thousands (and still does).

Then there’s Starmer’s rating in the opinion polls, which is plummeting. And what about this?

Who has done a better job of leading Labour? Corbyn – 44 per cent; Starmer – 13 per cent.

Is Starmer competent or incompetent? Competent – 18 per cent; incompetent – 76 per cent.

Is Starmer likeable or unlikeable? Likeable – 13 per cent; unlikeable – 80 per cent.

How likely is it that Starmer will become prime minister? Very likely – one per cent; very unlikely – 80 per cent.

Starmer – and Evans – are taking steps to fight back, starting with the release of details of their new ‘Organise to Win’ (ha ha) party structure, made necessary after Starmer squandered the £13 million that Corbyn raised from increased membership subscriptions and failed to raise any cash from corporate backers (they know a loser when they see one).

How was it received? Not well…

This is just not believable. Starmer has spent more than a year dictating to party members, so we have no reason to believe he’ll suddenly change his ways and start “serving the needs of voters first”, rather than “telling voters what they should think or do”.

And how about the following?

“Product mindset”?

“Agile ceremonies”? Seems a bit pervy to me.

“Rapid prototyping, deployment and iteration”?

These words are meaningless Newspeak – or, as Simon Vessey described it, above: bollocks.

Meanwhile the party has begun the process of laying off one-third of its staff members – because the alternative, after Starmer’s spending spree, is bankruptcy. They’ll be replaced by people on short-term contracts as the party inwardly embraces the “fire and rehire” strategy it outwardly condemns.

And there are questions about whether these redundancies will be as “voluntary” as they are said to be…

So it seems staffers who are union members may be told to go on strike – against the self-professed “Party of the Workers”. How do you think that will play out in the press?

Whatever he does, it seems clear that Starmer isn’t taking anybody with him – voluntarily or otherwise. In fact, it’s clear that they are abandoning him in droves – not only because they hate him with a vengeance, but because they don’t anticipate any improvement under any of the swivel-eyed right-wingers who are lining up to succeed him.

So it seems any renaissance of the Left at the autumn party conference may come too late.

Or will we all come back if the party is returned to the people for whom it was created?

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Doormat Dave: Labour pen-pusher wants the Party to stand for NOTHING, to avoid offending anybody at all

Doormats: Keir Starmer (left) and his right-wing ACTING general secretary David Evans, want Labour members to have no opinions or policies, for fear of upsetting anybody at all.

Once upon a time, the Labour Party had a mission. It stood for something. Under Keir Starmer and David Evans, those days are gone.

These two muppets are demanding that party members suppress all their political opinions – under pain of suspension or expulsion, let’s not forget – in order to avoid offending literally anybody at all, in any way.

They seem to have lost their way – badly.

As a party of Opposition, it is Labour’s duty to cause offence – at least to the policies of the Conservative government that they have been elected to fight.

They can’t lay out the grounds of any opposition without potentially offending people who disagree on fundamental ideological grounds.

Ah, but there’s the rub.

Starmer and Evans don’t actually have an ideology. Their only interest is in gaining power for its own sake.

As I have stated before, they are like the weathercocks in Tony Benn’s famous speech about “signposts and weathercocks”. To paraphrase: some politicians are like signposts – they point in a certain direction and you always know what they stand for; others are like weathercocks – they blow with the wind, changing their minds with the weather in a vain attempt to pick up public support by trying to attach themselves to whatever is fashionable at the time.

That’s Starmer for you, and Evans. They go any way the wind blows. In the words of a famous song that features those words, nothing really matters to them.

I’ve recorded a short video blog about it which you’ll probably enjoy. Here it is:

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‘Richie’: Sunak’s referral to ethics watchdog over wife’s vast wealth won’t address the real problem

The paper trail: financial holdings of Rishi Sunak, his wife Akshata Murty and her family are explained in this image, originally published by The Guardian.

How can a man as insanely rich as Rishi Sunak is – through the wealth of his wife and her family – honestly have any understanding of the struggles normal people are suffering as a result of his many decisions to cut their income?

He can’t.

That is the concern that we face after the revelation that the Tory Chancellor did not declare wealth larger than that of the Queen in the register of ministerial interests.

It won’t be addressed by Lord Evans, chair of the committee on standards in public life, because there is no rule requiring him to.

So the referral to the ethics watchdog by Labour’s Tonia Antoniazzi and James Murray may be seen as a pointless waste of time.

Here are the facts, neatly summed up in a couple of tweets:

More information is in the Guardian stories here and here.

According to the second of those stories, the Labour MPs’ referral to the ethics watchdog arises because they are concerned that Sunak’s wife’s holdings may create a potential conflict between his public and private interests.

But the Treasury has already said that Sunak “followed the ministerial code to the letter” in his declarations.

It seems he met the government’s then head of propriety and ethics, Helen MacNamara, to decide what needed to be declared before he joined the Treasury.

However: as This Writer learned only last week, a person can comply with the letter of the law and still be doing something wrong.

It doesn’t surprise me that Labour MPs are trying to tease out the nature of any wrong-doing by Sunak, because it was Labour that mistreated me.

Despite adhering to the letter of its rules on investigating anti-Semitism allegations against me, Labour ignored the requirements of its actual procedures in order to falsify a case against me, and manufactured an incorrect verdict. I had to go to court to have the facts revealed.

Will anything come of an investigation into Sunak? Doubtful. There’s no law against being ignorant of the way the other half live.

But if we know that Sunak is so far removed from the rest of us, we may also draw logical conclusions about his ability to create policies for everybody in the UK, no matter how deprived – or his lack of any such ability.

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Is Whittome Labour’s latest hypocrite in the Corbyn/suspension/free speech controversy?

Nadia Whittome: her behaviour is all the more vexing because she has no reason to be loyal to Keir Starmer – he sacked her as a Parliamentary Private Secretary because she voted against a Bill that would have protected soldiers from prosecution if they participated in acts of torture overseas, and briefed the right-wing Guido Fawkes blog about the sacking BEFORE telling her.

A Labour MP who had been considered to be on the left of the party and who said Jeremy Corbyn should be reinstated when his membership was suspended has become a turncoat, it seems.

Despite her own comments about Corbyn, it seems Nadia Whittome does not believe that her peers in the party should have the same right, as she stated in a Tweet following a meeting of Nottingham East Labour Party (she is MP for that constituency but not a member of the CLP):

It seems the agenda of last Friday’s CLP meeting included a motion that called for Corbyn’s reinstatement, the lifting of disciplinary measures from others for discussing the issues as well as for the removal of David Evans, General Secretary of the Labour Party, who imposed Corbyn’s suspension and the ban on discussing it that led to the suspensions of other party members.

Ms Whittome objected to the motion, despite having spoken against Corbyn’s suspension herself, it seems.

What are we to make of that? That she considers herself to be above her party colleagues? That she agrees that, while she may discuss such matters with impunity, it is right that rank-and-file party members be suspended for daring to do so? That she thinks party members should not be allowed to register their opposition when party officers flout rules and regulations?

That’s how it looks to This Writer.

Worse, Ms Whittome passed comment on an incident in which a Jewish CLP member left the meeting, claiming they did not feel safe there.

It appears that all was not as she led people to believe. Here‘s a statement from the CLP itself:

“There was only one interruption during the meeting. This arose when one member stated that in his personal experience he had never witnessed any antisemitism in any of our meetings. As he continued with his personal view, another member shouted out – in a manner that some found to be aggressive – that he himself had suffered personal, antisemitic abuse from the person speaking, who was taken aback and stated that this wasn’t true; the Chair intervened and tried to calm things down. At this point the member who had interrupted declared that he no longer felt safe at the meeting and left.

“The member who left has changed his narrative on social media to stating that the member he accused had ‘witnessed an anti-Semitic attack’ on him rather than had attacked him personally.”

Ms Whittome also mentioned the possibility that disciplinary proceedings had been launched against a member of the CLP. This appears to be CLP chair Louise Regan, a former NUT president and (I really hope this has nothing to do with it) vice-chair of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign.

It seems Ms Regan’s party membership was, in fact, suspended:

This can only be for allowing the motion to be heard (it was passed by 23 votes to 10). Ms Regan’s conduct during the meeting was described in the CLP statement as “exemplary” and Ms Whittome is said to have joined in thanking her for the way she chaired it.

If that was everything, it would be bad enough, but it seems even worse than that, as evidence has come to light claiming that Ms Whittome actually participated in a smear campaign against Ms Regan. Read:

Maybe Mr Kazmi has his own axe to grind (although, considering the number of Tweets by other people linking Ms Whittome with this AWL group, this seems doubtful). In any case, This Writer will be happy to hear what the MP has to say about all this.

At the moment, it seems likely she has fatally wounded her reputation among the very people on whom she would have to rely in order to be re-elected in any future Parliamentary poll.

And at the very least, it seems likely that she should expect a flood of complaints to Labour’s Governance and Legal Unit, that her comments have brought the party into disrepute – the very charge which, when used against her colleagues, she supported.

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Labour leader Starmer thought party rules are his toys for coercing the membership; he is badly wrong

We all learned a lot after This Writer’s court victory over the Labour Party on Tuesday, didn’t we?

Yes, I said victory – even though the case was dismissed. I gained more than Labour did.

The court found that Labour had deliberately ignored its own procedures in order to run an investigation that discriminated against me.

We may therefore conclude that Labour’s finding against me in that investigation also discriminated against me, and that the Vox Political articles that the party complained about were not detrimental to the Labour Party, nor were they anti-Semitic in any way.

In other words, any claim that the party ran its complaints system in good faith is utterly discredited.

Furthermore, the court found that this abuse of its own procedures was fully consistent with Labour Party rules – which says to This Writer that the rule book is not fit to be used and should be re-written, preferably by a committee of constituency-based members, with the help of lawyers hired with party funds. No member of Labour’s ruling elite should be allowed to get their fingers into it.

Further evidence of this came on Wednesday (November 25) when it was revealed that Keir Starmer’s Labour elite have tried to pretend there is a rule allowing him to stifle debate on the suspension of Jeremy Corbyn from the Parliamentary Labour Party. There isn’t.

None of the rules specifically forbid the expression of solidarity with Jeremy Corbyn or criticism of the leadership’s political decisions.

A letter from Fraser Welsh (who?), head of internal governance (oh), states: “The Labour Party disciplinary case against the former Leader has now concluded… However… motions around this issue… are providing a flashpoint for the expression of views that undermine the Labour Party’s ability to provide a safe and welcoming space for all members, in particular our Jewish members. Therefore all motions which touch on these issues must be ruled out of order.

“We are aware that this ruling will be questioned, so the following explanation of the powers exercised by the General Secretary, as well as the rationale for this decision may be helpful:

“The Labour Party’s Code of Conduct: Antisemitism and other forms of racism states (Appendix 9 in the Rule Book): “The Labour Party will ensure the party is a welcoming home to members of all communities, with no place for any prejudice or discrimination based on race, ethnicity or religion.”

“Chapter 1 VIII.3.A tasks the NEC to “to uphold and enforce the constitution, rules and standing orders of the Party and to take any action it deems necessary for such purpose…

“Chapter 1 VIII.5 states: “All powers of the NEC may be exercised as the NEC deems appropriate through its elected officers, committees, sub-committees, the General Secretary and other national and regional officials and designated representatives appointed by the NEC or the General Secretary. For the avoidance of doubt, it is hereby declared that the NEC shall have the power to delegate its powers to such officers and committees and subcommittees of the NEC and upon such terms as from time to time it shall see fit. Further, it shall be deemed always to have had such power.”

None of the rules mentioned specifically forbid the expression of solidarity with Jeremy Corbyn or criticism of the leadership’s political decisions. And Mr Welsh – deliberately? – omits any evidence in support of his wild claims from his letter, meaning local party leaders have no reason to believe him.

Having just won a court case on the basis that its rules don’t mean Labour has to follow any procedure that isn’t specifically codified in the rule book, the party’s leaders can hardly insist that, in this instance, they do.

And it is encouraging to see so many local parties overruling the diktat from party HQ in order to continuing expressing their support for Jeremy Corbyn, for free speech and for democracy. I’ve been monitoring Twitter and here is a taste of what’s been happening:

Opposition to Starmer’s power grab has extended to the unions, which are not governed by Labour Party rules and can say and do what they like:

It seems the whole Labour movement is turning on Starmer:

Sadly, the Conservatives are doing very well out of the civil war that Starmer has stirred up – and will continue to profit in any forthcoming elections, as long as Starmer and his elites have any power in the Labour Party. Here’s the reason:

The longer this continues, the worse it will get. Labour Party members across the UK have made it clear that they do not accept Starmer’s dictatorship and while the dissent is only a whisper at the moment, it will soon become a roar.

Starmer has put himself in an impossible position. Having abused party rules in a vain attempt to assert dictatorial authority, he is unlikely to accept the democratic decision of members to deny him that authority.

I think, therefore, that Labour members will have to consider what other steps they can take to have him removed. Potential left-wing challengers for the leadership position should start generating support – but should wait until large numbers of CLPs have registered their opposition to Starmer’s activities before demanding an election.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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Corbyn calls in the lawyers – just as This Site asked him to

What a coincidence!

The day after This Writer called for Jeremy Corbyn to take court action to stop the current Labour leadership from playing fast-and-loose with party rules to persecute him – he did just that.

Jeremy Corbyn’s solicitors have written to Labour calling for his suspension as one of the party’s MPs to be lifted, the BBC has been told.

I can’t take credit for the move – this is a tiny website with a very small readership – around 16,000 a day on average – but I think it is worth recording my gratitude to everybody who did pass my message on to Mr Corbyn, just in case.

Keir Starmer has built up a reputation, in a very short time, for conceding court cases Labour’s legal advisers say the party should win. In this instance, the opposite should apply – so I fear he’ll decide to fight.

Possibly mitigating against this is the letter to the party’s acting general secretary, David Evans (his appointment has yet to be ratified by a Labour Party conference), demanding that the Parliamentary party whip be restored to Corbyn.

According to Skwawkbox, the letter

  • condemns the ‘double jeopardy’ and ‘deliberate political interference’ of withdrawing the whip from Corbyn after he was reinstated by an NEC panel
  • makes clear that the decision of the panel was based on independent legal advice and the recommendation of Labour’s disciplinary investigative unit
  • implies that their advice was that there were no valid grounds for Corbyn’s suspension
  • confirms that the whip had been restored to Corbyn on the lifting of his suspension, making an utter mockery of Starmer’s excuse that he was ‘not restoring’ the whip rather than withdrawing it
  • makes clear that the meddling in the disciplinary outcome is exactly that kind of ‘political interference’ the EHRC has ruled unlawful
  • accuses Starmer and other right-wing MPs of smearing the NEC panel members who acted in accordance with the party’s rules and the legal advice they gave
  • says that Starmer has put NEC members in a legal bind – and that as a highly-qualified barrister he has no excuse for his ‘unconscionable’ choice
  • demands that Evans rebuke Starmer for his political interference in party processes and undermining public confidence in Labour’s disciplinary process
  • ‘requires’ Evans to immediately ‘demand’ that Starmer upholds the NEC panel’s decision and restores the whip to Corbyn

So now Starmer is well and truly caught between a rock and a hard place.

I wonder what sanctions will be carried out by the NEC members who signed the letter, if they don’t get what they demanded?

Perhaps Starmer’s decision will be made easier by the continuing rebellion of party members across the country, who continue to ignore his diktats that they should not speak up on Corbyn’s behalf or campaign for him.

This Writer is delighted to see that Bristol South CLP (I’m from that part of Brizzle) has just voted to support Corbyn:

I understand Brent Central CLP has also passed a motion demanding the restoration of the Labour Parliamentary whip to Corbyn.

And it seems another CLP has passed a motion calling on the NEC to take all steps possible to remove David Evans from office.

November 19 has been a disastrous day for Keir Starmer and his cronies.

How much worse can it get before he bows to the inevitable?

Source: Jeremy Corbyn’s lawyers challenge Labour over MP suspension – BBC News

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