This isn’t a kinder politics, it’s intimidation and it must end

Pamela-NashPamela Nash says the language being used to attack and intimidate MPs is appalling. The promise of “a kinder politics” has not been kept, and Corbyn is in danger of fracturing the party.


Our Labour Party, built on the central value of solidarity, is suffering from chronic and painful divisions which may irreparably damage it. I have not criticised Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership publicly before this week; in fact I have often defended him. He deserved to lead as he had achieved a huge mandate and had brought a lot of energy into the party. I did not doubt he was indeed principled and wanted to change the world, as his campaign made clear.

However, the implicit suggestion has been that other Labour MPs are not as principled as him, as they do not share all of his views. This is just wrong. I did not have the pleasure of knowing Jo Cox, but our mutual friends have told me just how lovely, hardworking, principled and driven she was. And there are many, many more like her in the House of Commons. Our Labour MPs have fought for years for social justice, equality and to improve the quality of lives of their constituents, and millions of people have thus voted them in.

The suggestion that those MPs resigning and calling on Jeremy to step aside are acting in self-interest is exceptionally hurtful. The reality is that this will have been the hardest days of their political lives; they have no choice but to act. Thousands of voters are telling them on their doorsteps every week that they will not vote for Labour under Corbyn. The last straw has been the lack of leadership from Corbyn in campaigning for a Remain vote; indeed it appears he hindered the Labour campaign and has even now refused to confirm how he voted. We are leaving the EU, and he has taken none of the blame.

This all takes place in the wider environment where politicians are despised and expected to put up with treatment that would not be acceptable in any other profession. Politician has become a dirty word. Rarely seen as honourable ladies and gentlemen, just money-grabbing careerists whatever their own personal records are. What is most hurtful is that some Labour Party members, and other Corbyn supporters, are now openly attacking our MPs in this way.

I felt sick when I saw the “Blairite Vermin” t-shirt making an appearance at the Parliament Square rally. “Vermin” was used by the Hutus to refer to Tutsis in 1990s’ Rwanda, not to mention its use in 1930s Europe. This vile language is being repeated all over social media to describe MPs; it is purposefully dehumanising and designed to stir up hatred against our MPs. All this when a beloved member of the Labour family was murdered in what appears to be a hate crime just two weeks ago. Of course this is a minority acting in this way, but a dangerous minority.

Jeremy has allowed the team around him to try and intimidate MPs and anyone who disagrees with him, instigating mob mentality, threatening deselections and protests at MPs offices and homes. He eventually condemned the abuse of MPs yesterday via a tweet. Hours later, Jewish MP Ruth Smeeth left the launch of the Party’s Anti-Semitism report in tears after being confronted by a Momentum supporter. Just to be clear, this was at an official Labour Party event. Corbyn stood by and watched. Horrendous.

A ‘kinder politics’ has proved nothing more than a platitude at best, at worst a cover for the more sinister intimidation of anyone who disagrees with Corbyn and his team.

Pride has quickly become one of my favourite films. There is a scene where a miner and an LGBT campaigner shake hands, and talk about this as a symbol of solidarity. I cannot watch it without a few tears of pride that I am part of the Labour movement. I love the Labour Party; it is my home and family.

Tragically, solidarity has not been nurtured under Jeremy’s leadership. Instead our Party has fractured to the point that we cannot function. If he cares at all about the Party, he must now stand aside and allow us to unify and save it.

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18 thoughts on “This isn’t a kinder politics, it’s intimidation and it must end

  1. I would suggest that having MP’s queuing up to stab Corbyn in the back on the hour every hour in the full glare of the media is also intimidation, in fact in any other environment it’d be called what it is, workplace bullying & anyone taking part in it would be sacked on the spot.

    1. Even his rump shadow cabinet wants him to go. It isn’t political, it is personal. Like Gove with Johnston, those up close have seen him in operation, and he has no, repeat no, leadership qualities. Like Johnston, he has vanity, and as Johnson wrecked our place in Europe, Jeremy is wrecking the Labour Party as a party of government. There is no way back from this, we are finished as a party. Back to draughty rooms and committee-mongering. Great for those who like that sort of thing, but nothing for ordinary people. Ane end o’ a lang sang.

  2. Labour used to have a collective leadership—-the leader was only the first among equals. In the first EEC referendum, Harold Wilson did not campaign at all, but left it to the others in the divided Cabinet.
    But Angela Eagles claimed Corbyn worked like a dog for the Remain campaign, so its odd that he is now being hounded by assertions he did not do enough( as in this article).
    I have no idea what the truth is, in fact the truth no longer matters.
    Corbyn has been so “monstered” he cannot remain leader, but if he feels betrayed by the PLP, he also cannot quit.
    The Party is in deep trouble, and there is no clear way out.

    The Lib Dems and UKIP must be rubbing their hands, hoping for an election.

    1. Angela Eagle, June 13

      “Jeremy is up and down the country, pursuing an itinerary that would make a 25 year old tired, he has not stopped. We are doing our best, but if we are not reported, it is very difficult”

      Angela Eagle, June 27

      “Under your leadership the case to remain in the EU was made with half-hearted ambivalence…I have come to the conclusion you are not the right person to lead the Party we both love”

      Cheers Will

  3. The reason he is considered principled is because he is. Instead of using the name of your murdered colleague to serve your petty needs perhaps you (and the rest of you blairite bleaters) ought to try some introspection. Kinder politics? Or do you mean the German ‘Kinder’? You need a ticking off and some time out. Serve the people or take a different job.

    It’s laughable that you are appealing for support here in the full expectation that you are deserving of said support. Labour eh? I’m facing eviction next week with three children to support & a terminal illness and my husband is a barrister of 17 years’ call. While your petty power squabbles rage on real life happens to the rest of us. We suffer your consequences. Look beyond your ego or ask if you are fit for public office. You and your well funded crones of questionable virtue.

  4. “However, the implicit suggestion has been that other Labour MPs are not as principled as him, as they do not share all of his views”

    Its not a suggestion nor is it implicit its bare faced fact! Everybody and his dog is aware that this is nothing but a right wing Red Tory Blairite coup with suspicious timing to coincide with the release of the Chilcot enquiry results. Nobody is fooled even when the right wing media have involved themselves in their usual partial partisan manner in support of the coup. In fact its even more transparent because they have!

    Make no mistake This right wing Red Tory sect of the Labour party has just lost whats left of Labour ground roots support. No Blairite is going to get their vote. Sadly in England it will go to UKIP. I wont be surprised to see moves made to deselect Red Tory candidates from their seats after this.

    I’m not a member of the Labour party but I feel the utter disgust at the despicable betrayal of a decent man and decent social Democrat by those not fit to wipe his arse in a political context.

    Shame on the lot of you. You reap what you sow. Hell mend ye.

  5. Day by day that this attempted coup continues makes Labour look like a party that serves just itself. You’re squabbling to #savelabour when you should be uniting to save the country.

    The disgruntled MPs should stand another contender and let your members vote on it. If elect-ability is the most important criteria then they should propose their best shot candidate and have The Mirror run a proper poll to rate the electablility of all the candidates. Then your members can be properly informed before they vote.

  6. I agree with Jim above. Also polls have shown that the Labour vote for remain did hold up. This is no time to be distracting from the disastrous manoeuvring of the Tory Party and yet Jeremy Corbyn was being blamed for Brexit before all the votes were counted. In whose interest was that. As for the “Vermin” T-shirt, it was appalling but there was no proof that it was anything but an isolated, misguided individual; while those on either side of him who brought it to public attention were identified as being connected to a particular group of “Blairite” supporters.

  7. I agree with Jim, for anyone who thinks it is ok to publicly humiliate and individual to the point of bullying is an absolute disgrace to the image of the party and to themselves. It is a human right to show people respect. There was nothing honorable in how the MPs have behaved and has really shamed the party. First Blair, then Gordon Brown, then Ed Miliband and now Corbyn. Will the MPs ever be happy with a leader? Quite frankly they have created a rod for their back and the party is more divided than ever before. I cannot think of anyone suitable to lead the party and will probably be another decade before a new fresh generation of pure hearted Labour activists take control and lead the party to victory.

  8. Is incredible that the PLP is so totally and utterly lacking in forethought.

    Similarly their lack of critical thinking when spouting nonsense like this would be hilarious if it wasn’t so deeply sad.

    They also seem to have very short memories, JC wasn’t even in the door before the knives were out for him; none of them seem to mention that though, fortunately in this modern media age WE all remember.

    The game’s over for Labour now, and while my time actively supporting them is in the past I had hoped it may be rekindled in the future, there is no future for the Labour Party now.

    1. Dear, dear Bill, calm down. I thought everyone had agreed with Shami that Nazi references were inappropriate for civilised Labour party discourse.

  9. As a non party member but a labour voter for 36 years before deciding I couldn’t vote for Mr Murphy in the Scottish elections I keep looking for a way back to Labour. I thought Mr Corbyn might be that way. Unfortunately that hasn’t been the case.

    Since his selection as leader he has faced a fair bit of resistance from the PLP and more than a fair bit of bias from the media. He would have had to be an exceptional man to turn the party around. It appears to me he is a good man, but sadly not an exceptional one.

    I can see the PLP’s point that the party needs to be electable and, in their view, Mr Corbyns policies make them unelectable. I disagree but can accept that, if they believe that they would believe getting rid of Mr Corbyn would be the right thing to do. They will make every effort to make the party electable by moving it back towards the ‘Blair/Brown’ policies which kept the party in power for ten years. Just where the media wants it.

    Therein lies the problem. Just as I couldn’t vote for Mr Murphy for First Minister, I can’t vote for a (I hesitate to use the term but can’t think of a better one) ‘Blairite’ Prime Minister. I suspect many will be the same and, if Labour go that route, they will likely suffer the same fate as the SLP has.

    That will leave the country in the hands of the Conservatives for at least a decade driving the wedge between Scotland and the rest of the U.K. deeper. Unfortunately I think that decisions taken within the party and the PLP over the last year have led to where we are and it is too late to turn. I believe the outcome is now inevitable and that isn’t good for the workers of this country. I hope I’m wrong.

    1. The outcome is far from inevitable. What the plotters can’t or won’t understand is that there has been a sea-change inside the Labour Party. The party no longer belongs solely to those who think they’re special because they had the temerity to put themselves forward as representatives of the party.
      When the so-called ‘modernisers’ got their wish with the changes to the voting arrangements for the leader they had no idea what they had unleashed. For the moment at least the membership has some measure of control.
      The battle is on. Those who wish for Corbyn’s resignation will stoop to any level; their campaign of bullying, intimidation and lies has shown them up as a bunch of self-serving hypocrites. There is a better than good chance they can be defeated – why don’t you join the party and help that happen.

  10. If Westminster was elected by proportional representation, it would make sense for Labour to split into two parties.
    Indeed it would also make sense for the Tories to do likewise, and all would have a decent number of MP’s.
    That MIGHT lead to adult politics, but Westminster is so up itself, I doubt it…………….

    We could also have an elected Upper Chamber, federalism, progressive taxation with no loopholes—–oh, and a White Christmas every year.
    Sadly the White Christmas is the most likely of them all to come true.

  11. A pitiful coup by a bunch of self serving blairite careerists against a man of principle with a huge democratic mandate.
    They have worked against Corbyn from his first day in the job,they care of nothing but themselves.
    A man of principle,a man of proper socialist labour principles,scares them and those of the same ilk who’d never have been in the Labour Party if Blair hadn’t happened,displaced Tories in reality.
    If they cared about the party or the people they’re elected to serve,they’d have grouped with Corbyn and the rest and attacked the Tories when they’ve never been more vulnerable.
    Instead they’ve destroyed any vestige of decency left in the Labour Party and handed the next election to an even more right wing Tory government.
    Well done you shameful bunch of cowards..

  12. Never mind Blairites or whatever you want to call them. What most posters mean is anyone who doesn’t support Jeremy – but many of the MPs who supported the no confidence vote were first elected in 2010 or 2015, so will not have been in the Commons at the time of the Iraq War (when Blair was PM of course). What these newer MPs see is not leadership, but posturing and incompetence. Under Jeremy, there will never be a Labour government – he is like George Lansbury in the 1930s, possibly worse – and the big losers will be the working class, doomed to decades of Tory rule. That’s why we need a new leader. My only worry is that the timing is poor – we should sit back for a few weeks and let the Tories implode – but will Jeremy really be able to exploit this? I can’t see it.

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