The Blairs, Catholicism, and New Labour

by Garry O’Connor

The word ‘religion’ comes from the Latin religare, meaning ‘to bind back’, and in the present climate, in a society awash with an ‘all-pervasive claim to victimhood’, and the escalating fear and often reality of violence, a ‘binding back’ in multiple ways, not least culturally, is needed. While the No. 10 press aides and the protagonists themselves have strenuously tried to keep religion out of politics, and in spite of the notorious British reticence in such matters, it both demands and needs a central place in the new twenty-first-century world picture or disorder. As for the recent growth of proselytising atheism, who would not rather listen to Albert Einstein, perhaps the greatest scientific mind in history, than diehard secularists such as Richard Dawkins? Einstein wrote in his diary, ‘What separates me from most so-called atheists is a feeling of utter humility towards the unattainable secrets of the harmony of the universe…. The problem involved is too vast for our limited minds.’ In declaring his personal creed he states, ‘The most beautiful emotion we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion that stands at the cradle of all true art and science. He to whom this emotion is as stranger…is as good as dead.’ More mundanely, Madeleine Albright, former US Secretary of State, in her timely book The Mighty and the Almighty (2006) defined the way her own country ill-advisedly tiptoedround the subject of religion.

Religious arrogance, or identifying oneself with the Messiah, could hardly be excused in Tony Blair, as it was by Dominic Lawson, as ‘unwittingly’ expressed. Cherie’s religious presumption has been of a more complicated and pervasive kind. Because she is a woman, and also an influential role model to other women, her beliefs have been both more invasive and convincing for other women, in particular those who put their gender first and their religion second.

Her revolutionary tenet, not exactly uncommon, and worthy of Lenin, which she holds with undiminished fervour, is that if you want to change an institution you join it and change it from within. In Why I Am Still a Catholic, published in June 2006, she averred:

‘Of course, like many Catholics in this country, I have doubts about some of the positions taken by the Church as an institution – for example, on contraception, or the role of women. But I am not one of those who believe that the only response is to walk away because you have a different viewpoint. I have been taught that you should stay and try and change things.

‘It’s like the Labour Party in the early 1980s. I wasn’t happy with the way it was going so I tried to help change it from within. Thankfully, we won that battle. And though the pace of change in the Catholic Church can seem slow, I believe that there are many people in this country – and not just in the laity – who are convinced of the need for it. That message, however, is not yet fully accepted by the Vatican. But, then, the Church isn’t just the Vatican. It is about all of us, the people of God as the Second Vatican Council put it.’

Father Beaufort, a priest from York, commented:

‘It would be terribly arrogant for any of us to suggest that we were somehow doing the Catholic Church a favour by gracing her with our membership. The idea that the Church is basically a human institution that has to be allowed to evolve to adapt itself to the spirit of the age owes more to Protestantism and to the modernist heresy condemned by Pope Pius X than it does to true Catholicism.

‘Ms Booth says she has some problems with certain positions taken by the Church ‘as an institution’, like the ban on contraception. But for Catholics, the Church is an institution unlike any other – a supernatural institution, founded by Christ. As the Mystical Body of Christ, the Church is the extension of His Incarnate Presence on earth, invested with divine authority to teach on matters of faith and morals. Catholics believe that the Pope, as successor of St Peter, is invested with the charism of infallibility. This means that no Pope, however sinful he is, can ever err when he teaches ex cathedra on matters of faith and morals.

‘As a moral issue, contraception is a good example of something that clearly falls under the Church’s teaching remit. To reject the Church’s clear, consistent and authoritative teaching on such an issue is to really deny the teaching authority of the Church altogether, and to cease to be Catholic.

‘Ms Booth also admits to difficulties accepting the Church’s position on the role of women. She doesn’t specify, but could she mean the Church’s restriction of the Sacrament of Holy Order to men? John Paul II made it quite clear that not even a Pope has the authority to alter the Church’s constant teaching on this matter.

‘To compare the Catholic Church with the Labour Party seems to miss the point that the Church is a divine institution. Yes, we all have a part to play in building up the Mystical Body of Christ on earth. Certain disciplines can and do change. But as far as doctrine goes, and the basic hierarchical structure of (male) bishops, priests and deacons, the Church’s role is simply to hand on what was given by Christ to the Apostles. In this sense, the Church is really defined by tradition. As for reform, we are always called to reform ourselves, by conforming ourselves to the Gospel of Christ, as handed on in the teaching of the Church.

‘The Church’s teaching on contraception and the priesthood will be substantially the same in 2,000 years’ time as it is today. It would be foolhardy to make such a claim for any other institution; but we can say it confidently about the Church because of our faith that she is not just any institution, but a divine one.


‘Ms Booth says that the Church is “all about us, the people of God, as Vatican II put it”. Yes, Christ founded His Church for our salvation. But the role of the “people of God” is primarily to listen and to learn, so that we can extend the sovereignty of Christ into every level of human activity. Vatican II didn’t change the constant doctrine that the teaching Church, or Ecclesia docens, is made up of the bishops in union with St Peter’s successor, the Pope. As the “people of God”, we have to be open to conversion from our preconceptions.’

The election of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger as Benedict XVI was a blow, not only to the left-wing liberal establishment of the English and Welsh bishops. Benedict sees the Catholic Church as a continuous organic whole, enlivened and united by the constant presence of the Holy Spirit, dismissing the view of the Church before Vatican II (1965) as bad and after as good, and calling such ‘ecclesiastical schizophrenia’ the ‘hermeneutic of discontinuity’.

On sin, Tony had pronounced that the concept of believing in it was ‘simple and important’, and that ‘this is an area that will become of increasing importance in politics’. Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O’Connor agreed: ‘You cannot’, he said, ‘divorce religion and life.’ But through legislation, instead of listening and learning, and by this bringing ‘the sovereignty of Christ into every level of human activity’, New Labour provided and widened the opportunity for ‘sin’, in Christian and Catholic terms (if you believe in them) in many aspects of social and personal life.

A longer opportunity for abortions, longer drinking hours, liberalising of cannabis, growth of casinos, wider and more useless sex education of the wrong kind (meaning one thing and one thing only, greater use of contraception and greater numbers of teenage pregnancies). Under the aegis of Tony’s espousal of population control the government funded international agencies which supported China’s population policies, in particular its cruel and inhuman treatment of women who are forced to abort or become sterilised if they want to breed more than one child. Gordon Brown, before he had children of his own, voted sixteen times in favour of abortion, including three times for abortion up to birth, and for disabled babies; for abortion on demand in early pregnancy; and to suppress information about abortions on disabled babies. He cut the VAT on morning-after pills from 17.5 per cent to 5 per cent. He also in 1990 voted for destructive embryo experimentation.

At the same time, New Labour created secular sins for its atheist followers to feel comfortable in denouncing and outlawing, such as fox-hunting, smoking, the right of Catholic adoption agencies to differentiate foster parents on the basis of belief, and even, some would claim, normal married life. A mass of new laws criminalising what had been seen as ordinary if not entirely appropriate behaviour filled the statute book, while a controlling and bureaucratic surveillance state came into being, in many ways similar to that of the former Communist countries of eastern Europe.

Cherie’s views on contraception and women priests did not stop her scurrying off to Rome at the first available opportunity to seek an audience with Pope Benedict XVI. The visit, as Father Seed says, ‘has to be seen as a perk of the job’. While Cherie had followed form at the funeral of John Paul II in April 2005 by wearing a black dress and mantilla, in her short audience with Benedict she flouted protocol and wore white. The correct dress code was black: only Queen Sofia of Spain, Queen Paola of Belgium and Josephine Charlotte, the wife of Grand Duke Jean of Luxemburg, as consorts of Catholic royalty, are entitled to wear white. This was deliberate. She would have known what to wear. Would she appear in court as a recorder in jeans and sweatshirt? Even Elizabeth II wore black when she and Prince Philip met John Paul. There is a kind of very English snobbishness, all too prevalent, that the Pope in Rome or anyone else shouldn’t presume to tell sophisticated lawyers like Cherie Booth what to believe and how to behave. Graham Greene, who would flout the rules even to the point of taking his mistress out to lunch with Father Philip Caraman, his father confessor (who was most upset), had something of the same attitude. It reinforces the notion that Cherie has a very grand idea of herself, but also that Tony supports and sustains her in her delusion. Ann Widdecombe commented, ‘She obviously thinks she is the First Lady. My message to her is that you are not a Catholic queen, my dear, and you never will be.’

It was a long way from those stalwart Catholic women of her Waterloo childhood, gathering in their living room rosary circles to pray together. But Cherie has been determined to keep her Catholic options open, like George Bush, who wooed the seventy-seven million Catholics in the United States by visiting the Pope three times during his first term. But she has kept in too with pro-abortion groups such as Planned Parenthood, and posed before their stand at a Labour conference brandishing a condom. In spring 2006 she delivered a paper at the Vatican Political Academy of Social Sciences, speaking about how children ‘are forced to grow up so quickly…having to take on the responsibilities of adults’ because they were neglected by older people. True in some cases for sure, although the trend in her own country was in rather the opposite direction, with children lamentably slowed down in their educational and maturing process, so that, as a head of department at a major public school observes, pupils of fourteen are five years behind the educational standard of those at a similar age ten years ago. In 2006 Cherie joined the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences as an adviser on social and legal issues.

Tony expressed one of his religious beliefs in the foreword to a pamphlet written by John Smith:

‘Christianity is a very tough religion. It may not always be practised as such. But it is…. It is not utilitarian – though socialism can be explained in those terms. It is judgemental. There is right and wrong. There is good and bad. We all know this, of course, but it has become fashionable to be uncomfortable about such language. But when we look at our world today and how much needs to be done, we should not hesitate to make such judgements. And then follow them with determined action. That would be Christian socialism.’

Latterly, though, it had become hard to know what he thought. He would seem to waver, disappointing those who hoped he would respect the Church authority, especially over contraception. Falling in line with Cherie, in 2006 he attacked the Church over what he called a ‘blanket ban’ on condoms and committed money to spread their use in Africa. The Catholic view is that condoms encourage promiscuity and have therefore only a limited value. To promote condom use is, according to Catholic doctrine, only one degree away from promoting the use of prostitutes, or in other words, using sex as a commodity. Condom use is, however, the soul of the sex industry, which expanded enormously in the UK during Tony’s premiership, and now he endorsed this wholeheartedly. Red-light districts had proliferated in every town centre, with brothels their inner citadels of degradation for prostitutes. A recent example is the town of Ipswich, where in 2006 five such poor women were murdered. Some say the condom culture, or commodity sex, is leading to wholesale population decline: one extreme and even absurd prediction is that by 2900 there will not be a single European left in Europe, but there is truth in the trend. After ten years of the Blairs the UK was judged in a United Nations study to be bottom in the moral league of the twenty-one economically most advanced nations.

Cherie invited Pope Benedict XVI to visit Great Britain in May 2007, twenty-five years after John Paul II visited in 1982. He didn’t of course come, but if he had it could have proved a final example of Tony and Cherie’s ecclesiastical topsy-turvyism. Would they have taken His Holiness to visit Ipswich? In the event, and as a final theatrical flourish in his world tour before departure on 27 June 2007, Tony took Cherie with him to Rome for an audience with Pope Benedict. But this time there would be no Berlusconi to write in the sky with £20,000 worth of fireworks: ‘Viva Tony!’

Garry O’Connor has worked as daily theatre critic for the Financial Times, and as a director for the RSC, before he became a fulltime writer. As novelist, biographer and playwright Garry has published many books on actors, literary figures, religious and political leaders, including Pope John Paul II and the Blairs. He has had plays performed at Edinburgh, Oxford, Ipswich, London and on Radio 4, and contributed dramatised documentaries to Radio 3, scripts and interviews for BBC 1, as well as having his work adapted for a three-part mini-series. The Darlings of Downing Street, from which the above excerpt is taken, is an incisive probe into the Blairs’ tenure of 10 Downing Street and the New Labour project. The Darlings of Downing Street, published by CentreHouse Press, is available on Amazon Kindle and most other ebook platforms.

Labour – The end of the affair

Or, “I really think we need to take a break”.

By Paul Halas

After several months of running on empty I’ve finally decided to leave the Labour Party. It’s a wrench, to put it mildly. For the past few years the party has been very central to my life, occupying much of my time and providing a circle of friends and comrades I value greatly and who’ve broadened my horizon immensely. So leaving the organisation, even if it doesn’t automatically entail losing contact with a host of great people, doesn’t come very easily.

I was one of the Corbyn influx. Up until his accession as party leader I’d never been part of any political organisation, always finding some reason or other not to engage with the process. In the 1970s the true left was too fragmented (and in truth I was probably too stoned much of the time), in the 1980s I couldn’t see beyond my visceral hatred for Margaret Thatcher, in the 1990s none of the Labour leaders ignited any sort of enthusiasm in me and in the Noughties New Labour fulfilled its remit of slyly continuing Thatcher’s neoliberal (a word not in general circulation back then) crusade… God, for a while even Charles Kennedy’s Lib Dems advocated a more radical platform than Blair and co. Fast forward another five years and the advent of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader coincided with my being found surplus to my publisher’s needs as a comic strip writer (in fairness I’d had a pretty good, forty year innings), meaning that not just was there a political leader I truly believed in, I now had the time to devote myself to the cause. Of course I rushed to join.

Image result for photo jeremy corbyn

Corbyn arouses mixed reactions, to say the least. But for me and thousands like me he represented a storm-force blast of fresh air in politics. He had his flaws but he was sincere, he cared, he stood up to the Establishment, he convinced us that even within our tired old parliamentary system we could actually achieve something better – something far better. Until the media concocted an evil narrative against the man he was derisively known at “Saint Jeremy”. Within my local party the influx of Corbynistas received a mixed reception.

Here a tip of the hat to all those who’ve worked for years – decades – within the Labour Party to keep the wheels of society turning and strive for the betterment of all. Leaders have come and gone, but indefatigable Labour councillors and activists have put their all into their roles and we’re far better off for it. I have no doubt the vast majority of them have done far more for their fellow humans than I ever have. Locally, some of them welcomed the newcomers with open arms, others took a dimmer view of all the “entryists”.

I had no experience whatsoever of functioning within any sort of organisation, and had no expectation of “upward mobility” within the local party. Having been a scriptwriter I was useful as a “messager”, writing a stream of press letters and leaflets, and I took to activism like a duck to water. But those newcomers with far greater political and organisational ability than me, who could have made a real contribution in more executive posts in the party, frequently encountered a high degree of resistance. In the local party things were done a certain way and by certain people. The newcomers were useful as activists, fetchers and carriers, but to go any further than that they had to adhere to a very well established template – one that pre-existed the Corbyn phenomenon. And that, in microcosm, appears to encapsulate most of the Labour Party machinery.

While the Labour Party can and frequently does work to improve matters at local level – even under a kamikaze Tory government – the evolution and ethos of the party at national level is of paramount importance, but how often that appears to be ignored at CLP and branch level. For over two decades, and some would say far longer, the Labour Party has adhered to the neoliberal consensus that underpins the economies of much of the developed world. A system that’s been shown to be increasingly dysfunctional, unless you’re a hedge fund manager or oligarch. Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour rejected that path (well, not the PLP and a whole bunch of party workers, as we now know) – and that’s why so many of us loved him… or certainly what he stood for. In a world where everything and everyone is viewed as a commodity, he wanted to put human beings before the sacred market.

He had to go, and he was dealt with.

In the run up to the 2019 general election we campaigned with feverish intensity. For nearly six weeks I helped run a high street Labour stall in all sorts of beastly weather, fielding all sorts beastly comments from a public versed in beastly anti-Corbyn invective by a beastly media. Perhaps our intensity was fuelled by a subconscious foreboding that we were dead men walking, or maybe that’s just hindsight speaking. Certainly we can now look on that time as Corbyn’s last stand, because we knew that if he lost he’d inevitably stand down, and there was no natural successor. The feeling of numbness from that defeat has stayed with me ever since.

In the Labour leadership ballot my vote was unsurprisingly for Rebecca Long Bailey – by default really. For me the other candidates were unthinkable. At the CLP meeting in which our membership chose Keir Starmer by a two thirds majority my post election gloom grew several degrees darker. I didn’t trust Starmer and I didn’t like him. Maybe I could’ve given him the benefit of the doubt – many did and many are now having second thoughts – but I didn’t want to give him the time of day and for once I was right. For all his “forensic” intelligence, I saw him as completely untrustworthy, as often on the dark side as on that of the angels. That probably marked the death knell of my party membership, the intervening time just an agonisingly long farewell.

Going into yet another bout of Starmer-bashing is probably pretty boring by now, so I won’t go too much to town on it. I think anyone still believing he’ll stick to the Labour Party’s ten core pledges is living in Narnia – his “direction of travel” is crystal clear and he has another four years to dilute them further. His conduct over the whole antisemitism issue is deeply dishonest and shameful. The loss of freedom of speech within the party is shameful. The party’s purge of the left isn’t going to stop until the notion of democratic socialism is a whimsical memory. And as if all that ain’t enough, he is deeply and completely enmeshed in “the Establishment”. You don’t have to be a conspiracy nut to realise that no member of the Trilateral Commission – an international neoliberal “think tank” founded by David Rockefeller in 1973 – could ever hold socialist views… and Starmer belongs to that very elite group.

Neoliberalism hasn’t provided any answers for society, but then that was never its aim. Rampant disillusionment with the status quo along with an increasingly meagre trickle of trickle-down is what helped fuel right-wing populism in a host of countries, and a swing back to centrism – underpinned by a continuing adherence to the same old tried and failed economic framework – is only a recipe for more of the same, and in all probability still worse, in the future.

Starmer is desperate to occupy the “centre” ground to boost his much vaunted electability, and he sees ditching the left as his means of achieving that. Quite possibly he’ll win the next general election, although the proposed boundary changes may well jam a spoke in his wheel. But if he wins I don’t believe his new New Labour will provide any answers. The corporate elite will still hold sway, inequality with continue to grow, the environment will continue to be ravaged and resentment will continue to fester – ripe for the unscrupulous with their gruesome easy answers. That’s how fascism takes root.

Plenty of friends and comrades – most – have urged me to stay in the party and fight, but for me the suspension of Jeremy Corbyn was the final straw. Except of course for Starmer that was just another step along the way. My feeling at the moment is that staying and fighting for the soul of the Labour Party while Keir Starmer is leader is like trying to bail out the Titanic with a teaspoon. It’s a painful decision, and I’m aware that for many the idea of leaving the party is unthinkable – like a Catholic choosing excommunication. It’s just a matter of how much one can bear to see the party one has loved move away from its core ideals. George Monbiot recently said the best hope for the left is a populist movement harnessing the same degree of passion and simple messaging that so invigorated the right. It nearly happened in 2017. But I don’t see how that’s going to be repeated while Starmer and the current PLP are in charge (whatever the make-up of the NEC); the powers that be are absolutely determined that no such thing should reoccur. Maybe a mass rebirth of the left will have to take place outside the Labour Party, at least initially. However, if I’m completely wrong and the party veers back to the left I’ll recant my apostasy and happily beg to be re-admitted, pretty please. In the meanwhile, I remain an ardent Corbynista. I’ll be happy to help out with volunteering for this and that (such as leafleting), but I really cannot continue my membership while Keir Starmer leads the party.

A last thought. Would I want to join the Labour Party as it is now? The answer is a definite no.

Paul Halas’s escape from 1970s hippidom was the discovery that he could invent stories. He spent forty years contributing to various Disney magazines and books, as well as a variety of non-Disney comics, books and animated films. His retirement from commercial writing coincided with Jeremy Corbyn becoming the Labour Party leader, which led to five years’ political activism. He left the party two years ago with a heavy heart.

Suspending Jeremy Corbyn is a Declaration of Civil War

Keir Starmer has now alienated the best and the most idealistic people in the Labour Party

By Phil Hall

My daughter has a heart of gold and though she is young she has already worked as the manager of a women’s refuge and in a legal advice centre. She’s about to train as a housing lawyer. I am very proud of her and her brother and sister and I want the best for them. She was inspired by Jeremy Corbyn’s vision of a social democratic Britain, a more socialist Britain, but when Corbyn lost in 2019, despite manning the phones for the Labour Party and going on the stump, she was willing to accept Keir Starmer as a compromise. She convinced me, too:

‘Have you seen McLibel, Starmer gave his time as a young lawyer for free. He saw the case through to the end. He had grey hairs by the time the two litigants lost their case against McDonalds. You know, he had a paralegal working with him who was poor and bought him a suit and books. Starmer is OK. He’s a brilliant lawyer.’

‘I am deeply shocked. I can no longer defend Keir Starmer.’

Yesterday, after Jeremy Corbyn’s suspension from the Labour Party she contacted me and said: ‘I am deeply shocked. I can no longer defend Keir Starmer.’ Keir Starmer has alienated the best and the most idealistic people in the Labour Party, the ones who, had he really being trying to unify the Labour Party and reach a unity compromise, would have supported him.

In January 2020, Labour had 580,000 registered members, the largest membership of any party in Europe. After the near win in 2017 the membership dipped a bit, down to 475,000, but then it rose again. The Labour membership seemed to have accepted Starmer, perhaps for a trial period only. That trial period is over and he should not be hired.

After Jeremy Corbyn’s election the excitement in the Labour Party grew. Hope grew. This enthusiasm was powered by the energy and idealism of a disenfranchised generation of millennials

Let’s look closer at that. Under Blair the membership of the Labour Party was around 200,000. It was a membership that the technocratic, autocratic, right of centre leadership of New Labour did its best to circumvent using the rules of the Party machinery. These rules favoured the votes of MPs and cabinet policy was rubber stamped by an NEC that was neutered, balanced in the favour of the Blairites.

After Jeremy Corbyn’s election the excitement in the Labour Party grew. Hope grew. The membership rose to over 500,000. This enthusiasm was powered by the energy and idealism of a disenfranchised generation of millennials – and enriched and tempered by embittered old lefties like me working mainly in education and public service, who saw a glimmer of light in the darkness.  

The Labour membership seemed to have accepted Starmer, perhaps for a trial period only. That trial period is over and he should not be hired.

Jeremy Corbyn, an upstanding human being, an important representative of the British Labour left and a lifelong socialist, got enough votes from MPs to stand for the leadership – despite the party mechanisms designed to disempower the membership. The MPs who voted for him wanted a balanced choice for leader, including someone to represent the ‘dinosaurs’ on the left. To their surprise and regret, Corbyn won. He won and he won and he won, despite three attempts to oust him.

We hold the centre-right of the Labour party responsible for joining in with the USA’s oil wars and for safeguarding Thatcher’s legacy.

At every turn Jeremy Corbyn won about two thirds of the membership vote. In a time of deepening climate change, a housing crisis, zero hour contracts, disillusion over New Labour’s support for oil wars, tuition fees at all time high it was obvious that a Corbyn premiership would go some way to redressing the imbalance in British society and  that it would allow us to get along peacefully with each other for a little while longer.

And Corbyn won. He won and he won and he won, despite three attempts to oust him.

Historians once praised the British establishment for knowing when to retreat, when to concede. After killing the demonstrators at Peterloo in Manchester it quietly retreated improving conditions and suffrage. After locking up the suffragettes and force feeding them and torturing them it waited a little and then gave women the vote. After huge mobilisations in India it finally understood that it was time to leave. The last British soldier didn’t leave India like the US left Vietnam: with an embassy operative dangling from a helicopter punching a Vietnamese collaborator who tried to get on board. No, the British left India with ceremony.

Historians once praised the British establishment for knowing when to retreat.

But this admiration doesn’t wash for the current buffoons running the British establishment. The current British establishment has shown itself to be less than silver service, less than aware of the pressing need for a rebalancing and for social justice. The establishment’s butler, its Jeeves, is now Keir Starmer.

Starmer is doing his best to please Boris Wooster and his pals, to diffuse the situation and return us to the ‘normality’ of neoliberalism. The British establishment has used the pretext of antisemitism (a deeply hurtful irony) to actually expel the man who caused membership to rise by hundreds of thousands of people making Britain’s Labour Party the largest party in Europe. The centrists and right wingers in the Labour Party like Jess Phillips have ‘stabbed Jeremy from the front’ just as they said they would and in doing so, they have stabbed us all right in the heart.

Starmer is doing his best to please Boris Wooster and his pals, to diffuse the situation and return us to the ‘normality’ of neo-liberalism.

Does the centre right in the Labour Party – who we hold historically responsible for joining in with the USA’s oil wars and for safeguarding Thatcher’s legacy – imagine that all the people who joined Labour to vote for a proper social democracy under Jeremy Corbyn will accept the decision to suspend him?

Does the centre-right imagine that we will say or do nothing and be happy going back to Blairism?

Does the centre-right think the unions that supported Corbyn will accept this action?

Does the centre-right think they can pour oil on the waters and everyone will carry on as normal?

Strangely, Keir Starmer’s Labour decided to suspend Corbyn precisely on the eve of the elections to the NEC. The voting closes on the 12th of November. This is how I voted.

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