Ken Wins Election Again Despite Promising to Never StandMore Blairite Purging in Labour's NEC Elections

Victory for the anti-austerity brigade as Labour’s NEC results are published this afternoon:

LIVINGSTONE, Ken 39,548 Elected
BLACK, Ann 36,496 Elected
REEVES, Ellie 31,278 Elected
SHAWCROFT, Christine 29,558 Elected
OSAMOR, Kate 28,484 Elected
BAXTER, Johanna 24,325 Elected
+
McMAHON, Jim 1,894 Elected (Local Gov)
PERRY, Alice 1,510 Elected (Local Gov)

Don’t tell Austin Mitchell, but now five sixths of the CLP representation on the Party’s governing body are now women.

“Left, left, left” says one Labour source. Progress candidate Peter Wheeler has been booted off, to be replaced by Kate Osamor from the ambitiously titled Campaign for Labour Party Democracy. She was elected on a promise to “reject austerity as a solution to the economic crisis.” Apparently, “instead of cuts, we will work for a Labour government committed to a plan for public investment.” Spend, spend, spend!

Joining Ken on NEC will be Ellie Reeves, the sister of Rachel Reeves MP and partner of John Cryer MP. She was endorsed by Unite, Tom Watson and his on/off young girlfriend, Stephanie Peacock. Who you know, not what you know…

Ellie will be in good company. Christine Shawcroft describes herself as being on the “extreme left of the Labour Party”, a CND supporting fan of Hugo Chavez and former Tower Hamlets councillor.  Ann Black said before the ballot “there are further challenges as the economy crawls out of recession. First, Labour needs a …positive alternative to Osborne’s endless austerity”. At least she publishes decent minutes of the meetings.

There is no doubt who the winner is. One seasoned Labour insider tells Guido:

“The NEC results are a shift to the Left with Grassroots Alliance (Left) candidates winning 4 out of the 6 slots. Popular young leftie Kate Osamor replaced the veteran old Right Peter Wheeler while right-wingers Akehurst, Nosegbe and Peel also lost out. The ambitious Johanna Baxter won as an independent and is well placed  to continue her hunt for a seat.”

A further purge of the Blairites at every level of the party.

Given how dismally Labour are represented in the South East, its is rather ironic that all of the CLP representatives live there. As LabourList notes: “only one candidate (Jim McMahon, the leader of Oldham Council and the Labour LGA Group) lives outside London or the South.”  And he’s only there as a councillor.

Perhaps the least surprising result saw Ken Livingstone breaking yet another pledge. In 2012 he promised that the London Mayoral battle would be his ‘last election’. He topped the ballot. It’s pathological…

UPDATE: Just in case you think Guido is overstating the swing to the left, the neo-Bennite Left Futures blog says it represents “a 14% swing to the left from right-wing and independent candidates… It is the best result for the Left since the mid-1980s.” The 80s were when Labour was loony and in permanent opposition…




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Quote of the Day

David Cowling, the BBC’s head of political research, in an internal memo…

“It seems to me that the London bubble has to burst if there is to be any prospect of addressing the issues that have brought us to our current situation. There are many millions of people in the UK who do not enthuse about diversity and do not embrace metropolitan values yet do not consider themselves lesser human beings for all that. Until their values and opinions are acknowledged and respected, rather than ignored and despised, our present discord will persist. Because these discontents run very wide and very deep and the metropolitan political class, confronted by them, seems completely bewildered and at a loss about how to respond (“who are these ghastly people and where do they come from?” doesn’t really hack it). The 2016 EU referendum has witnessed the cashing in of some very bitter bankable grudges but I believe that, throughout this 2016 campaign, Europe has been the shadow not the substance.”

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