Pete Willsman has now been suspended from the Labour Party after his outburst revealed this morning where he claimed that the Israeli Embassy was fuelling Labour’s anti-Semitism crisis. Labour General Secretary Jennie Formby emailed Labour NEC officers to say:
We have received a number of complaints, including from NEC members, about Peter Willsman’s latest comments, as reported on LBC this morning.
I am writing to let you know that we took the decision earlier this morning to administratively suspend Peter, pending disciplinary action.
Willsman can’t attend NEC meetings while he’s suspended from the party but he’s still officially a member of Labour’s ruling body. What are the chances he ends up straight back on the NEC as soon as his suspension is lifted…
Thoroughly disgraced Labour NEC member Pete Willsman is facing fresh calls to resign after LBC’s Theo Usherwood unveiled a recording of Willsman ranting about the “Israeli Embassy”. Willsman claimed the Israeli embassy had been deliberately whipping up anti-Semitism claims to attack Labour and had “organised” 68 rabbis to complain about “severe” anti-Semitism within Labour. Yet another incident for the EHRC to investigate…
Wes Streeting has called on Willsman to resign and face disciplinary action immediately, warning that “his views have been known and tolerated by those at the top of the Party for too long.” His call has been reinforced by Welsh AM and former Labour NEC member Alun Davies who says he “witnessed it at first hand on the NEC. It is appalling”. Which Blairite will Labour purge next to try to push it off the news cycle?
UPDATE: Several more Labour MPs have joined the calls for Willsman to go, including Owen Smith, Stella Creasy, Margaret Hodge, Kevin Barron and Jess Phillips…
Perhaps the only thing more predictable about a socialist government than brutal crackdowns on civil liberties and economic collapse is the UK’s hard left coming out in solidarity with it. Sure enough, the usual suspects are out in force in the Guardian, with numerous senior Labour MPs including John McDonnell, Diane Abbott, Richard Burgon, Chris Williamson and Clive Lewis co-signing a letter along with Owen Jones condemning the “US attempt at regime change” in Venezuela and instead calling for “dialogue”. Classic…
Never mind the fact that it’s millions of ordinary Venezuelans who are taking to the streets to demand regime change after seeing their lives ruined by the crippling socialist policies of successive dictators Hugo Chavez and Nicolas Maduro – obviously they’re just part of a grand “far right” US conspiracy which must be resisted to keep Maduro in place.
At least they’ve got some renowned moral authorities on their side, the letter was also signed by antisemitism scandal-ridden Pete Willsman and the disgraced Ken Livingstone. When you’re on Ken Livingstone’s side of history you know you’re on the wrong one…
UPDATE: Labour MP Angela Smith has condemned the letter as a “disgrace”, as well as the fact that Baroness Massey’s name was wrongly attached to the letter.
UPDATE II: Labour peer Baroness Massey insists her name was wrongly included in the list. “I disassociate myself from this letter,” she told PoliticsHome, “I know nothing about it. My name is Doreen E Massey and I’ve never heard of this letter – it’s nothing to do with me. They have pursued this in a very unprofessional way. It’s crazy.”
Pete Willsman received a hero’s welcome as he walked into Labour Party HQ today. Signs outside insisted anti-Semitism does not exist in the Labour Party, and claims of it are merely a Blairite Zionist conspiracy. Meanwhile activists shouted about how Jews “don’t suffer economic discrimination.”
Labour will need to do a lot more than just accepting the IHRA definition to clean up the anti-Semitism infesting the party…
The Labour NEC election results are in and all nine Corbynista candidates have been elected, including Pete Willsman who even Momentum, Owen Jones, Ash Sarkar, and Matt Zarb-Cousin withdrew support for over his rant about the anti-Semitism crisis being faked by Jewish Trump supporters. Willsman has been accused of behaving inappropriately towards young female activists.
The nine candidates elected include Momentum Chair Jon Lansman, who reportedly voted for Pete Willsman despite hearing his rant.
The Labour membership is now more in the pocket of the likes of Chris Williamson than Owen Jones…
Oh, and Eddie Izzard loses, again.
Scandal-hit Pete Willsman repeatedly made inappropriate comments to young women on Labour’s NEC, according to four witnesses who were present. The witnesses all say that, during a meeting of the NEC in 2016, Willsman bragged that he uses his relationship with Jeremy Corbyn to get close to young women. The four witnesses say that Willsman, in front of the whole NEC, boasted that he chats up women by telling them he is friends with Corbyn. “He was arguing that it showed how popular Jeremy is that he could successfully chat up women by saying that he was his friend,” says a source who witnessed the comments. The witnesses say that Willsman told the room that he has a “three yard rule” about how close he can get to women while chatting them up.
In front of the entire NEC, Willsman then asked the young female members present if they would go clubbing with him. Four witnesses say he asked one young female member of Labour’s NEC if she twerks when she goes clubbing. The witnesses say that Willsman boasted that other women like to twerk on him.
At this point, the then Labour chief whip Rosie Winterton, interrupted Willsman and admonished him. Winterton told Willsman: “I think that is really inappropriate and out of order. I think you should apologise”.
Several female members of the NEC complained informally to the then Labour general secretary Iain McNicol about Willsman’s conduct after the meeting. One woman present tells Guido Willsman’s behaviour was “shocking”.
All four witnesses to this incident tell Guido that it was not a one off, and that Willsman routinely makes similar comments to young women in the Labour Party. Guido is told Willsman has also repeatedly sided with the accused in sexual harassment cases. One NEC source says he sided with the accused in once case because he was a “good guy”. A second NEC source says he described the accused as a “good comrade”.
Willsman declined multiple opportunities to comment by phone and email both today and yesterday.
Willsman retains the support of the Labour leadership after his rant against Jews that provoked this week’s anti-Semitism furore. Why is this person still on Labour’s NEC?