Labour leadership contest ‘will be close’: Theo urges Gospel Oak members to reject Corbyn

LABOUR Party members in Gospel Oak are today receiving a personal message urging them to vote for Owen Smith from one of their ward councillors. Theo Blackwell, the council’s finance chief, has railed against what he sees as a Jeremy Corbyn cult in recent weeks, so perhaps the content is of little surprise. He’s been around too long to worry about those words in the wind about deselection for local politicians who refuse to stand behind the Labour leader.

Both CLPs in Camden have nominated Corbyn to stay as leader, but Smith supporters believe they have charted some degree of wavering among those upset by the Brexit vote in June. Nearly 200 people voting for Smith at this month’s nomination meeting at St Pancras Church was not seen as a disaster, for example, and there is a belief that some minds are still yet to be made up.

“Jeremy’s changed changed the discourse, now we need someone to deliver a distinctive left wing agenda whilst carrying the party and the PLP together,” Theo writes. “Owen Smith will bring the passion people have for Labour politics into action: building an effective team across the country to speak for our values. He gives us the best chance to rebuild and the best chance to make a difference, which is what our Party was created to do in the first place.”

You don’t even have to call the other side to know they will treat all of this as the views of somebody who vouched for last-placed Liz Kendall in last summer’s leadership contest, a position which has been cast this time around as being out of step with the wider membership. His letter, however, follows similar pleas to members from Keir Starmer, Frank Dobson, Sarah Hayward and others to side with their challenger.,

Theo adds: “Many of the demands for greater debate and say in democracy are well made and part of our great Labour traditions. But we need practical policies to extend democracy to the people — like proportional representation, House of Lords reform, proper decentralisation of power to regions and cities- and little has advanced since the last leadership election. I do hope whoever the victor is in this two horse race  —  it will be close —  will recognise the need to draw into the fold those that felt they couldn’t support the winning candidate.”



9 Comments on Labour leadership contest ‘will be close’: Theo urges Gospel Oak members to reject Corbyn

  1. Bridget Dunne // August 22, 2016 at 1:08 pm //

    No surprises there from the Progress councillor then.

  2. Terence Flanagan // August 22, 2016 at 4:31 pm //

    If Gosper Oak need to reject someone surely it should be Theo Blackwell recently identified as a Quisling by a Trot !

  3. alan watson // August 25, 2016 at 7:08 pm //

    ‘But we need practical policies to extend democracy to the people – ‘

    It shows the councillor’s way of thinking. How patronising, how arrogant, how elitist. The good people of Gospel Oak should extend their democracy by kicking this backward snob out of office.

  4. Gemma Jeffreys // August 26, 2016 at 12:03 am //

    Just shows how he and a lot of the Camden councillor’s are out of touch including my MP Mr Starmer!

  5. Terence Flanagan // August 26, 2016 at 9:36 am //

    Gemma your MP is a “Sir” surely that says it all ?

  6. Excellent examples of Jeremy Corbyn’s new politics on show here..

    • Alan Watson // August 29, 2016 at 1:02 pm //

      The really good thing that Camden Council do is smearing any dissident criticism, especially if it comes from ordinary working Londoners – that are held in contempt, rather than responding with reasoned argument. Disagree with Mr Blackwell or Camden Council you are labelled as any number of extremist views. What is more sinister is the implication that because you are from a low income background that you are sexist, racist etc. I know who the prejudice really are Mr Blackwell.

      Can you answer, in a reasoned manner the charge that you and Camden Council are patronising, arrogant and elitist?

      • Not actually sure what you are taking exception to & you seem to be putting words in my mouth.

        The proposal in my piece is more democracy.

        Are you disagreeing that it’s me saying it or the actual ideas?

  7. dont hold yer breath Alan waiting for a polite reasonable reply from this pompous buffoon!

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