Wednesday 13 November 2019


If you've followed Labour's sinister purge and recent selection controversies, you'll probably be aware of the term 'stitch-up'.  Countless constituency parties are up in arms over candidate selections in their areas, primarily that the shortlist has been gerrymandered in order to get the preferred hard left/Momentum candidate selected.  To add to local discontent, in many cases these candidates have been 'parachuted' in from outside the area.  These seats will now be contested by people who have absolutely no links whatsoever with the place in question, some of whom have been dropped in from hundreds of miles away.

While it's quite common for political parties to parachute in candidates, this election has drawn consistent anger over Labour selections north of Watford.  Some of the stitch-ups involve seats where people from London have been selected over local candidates.

When Keith Vaz finally caved in to pressure over his 'rent boys and coke' scandal, many eyes were on who would succeed him in Leicester East.  Given Vaz's almost last minute decision not to stand, the NEC imposed a candidate on the constituency.  Claudia Webbe is an Islington councillor, an ally of Corbyn and an apologist for Ken Livingstone.  Needless to say, Islington is a long way from Leicester and locals are not happy.

An attempt to install an Islington councillor in a safe Liverpool seat was defeated, while a former Camden councillor selected to fight a Nottinghamshire seat was later deselected following 'serious allegations'.

Back in the Midlands there have been two successful London impositions this week.  Two Black Country seats will be contested by councillors from Lambeth.  Eyebrows have been raised in particular at the selection of Lambeth mayor Ibrahim Dogus as the replacement for Tom Watson.  Dogus runs a chain of kebab restaurants in London and sparked controversy earlier this year when he began printing an anti-Brexit message along the bottom of his till receipts.  He is standing in West Bromwich East, a 68% Leave seat.

A couple of months ago we coined the term 'Party of London'.  We weren't wrong.