Len McCluskey's revelation about the deal with Starmer to lift Corbyn's suspension has forced a response from Starmer's office. It's contradictory, weird & accidentally damning.

Most important: they don't contest any of the direct quotes Len provides.
For example look at this: direct quotes from Starmer, including the admission "He put me in an impossible position and I had no choice."

They don't deny he said it, they just say it doesn't mean what it means. "Labour sources denied those words were tantamount to an admission."
Similarly, Len asked Starmer "if we could reach an agreed form of words that both Jeremy and you, Keir, are happy with, then the suspension could be lifted?" Starmer said "Yes." That's unambiguous. It's an agreement. No denial it was said.
Again, direct quotes from Starmer's chief of staff; an agreement, a deal. No denial it was said.
They daren't deny these things were said, so instead they claim they've been misinterpreted. We're meant to believe they were all just having a chat about what they expected to happen. It was just a coincidence that they were agreeing the text of a statement at the same time.
But this excuse is actually very revealing because if it was Starmer's expectation "based on precedent" that Jeremy's suspension would be lifted, then he knew immediately that Jeremy hadn't done anything to warrant it. So why the hell was he suspended?
And if Starmer expected from the very beginning that Corbyn would be cleared—which is what *he* is now insisting—then how come he withdraw the whip when Corbyn _was_ cleared?

He's got himself tied up in knots. Faced with quotes he can't deny, he has to twist his story to fit.
Unwilling to refute quotes and facts, Starmer's office explains the "disparity" between the stories with a complete red herring: that Corbyn refused to delete his original Facebook statement. But that's got nothing to do with the deal that Len reveals.
The issue of deleting the Facebook post came later, after Corbyn was readmitted by the NEC. Len is describing what happened earlier, in negotiations over the deal. Whether a Facebook post was deleted later isn't relevant to the earlier negotiations. They're shifting the grounds.
But if, on the other hand, Starmer's office is claiming that deleting the statement was part of the deal, then they're admitting there was a deal, despite denying there was a deal in the previous paragraph.

Either way, they haven't got their story straight.
Starmer's team's big retort is: "Len cannot acknowledge that even he could not get Jeremy to apologise or retract his original statement."

The thing is, Len never asked Jeremy to. That wasn't part of the deal. Starmer only demanded an apology *after* the whip was withdrawn.
It's interesting that the demand from Starmer now appears to be that Jeremy must delete his Facebook statement. Previously it was that he must apologise. If the terms keep changing, how can Jeremy ever trust the other side?
Finally, the weirdest claim in Starmer's team's response is that Corbyn was suspended because of the conclusions of the EHRC report.

This is completely new. They've always said he was suspended for his statement in response to the report, not for the content of the report itself
Have they just got mixed up, or did they actually suspend Jeremy for one thing but tell him, and the NEC, it was for another thing?

Why is their line always changing?

It seems they're in a constant state of confusion about what they did and why.

Or they're making it up.
If what they're saying is true (it isn't) and the head of legal and the general secretary decided to suspend Corbyn, why did they bypass the Governance and Legal Unit? If the head of legal knew the EHRC's conclusions, he must have known the report said GLU had to handle it.
The idea "Starmer was in the room at the time" it was decided to suspend a former Labour Leader, but didn't have any involvement, stretches credulity even without knowing he told Len he did it & boasted about it on the radio. What is it they say, "present but not involved"?
So in the blue corner, Starmer's team deny a deal, but their arguments are inconsistent, illogical & anonymous.

In the red corner, Len is on the record saying there was a deal, providing uncontested verbatim quotes & showing Starmer to be dishonest.

Who would you believe?

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More from @alexnunns

11 Sep
The real story of what happened with @JessicaLBarnard yesterday is incredible.

The party said she was sent a notice of investigation “in error”. That was mocked—how do you investigate someone & send them an intimidating letter at 1 am by mistake? But it was actually true. >
True in the sense that it was done completely outside the official processes in what must count as the definition of bringing the party into disrepute.
First, the context: Young Labour is a thorn in the side of the leadership, a left-wing outpost in the party. The leaderhship's plan is to revive Labour Students (traditionally a right-wing part of the party) to displace Young Labour.
Read 18 tweets
10 Sep
The letter sent to Jess reportedly asks if she regrets "posting such comments on Facebok [sic]" when it was Twitter.

Spelling mistakes, errors, sending the email at 1am, the sheer absurdity... I'm hearing there's a story here about someone very senior in Labour HQ going rogue.
If it's true that a senior member of staff with a vendetta went outside all the usual disciplinary processes to do this, isn't that a disciplinary matter itself?
First step to resolve this: Labour must announce the notice was sent to Jess in error and there is no investigation.
Read 4 tweets
10 Sep
After @JessicaLBarnard went public to expose that Labour's leadership and bureaucracy was sabotaging @YoungLabourUK's conference, suddenly she is under investigation on the most obscene and baseless grounds I have ever seen.

They're coming for Jess; she needs our solidarity.
It is an outrage—a pure outrage—that Labour's leadership is blatantly abusing the disciplinary system for a cheap political win. It's directly against the EHRC report but they don't care how it looks, they just want to punish a young working class woman to shut her up. Depraved.
They're so committed to their petty factionalism that they're prepared to intimidate someone for OPPOSING prejudice and abuse, contrary to all their statements and graphics and rules. People talk about things being Orwellian; this is more far fetched.
Read 4 tweets
30 Jul
I remember when the press had real news values & Labour losing a single council seat brought the leader's job into question...

These days that kind of thing just isn't covered. Must be due to budget cuts, right? It can't be political because journalists & editors are objective.
Here's the May 2019 result for the council seat Labour lost last night. As you can see by contrasting the big victory in the ward under Corbyn to the heavy loss under Starmer, Labour must distance itself further from Corbyn if it wants to carry on achieving these kind of results.
It's funny to read the 2017 Guardian story about a lost council seat & see how warped news became in the Corbyn era. You get obligatory wrecking quotes from Jess Phillips & Tom Blockandstrop & that's enough to run with "casts doubt on Corbyn's leadership."
Read 5 tweets
6 Jul
Labour unsuspended Trevor Phillips, its most high profile member investigated for alleged Islamophobia, before the NEC heard the case.

Coincidentally, Trevor Phillips started his job hosting a Sunday morning politics show, interviewing Labour frontbenchers, the following week.
"LabourList has been told that the investigations officer working on the case – the only Muslim staffer in Labour’s governance and legal unit – was not included in the process."
The Labour Party, and the Governance and Legal Unit in particular, can be a brutal place to work, even worse if you're Muslim, working on an Islamophobia case, and suddenly find yourself being bypassed as the person under investigation is unsuspended.
Read 6 tweets
28 Jun
This article is a goldmine of stupidity. The quotes from Labour MPs and officials show a bunch of people flailing around as they drown, unable to understand the situation they're in.

But amid that, it contains useful glimpses of the Labour right's aims. >
It's nice of them to set out the Labour right's big objective: "A big bang change to water down members' hold."

Is that what 56% of members voted for last year? To have less say? To be made powerless?

Which number was that among Keir's 10 pledges?
The justification? "MPs represent millions of voters, whereas party members represent only themselves."

Nah MPs get elected as Labour reps. The idea they're all brilliant individuals whose sheer talent wows voters is quickly disproved by all the quotes from MPs in this article.
Read 12 tweets

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