Rumours are reaching this blog that Shadow Foreign Secretary Emily Thornberry may be preparing to challenge Tom Watson for the deputy Labour leadership.
After the debacle yesterday of Watson’s hypocritical and rather desperate attempt to smear the left of the party – again – and to interfere in the Unite General Secretary contest, Watson’s public credibility has reached a new low.
The twin slap-downs from both Unite and a near-unanimous Shadow Cabinet demonstrate that his political standing is equally tenuous. The ‘hissy-fit’ by part of the PLP (parliamentary Labour party) last night only served to reinforce the impression that Watson is in trouble – when the bankrupt likes of John Spellar, John Cryer, Wes Streeting and Neil Coyle are the best he’s got to defend him, his situation is dire.
Ms Thornberry is a popular and capable politician who has performed well at the Dispatch Box and insiders claim that she can reach the required nomination threshold – the same requirement as for the party leadership – while the evident outrage of the pro-Corbyn majority of members would bode ill for his chances if a contest is triggered.
It must be remembered that these are, as yet, only rumours. albeit rumours that seem to be coming from a lot of directions – but if the challenge does materialise then this blog urges every reader who is a Labour member to give Ms Thornberry wholehearted and full-throated support. The party will be healthier and far more able to fight with Mr Watson, who appears to have forgotten his 2015 campaign promise of full support for the elected leader of the party if he ever meant it, consigned to a dark corner of the back benches.
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