Labour MP Jess Phillips has put out what PoliticsHome describes as ‘a string of highly-charged tweets’, including one in which she calls for the sacking of, among others, Labour MP Kelvin Hopkins. She also accuses Hopkins of ‘victim blaming’:
Ms Phillips, of course, is no stranger to using her ‘wing of the media’. In the wake of Laura Pidcock’s statement during an interview with this blog that she had no intention of making friends with any Tory MPs, she was quick to publish an article in the Guardian critical of her colleague’s position.
In the same vein, she also featured in the Guardian’s sister publication as part of an ‘odd couples’ article looking at friendships between Tories and Labour parliamentarians.
And last November, she again took to the Guardian to attack Hopkins – who has not been found guilty of anything – claiming that he should not have briefly held a shadow minister’s post, even though the matter had been dealt with by Labour.
Ms Phillips will almost certainly be aware, of course, that Hopkins’ statements in response to the allegations against him were first broken exclusively by the SKWAWKBOX, so it appears that she considers this blog Hopkins’ ‘wing of the media’ – even though the SKWAWKBOX has never had any contact with him.
Of course, Ms Phillips is no friend of this blog, which recently highlighted her decision to attend – as the only Labour MP – a private party thrown by right-wing media baron Rupert Murdoch.
Her allegation of victim-blaming echoes the bizarre attacks by fellow ‘centrist’ MP Stella Creasy on this blog, in which she made the same accusation on Twitter more than once after we published Hopkins’ statements.
But when Ms Creasy was challenged by Twitter users to show what in the articles constituted any form of victim-blaming, she failed to respond with any evidence – despite repeated requests.
But you've not explained or demonstrated specifically what skwarkbox have done. Can you do that please because you're making quite a strong accusation which could deeply affect somebody's livelihood.
— дэ (@hot_diggity_d) November 11, 2017
Of course, there was nothing she could respond with, since Hopkins’ statements did not blame or criticise either complainant and the SKWAWKBOX articles containing the statements made no comment about the legitimacy or otherwise of the allegations.
This afternoon, we made a similar challenge to Ms Phillips by email, asking her to substantiate her allegation with any specific parts of either Mr Hopkins’ statements or the articles that :
So far Ms Phillips has failed to respond at all, let alone provide specific quotes to back up her claim that any victim-blaming – let alone ‘classic victim blaming’ – took place.
Neither has she defended her call for Hopkins’ sacking – as an MP – before the investigation has reached any findings at all.
Kelvin Hopkins was not available for comment. A decision on whether to refer his case to Labour’s National Constitutional Committee is expected next week.
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