Tories ‘rush to smear Labour’ – and get their central, simple number wrong

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Last night, the Conservatives’ Twitter account put out a tweet clearly intended to try to turn Brexit supporters away from the Labour Party:

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The tweet was copied by numerous Tory MPs and functionaries, as well as by bot and sockpuppet accounts – with some adding a more explicit claim that Labour was trying to ‘block Brexit’, such as the lamentable James Cleverley:

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This was completely untrue, as the bill had nothing to do with whether Britain leaves the EU and was about how laws will be applied after Brexit.

Labour had warned they were going to vote against it if it wasn’t amended to protect our human rights – but the Tories defeated the amendment to protect human rights, which says a lot about their ultimate goals post-Brexit.

However, the Tory tweets contained another fake ‘fact’.

Labour MPs voted against the bill – but not 243 of them:


We asked Conservative HQ:

“Your @conservatives Twitter account tweeted last night that 243 Labour MPs had ‘voted to try to block the EU Withdrawal Bill which is essential for a smooth Brexit’.

This is untrue – the number was 241 who voted against the bill, which did not protect human rights.

  • how can UK voters trust the Conservatives to run the country when they are in such a rush to put out a smear that they can’t even get a simple number right?
  • how can UK voters trust a party to run the country that is yet again happy to mislead them?”

Pertinent questions that the Tories did not answer by the time of publication.

A senior Labour source told the SKWAWKBOX:

The Tories’ whole propaganda effort last night was dishonest, but getting the simple number wrong that was central to their claim is just sloppy. Clearly they were in such a rush to smear Labour that they didn’t even do a basic fact check.

That speaks volumes about the Conservatives’ approach to running the country – and we see it in their Brexit negotiations as well, where they’ve been woefully underprepared.

The Tories will no doubt be counting votes by two MPs who are suspended and are therefore not currently Labour MPs. But if so, this displays a no less worrying tendency to play fast and loose with the facts.

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  1. We are now far enough into the negotiations for it to be abundantly clear that the Tories and the EU are so far apart on key issues that no deal between the two parties is possible.

    However, a deal is possible between Labour and the EU.

    Mr Corbyn has stated unequivocally that Labour will honour the referendum result and will deliver Brexit. His sacking of shadow cabinet members who fail to follow the party line is evidence he can be trusted to deliver.

    Mr Corbyn will respect the wishes of both those who won the referendum and those who want the least damaging Brexit outcome.

    That is what scares the divisive and unstableTory party.

    Mr Corbyn unifying the country is their worst nightmare.

    1. I don’t agree with the hard brexit title, but it is worth a read.
      It’s time to accept that the Labour manifesto you voted for promised hard Brexit – New Statesman

      1. Those members and Labour MPs who argue the result should be ignored are effectively advocating in favour of the electoral oblivion of the Labour Party. The Tories would remain in power for at least three further uninterrupted terms if their advice were to be followed.

        The highest priority for not just the Labour party but the country is to remove the Tories from office.

        That can only be achieved by Labour delivering Brexit.

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