MSM claims left panic, little support for Formby for #JenSec. Oh dear

PoliticsHome‘s Kevin Schofield has tweeted an ‘anonymous source’ claim that the left is ‘panicking’ because Unite’s Jennie Formby ‘hasn’t got enough support’ for her candidacy for the position of Labour Party General Secretary. The New Statesman‘s Stephen Bush seemed to agree there was a problem:

schof bush formby.png

When Mr Schofield was challenged on his claim, he defended it:

schof source.png

Fair enough, as far as it goes. Of course, the quality of the source(s) are also relevant. This one seems a little, well, out of touch.

First of all, the source says ‘enough support on the left, never mind the wider party‘. At the last leadership election, Jeremy Corbyn received almost 62% of the vote – including 59% of Labour Party members and higher still among registered supporters and union affiliates:

leader result 2016.jpg

The recent elections for additional NEC members, which the left slate of three candidates won by a country mile over the right, showed that there has been, if anything, a strengthening of the left. Only the one plausibly-independent candidate got anywhere near the winning trio, with the ‘centrists’ Baxter and Josan achieving little more than a third of their votes:


The left is ‘the wider party’.

But that’s small by comparison with the main inaccuracy of the information Schofield received from his source: “Jennie hasn’t got enough support on the left”.

Senior Labour and NEC sources tell the SKWAWKBOX that all the left NEC members have committed to support Jennie Formby, with the exception of a couple who have said they’ll only vote for a left-wing woman – and one who is behind Jon Lansman.

Those committed to Formby include both party and union representatives – including party representatives elected as part of slates backed by Momentum, the organisation founded by Jon Lansman.

In addition, from the ‘wider left’, Ms Formby has the endorsement of:

  • the Labour Representation Committee
  • Red Labour
  • Labour Left
  • JeremyCorbyn4PM

and others, as well as an array of MPs.

It’s not the first time one of Schofield’s sources have been wrong recently on the General Secretary issue. Earlier this week, we contacted him about a claim that Unite, Jennie Formby’s union, was ‘split’ over whether to support her – which had turned out to be untrue. He responded:

That was information I got from a very good, reliable Labour source.

When we pointed out that the good, reliable source had been wrong, he didn’t dispute that the information had been incorrect but retorted:

Are you suggesting that Sqwawkbox [sic] never gets things wrong? Bold.

Which, of course, was neither suggested nor the point of the question.

Whatever the nature of Schofield’s sources, which of course we would never expect him to reveal, it seems that one of them has misled him badly this week about the state of affairs in the contest for the General Secretary position.

We asked Mr Schofield for comment on the latest claim. He responded that he didn’t “have time for this”.

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  1. If Jennie asn’t enough votes what can we say about Lansman? Does someone know about one person who support his bid within the NEC members?

  2. He should write under the name of “Kevin SchoFAILED” and find a new source who is not taking such an advantage of him.

  3. The left has rather played into their hands in the weird, desperate attempt to suppress all other candidates.
    From what I’ve read, Jennie Formby is the ideal candidate, and has support where it matters, and likely will get the job. So trying to rig the selection process by bullying others not to even stand is
    (a) undemocratic
    (b) unnecessary
    (c) a gift to the MSM
    (d) implies that Labour cannot be trusted to select the best candidate for the job.
    All very, very sad.

    1. Nobody has even tried to bully anyone – and Lansman’s not easy to bully even if anyone wanted to

    2. And WHO precisely is “suppressing” other candidates?

      And given that your claim of “bullying” is false, baseless and contrived, then of course no-one is trying to rig anything, and your (a) to (d) false, baseless and contrived also, as is your ‘sadness’.

      And the joke of it is that you right-wing shills really believe you’re so clever that people can’t see right through you, when it’s so glaringly obvious – ie your distorting and misrepresenting and fabricating etc.

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