Centrist MP Jess Phillips was reportedly a lot less than happy as Birmingham Yardely CLP (constituency Labour party) held its annual general meeting (AGM) to elect its officers for the next year.
In a fractious three-hour meeting – starting 10am on Saturday – attended by 92 members eligible to vote, the left candidates took all the positions contested – three key positions of Chair, Secretary and deputy Chair. That the election of just three officers took three hours – the meeting then had to then be adjourned as the room was only booked for that period – speaks volumes.
Of the three positions elected, only that of Chair saw the full ninety-two votes cast, with the left candidate winning by sixty votes to thirty-two.
Presumably seeing the writing on the wall, a number of members left at that point – including Ms Phillips. The deputy’s position was subsequently won by forty-seven to thirty-nine and the Secretary’s by fifty-two to thirty-three.
The defeated CLP secretary is an employee of Jess Phillips and the defeated deputy Chair is a councillor described as a ‘Phillips stalwart’. The former Chair did not stand, so the contest was between right- and left-wing challengers. Ms Phillips was reportedly among those ringing round and knocking doors to try to get out the centrist vote for the AGM.
Interestingly, the day before the AGM Ms Phillips proudly tweeted a card from a ‘constituent and a member’ saying ‘I f***ing love you’, before making what might become a famous comment when discussing the risk of deselections:
The SKWAWKBOX contacted Jess Phillips to ask about her reported unhappiness and received the following response:
Total lies as per usual. I wasn’t happy with one bloke shouting at a disabled woman otherwise I was fine.
Yardley members have denied anyone shouted at a disabled woman.
Asked why she left early – around 11.50am after only the Chair’s position had been filled – Ms Phillips did not respond before publication. However, she did appear at the ‘Women, Power, Protest‘ exhibition that afternoon, which started at 1.30pm at the Waterhall, a 20-30 minute drive from the AGM venue at South Yardley library.
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