Second Sandwell councillor faces potential expulsion for supporting anti-Labour candidate

Bill Cherrington admits comment supporting David Hosell, who fought against Labour as independent candidate earlier this month
Princes End Ward councillor Bill Cherrington

Last week, the SKWAWKBOX revealed the expulsion from the Labour Party of Caroline White, a Sandwell councillor who had campaigned for independent candidates David and Shirley Hosell during the recent local elections.

The Hosells had left Labour to stand as independents against the party’s candidates. Neither was successful. Cllr White was captured on video and audio campaigning with Mr Hosell for his wife.

Now a second Labour councillor faces potential expulsion from the party, after also publicly expressing support for David Hosell’s campaign. Mr Hosell, who together with his wife quit the party after being deselected by Labour’s National Executive Committee, launched his campaign logo – in a red almost identical to Labour’s – and posted an image to his Facebook page.

Councillor Cherrington posted a clearly supportive message in response:

Hosell, an ally of Labour deputy leader and local MP Tom Watson, clearly recognising that this contravened Labour’s rules, responded with a warning: “be careful bill [sic]. I don’t want you deselected.”

Cllr Cherrington saw the response – and even ‘liked’ it – but had not deleted it as of 7.55pm this evening:

The SKWAWKBOX contacted Cllr Cherrington. He at first claimed he did not remember making any comment to David Hosell, but then admitted it and said “I’ve known Dave for some years. Why shouldn’t I?”

When the SKWAWKBOX pointed out that Labour’s rules about support for a rival candidate an automatic expulsion offence, the line went dead.

A second call was made, to ensure that the councillor had not simply lost the line. A clearly upset Cherrington shouted “Stop harassing me, just go away!”

Labour’s rulebook, section 2.4B, states that:

B. A member of the Party who joins and/ or supports a political organisation other than an official Labour group or other unit of the
Party, or supports any candidate who stands against an official Labour candidate, or publicly declares their intent to stand against a Labour candidate, shall automatically be ineligible to be or remain a Party member

If the Labour Party considers that Cllr Cherrington’s public Facebook comment constitutes support for a rival candidate, it is likely to act very swiftly.

The SKWAWKBOX understands that at least one further councillor may face action for similar support.

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  1. Tony Blair seems to have developed the technique of keeping the attacks on your own side as general and additionally any support for opponents as being collective opponents. Smart technique for achieving the same outcome. I believe this comes with some training by those attaching support to Watson. Although Campbell from a slightly different tradition also seems to acquired this skill.

    Whilst generally not favouring PR electoral systems, I can see one advantage of this D’Hondt European election system that combines a single vote by the voter (i.e no Lib Dems or Green required second vote) with a Party list system. So if we cannot in the future restore ‘electoral’ discipline (looking most likely to me), such a list seems at least to have shown (temporary) success in bringing Adonis partially into line. This could also secure or at least some constraint in their behaviour over time.

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