Excl: green light for triggers as Labour NEC lowers bar further

Number of branches needed to trigger selection could be lower for some CLPs
Green light to turn left? NEC lowers ‘trigger’ bar

Labour members eager for the opportunity to choose a new parliamentary representative now have a green light to start the ‘trigger‘ process – and some will face a lower hurdle to successfully force a full selection contest, after the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) agreed a change to the application of the ‘one in three branches’ trigger threshold.

A document being circulated by the NEC to constituency party secretaries outlines the process for fixing a timetable – a process that can begin immediately and which forbids the participation of any sitting MPs seeking re-election:

PROCEDURAL GUIDELINES
1 Drawing up a timetable
1.1 Each Regional Executive Committee (REC) will appoint an NEC Representative, who shall usually be a member of the REC, to act on behalf of the NEC in liaison with each CLP in the Region. Names of NEC Representatives shall be made available to members of the NEC and disputes shall be referred to the NEC. The NEC Representative will meet with the CLP Executive Committee (EC), or General Meeting (GM) if no EC is in place, to draw up a timetable for the ballot and agree a Procedures Secretary with the CLP; this could be the CLP Secretary or another officer. The Procedures Secretary will carry out all secretarial duties required during the procedure. The Procedures Secretary must not be employed by or act as election agent to the Member of Parliament seeking re-selection. A sitting Member of Parliament seeking to be re-selected, must not attend the part of any meetings within these procedures at which the CLP/branch is to or may discuss the selection.

1.2 The NEC will nominate a Procedures Secretary when it is necessary because of local circumstances.

2 Freeze Date for Individual Members
2.1 The “Freeze Date” for each CLP will be the date at which the NEC Representative meets with the Executive Committee (or General Meeting if no Executive Committee is in place) to draw up a timetable. Where the NEC determines there are special circumstances, or when there is an unforeseen delay to the commencement of the process, an earlier freeze date may be fixed by the NEC.

3 Organisations entitled to take part

3.1 The affiliated organisations entitled to return a ballot will be those that were affiliated to the CLP as at 31 December of the previous year and had paid their affiliation fee for that year at least 35 days prior to the closing date for the return of ballots. Immediately after the first meeting of the CLP EC or GM with the NEC Representative, the Procedures Secretary will publish a list of organisations affiliated to the CLP as at 31 December of the previous year and will contact any whose affiliation fees for that year have not been received to remind them of the
deadline for receipt of payment. Any dispute as to the eligibility of an affiliate to return a ballot shall be referred for determination to the NEC Representative.

3.2 The Labour Party branches entitled to take part in the trigger ballot process are those in existence at the freeze date.

The SKWAWKBOX has established that branches ‘in existence at the freeze date’ means the same ward-based groups that would meet to select council candidates, even if the groups do not routinely meet as branches.

In addition, a key chance agreed by the NEC’s ‘organisational subcommittee’ this week means that the bar has been lowered. In Labour’s new trigger rules, one in three member branches must vote for a selection contest in order to ‘trigger’ one.

However, the total from which ‘one in three’ will be calculated will be of those branches participating in the vote‘, not of all branches in the CLP. Moribund branches therefore cannot be used by supporters of MPs hoping to avoid a selection contest to raise the bar.

For example, if a CLP with, say, seven branches are eligible to vote but in which only six actually meet and vote, the requirement to trigger would be two branches (one third of the six).

If you are a Labour member, contact your CLP secretary to ensure that s/he is promptly in contact with regional Labour representatives to make the necessary arrangements.

The full procedures document can be downloaded here.

SKWAWKBOX view:

Labour members have a historic opportunity to shape the parliamentary Labour party in line with its left membership – but also need to organise to defend good MPs. Get organising.

The SKWAWKBOX needs your support. This blog is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal or here for a monthly donation via GoCardless. Thanks for your solidarity so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.

If you wish to reblog this post for non-commercial use, you are welcome to do so – see here for more.

66 responses to “Excl: green light for triggers as Labour NEC lowers bar further

  1. You need a certain type of clever brain for this sort of thing. I once had such a brain but the years have worn it away.

    Anyway, sounds a good move

    • Bay I never had a brain capable of working out this jokers riddle and the laughs on us……Not fit for purpose and I do not appreciate the jokes on the membership trying to implement it.. More right wing mind games?

  2. Steve it says when calculating the 1/3 of branches that you level up to nearest whole numbers, there is a calculation 7 branches need 3 to call for reselection 10 = 4 but the nearest whole nunbers are 6 and 9 respectively which should read 2 and 3 branches or have I read that wrng?

    • Meant to be complicated and thats why they came up with it…..Life of brian judean popular front……Comedy THE larfs on us!

    • tcliverpool. One third of 7 = 2.33etc therefore nearest whole number up is 3.

      Likewise, one third of 10 = 3.33etc nearest whole number up is 4.

      • The nearest whole number to 2.33 is 2, likewise the nearest whole number to 3.33 is 3. This was and always has been the case when calculating to nearest whole number.

      • Typical of the NEC, turning basic mathematics on it’s head.

      • “Under current Rules, CLPs will proceed to a full selection should one third or more of Labour Party branches who indicate a preference, or one third or more of affiliated
        branches indicate they wish a selection to take place.”

        No confusion there – one third or more of either branches or affiliated branches couldn’t be plainer.

        Whether it means what it says is another thing entirely.
        Take 7 branches and 7 affiliate branches. As written it means 3 affiliates for can trigger selection against the combined wishes of 7 branches+4 affiliates against – so – whoopee maybe.

      • I do realise that Jack T but why on earth did it not go to the nearest multiple of three? rather than the next multiple
        up.

      • We will be lucky to expel anyone,and each branch will require a mathematician to ensure the legality.. Only the NEC in consultation with governence could have dreamt up this minfield to be challenged of course by anyone deselected…….You couldn’t make it up?.. Democracy now!

  3. We have four branches in our CLP. So I’m assuming we won’t get away with just one branch voting for trigger ballot. But at least now is the time to come together and get these useless MP’s out of their privileged positions.

  4. The process would have been much easier, fairer and more transparent using mandatory re-selection and OMOV.

    • Yes my thoughts also SteveH but thanks to certain miscreants we are at present at least , stuck with this farce . I live in hope that sooner rather than later the motions for mandatory selection will be bought back to Conf and ratified

    • I won’t expect any movement from my local Wallasey CLP, despite Angela Eagle unfairly suspending them for 18 months via fakery, flying bricks, a pack of lies and trial by media.

      Why? Because they’ve adopted a dunderheaded “softly-softly” approach that pays undeserved, undue deference to their attacker and has no hope of shifting her squatting bulk before 2032, never mind any snap election coming soon. So my vote has been jettisoned along with thousands more.

      They’ve also blocked me on Twitter because, opting to promote a fake “clean reputation” they’ve fallen into step with the hard right.

      I bring awkward truths to the table about unaddressed power abuse, corruption and #racism. And such conduct simply won’t do.

      Shame.

      • Wirrelinit well I feel sorry that you are infected with Labour party members who do not have the guts to do the job of ridding the Labour party of a serial offender that could help to finish Corbyn and the Socalist Labour party off..You will be one of many that have no guts and would like to runaway and hide….So ..sorry,what a waste?

      • Wirrelinitogether…………. When Wirral was suspended for made up lies and innuendo,most thought that the carreer of eagle was over!What has happened in between then and now to protect eagle from deselection,because if we cannot get rid of her then it puts a big?question over the whole complicated procedure. It is clear you have opposition amongst the membership but surely your membership would want to get rid it can’t all be because they are frightened of the eagle supporters…..So what’s happening?

      • Nor me, Paul.

        I’d been hearing snippets of useful info from a certain ‘high-ranking’ Wirral…sorry, Wallasey labour member (<<clue there) and friend of paul davies about the possible deselection of (ill)eagle.

        Except I've heard nothing for the last few weeks now. The masquerade (which I'd never bought into anyway) that this person was 'of the left' was as convincing as John Wayne's Kublai Khan (Never knew Khan was a yank!) although in fairness, it's difficult to get in touch with the 'source' when they're in perhaps the highest ranking job outside of being an MP in Wirral (Another clue).

        It appears I've allowed meself to be strung along, to my detriment. I can't see (ill)eagle being given the boot, despite the murmurings (and it looks like that's ALL they are) of malcontent.

        Like yourself I have very little (i.e. NO) faith in Wallasey CLP as it stands. The main factor why I wouldn't rejoin the party is because I'd be surrounded by the same maggots who infested the party when I left it.

        No thanks.

  5. I am sure the right wing will be having a larf at this so called rule change The clowns that came up with this over complicated idea should be ashamed?. Democracy now not insults!

    • Oh Dear, some of your language to each other ain’t too kind, is this what they have done to us?
      Once read an interesting piece where an activist gave a history of Wallesey and argued locals had wanted a local Leftie but the Blairites kept him out. Then the local activist claimed at the ‘selection’ of AE a majority voted No but an official did not report this to meeting (according to this source)?
      Once wrote a poem re AE’s failed bid to lead Labour (she withdrew).
      (The Hawk is Eagle the Canary is Labour members):
      ‘The Hawk on the Canary landed.
      Playing the Chameleon’s part.
      And whispered, “I come to heal you.”
      But failed to remove the heart.
      Then the Canary turned back into a Lion.”

  6. I think Labour MP’s should have individual websites standardised by and monitored by the Party, but open to public comment so they don’t have to guess at and can’t bullshit on local or wider public opinion on issues – or on their performance as MP’s.
    Their personal control of the site should be limited to that of a frontline moderator – adding news, events, positions on policy, discussion and so on.
    Removing offensive comments too but no permanent delete rights.

    A CLP Member area with log in – and ongoing up/down-voting on satisfaction levels and on current issues – would keep the MP up to date on CLP opinion and whether/what changes in her/his behaviour, voting or performance might be necessary to retain the seat.
    It’d make it harder to be incompetent and impossible to be a Quisling I think.

    • Correct david,but I would pefer them chiped with an incision in the neck so we could track what the buggers get up to!…I wouldn’t trust Benn with my cat!

  7. It Will be interesting to see who the first mp is to challenge their deselection and the reasons ? …….I hope it all works but the procedure is long winded and open to misuse and will eventually have to be replaced……farcical NEC…will help the traitors save their necks and enforce draconian expulsion by a bunch of right wing fanatics!

  8. The bottom line is that until the NEC becomes more generally representative and open (and also savy), nothing much changes.

    • RH…very true but my times running out and I suspect it is for Jeremy Corbyn……its now or never…..so the song goes….showing my age!

  9. Chuka Umunna has stated that a “sizeable minority” of Labour MPs have said to him they will prevent a Corbyn government by opting for a government of national unity under a new leader ( him presumably).
    While I don’t think they will succeed and while I would question what makes a sizeable minority it is vitally important that we realise the further damage even 20 Labour in Name Only MPs can do to us in the event of a hung parliament in which we are the largest party or one in which we have only a small majority.
    They could completely tie our hands and could dictate our every move, eventually making their support conditional on a change of leadership including top cabinet posts.
    We cannot allow this to happen and we must get on with the deselection process now. The new rules will not make it as easy as we would have liked but we have do our utmost to prevent being potentially held to ransom by “Labour” MPs whose behaviour is destructive and incompatible with our Labour values and roots.

    • We the Labour party are going almost certainly,to be defending our deselection rules and regulations in the courts and that is down to the NEC and the leadership!We’ve had enough time and now are subscription will be used for lining the pockets of the men in wigs and gowns,and of course women in wigs and gowns!.We should have been ready but we didnt take our chance and now what?… We tried!

      • Joseph
        Plenty of time to see JC over the line and the destruction of the cheap and nasty Tory party, been a long time coming,
        Sit back and enjoy

      • On what grounds do you think a Labour MP who failed to be re selected could take action?
        Up and down the country people in all parties put themselves forward but only one candidate per political party is chosen in each constituency. Those not chosen as PPCs have no legal redress provided the selection process, which may vary between political parties, was properly followed.
        As long as we act fairly and within the rules we need have no worries about legal challenges. Deselecting an unsatisfactory or under performing MP is called exercising your democratic right.

      • Absolutely, smartboy. We have enough problems without over-doing the paranoia.

    • Smart boy…..The new leader would be Bomber Benn,torys love him!I wish it was only 20or so mps that would support anyone but corbyn.looking at the first chicken coup and now the last few months,we would be lucky to get a third of PLP to support corbyn,We are now relying on deselection to get a more even balance and thats a bit of a wing and a prayer unless we come out fighting at the conference and publicly denounce the traitors….My ambitions for a Labour government have been a reality check that we didn’t act against the traitors Quickly enough and never showed them the anger and passion to destroy the right wing infiltrators.We have been too apologetic on many occasions not just AS.Chris Williamson will be the deciding point for me on whether we sink or swim…phone ☎ governance and email them,don’t let the NCC destroy any more comrades….smartboy….phone them and let them know we are watching and we are the Labour party!

  10. Some good news

    Nav Mishra, a Momentum-backed member of Labour’s national executive committee, has won the Stockport parliamentary selection race by a significant margin.

      • Maybe so, but he appears to have attracted a wide range of support so hopefully things will be OK.

        Nav Mishra is an NEC member, who lives in the constituency, was backed by nine trade unions including Unite and Unison, and nominated by five party branches. Several shadow cabinet members backed him, including local frontbencher Angela Rayner and John McDonnell who made a supportive video.
        https://twitter.com/NavPMishra/status/1150710862140903424

      • Not even sure if being union backed is anything to go by. Wasn’t it the union vote which lost us Open Selection?

  11. Watson’ will soon be climbing from under the rock he’s been hiding in Jeffery Epstein found dead in is cell,accused of child sex trafficking and abuse of under age girls?,So what? Well it seems their is a connection to the Westminster elite through Prince Andrew and the beans were to be spillt,in a plea bargain?… ..now we shall never know ,after being beaten in his cell last month,it seems he killed himself. We have no knowledge of who beat him unconscious last month… Looks like Tom will have to climb back under a rock again.. .Epstein waited and committed suicide yesterday.. ..Corrupt and evil,but a shame that he could not get to testify…. Amazing luck for the Westminster paedophile ring?

  12. Great news!The Quakers are standing up to threats of violence by the right wing infiltrators and thugs that have so far managed to intimidate the Holiday inn at Brighton and forced Chris Williamson onto the streets.I really am absolutely impressed by the courage that they are famous for!Brighton police are investigating the threats and hopefully they don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to trace the suspect’s.We all know where this came from,inside job and bankrolled by a foreign government agency…

    • The Quakers in Brighton apparently didn’t stand up to the thugs. They should have allowed the meeting to go ahead and called the police for assistance. It’s what my local Quaker Meeting House does in this situation.

      • We don’t know all the facts Jack,but whatever they have allowed Chris Williamson and his campaigning to draw out the people behind the scenes who have orchestrated a lot of the trouble inside the Labour party.We need the police to follow the evidence and the local knowledge of the Chris Williamson supporters in Brighton who know the people behind this intimidation and thuggery?… … And just a thought on the Quakers,Maybe they have a duty of care to their staff,and will the Evening Argus run a story about the intimidation…..A lot of prominent people are involved here according to my Jewish wife born and bred in Brighton,and we lived there for a no of years,but I have lost touch locally but know enough to be sure we have some very nasty characters inside Brighton Labour!

      • Easy to say, Jack. But remember a couple of things – firstly, that the Quakers have come out in support of boycotting West Bank settler goods, and have supported the right of people to pursue a wider BDS.

        Secondly – a threatened attack on a Quaker meeting house is prima facie evidence of the viscious and violent nature of the Israel lobby – great confirmation of what we’re saying.

        However, I’m not naive about proper press coverage – cf. the Conference incident last year.

      • RH, yes easy to say but I was aware of the possible repercussions to the Quaker Meeting House when I made my comment, which was why I said the police should have been involved. It’s the job of the police to protect the public and if threats had been made against the Quakers the police should have been present at the meeting.

        If it was good enough for Luciana Berger to be given police protection for her journey to the Labour conference last year, it should have been equally available to the Meeting House.

        If meetings such as that by Chris Williamson can be called off because of threats, the thugs have won. As Chris is demonstrating, we cannot appease bullies otherwise where will it end?

  13. Ps…..Time some on here got on the blower to HQ and support Chris Williamson and ask why we are having a witchhunt against one brave man……whilst others.are allowed to bring the party into disrepute.Tell them we the membership are becoming increasingly angry and their will be repercussions if Chris Williamson is thrown out!.Name the traitors and don’t be intimidated by the standard replys I telephoned nearly every single day and probably became a nuisance,,but keep up the pressure comrades !

    • Joseph – Don’t you recognise the Catch-22?

      Complain about Watson trying to get his sticky fingers into the disciplinary process – but then do precisely the same?

      Nobody here is going to argue that the whole affair is other than a set-up – but complaining down a telephone line to a disciplinary structure that isn’t fit for purpose isn’t going to have any effect on that disciplinary procedure that isn’t fit for purpose. It’s circular.

      The root of the problem is much deeper.

      • RH…..you could be right,but remember all conversations are recorded and the more people phone ☎ and comment to the blatant fit up and driving a coach and horses through their very own system by vaz the better!Any action noted and recorded must have an effect…..even at the risk of expulsion of myself it will be worth it……Try it RH……and at least you will have tried,otherwise Whats the point if we do nothing?

  14. P.S. Re my comment above.

    Has anyone come across any MSM reporting of the threats against the Chris Williamson meetings?

    • Deathly silence……Ivor caplyn and kyle well connected and active in the community!….they have lots of influence…..?

      • Ivor caplin,not my misspelling…..Inspector knacker should not have to look too hard to source the violent threats,,motive and opportunity from a very dangerous and abrasive person.Met him once at a dinner in Brighton…fell out with him ten minutes after meeting him and creepy jack straw…..peter kyle again a very dangerous influence in the Brighton right wing……

  15. Ivor caplin…..former mp Hove, ….his company advises foreign government s…. Chair of Jewish Labour movement,active in getting Chris Williamson silenced,and many other comrades,always voted for bombing anything that moves and of course welfare cuts,Same as his pal Peter Kyle mp for Hove…..runs a little fiefdom Brighton councillors and have an organized supporters network across all of Brighton and hove including business and the police…. So good luck for justice?

  16. SQuawk box……Thanks for the reports and chase up of the hotel and Quakers,….You do more for Chris Williamson than the whole of the PLP.Just one criticism?The people going after Chris Williamson are not opponents!They are no more opponents than the man that murdered jo cox……They are criminals and some being paid to destroy socialism and specifically Chris Williamson… and I believe that the people behind them are the Israeli apartheid regime… and we all know what they are capable of!..Chris needs to be protected from violence and its our duty to help stop the witch Hunt,are hold our heads in shame!

  17. Jack.. Power to you for standing up to be counted!Its times like 👍 this that true socialist should stand shoulder to shoulder and fight back.

  18. CF You would need 2 of your branches or 1
    branch and one third of affiliated organisations for a trigger ballot.

    • Bazza, the rule I copied and pasted further up the page says it’s EITHER a third of branches OR a third of affiliates, not a third of branches PLUS a third of affiliates.
      I may be wrong about the intent of the new rule but the wording is clear.

  19. BBC news online:
    “Many rumours have centred on what politicians may have known about Epstein’s alleged crimes and whether some may have wanted him dead. There is absolutely no evidence to suggest this was the case.”
    Somewhat premature to be quite so dogmatic about an as-yet unexplained death – on the other side of the Atlantic – surely?

    Stark contrast to the complete news blackout on the terrorist threats against Chris Williamson.

    “@willuminare” clearly hasn’t had the advantage of attending the BBC training course “How To Do 1984”

    • BBC can always find time and space to publicise twatson’s bile though – this time “voicing indyref2 opposition” – deliberately to contradict and undermine McDonnell.

    • The canary are reporting that the Brighthe!I’m centre was cancelled by Peter Kyle mp right wing infiltrator for hove.Thats 3 then!Will the police interview kyle and his pal ivor caplin?. . What will the response from HQ be. …..ERR….Have we got a rule on threats of violence?…can we blame Chris Williamson?………

  20. Rule Change Motions
    Implement the reformed trigger ballot!
    https://www.labour-open-selection.org.uk/implement_the_reformed_trigger_ballot
    “This branch/CLP believes:
    Labour members have a democratic right to select their parliamentary candidates.
    For these rights to be abrogated for two general elections in a row would mean many Labour members have had no say in the selection of their parliamentary candidates since 2015. This would leave an indefensible democratic deficit that the NEC must take emergency measures to prevent.
    We, therefore, call on the NEC to:

    To amend its selection timetable as foreseen under Chapter 5.IV.1 of the Labour Rulebook by:
    Instructing CLPs with sitting MPs who wish to stand again to complete all trigger ballots by 31 October 2019.
    Beginning all CLP selection processes automatically within one week of any trigger ballot threshold being reached, and by 1 October 2019 if this threshold has already been reached.
    To complete rather than abandon all ongoing selections in the event of a snap election, by bringing forward the selections timetable under the powers granted under Chapter 5.IV.10 & 12 of the rulebook.”

  21. What has the Labour party become when one Labour mp kyle runs round Brighton cancelling venues booked for a democratic socialist Labour party meeting and another ex mp ivor caplin JLM chairman follows up with with threats to hotels venues etc with violence against staff etc if they do not comply.Time for a democratic rethink of the whole expulsion fiasco by the NEC and the NEC hearings.The perpetrators of the AS charges against loyal democratic socialist Labour party members have been caught bang to rights by Chris Williamson and their is already a police inquiry……over to the membership!

  22. PS.. I n veiw of the keith vaz medication fiasco .We should have all members of the NCC and NEC tested before sitting in judgment for drug or drink 🍸 abuse.Also to avoid bias all members of affiliate outside body’s such as JLM IF I Coop party momentum and other obscure attachments must be looked at with scepticism. How much longer will we have to endure ludicrous judgments from the un judged

  23. https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/asa-winstanley/chris-williamson-sues-over-unlawful-labour-suspension
    “Socialist member of Parliament Chris Williamson has begun a legal action against Labour for its “unconstitutional decision to ‘re-suspend’ me from the party I love,” he said on Tuesday.
    At the time of writing, a crowdfunder has raised more than $26,000 in legal costs in less than 24 hours.
    Williamson told The Electronic Intifada on Wednesday that he was “absolutely overwhelmed and inspired” by the support he’s received.

Leave a Reply to David McNiven Cancel reply