Video: Think Labour members are the heart of the movement? You need Lavery in leadership race

There is no candidate on the leadership horizon who matches ex-miner’s track record of commitment to enabling members to carry Labour into government

Labour Party chair Ian Lavery has quickly become a hot favourite among the party’s grassroots as a prospect for the party’s leadership contest, thanks to his genuine working-class roots, his loyalty, his straight talking – and an incident in which he reduced Boris Johnson to looking like a naughty schoolboy on national television.

But a key consideration for Labour members and supporters will be Lavery’s demonstrated commitment to empowering members – and his sense of duty and respect toward their part in building the movement to take Labour back into government.

Lavery spoke at Labour’s 2018 conference in Liverpool – and his words will be music to the ears of Labour’s grassroots:

A ‘democratic, members-led party’ that will be part of a movement of ‘unstoppable force’ – if those grassroots members want to their influence in the movement to continue and to grow, they need Ian Lavery on the leadership ballot.

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.


  1. If Lavery is going to stand he needs to say so soon, otherwise the image is of a man who can’t make up his mind. I want him to be the next Labour leader but he needs to commit.

    1. The contest has yet to start. The others jumped the gun, and some already look silly for doing so.

      1. Perhaps but we are where we are – Lavery is still looking like a late-comer to the party and that is not a good image.

      2. heenan73 is right. The contest is not officially started yet. Lavery can take his time. Desperados start early (and hopefully burn out) before the membership pays attention.

    2. If I remember correctly, Jeremy only entered the leadership contest on the very last day.

  2. Starmer is like a comfort blanket for shell shocked Labourites. His lack of charisma and (strangely) his lack of forensic skills of cross examination he will sink.

    1. Johnson will have him for breakfast and spit the pips at us. Johnson is no gentleman. Lavery on the other hand is a tough old bird who’s done a few rounds.

  3. Unfortunately any candidates still require 10% of MPs & MEPs to nominate them ( about 20ish?).
    So PLP can still keep candidates out of the Leadership election regardless of popularity in Party as a whole.
    Will all would be left candidates be able to secure enough nominations?

  4. Our wonderful but much-maligned leader will, it is certain, be very correct and highly ethical. He will be meticulously impartial and “independent “.

    I’d much rather he wasn’t and, instead, told us who he will vote for.

    Left to myself and if Ian Lavery stands, I will probably vote for him.

    1. and I would CERTAINLY vote for him if he committed himself to electoral reform (FPTP always favours the RW), promoted extensive Green New Deal type investment and showed himself to be as radical and ethical as Jeremy Corbyn.

      1. FPTP always favours the right wing? WRONG!

        Proportional representation MASSIVELY favours the Lib Dems who ARE a party of the HARD right wing,

        Recall their whole-hearted efforts to enforce austerity in the Cameron-Clegg government, not to mention their more recent vow not to form a coalition with Labour.

        Supporting PR would amount to turning Labour into the “Let’s Rescue the Lib Dems” Party!

      2. Danny 03/01/2020 at 4:00 pm

        Danny surely the whole point of a PR voting system is that it favours no one and is fair to all.

      3. The luxury of dismissing proportional representation was lost to Labour when they threw away the Scottish seats; events since have shown that Labour are unlikely to ever get a serious majority without it.
        I agree it could help the LibDems – a risk we need to take – but it’s simply a better system that FPTP.

  5. No choice at all for socialism with only one whisper of lavery possibly running.Why is the PLP standing in his way,Looks as if the Labour party are back to the same old worn out ideology that lost us Scotland and the north with middle class unrepresentative mps . Without someone like lavery the membership will walk away from a Labour party they don’t recognise from the Corbyn led socialist Labour party.Social democrats are a failed ideology and Like many others would not wish to prop up a dying failed ideology with my subscription for a blast from the past.The candidates are to be announced next week and it will be more important than the election we just lost for the survival of the socialist Labour party.

    1. Joseph no one is standing in anyone’s way. The contest hasn’t started yet. No MP has any. I’m sure that a centrist candidate like Starmer or similar will not struggle to get endorsements and backers, but none have been obtained yet because the contest hasn’t started.

      1. Quertboi…..I have been in the Labour party longer than many and have won a seat never held by Labour in the Tory heartlands of Surrey were most would vote for a paedophile rather than a Labour councillor.I have learnt a bit in my time and unfortunately lavery will struggle unless we make a noise and my contacts say we have a problem.And didn’t we expect problems in the undemocratic Labour party and the PLP.?Waiting like good little boys is not good enough.!Times running out for me at 70now and so it is for a socialist Labour government in my lifetime if you detect a voice of desperation.

    2. You are soooooo right Joseph , my gut feel is that there will be an initial dump of members leaving if Lavery doesn’t get it , and Starmer or RBL do , then a slow but continuous flow of lapsing membership over the yrs as reality sinks in that the RW PLP bastards have won , and lost everything that was precious to the working class .Mind you why the heck should they care they just lost us the last 2 elections and ensured us 5yrs plus of Tory hell

  6. I did a quick search in the hope of reading about the grass-roots support for Ian and managed to find this expression of support for Lavery.

    “Senior Labour sources have told PoliticsHome that Mr Lavery is being urged to run by Karie Murphy, Mr Corbyn’s chief of staff and a key figure on the left of the party.”

    It would be helpful if others could perhaps post some links so that I can read-up on Lavery’s grass-root support from a selection of sources.

    1. Most of the Left on Twitter, including some with a history of being close to JC. Take a look.

      1. I’m not signed up to twitter so perhaps you could start me off by posting a link to a good starting point for my search.

    2. There is lots- and it’s growing quickly. If you want to see it why not just go looking? That’s far more fun.

    1. heenan73 02/01/2020 at 10:44 pm

      I guess that’s a no then, thanks for being so helpful.

      1. I’m really not going to cut and paste Twitter for you.
        It’s free, it’s waiting for you. Go!

      2. My apologies if it was expecting too much of you to simply post a link to a specific tweet that you thought was representative. As you are advising me to look on Twitter I naturally presumed that you’d already identified numerous tweets that support Lavery and I therefore thought it wouldn’t be much of an imposition for you to post a link to one as a starting point so that I could avoid the many rabbit holes.

        If as you say the evidence is currently limited to Twitter then it comes as no surprise that I was having some difficulty in finding much evidence of this grass-roots support.

      3. I’m afraid that’s really not how twitter works. You need to see whole conversations, individual tweets – though much loved by the press – can never really say anything; context is all.
        And there’s no point in us here discussion a few tweets from there. Just scan a few. Resist the temptation to reply, however much you want to, it’s a distraction, especially for current purposes. Be a tourist!

      4. Oh, and I’m not saying it’s limited to twitter, simply that Twitter is full of it. And the sheer numbers involve suggest it’s not to be lightly dismissed.
        Go for it. It’s quite entertaining in small doses!

    2. Well done heenan73
      There is a cunning entryist tactic of demanding that that the entire Leftist supporting premise of a given Skwawkbox report needs to be further legitimised, Then instead of focusing our fire on the Blairites and Tories the following comment page ends up redirected into calling in to question the very people we’re with whom we’re supposed to be showing solidarity. Others can decide for themselves if the same individual is responsible for each occasion. But it does occur on Skwawkbox comment page after page, most often in a manner that absents the poster’s own politics from scrutiny, though the practice usually favors a neoliberal agenda, or candidates.
      Ironically if you tried a socialist version of this practice on a neoliberal newspaper you’d be moderated for going off-topic.

      1. Bernie – I’m puzzled how simply asking for additional evidence of a claimed surge in the grass-roots support for Lavery is off subject. I am however more than a little surprised that Ian Lavery’s supporters appear to be reluctant to link to material that supports their point of view and the premise of this post.

      2. Steve H Are you a doubting Thomas!You are more than capable of researching than most posters.But is that actually what you are up to.Are you casting doubt on lavery and the clear support he has.How could he not get the support being as he is the only socialist potential candidate on offer……simple really

      3. “Steve H Are you a doubting Thomas!”

        This is politics, not religion. We’re voting for a leader, not an anointed messiah, and the simple fact is that there is no outstanding candidate about whom there will be no doubts.

        There will also be a variety of views within the Party, many of whom won’t post on or read Twitter – that most unreliable of sources. That’s life.

        Bellyaching about everybody who mildly questions the misleading Skwawkbox consensus being ‘centrists’ or ‘Blairites’ has the same validity as horoscopes in the Sun.

      4. “Bellyaching about everybody who mildly questions the misleading Skwawkbox consensus …”
        But he isn’t, is he? – he’s ‘bellyaching’, as are we all, about you are your pal’s constant troll posts.
        Granted he needs to lighten up and treat you with the contempt you deserve, but cut the guy some slack before your next pro-tory shit-post.
        I thank you 😉

      5. Thanks heenan73 – you’ve just proved the point I was making.

        I’d get some advice about that red mist that colours everything that you look at. It’s political colour blindness and has nothing to do with socialism.

      6. Wrong as usual.
        It’s an acute sensitivity to trolls.
        The day you do trying to fucking up the Labour party is the day I give you a break.
        Crawl back under that blue rock of yours.
        My only regret is that Skawkie hasn’t banned you and saved me the effort of standing on your fingers now and then.

      7. Another hissy fit.


        Your definition of ‘trolling’ seems to be ‘anything that lies outside the bounds of my tiny prejudices’.

        C’mon. Grow up, get a grip and stop being a little prima
        donna when someone gives an alternative view. Join the Labour Party..

      8. “Your definition of ‘trolling’ seems to be ‘anything that lies outside the bounds of my tiny prejudices’.”
        Not so, I welcome debate. But you never debate; you simply sneer at other people’s points. The only consistency in your posts is your hatred of the Labour party and your desire to see it fail.

        Sad, but that’s tories for you.

      9. Heenan73 –

        “I welcome debate”

        You have an amazing lack of appreciation. of self-generated irony.

        … and also an amazing level of self-righteous paranoia.

        “Sad, but that’s tories for you”

        … not to mention a level of political illiteracy that is mind-blowing. Not to know what a Tory is after this election, FFS! Time to get out of that little dark room, I think.

      10. Why so much personal abuse? You are on the wrong site mate! And a monumental waste of time.

      11. I think anyone with a bit of nous would note that I was actually responding in kind to ‘personal abuse’ (admitedly not something to be proud of, but justified), not initiating it.

        Precisely the right site, ‘mate’.

      12. Well done Joseph OKEEFE
        Absolutely right!
        “You are more than capable of researching than most posters.”
        Given the page topic we could have been discussing how best to support a natural Left candidate like Lavery. Instead what has sly entryist pedantics dragged the debate and us into???

      13. “Twitter – that most unreliable of sources”
        But then again, the casual visitor here wouldn’t be aware of the tory-supporting trolls, would they?
        And however unreliable Twitter may be (and, like all social media, it is), be aware that Jess Phillips’ announcement amassed almost 30,000 ‘likes’ in three hours, plus 3.4k comments and 3.8k retweets.
        Beats getting two likes from your fellow trolls, I guess?

      14. If Jess Philips has generated a few ‘likes’ on social media it does raise the question are they actually Labour supporters and/or have Labour membership voting rights.
        Phillps being supported by people who hate socialism, do not favour fair distribution of wealth, do not object to workplace exploitation or western imperialism is as relevant to the Labour Party as those entryist posts popping up on Skwawkbox comment pages designed to deliberately subvert debate.

      15. I’m sure many are from tories and other camp followers, probably several thousand. That’s how it works. But it still shows how big an arena Twitter is, and at that level, certainly suggests she has significant support among Labour people.
        And the video has been watched 735k times on twitter. I doubt may tories were THAT impressed with her.

  7. And search for “Lavery” or #LabourLeadership.

    Alternatively search for any Labour figure whose views you wish to know – there’s not many have managed to avoided Twitter, alas.

    Best not to do more than dip in: immersion rapidly leads to madness.

  8. I want him – I only hope he can get 21 nominations from the MPs. I doubt that he would have any trouble getting the 5% CLP/Affiliate nominations.

    1. If he wants it, he’ll be fine. MPs aren’t quite what they were at Corbyn’s nomination. If you know what I mean.

  9. I’ll back Ian.
    Neo-Liberal Tories have spent £435b on QE since 2010 just to keep the economy static so perhaps Streekt is correct “The rich and powerful are just buying time because they haven’t a clue what to do” and perhaps Tory Gambler/Advisor Cummings call tonight for eccentrics to apply to be Downing Street advisors highlights this narative.
    The Tories haven’t a clue what to do, neither has the Centre or the Centre/Left but left wing democratic socialists do!

  10. In the unlikely event that Ian Lavery won the leadership contest would he stand in a safe Labour seat at the next GE instead of his current constituency of Wansbeck where he has a very marginal majority of only 814.

    1. Steve H… know that the brexit debate cost us seats in laverys seat and many others.Nothing stays static especially after a few years of slash and burn destruction from the old Etonian boys have worked their version of democracy.!

    2. SteveH can you provide links to sources of information that support your assertion that Ian Lavery will not win .

      What are your concerns over Ian Lavery SteveH ?

      Is there information you know of that could help aid the debate here and provide a better level of understanding ?
      Not sure of the intention of your question regarding Laverys constituency , why would you pose this hypothetical question , has Lavery ever done anything in his past that would lead you to think he might do this in the future ?

      I wonder what your views on the other front runners such as Starmer .
      To help with some background analysis as to the repercussions of choosing a Centrist candidate here is an excellent article imo written by
      Raoul Martinez for Novara Media , which is almost tragically poetic now in it’s pre election review of Centrists policies.

      PS I am on Twitter , its easy to sign up to and you can use a fake name etc to create your account if you are worried about anonymity.
      More so Steve , you can peruse the Twitter sphere with simple search engines like Google .

      1. rob 03/01/2020 at 9:03 am

        Hi Rob – Thanks for the link, I have only just got round to reading this excellent article by Raoul Martinez and by and large it mirrors my own thoughts.

    3. “In the unlikely event that Ian Lavery won the leadership contest would he stand in a safe Labour seat”
      If Labour do well at the next election – or at any rate, better than the last, I can confidently assert that the swing in Labour’s favour will increase that majority.
      That’s really a tory troll post, isn’t it Steve?

  11. Ian Lavery, Chair of the Labour Party. There has been a witch-hunt in the Labour Party & many ‘Socialist’ members have had anonymous accusations made against them; no evidence provided & no details of the accusation. Chris Williamson is the most high profile example, but there are many others. No defence allowed in this Orwellian nightmare. Is this democracy in action or………?

  12. Meanwhile, in the wider world, the US has just committed an act of war that will provide a post-hoc justification for any event such as 9/11 by any nutter of the planet.

    The GBP has, in the interim, elected good mate of the perpetrator whilst pretending that Europe was the major threat to national sovereignty!

    It would be interesting to know if the government had advance warning of this. The response from the Brexit Party has hardly been one that instills confidence in its moral centre.

    1. “Meanwhile, in the wider world, the US has just committed an act of war that will provide a post-hoc justification for any event such as 9/11 by any nutter of the planet.”

      Assassinating the most lauded and effective military commander against terrorism in ME will be whitewashed as ‘self defense’ in western media. You wont see terms like act of war on BBC et al. Until people wake up to the horrors their Govs inflict in the world they will be at risk of ‘blow back’. Terrorists in chief like Trump don’t give a monkeys about citizens unless they are billionaires, banksters or corporate raiders.

    2. Talking about GBP…the pound is falling quite dramatically and the oil prices are rising.I wonder who ordered the hit,because no matter what trump says,its more than the USA behind this piece of warmongering.Somebody always makes a profit on the backs of misery.

    3. How’s that ‘special relationship’ going?

      It is reported that Boris was not even informed of this let alone consulted.

      1. That’s what is reported but I am 90% sure Johnson and FCO would have agreed but even if they had reservations Netanyahu was reportedly informed and no doubt Saudi and other gulf members of the western led axis. The modern western led neocolonial nexus doesn’t require all elements to be on board especially when chief bully and terrorizer on the block has decided to take advantage of circumstances and implement a long term plan or as Bolton and others have admitted a plan/goal ‘long in the works’.

        The western imperial axis feeds off death, destruction and chaos, it has zero care for peace, the lives of people or their societies when geo-strategic goals are to be met, those goals always aimed at increasing leverage for extortion, bribery and plunder/theft aka enriching the bankster/Capitalist classes.

  13. Veganism has been judged a protected characteristic.
    On what criteria could the same protection for socialism be denied?
    Conservatism? Good luck claiming protection for the love of money.

  14. Bernie 03/01/2020 at 7:29 pm
    Well done Joseph OKEEFE. Absolutely right!
    “You are more than capable of researching than most posters.”
    Given the page topic we could have been discussing how best to support a natural Left candidate like Lavery. Instead what has sly entryist pedantics dragged the debate and us into???

    That was entirely the responsibility of you and your comrades. If instead of concentrating on trying to prove to yourself and everyone else how clever you are you’d simply answered what was a genuine request for more information with some links to the evidence you would have served Lavery’s case far,far better and you could have then got on with the job of attempting to boost Ian’s profile. It was you lot that caused the distraction and wasted your own and everyone else’s time.

    I find it more than a little perverse that you are now patting yourself on the back for being ‘clever’ enough to have seen through ‘my cunning plan’ to discredit Lavery by asking for links to the evidence of a surge in grass-roots support for him. Perhaps on reflection you may realise that it would have been far more sensible to take my request at face value and highlighted the evidence instead of giving everyone the impression that you were rather desperately trying avoid answering the question.

    Your thought processes are just weird. If the evidence is there then why not simply take the opportunity to publicise it?

    1. Neoliberals manipulatively demanding that Leftist supporting Lavery should provide data that might undermine him was met with logical responses from a number of poster’s.
      Joseph OKEEFE “You are more than capable of researching than most posters”
      heenan73 “I’m really not going to cut and paste Twitter for you. It’s free”
      Florence “If you want to see it why not just go looking?”
      Obviously if you’re capable of posting on comment pages then you’re IT literate enough to do your own searches – unless of course you’re purpose is to deliberately take debate off-topic and off support for a traditional socialist Labour candidate.

      1. He avoids discussion by calling for evidence – often pointlessly or redundantly – and when we won’t play that game, he distracts by arguing about why we won’t do his thinking for him – thus still avoiding the main issue

        While it’s obvious that he doesn’t like Lavery [sigh – evidence above], please note that he hasn’t set out any argument against him, neither has he suggested a better candidate.

        It’s sneer, obfuscate, and blether (not necessarily in that order).

        He’s a troll; tory enabling at best, tory at worst. And one thing is 100% certain – he’s no Labour man.

      2. heenan73 04/01/2020 at 6:40 pm

        You are right I think that Lavery would be a disastrous choice for Leader. Why should I hide my opinion.

        When I posted my original question asking for links to evidence of support for Lavery I had just done a Google search and it produced no other meaningful results apart from Skwawkbox’s articles. So rather than dismissing the grass-roots support as rubbish I did what I thought was a sensible option and asked others to highlight this support for Ian. I must admit that I did pause for thought before doing so because I fully expected to be deluged with links to the support that had eluded me. Instead all I got for my efforts was lame excuses which only went to confirm my original thoughts that this so called grass-roots support had been somewhat exaggerated. Yours and others rather childish responses may have boosted your flagging egos a little but they were entirely counter productive and only served to confirm that you were avoiding answering the question.

        Incidentally you are also right about me having the skills to construct a decent search query. Skills I have built up over several decades of working at a senior technical level within IT both in the UK and overseas. It’s just a shame that you’ve allowed your own hubris to run away with your common sense and shot your own argument in the head by trying to be far too clever for your own good.

      3. Bernie 04/01/2020 at 7:48 am
        “Neoliberals manipulatively demanding that Leftist supporting Lavery should provide data that might undermine him was met with logical responses from a number of poster’s.”

        If you are so shit scared of undermining Lavery by simply linking to his supporters what does that say for Lavery prospects as party leader.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: