Breaking

Bird reinstated to NEC by-election

Suspended councillor back on ballot after ‘spurious’ suspension
Cllr Jo Bird

Birkenhead councillor Jo Bird, one of two candidates suspended by Labour during the nominations phase of the by-election for two National Executive Committee (NEC) places, has been reinstated after a meeting of the NEC disputes committee yesterday.

The nature of the complaint against Bird was never officially confirmed by the party, but was widely said to have been an antisemitism complaint. A source described the complaint against Bird, who is Jewish, as ‘pretty spurious’.

Bird has been reinstated to the list of candidates who has passed the nomination threshold for next week’s full ballot. In spite of the suspension and her temporary removal from the process, she received well over 100 nominations from local parties.

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57 comments

    1. Magnificent news! Seems charge against Jo summarily thrown out. Hope the wheels begin 2 fall off the antisemitism smear campaign against Labour left. Great this palpably nice honest woman has been suspended.

  1. Well – something to be pleased about, I suppose.

    But she should never have been suspended in the first place, and certainly not without filtering out of spuriousness in complaints. The structural problems remain.

    1. There’s been nothing on BBC News for the last 3/4 hour but the news that a TV presenter called Caroline Flack has apparently suicided, presumed to be because of an upcoming court case. Something to do with an accusation of assault on her boyfriend, with whom she was allowed no contact despite his denying any assault took place. The no contact order presumably to prevent collusion between the two at a guess.
      No relevance to this, sorry – the newer SB post about the NEC & NCC made me think about society’s deficiencies is all.
      TV is making feeble noises about “being nicer and kinder to each other” since it was one of their own this time.

      Anyone remember them emoting over the many UC deaths? Devoting more than a sentence to any of them?

      1. There is a connection, David – you’re right. Even given hesitancy about attributing suicides to a particular cause without full knowledge – the rampant nature of ‘accusation’ as a weapon is a serious problem in all areas where it can be used. Victimhood has become perverted – to the detriment of real victims.

      2. I know someone who suffered a breakdown after being accused and another who lost important employment and others were seriously threatened. It goes without saying all malicious accusations were untrue.

  2. This is clear proof of ‘vexatious claims ‘ being made and the accuser should now be suspended pending expulsion

  3. It is brilliant that Jo Bird has been reinstated but that raises the inevitable question was there really any need to suspend her in the first place and will there be any repercussions for the person who made the spurious complaint against her.

    It is high time the NEC got it’s act together and stopped our disciplinary processes being subverted to maliciously undermine our party’s internal democratic processes.

    1. Absolutely Steve H. It seems that as soon as an allegation,even one which is “spurious” is made, the accused is suspended.This is disproportionate.
      It has to be acknowledged by the party that not all allegations are made in good faith and the blanket acceptance that members are guilty until proven innocent is unjust and is being exploited by those who do not have the party’s best interests at heart.
      I think a full investigation the motivation of the complainant in this case is warranted and if it is found that they acted in bad faith or maliciously they should be subjected to a disciplinary penalty up to and including expulsion.
      We need to grasp the nettle in respect of false allegations against innocent members and we should start with this case.
      We cannot morally justify expelling members for breaches of our rules on the one hand while ignoring false and malicious allegations of wrongdoing on the other.

    2. In politics telling lies about people is subversion of democracy whether by media or individuals and should be punished accordingly. This appears to have been an attempt to do that – not on the global scale of the mainstream fake media or the others who may not be named, but subversion of democracy nonetheless.
      Fairness and protection for accuser and accused is a difficult balance to strike, but blanket anonymity for accusers and suspensions of accused falls a fuck of a long way short.
      It’s the party’s systems that bring it into disrepute more than any individual.

      1. David – If the party’s rules are decided on in the same way as composite motions are then it shouldn’t really come as a surprise that the outcome is the same.

  4. Which begs the question what the hell are our leadership candidates playing at, my biggest complaint is these questions are not being asked at the hustings,
    Methinks the accusers are running the leadership debate

  5. There is growing resentment at grass root level that the Tory Jews (eg in the BoD) are still getting away with vicious slurs about Labour and NONE of the leaders seem capable of calling it out. Maybe it is ‘safer’ to say you agree with everything the BoD says but members know just how hollow that is. The only way we can currently express some disapproval is by not voting for Nandy. Cowardice isn’t a good look for a radical progressive party.

  6. In America they tend to kill dissenters, usually by shooting them. In the UK they can stifle the ‘dangerous’ elements by shouting ‘Anti Semite!’; it’s almost as effective as the rifle; ask Williamson or Livingstone.

  7. If the complaint was ‘pretty spurious’, then it should have been dealt with rather more quickly. We have yet to see what damage it’s done, but it was almost certainly launched with damage in mind.

    1. I met Jo Bird a few times last year………I have seldom seen a young woman so shaken. Death threats & suspension are serious events in anyone’s life & today, Jo Bird appears to be more confident & able to cope with spurious accusations. It seems incredible that the Labour Party accept anonymous accusations without allowing the accused to know the nature of the accusation. No consequences for vexatious accusations means they will always continue. No defence allowed.

  8. If the complaint turns out to be spurious then the complainant should be investigated.

  9. Well on piss poor day (weather wise ) this is a real ray of sunshine .
    I agree with other comments as to why and how this happened in the first place . STINKS !

  10. The cross-party knives are still out for her here on Wirral.

    Hard-right Labour, Blairite councillors’ blades are glistening a lot more than Tories, LibDems, and others, take it from me 🗡️🗡️🗡️

  11. There is something seriously wrong with this whole process and it appears blame rests on the Tory-Israeli lobby that benefits. . In a straight forward investigation weak or spurious cases should be spotted and chucked ASAP not left to fester under the TV lights for months or now even years. The details of the allegation should come out early days and not just vague assertions of how upset various Dames in the Lords were. The truth is they daren’t do that because they’d be showered with ridicule. A weak case will often mean NO case at all. When we do know the details it proves my point. What rational person could say Ken Livingstone was demonstrating a ‘hatred of Jews’ by correctly relating the historical fact of Hitler in discussion with Zionists in 1932. Williamson’s case was even worse because the film of him speaking was broadcast before he was denounced and a blanket of silence was thrown over him. It seems like years ago and yet the “issue” is simple and resolvable in an hour or so. Thus one of the most articulate Labourites of recent years is ‘jailed’ by the fanatics – indefinitely it seems! – which is really all you need to know to be satisfied who is behind the bureaucratic anarchy and unnecessary secrecy that we’re currently mired in.

  12. The cross-party knives are still out for Jo Bird here on Wirral.

    Hard-right Labour, Blairite councillors’ blades are highly polished and glistening a lot more than the Tories’, LibDems’, and others’ 🗡️🗡️🗡️

    1. ‘Still’ ??? When was there anything to remotely ‘trust’ in the whole rotten farce?

      I note that Swawkbox has avoided comment on the report about the functioning of the NCC. Obviously, this body contains members attempting to do the right thing instead of trying to win an Oscar for a craven and dishonest performance. But the very act of blocking comments shows that the power of the backers of apartheid and ethnic cleansing have the whip hand.

      I was particularly interested in the quoted comment :

      ” the EHRC has been investigating antisemitism in the party since May 2019 and has not accepted our offer to be interviewed by them.”

      … which reinforces the suspicion that the EHRC may itself be a body that needs examination.

  13. Pantomime Dame Margaret Hodge raised 200 complaints, vast majority had no substance, on what planet is she still in the party

  14. One does wonder what the outcome would have been if Jo Bird had been a lower profile member without a very substantial support base, would she have ended up being yet another bit of collateral damage.

    1. Indeed.

      I’ve often – like others here – been frustrated with the Labour Party. Particularly during the Blair years. But I’ve never quite felt so strongly that it I’m watching ‘The Invasion of the Body Snatchers’. At least, unlike a chocolate fireguard like RLB, Blair didn’t pretended to be a ‘socialist’ or in favour of an ethical foreign policy.

  15. Tragic re the recent deaths of members.
    There is little AS in Labour – 45 expelled out of 580k (0.000258%),but what there is needs addressing and whilst AS in the general public is 7% in the Tory Party it may be higher.
    But is all a con, firstly as the brilliant US academic Richard Silverstein argues, it is an attack on Jewish diversity.
    Right Wing Jewish groups want one dominant narrative, total and uncritical support for the Right Wing Govt in Israel.
    Secondly the Right Wing media (and niave Liberal) have piled in cos their offshore tax dodging owners don’t want to pay their full taxes – perish the thought that they contribute their fair share to addressing poverty (including 4m diverse w class kids in poverty), record homelessness, mental health needs etc after legally stealing the lions share of the surplus labour of diverse working people.
    Thirdly Right Wing Labour MPs jumped on the bandwagon cos they couldn’t beat Corbyn on IDEAS because they are Right Wing Barbarians who are devoid of ideas.
    We need a one state solution in Palestine- respecting all citizens religious views as advocated by a minority report of the UN in 1947 (members from 3 countries supported this whilst the remaining 8 supported what we now know as the 2 state solution – which this latter view some argue – inspite of the built up rival hatreds perhaps is a defeat for humanity).
    But meanwhile Far Right US barbarian billionaires are funding far groups (and individual morons here) around the World.
    In the UK they are using the issue of the appalling issue of mainly Asian men grooming girls (which we and the Asian community condemn) but tragically the greatest threat of abuse comes from within the family or from people known to them so focussing on one group does nothing to help vulnerable children.
    So the Far Right are going for Muslims now but if other BME groups think they have forgotten them, then they are bloody niave!
    The Far Right try to set diverse working people against each other and to divide thus help the rich and powerful.
    The only good thing to come out of this AS
    right wing narrative is its opponent – the brilliant Jewish Voice for Labour.
    Become Solidarity Supporters of JVL.
    Diverse Working People of the World Unite!

      1. A central point, Rita. I have yet to come across a case of which we *know* the issues where the charge of ‘antisemitism’ has been established in any proper judicial sense.

        Of course, this gets ducked by substituting the fake charge of ‘Bringing the Party into disrepute’ – a charge to which the disreputable Hodge (the most blatant open-and-shut case) seems immune!

        The other one is people feeling they have to resign because they can’t win (Asa Winstanley, Ken Livingstone).

        Stinking fish.

  16. Oh and it is the Left who confront the Far Right barbarians on the streets, putting ourselves at risk.
    But where are our critics with us on the front line- BOD, JLM, LFI, CAS, Right Wing Labour MPs?
    All gob and no trousers!

  17. This confirms,to me how malleable the NEC is. Swayed by fears over media repercussions leading to their knee jerk response to the complaint and then swayed again by CLPs refusing to accept this decision and voting for her anyway. Once the media and BOD get hold of this do you think they will be swayed again and change their minds? Such is the weakness of the NEC which in my view loses all respect! More importantly this to me shows the power of the members is something the NEC cannot ignore. We must continue to show back bone where the NEC has failed dismally

  18. We now have to consider that being a member of the Labour party could damage your health,wealth and ability to travel.Accusations of Racism and bigotry of anyone who has a opinion on AS can lead to an expulsion a damaging investigation,or even a criminal prosecution for expressing an opinion on AS.I am begining to worry that leaving my membership to expire may be too big a risk?.Who would have thought the democratic socialist Labour party could descend to self destruction.on a scam and a lie…

  19. The quote I picked up on talked about the party facing legal action,
    All the more reason to throw out those making vexatious claims,
    At some stage these issues need to be tested in court,
    My hope is we then go back and clear out all those individuals and groups responsible for the smears
    Members will back the candidate who defends the proud record of the party, members and supporters
    Safest country in Europe for the Jewish community thanks to JC and Labour party

  20. In the next blog, for which there is no opportunity to comment, Skwawky said a Labour source told him in relation to suspensions:

    “A lot of these people are older members, many not understanding properly how social media works and without the political education to understand how to express their objections to the behaviour of Israel in a more sensitive way”

    This is disgraceful, why should anyone be ‘sensitive’ about the way they criticise one of the most brutal States on Earth? It typifies the way the Labour bureaucracy has brought upon itself the need to tread on eggshells for fear of repercussions from the JLM who should have been cleared out of the LP a long time ago, together with the LFI. Both groups are only in the LP to protect the interests of Israel at the expense of the LP and its members.

    1. ” why should anyone be ‘sensitive’ … [in this sense]

      And, more importantly, when was lack of ‘sensitivity’ a crime? And how do you distinguish between sensitivity and letting people get away with dangerous delusions on the basis of belief?

      I’m sure some of the right-wing racists (and also SunMail fellow-travellers) in other fields genuinely feel strongly about the racism that they spout. So – do I have to be ‘sensitive’ about their views?

      And is it ‘sensitive’ to deliberately sow untruths and confusion by conflating Judaism with ‘Zionism’ – patent rubbish that can be refuted with a minimal knowledge of history. Is it ‘sensitive’ to give a free pass to apartheid and ethnic cleansing – again simple historical irrefutable facts on the ground? Is it ‘sensitive’ to link lifetime anti-racists with the philosophy and actions of the Third Reich, if it’s ‘insensitive’ make comparisons regarding Israel’s behaviour? It might not be wise; it might be a poor analogy, but when was that a crime? When was reporting uncomfortable history a crime – albeit a bit cack-handedly – (see Livingstone) or making an accurate metaphor ‘distasteful’ (Naz Shah)?

      Isn’t bouncing people out of the Party (to which some may have devoted a major part of themselves) on the basis of no evidence the real crime? Isn’t denying the existence of Jews other than those who share right-wing views and support of Israel a crime? – rather than just a confected ‘insensitivity?

      I know I bang on about this issue, but it’s because it’s the single one where there is absolutely no debate to be had – it’s the manifestation of a profound rottenness at the core of the Party.

      1. RH, “it’s the manifestation of a profound rottenness at the core of the Party.”

        I prefer to call it corruption.

  21. Any news on the suspension of Mo Azam? I found it disgraceful that the CLPD dropped him after his suspension, rather than stand in solidarity by him.
    Well done to LRC, JVL and LLA for standing by Jo Bird. I am going to vote for Jo Bird and Deborah Hobson from the LRC’s slate.
    Momentum (Lasman really) needs to learn the lesson that his slate isn’t going to wing by imposing his slate on the left. CLPD needs to learn that dropping its candidate at the first sign of travel and sort of surrendering to Momentum doesn’t pay.

    1. If I read it right, Ashcroft’s findings in this latest survey suggest that Momentum members are not swallowing Lansman’s parroting of the BoD line. Small mercies?

    2. CLPD is frightened of anything stronger than a motion, and I say that as a member. It has stood by noone, I clouding it’s keystone member Pete Willsman.

  22. I don’t ever watch “The Big Question,” me being an atheist and it being a religious programme, but today it’s asking a couple of political questions – the first, “should britain be ashamed of its deportation policies?” might have Tories saying that religion should keep its nose out of politics.
    The second, “will defining Islamophobia undermine free speech?” is interesting for its direct relevance to that other fairy story demanding Labour accept its right to undermine our free speech.

    1. Correction: Would have been interesting if tackled seriously.
      Pfft. What did I expect from a religious programme ffs?

  23. I am one day older than JC & us ‘geriatrics’ from a generation of ’60s Flower Children, can also have attitude. I dislike being patronised by anybody, but it seems ‘fashionable’ for MSM, especially the Guardian & Channel 4 (aka left slate) to either blame us for all the world’s ills, especially climate crisis, or being old & wealthy.
    Having my ‘attitude’ being determined by the faux-sensitivity of others I believe they are known as ‘snowflakes’), does not appeal, having spent many decades challenging social injustices & will continue ‘raging into the night’ until ‘the ‘final curtain’ & ask no leave from you!

    1. Well, also being a member of the Old Farts Club, I agree with you. The knots that are being tied around the ‘transphobic’ issue at the moment is another example of rationality departing on the Correctness and Identity Express.

      There’s nothing concerning real ‘sensitivity’ in all this pseudo-concern – just self-indulgence.

      1. As ever, I disagree with you.
        The ‘transphobic’ issue is a real one, distorted and twisted, as always by the MSM. It is not for us, who (I’m guessing), are comfortable with our place on the ‘gender spectrum’ to make assumptions about those who are far from comfortable. That comes very close to victim blaming.
        In my personal opinion the ‘trans’ lobby aren’t helping their case by focusing on trivia – but I may have got that wrong, that may well be another MSM issue, and – of course – it’s not for me to lecture them on their issues (that WOULD be patronising). My place is to support them in their struggle for recognition and a fair deal. And I do.
        Interestingly, I often hear that the fair deal they seek is simply to be allowed to live their lives as they choose, without pointless interference. We managed that for the gay community, why dismiss the trans folk?
        I’m also an old git, so apologies if I’ve got things out of context.

      2. The only arguments against self-identification I’ve heard have been around toilets and shelters for those women who’ve been abused by partners.
        gov.uk thinks there might be between 200,000 and 500,000 trans people in the UK, more than I expected.

        I think both arguments, regarding safety alone, are weak in terms of actual risk – the fear women might feel is a different matter, and one I couldn’t quantify.
        If women fear the consequences of self-identification then maybe another approach is necessary – what, I don’t know – I suspect male opinions are no more valid or welcome on this issue than on women’s right to control their own fertility.

      3. “The ‘transphobic’ issue is a real one”

        I totally agree with you.

        My problem is with the hysterical disortions and polarisations that are taking place in discussion of the issues involved. It’s no way forward for groups to claim competing victimhood.

  24. Jo Bird reinstated…….so who suspended her & why? Who will tell us or are members treated with such contempt as though button mushrooms. No names ever mentioned; no substance to any accusation; no explanation & everything in secret. If you wrote this as an episode of a political thriller you would not be believed. Big lies; big secrets; big cover-up.

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