Analysis Poll

Poll puts Bird miles ahead for left NEC slate – despite attempt to stack result by supporters of Momentum pair

Lauren Townsend – backed by CLPD, Momentum, Unite and others – comes in clear second place

A SKWAWKBOX poll that asked which two candidates members want to see on the left ‘slate’ for the NEC by-election has yielded an emphatic result – in spite of what appears to be an attempt to stack the poll by supporters of Momentum’s preferred pairing.

The 36-hour poll saw just under 2,700 votes cast, with Birkenhead’s Jo Bird a long way ahead of the field with over 40% of the vote and Lauren Townsend next on almost 30%.

Bird is backed by Jewish Voice for Labour (JVL) and Labour Representation Committee (LRC). Townsend is backed by both CLPD and Momentum.

Momentum’s other candidate, Leigh Drennan, initially showed in third place – just ahead of CLPD-backed Cecile Wright:

However, an examination of the IP addresses from which all the votes were cast revealed two instances of apparent attempts to stack the vote count in favour of the two candidates backed by Momentum – Manchester-based Drennan and Milton Keynes councillor Townsend.

Two pairs of related IP addresses had cast a large number of votes:

In every case, those votes had been cast, within a short period last Sunday, for Momentum’s preferred pair of candidates:

A lookup of the IP addresses reveals that the most active pair traces back to an Internet Service Provider (ISP) with its office in the Hulme area of Manchester, while the less active pair is provided by an ISP in London.

When these stacked votes are removed from the count, Bird’s share of the total valid vote is increased and Townsend’s drops slightly but leaves her still clear in second place.

But Momentum’s other nominee, Leigh Drennan, loses more than a quarter of his original 278 votes and falls to last place:

The NEC by-elections are vital for the future direction of the party – and a united left ‘slate’ is essential if the die-hard right’s favourites are not to slip through the middle.

The poll of members – in spite of an attempt to influence the results – suggests that left members want the two names on that slate to be Jo Bird and Lauren Townsend.

Those are the two candidates that the SKWAWKBOX recommends left members must unite behind if it wants to win those two vital places and prevent the right gaining influence its numbers do not merit.

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. It would be an interesting exercise to match up these IP addresses with the IPs of those who post comments on here.

  2. Is it possible that Momentum members were informed about the poll at two separate meetings and someone made a computer available for members to vote with at each meeting?
    I’m not a member of Momentum and not defending them – it just seems there could be an honest explanation. I can imagine offering the use of my laptop in such circumstances.

  3. As much as I abhor poll stuffing are you aware that the provisions of the GDPR cover IP addresses and that good practice is that unless you’ve sought a waiver to allow you to publish them, you should not?

  4. I am former Momentum member having joined in June 2016 and leaving a few weeks back. I am voting for Jo Bird only.
    Nothing against Lauren Townsend but a vote for her is a vote for Lasman.
    I hold Lasman responsible for the introduction of the full IHRA that incidentally is what is causing problems for Jo Bird and other comrades. Plus Jon Lasman is managing RLB leadership campaign and he has been instrumental in RLB signing to the 10 pledges from the BoD.
    Consistency comrades, it is incoherent to vote for Jo Bird and them for Lauren Townsend on the same slate.
    Let’s get Jo Bird elected to the NEC and if Johanna Baxter get the other position, we can live with it for a few months.
    All 9 positions are for re-election during the summer. I believe it is more important to teach Lasman a lesson, so that he realises that he need to come to the table with other left groups and negotiate a single slate.
    I am sorry for Lauren Townsend and would agree for her to be part of the 9 negotiated left slate candidates for the summer NEC elections.

  5. How do you know that Lansman had anything to do with her signing the BoD demands?

    Evidence, please.

    1. There’s certainly circumstantial evidence.
      He’s her campaign manager.
      Didn’t you know?
      But I’m impressed that so many people are jumping in to defend Momentum (and thus kick democracy in the teeth).

      1. Who here has jumped in to defend Momentum?
        If you include me you’re mistaken.
        I asked the question out of a sense of fairness, seeing what I thought might be a different explanation.
        There’ve been occasions when I’ve had no 3/4G signal and others have, and vice versa.
        At a Momentum meeting there’d likely be people wishing to vote for the same candidates.
        Polls usually block IP addresses after someone votes, don’t they? SB’s tech savvy so I assume WP doesn’t support it.
        My IP address places me hundreds of miles from my geographic location by default.

      2. I replied earlier, but it seems to have got lost in the ether…

        I wasn’t particularly thinking of you, though I think a queue of 84 people responding on one device is stretching credibility somewhat. Even if only the one had functioning internet access, on these days of mobile phones of guess that 79 would have said “I’ll do it when I get home”.

      3. heenan73, I see on re-reading the numbers you’re right of course, they do make it highly unlikely.
        I should have re-read the post before commenting. Getting lazy & slapdash.

    2. I guess it’s a fair assumption, although unproveable.

      What is certain is that she hasn’t had the nous mto undertand the implications of what she is signing up to – not a good look for a candidate for leadership.

      I have some criticisms of Corbyn about how he responded to the ‘antisemitism’ scam – but at least he knew which way was up in political terms.

  6. Yet another example of Momentum’s contempt for democracy. If Corbyn had asked for a peerage for Lansman, they’d be calling for protection for the House of Lords.
    Isn’t it time the democratic forces within Labour divorced these entryists, and stopped giving them a consistently undemocratic voice?

    1. Democratic forces? There are democratic forces?
      Why didn’t somebody say?

  7. Interesting how the spectre of ant-Semitism is mirrored back & forth between GB & USA. The same accusations made against Jeremy are now being made against Jo Bird & Bernie Sanders. Billionaire Bloomfield is the good Jew, but the Socialist Sanders is not. Bloomfield supports Israel & bombing schools in Gaza, but Sanders wants an american version of the NHS in USA. Money is pouring into the coffers of Bloomfield’s political machine…..’anything but Jeremy; anything but Sanders’.

    1. The similarities are unsettling, yes, but the ability of Bernie to be less damaged is noticeable:
      1- Bernie’s manner and persona is pwerceptably Jewish, so the personal smears would take hold less;
      2. – The US Jewish community does not have a (single) rabbinic leader, much less one which is rabidly pro-Conservative and a personal benefactor of likudist land theft or rights-denial apartheid. Neither in the US is there a BoD which, sits under the control of the aforementioned non Chief Rabbi;
      3. – Bernie Saunders’ party is not – on the whole – as viciously frightened by moderate socialism as is the Parliamentary part of the British Labour Party;
      4. – US does not have a massive state-funded public broadcaster which amplifies the hard-right billionaire press and never speaks truth to power, but, instead, amplifies their lies and misinformation.

      Occurs to me that if the US opponents of Sanders re-ran the J.C. anti-Semitism smear, people here might finally realise that ‘antisemitism’ actually means ‘not ant-Palestinian’.

      The real anti-Semities can’t believe their luck. MOSAD has given them a boy-crying-wolf gift.

      1. The BBC certainly shares the media prejudice over Israel/Palestine – but so does the privately owned US media.

        But to put that prejudice in perspective (and recognising that this is as much the result of propaganda pressure over a long period as design – although the shaping of BBC management in the field of News and Current affairs is now at an apogee. Ask people like Jeremy Bowen about that pressure.

        A major problem in terms of the Palestinian case is the grovelling cowardice of any potential opposition in this country – particularly the Labour Party. If the Party sings ‘Three Bags Full, Sir’ to the zionist tune (including the favoured ‘left wing’ candidate), it’s hardly surprising that the Beeb does the same.

        Blame where blame is due.

    2. It’s not all that strange – Israel is a bridghead in the Arab world, operating (principally) in the interests of the US, but also of the West in general.

      Remember – France and Germany are also notable members of the Israel/anti-Palestine consortium.

      It’s modern colonialism by proxy.

    3. Moreover, prior to Bloomberg’s splashing $300,000,0000 to push his propaganda campaign via the MSM, the usual TV networks, Twitter, Facebook and donations to various Mayors, Senators, Congressmen “ charitable foundations” he languishing at 4% now he is at 15% and in some polls 20%. Despite being a misogynist, racist and bully, no one appears to be bothered. Sounds familiar, think Trump, think Johnson. Who said propaganda doesn’t work? Just look at how they turned a man who abhorred racism and violence into a ranting raving terrorist supporting racist in the U.K.!

  8. I’m backing Bird and the LRC slate – JB & Deborah Hobson – not mentioned in this poll.
    2 solid socialists & 2 fingers to bourgeois socialist top down, wheeler dealer, smoke filled rooms, Lansman!
    Of course we need to firmly get behind 2 or the Right with their consistent 2 get in.
    Oh and if Right Wing Neo-Liberal Starmer (member of the Neo-Liberal promoting Trilateral Commission global think tank) gets in, Labour will run to the centre, offer crumbs for working people, and could face political oblivion AND THERE WILL BE A PURGE OF THE LEFT.
    The Right via Starmer and centrists via political lightweight Nandy are pretending to be Left to reel in the more niave Corbyn voters and perhaps for the Right it’s “Slowly, slowly, catchey monkey.”
    I am voting RLB and Burgon.
    The last chance saloon for left wing democratic socialists in Labour to keep alive the dreams we had under JC.

    1. “The Right via Starmer and centrists via political lightweight Nandy are pretending to be Left to reel in the more naïve Corbyn voters and perhaps for the Right it’s “Slowly, slowly, catchey monkey.”

      Totally correct!

      And you could see the return to the shadow cabinet of the toxic trio:

      Benn, Cooper and Reeves.

  9. Another NEC by-election candidate suspended

    Another candidate in Labour’s national executive committee by-elections – Graham Durham – has been suspended from the party

    According to the JC, Durham criticised Rebecca Long-Bailey, saying: “She has been cuddling up to the Jewish Labour Movement and the Chief Rabbi, a well-known Tory. We should not be allowing that.”

    On Sunday, Durham tweeted: “I am not to my knowledge suspended but, whilst anti-racist to my core, I did call the Chief Rabbi a Tory ..are facts illegal now”.

  10. The statement isn’t even controversial – just a verifiable fact!

    Mirvis welcomed Johnson as Tory leader whilst confecting untruths about Corbyn.

    FFS – what incompetent or shill was responsible for this?

    1. At last somebody from Labour speaks out

      Extraditing Julian Assange would ‘damage UK’s democratic standing’ says John McDonnell
      The Shadow Chancellor compared the case of the WikiLeaks founder to that of the Dreyfus case. Speaking outside Belmarsh prison he said that Mr Assange was being “persecuted for political reasons, for simply exposing the truth for what went on in relation to recent wars”

  11. So much for the claim that Momentum somehow “control” Labour.

    They were made into a bogieman by the rightwing and though they have been very helpful in many ways, the idea that they have sway over the membership is clearly nonsense.

    1. I think that it’s important to distinguish between Momentum members and Lansman’s power plays.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: