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Breaking: Labour finally suspends seven in connection with leaked report – including former campaigns head

Seven members have been suspended by the Labour Party in connection with the leaked report accusing a group of ‘moderate’ former headquarters staff of undermining the party’s electoral efforts and racism complaints, as well as abusing colleagues and MPs.

The identities of those suspended have not been disclosed, although the Times is reporting that one of those affected is the party’s former campaigns director Patrick Heneghan, who quit his role in September 2017, a few months after the ‘Corbyn surge’ that WhatsApp messages included in the report revealed had so horrified HQ staff who had been banking on electoral disaster to remove Jeremy Corbyn.

It is not yet clear whether all those suspended are people accused by the report or include those the party suspects of leaking it – Keir Starmer’s investigation announcement focused more on the creation and leaking of the report than on the events it described and the party has spent a six-figure sum on forensic computer specialists to try to identify the source of the leak.

Ian McNicol, the party’s former general secretary who featured prominently in the report, is not one of the seven. He resigned as the Labour whip in the Lords because of the investigation but remains a member.

Patrick Heneghan has been contacted for comment.

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34 comments

  1. Everything I’ve read for the last six months tells me I did the right thing in leaving.
    Keeping the membership in the dark over who in the party worked to cheat us out of its election victory is beneath contempt.
    What could be more insulting and offensive to every soul who trudges the streets canvassing for Labour and pays their subs than finding out there are traitors in high office making every step and every penny a complete waste – and that the new leader of ‘the party of the many’ doesn’t think that’s a problem?

      1. Doug, “the people” to whom you refer, of whom I’m one, need a government that works for them – not just a bunch of Quisling half-Tories that lied their way into a socialist party and decided to remake it in the image of the Tory party.
        Socialist members who rejoined for Corbyn shouldn’t be condemned – we’ve left because the current leadership betrayed us and the country.

        When Joe and Joan Public own a bit of a house they get scared of losing it and they turn a bit Tory – hence ‘right to buy’ – they apparently don’t notice that they’re no better off once the house has to pay for their care and they can’t leave it to the kids after all.
        We need socialism, not Tory scum that call themselves “Labour” while keeping their fingers firmly crossed and the red card hidden behind a bunch of credit cards.

        Half the PLP are only here because they used the wrong fork at the Tory selection dinner ffs.

      2. People need a transformational socialist government. Sadly that is not necessarily the same thing as a Labour government.

  2. I couldn’t agree more. Not just myself but all the people I persuaded it was worthwhile canvassing, leafleting and contributing again and again to requests for funds. And to discover that it was all misdirected and deliberately pissed up a wall by people within the party who deliberately sabotaged a win for the party they worked for. Perhaps the greatest political scandal of my 67 year lifetime and it’s being brushed under the carpet.

  3. As the above points out the 7 who have been suspended have already resigned from their jobs within the Labour Party so although this is a welcome move the reality is that these suspensions will have very little material impact on those that have been suspended.

    I want to see this process conclude with an open, authoritative and detailed report that is backed up by the forensic evidence. A report that names and shames those who have betrayed the party’s membership and the electorate. If any criminal activity is identified it should (without exception) be reported to the Police and/or other relevant bodies.

    If any current employees are found to have been involved in this treacherous behaviour they should face normal HR procedures. Anyone who’s behaviour warrants dismissal should be sacked, no soft options of being allowed to resign.

    1. I have just read an article in the Evening Standard and reading between the lines, perhaps some of the suspensions could be against whistle blowers.

      https://www.standard.co.uk/news/politics/labour-party-antisemitism-report-leaked-high-court-suspensions-a4474456.html

      It mentions a member of the staff taking the Party to court to get other people suspended too. So perhaps the suspension of Patrick Heneghan was as a direct result of MH taking the Party to Court? It would have looked bad to have MH suspended for blowing the whistle and not to suspend the rest, wouldn’t it?

  4. We know for a fact that one the groups driving the smears and the destruction of Labour’s electoral chances under Corbyn was the JLM, they should therefore be disaffiliated from the Party.

  5. Am I alone in thinking that party employees should be barred from membership? Officers will have any voting rights etc. in accordance with their status as appointed by conference. But with factionalism posing such a threat, surely it is a situation that is open to abuse whereby rank & file employees are able to manipulate the workings of the party towards a political end. There is no point in investigating and acting against those who have been proven to act against the party from within unless the mechanisms by which this can be achieved are also dismantled. (Right now my membership is hanging by a thread.)

  6. What has been done so far – the suspension of ex-staff, has only been done to pacify members, as Starmer and Co realise that something has to be done. However, they are not really dealing with the issue as that would mean really drastic and far reaching action. Having to tie links to JLM, Sack and expell people like Hodges, Blair, Waysonand others… Would/could also mean suspending Starmer. He is not likely to do anything that could rock his boat. And that is usually referred to as a white_wash.

  7. Thank you, well said. BAME members drifting away, including myself and a friend in another constituency. Our MP had the cheek to invite a BAME Officer to join her in taking the knee at group photo op last weekend yet refuses to even pretend to care about annexation of Palestinian land (which Hodge does now worry about as it damages Israel’s reputation and therefore hers) yet invited a critical BAME officer to accompany a Labour photo op ”taking the knee” to show solidarity in the ”fight against racism”. Hypocritical to say the least.

  8. Interesting to find out McNicol is not included. Even if the party is only acting upon the ‘let’s pretend we’re doing something about this.’ Surely these suspensions should have been announced months ago. Reading allegations this has only been revealed because a party or ex party member is taking them to court over the misuse of their subscriptions. Anyway we’re is the usual leak to the media that certain high profile members have been suspended. Oh yeah stupid me I forgot MSM at the moment have shown very little interest in this.

  9. You’ve linked it elsewhere Skwawk but Laura Smith’s piece in Tribune is all anyone really needs to know about why Labour lost so badly in December.

    The Labour Together report is long-winded obfuscation and fudge, which should come as no surprise since the organisation is run by Starmer’s chief of staff, Morgan McSweeney and its directors include Lisa Nandy and Trevor Chinn. McSweeney also founded the strangely named Center for Countering Digital Hate, who feature in the report (“analysis of the role of online outriders in the campaign commissioned from the Centre (sic) for Countering Digital Hate (CCDH)”). CCDH is run by Imran Ahmed, who was Angela Eagle’s head of communications during her disastrous coup attempt and most probably responsible for the “brickgate” story. CCDH has one patron, a certain Rachel Riley: the lunatics really have taken over the asylum.

    https://tribunemag.co.uk/2020/06/the-signs-were-ignored-in-the-red-wall

  10. Laura Smith said that the ‘red wall constituencies’ were ignored. To an extent she is correct, they were ignored by the Labour Remain campaign but they were certainly not ignored by Farage and UKIP. Farage targeted them with his Leave campaign as he did in many constituencies where voters had supported Labour out of habit rather than conviction. By doing this he was able with the help of far right Tories and Dominic Cummings, to swing the Brexit vote in his favour and against the interests of the country. By leaving the EU the world’s strongest trading group, we have deserted our European Socialist comrades and thrust ourselves and our NHS into the grasping arms of Trump and the far right nutters in the USA.

    1. JackT
      The EU left Europe when they shafted Greece
      Agreed there is an EU we can all sign up to but it doesn’t exist yet
      I am aware I’m contradicting my advice to Labour members, simple reason is we have the numbers in party to seize control and move forward if we have to,
      EU needs to lose neo liberalism before they can advance, I voted Leave to maintain standards and jobs and honour manifesto
      What Laura is saying clearly is we lost the moment we failed to honour the referendum,
      No matter we are in the right place for the financial pandemic with our own currency and independence then let’s see what rises from the ashes

      1. Doug, EU is not the neo-liberal bogey man you have been led to believe, certain elements of it no doubt are but that doesn’t detract from the overall benefits. What happened to Greece is just as much its own fault as it was the fault of the EU and IMF bankers.

        Contrary to what you say, we are now in a far worse position by leaving the EU. I’ve no time for the argument that ‘I was respecting democracy’. The British people were conned by the far right media and it’s not democracy to just go along with the herd. The Covid disaster has decimated our economy but on top of that we will now have to go scurrying around the world to replace the trade that leaving the EU will have cost us. Just to regain trade, we will be at the mercy of the US and others who realise far more than some of our politiucians do, just how badly off we are. Watch how the EU will recover at a far faster rate than us. Leaving the EU was a disaster of immense proportions and Covid will show it.

  11. Far right wing nuts
    Are with us in the short term and it is dangerous to underestimate how low they will go, 2019 GE was bought
    Change the language
    Racist, white Peoples party is robbing the 95% blind

  12. Keir is slowly balancing the books
    I was taught you dont have to like the people you work with, it’s all about doing what it takes to get job done, as for those who woke up every morning working against the party
    Starting with Blair, get them out of the party

    1. Doug, when the person ‘balancing the books’ is also the person who has been cooking them, we can have little confidence in what Starmer does.

      1. JackT
        Care not a jot about Keir or what others think of him, quietly he appears to be playing some of the notes in the right order

    2. Well that stupid comment of yours , “hes slowly balancing the books” just about sums up your version of the Labour party.Your mask has slipped,but I never much cared for your veiws any more than I would the knight of the realm.You both piss in the same pot.

      1. I’m from the T Dan school of politics, I dont give a flying fuck how we get there as long as we get there
        To many people desperately need a Labour government
        Joseph you and your purity want shoved up a dogs arse and the dog cremated

  13. Doug, I too want a Labour government but I also want it to be a Socialist government. Honestly, do you really think that Starmer is a Socialist and any government led by him would be Socialist? There is an argument that any Labour government is better than a Tory government but I think Blair disproved that view.

    1. The purists on here are part of the problem not the solution
      All Labour governments are good, some may be better than others, but they are all infinitely preferable to any Cheap and Nasty Tory government

      1. “Preferable” yes, “infinitely” no. Any difference between Starmer and any other Tory is marginal if it exists at all, but I’ll always vote Labour.
        To give our kids any kind of future we have to reverse the torrent of (mostly unearned) wealth flowing ‘upward’ to the 1% – the opposite direction to that which capitalists claim justifies their privilege, ie that wealth ‘trickles down’ from them to us.
        Not only do those who call themselves “centrists” have no plans to redistribute wealth, they fully accept capitalism as the only workable system and are therefore obliged to accept the ever-burgeoning wealth gap.
        Except for the magic money tree Covidia Extremensis newly-discovered in the garden at Threadneedle Street where it had been hiding all along – but which will coincidentally turn back into a Labour fairy story the moment Covid is over or Labour wins a general election, whichever comes first, we’d be starving.
        Either we have real, actual socialism soon or our grandkids will still be ‘paying our debts’ to the grandkids of the 1% for a hundred years – this despite the fact that they’re not the ones losing out here, we are.

  14. Are you the socialist party of Great Britain or the Great British Socialist party, take me to your leader Mr W Smith
    Keep it simple what do we nationalise and what do we regulate,
    Anything else is you lot entertaining yourselves in public

  15. Doug, forget the name calling, I am no longer a member of any party. If you are a member of the Labour Party look at the back of your membership card. It says that the LP is a democratic Socialist Party. Starmer is neither of those things and is in the Party by deceit, do you want Labour to be led by such a person, someone who conspired to get rid of Jeremy Corbyn?

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