Analysis Breaking

‘Disrespectful’ Leadbeater pulls out of Batley/Spen hustings at last minute

Labour candidate criticised by chair for last-minute decision after previously confirming attendance

Labour candidate Kim Leadbeater has been criticised as ‘disrespectful’ by the chair of tonight’s Batley and Spen by-election hustings for pulling out at the last minute – after her attendance had earlier been confirmed.

The chair told the audience, which included many Muslim voters, that Leadbeater – and her Tory equivalent – had dropped out with only half an hour before the hustings was scheduled to begin and that when ‘every vote counts’ in the by-election, he considered this a sign of disrespect:

Keir Starmer – who has described himself as an ‘unequivocal’ supporter of Israel – has attempted in the last two PMQs to convince Batley and Spen’s 20% Muslim population that he is in favour of Palestinian statehood, but without actually calling for it to be recognised.

Now his efforts to appeal to – some might say ‘fool’ – the constituency’s Muslims look to have been undone by a show of disrespect by the candidate, who dropped out rather than turn up to face the one opponent who did attend.

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    1. …. how many were there in the audience, Were those who stayed suitably impressed by Galloway’s eloquence

      1. Idiot steve H..Anyone who watched Galloway tear apart a senate hearing over the lunatic Iraqi war would realise that George Galloway is eloquent and nobodys fool.The Labour party would not be in the gutter had he and many other talanted and tough mps that were screwed by media and the Labour party.

      2. Joseph – How many years ago was that, his more recent outings have been less than successful. As I’ve said elsewhere on this page Galloway is yesterday’s man hankering after his glory days..

      3. Steve H, I am not keen on George Galloway, I found him a bit of a demagogue. However, in all fairness he is an excellent speaker.
        No wonder that both the Tory and Labour candidates didn’t attend. I am not going to be surprised if neither fancy the challenge to attend a hustings with Galloway, found the prospect terrifying and decided to cancel.
        I guess that among the audience those left leaning or Muslims would have been impressed by Galloway. No the Tories though, even Muslim Tories would vote Tory no matter how impressed they were by Galloway.
        The loser here was without a doubt Leadbeater, Although, it can be argue that perhaps she would have lost more votes by attending, as depending on her skills as speaker. Gallaway could have landed blow after blow and the effect could have been devastating.

      4. I do wonder though how many were in attendance at this meeting. I’m guessing if there had been hundreds in attendance then we would have been told.

    1. Why would you say that? After this- and now that we know that essentially no Muslims in the constituency will vote Labour now- there is a good chance that Galloway could make a massively stronger showing in the constituency than previously expected. GIven that Leadbeater is the disaster here, given that she has done irreparable damage to Labour’s chances in the by-election, what have you got to mock Galloway about here at all?

      And I ask that as a person who would never VOTE for George Galloway.

      1. Why would you presume that others are stupid enough to be taken in when you weren’t. The voters in Bradford were quickly disappointed with him. Galloway has nothing positive to offer anyone in the constituency. He’s just a Tory enabler.
        Contrary to what you claim there is a lot of respect for Kim in the Asian community. I have known several families who live in the constituency for many years and they regard GG as a sad joke and those that follow him as gullible idiots.

      2. “I have known several families who live in the constituency for many years and they regard GG as a sad joke and those that follow him as gullible idiots.”
        Ah well, that’s explained everything. ‘Several families’ (note, not several voters) who know centrist dad (I can only imagine) share his opinion (he must have contacted them specially). Batley and Spen denounce George Galloway.

      3. lundiel – I have absolutely no idea what is going on in your mind. What are you trying to imply.
        Is there a reason why you are hiding behind innuendo If you’ve got something to say then say it

      4. …Galloway has nothing positive to offer anyone in the constituency. He’s just a Tory enabler…

        Sounds like your idol to me.

      5. NVLA – You are the one stupid enough to be singing his praises.

      6. I agree that Galloway has little to offer-which is why it is an indictment of Labour’s horrible strategy in Batley that the man was able to take over 20% of the vote. If Labour hadn’t insisted on going out of its way to distance itself from Muslim voters, if the party hadn’t slandered Muslim voters by falsely accusing them of not opposing AS-a prejudice the overwhelming majority of Muslims in the UK oppose as passionately as anyone else- if Keir had not acted as if AS was a massive problem but Islamophobia is somehow trivial- Galloway would have lost his deposit.

      7. kenburch – What prompted you to suddenly comment about an evil f’wit like Galloway on a post that is 3 weeks old.

  1. SteveH
    Geordie Galloway plus John Berrow plus Jeremy Corbyn equals Centrist oblivion, its called democracy

    1. Doug -This is what a descent into pointless oblivion looks like

      2012 Bradford West by-election Bradford West Respect 55.9%
      2015 general election Bradford West Respect – 21.2%
      2016 London mayoral election Respect – 1.4%
      2017 general election Manchester Gorton Independent – 5.7%
      2019 general election West Bromwich East Independent 489 – 1.4%
      2021 Scottish Parliament election South Scotland All For Unity – 1.5%
      2021 Batley and Spen by-election Batley and Spen Workers Party of Britain ???

      Admittedly he had a high point nearly a decade ago but it only took a couple of years for Bradford West’s constituents to realise he was just so much empty rhetoric. Since then his trajectory has been consistently downwards. George Galloway has nothing positive to offer the people of Batley, or anywhere else.

      Jeremy losing 60 seats must have scared the shit out of the Tories.

      1. LOL @Centrist Dad.

        Galloway is an excellent orator. He also far more relevant than you’ll be in your dreams. I’m happy to admit it’s always been about George, but I can forgive him after shredding, no eviscerating the yanks at their Iraq inquest.

        Hang on a minute, shouldn’t you be using your oratory skills elsewhere? Mr.Stonger won’t be here for much more and I’m sure you’ve become quite accustomed to the taste.

        Off you fuck

      2. Galloway is the greatest orator since Tony Benn, with the added advantage of still being alive and able to hammer the final nail into Keith’s forensic coffin! 😛😂

      3. SteveH
        One plus One plus One equals Five
        Its called Synergy
        Its when you actually believe in something worthwhile

      4. steveh “Jeremy losing 60 seats must have scared the shit out of the Tories.

        Im think yo will find that it was Si Keir Pasok Stamer wo lost 60 seats for Jeremy.

      5. That’s right, Galloway’s last two showings scored less than 2%.
        Now, what was Starmer’s last showing (in Amersham)?
        I forget.

      6. Nobody here is a member of The George Galloway Fan Club, SteveH.

        All anybody has said is that Leadbeater’s unwillingness to go to this event- probably because she’d heard of the quote in which a senior Labour staffer claimed that Muslims didn’t like Keir because they supposedly don’t approve of his efforts to address the massive AS problem Labour has never had, and therefore implicitly accused every Muslim in Bately & Old Spen and probably every Muslim in the UK as well of being antisemites and realised she’d be booed off the stage- which, admittedly, would be personally unfair to Leadbeater since she had nothing to do with that indefensibly stupid, remark having been made.

        The only other thing anybody else here was saying is that, thanks to the Labour Right stupidity of that absurdly bigoted and slanderous remark there was a good chance Galloway could make a much stronger showing than expected- not that he personally deserved to, but that he probably would in spite of himself- and that it is now virtually certain that Labour will lose a by-election it should have been able to count on winning in a walk.

        What is so inadmissable about either of those things, Steve?

      7. Er, I am! The Workers Party might well be getting my Labour subs soon…

      8. Sorry, should’ve said that last comment was a reference to “Nobody here is a member of The George Galloway Fan Club”

  2. Well that puts paid to her statement about ‘really caring ‘ about the place and its people.Brilliant own-goal.

      1. You can’t see your unwelcome here either.


        A text book example of “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

      2. NVLA – I don’t really care what you think, its not your blog.

      3. timfrom – I’ve never claimed it is, unlike you I’m not presumptuous enough to try and dictate who should and shouldn’t comment on here.

  3. Ha ha, what ever anyone thinks of Galloway he would have shredded his oponents, I’m sure the inexperienced Ms Leadbeater was directed from high up not to engage with him.

    1. What on earth were the powers-that-be thinking when they imposed a political novice as candidate in this bye-election?
      I have to admit that my life changed infinitely for the better when I learned about the subtle art of rhetorical questions………….!

  4. As much as I dislike him, Galloway would shred most MP’s in any husting. His Middle East knowledge is without equal and he’ll take enough votes off Labour to seal Starmer’s fate. Good.

    1. baz2001 – The problem is that as the people of Bradford quickly realised rhetoric is all he has to offer. You might have a valid point if you could name a credible replacement. As it is you’re a bit like GG just a Tory enabling wrecker without anything positive to offer.

      1. SteveH
        Tory enabling wreckers
        Sounds like the internal report
        Red Tories are in the wrong party, off you must fuck

      2. There you go again SteveH getting nasty and personal. Nice try though I’ll admit. So glad that your idol Keith is about to go up in flames and your piss is boiling….Keep trying to polish the turd though.

      3. Steve H, what Starmer has to offer to the people of Batley & Spen? At least, Galloway is an entretaining speaker rather than a “forensic” bore.
        I don’t see Galloway wining the seat. But what I can see is a lot of former Labour’s voters no bothering to go to the polling station.

      4. Maria – The question is how many could be bothered to go and listen to him.

      5. Steve, do you honestly believe that Galloway could have been stopped from making the showing he did in Batley & Old Spen if only those who comment on Skwawkbox had joined you in denying it was possible that he could make it? It wasn’t cheerleading for the man just to point out that it was likely that running an Islamophobic campaign in a heavily Muslim constituency was likely to damage Labour’s chances. If Keir drives all the Corbyn supporters away AND drives all the Muslim voters away, those losses essentially make it impossible for Labour to make any significant gains at the next GE-no one will even come in to match those lost numbers, let alone to exceed them by a margin large enough to get Labour with sixty or seventy seats of a one-seat plurality. They’re simply aren’t any large groups of voters anywhere in the UK who are impressed by Keir’s war against left-wingers OR his embrace of small-town bigotry and xenophobia.

      6. kenburch – Is there a reason why you had a sudden compulsion to comment about an evil f’wit like Galloway on a post that is 3 weeks old.

  5. Skwawkbox provides an essential service to left but why did not it provide any opportunity to comment on Howard Beckett’s disastrous error of judgement to throw in the towel for the Unite gen sec. Labour Left Alliance has already banned me for criticising all the centre left who nagged him into this destroying the left’s last chance of a national voice and setting an fatal precedent for future FPTP elections. The left has cut it’s own throat. Given Skwawkbox’s earlier coverage I suspect it shares my opinion but is too embarrassed by Howard to allow anyone to voice it.

    1. I share your disappointment Rita, but we don’t know what information Beckett was getting back about members voting intentions. The Labour far right, like the Tories always get their vote out, and with the tabloids joining in the attack Tory union members might vote, and the Left vote split, we could actually have seen the disgraceful Coyne elected. It is a pity Beckett was the one who had to do the right thing, but like I said, he would have a better idea of members voting intentions than us. We must hold Turner to the promises he has made, as far as we can.

  6. I think you’ll find that it’s Starm-Trooper who’s the Tory enabling wrecker.
    You can’t blame Galloway for the Hartlepool and Amersham fiascos.
    I wish I had an MP like Galloway.
    Respect to the man …. and Good luck to him.
    My sympathies to the Labour candidate Ms Leadbeater – She’s been fitted up with a poisoned chalice sure-enough.

    1. Far from being ‘fitted up’ , leadbeater was shoehorned into the candidacy by the geniuses, despite not meeting the eligibility rules to stand.

      I’ve no sympathy for her, but rather for more suitable candidates who met those criteria.

  7. This is the BBC’s take on Becket’s withdrawal –
    …….’So the Labour leadership will be relieved the Unite assistant general secretary is out of the running.

    But Mr Beckett was also under huge pressure to step aside from many on the Left – not least Mr McCluskey.

    The outgoing Unite boss hosted a series of “behind-closed-doors” negotiations with the three Left candidates – Steve Turner, Sharon Graham and Mr Beckett……….

      1. That’s been my gut response based on her reactionary denial of politics in trade union context. I’d appreciate any info/links you can supply. Thanks.

  8. SteveH if you new anybody that lives in Batley like you say you do you would have sent then to pick some leaflets up that we were distributing for GG and anyone but Labour. you wanted proof which we had now lets see if you can prove to us that you reaily do no anyone who lives in Batley and send them to have a chat with us at Dick’y GYM just ask for Brian

    1. I predict tumbleweeds for you Brian. Kudos to you challenge.

      Boxing gym or regular keep fit? Just curious as my one lad does boxing.

      1. As I recall this started off me requesting a link to the brochures they were distributing. I made no comments about proving anything As I don’t live in the area I simply wanted to be able to read what they had to say online. Not an unreasonable request in this digital age.
        I’m a little surprised that they haven’t published them on their website.

  9. Becketts future has been guaranteed by showing a selfless stepping down from the unite election.The morning star applauds his brave decission and we all know that his future must be in Westminster politics.

    1. Too right. We need him in a position where he can run for Labour leader as soon as humanly possible!

    2. The Star/CP rarely supports any radical left, preferring the mainstream conservative ‘left’ so that’s not new just CP business as usual.

      If we do not know what was said neither do so is irrelevant and cannot be used by anyone!

      The TV plan could so easily turn into a poisoned chalice. Tunion past history on this is of embarrassing failures.

      Accepting the turner argument sets a deadly precedent where any radical left rules itself out of all FPTP elections if there is a viable right and a conservative left. Radicals will be ‘splitting’ the left vote so never stand! That’s the trap we’ve walked into eyes wide open

    3. Is HB destined to become just the latest hero of ‘the left’ to fall by the wayside in the quest to find a credible leader for your new ‘socialist’ party

    4. Joseph, I will vote for Beckett for leader of the Labour Party.
      Beckett just need a safe labour seat to stand at the next GE (possibly 2023) and when Starmer is forced to resign after the electoral disaster, Beckett could get enough support from the SCG within the PLP to stand for the leadership plus he will get the support of every single Trade Union. It would be unstoppable with Turner by his side.

  10. He’s a real nowhere man sitting in his nowhere land making all his nowhere plans for nobody. Isn’t this your theme tune oh troll of trolls SteveH?

      1. Which is why it was so incalculably stupid of anybody on Starmer’s staff to help Galloway and destroy Leadbeater’s chances by claiming that UK Muslims OPPOSE the fight against AS. Do YOU “recognise the problem as well”, Steve?

        Nobody here is campaigning for Galloway. All anyone here has said is that it was stupid of Labour to help the man. Agreed?

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