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Exclusive: ‘deceit and betrayal’ – the full, powerful letters to Starmer from councillors who quit Labour

“You have committed the ultimate act of betrayal and I cannot forgive you, in the same way I could never forgive the S*n”. Three East Hants councillors quit party in disgust at Starmer – their explosive letters of resignation show their anger at his S*n column and much more

Cllrs Paula Langley and Gideon Cristofoli, main pic, and Stephen Dolan (inset)

Three East Hampshire councillors have resigned from the Labour party in disgust over Keir Starmer’s appalling decision to become a S*n hack last weekend.

But the full resignation letters of Paula Langley, Gideon Cristofoli and Stephen Dolan reveal that their resignations were also driven by Starmer’s litany of dishonesty and attacks on democracy to ‘drain the life and soul’ from the once-great party, of which Starmer writing for the Murdoch rag was simply the ‘ultimate’ and ‘final’ act of ‘deceit and betrayal’.

Paula Langley

Langley wrote (emphases added):

I was elected in 2018 to represent Alton Eastbrooke at East Hampshire District Council.  I was the first ever Labour Councillor for my ward and the first at EHDC since the 1970’s. I was followed by Stephen Dolan for Alton Wooteys and my husband, Gideon Cristofoli, for Alton Town Council.  This was a historic night for Alton Labour; in the Conservative heartlands we took 3 local seats by persuading many residents, who had never voted Labour before, to put their faith in us and the truly hopeful Labour manifesto that had just been produced. 

I was inspired by that manifesto because it offered people a future that was fairer, more balanced.  It inspired me to get involved with my community, set up a community bus, volunteer at the Community Cupboard and set up and run a Mutual Aid group during lockdown that had over 150 volunteers from all areas of our town. It inspired me to stand and get elected and I was so proud to represent a party who talked about the many, not the few.

During your leadership campaign you made promises to people like me that you have now broken.  More worryingly,  you seem determined to rid the party of people like me – committed members who are doing good things in the name of the Labour Party up and down the country – just because we once campaigned and were inspired by a different leader.

During your campaign you promised the people of Liverpool, my home town, and the party’s most loyal base, that you wouldn’t talk to The S*n.  That indicates to me that you fully understand why we deplore that paper and all it represents.  Anyone who lived in Liverpool at the time of Hillsborough can never forget what that paper said, just 4 days after that most horrific of days, whilst we still grieved our dead friends and family.  As a Liverpool fan who lost a 17 year old friend, what they did was beyond unforgivable.  The fact it took 28 years for them to admit they were wrong is even more distressing.

But it’s not just about Hillsborough.  There are many communities that The S*n has made feel abused, over many decades.  There has been a positive campaign that has spread beyond Merseyside, asking people not to buy The S*n and newsagents not to stock it.

By choosing to write for this paper, and it was a choice, you have done several things. You have legitimised the kind of ‘news’ this paper reports, despite knowing the pain they have caused to millions. You have said what they do and the lies they have told are ok.  You have said to the people of Liverpool, and all those affected by Hillsborough, that, despite understanding their grief and their suffering, you are prepared to court the instigators of that pain.  You have legitimised headlines that most of us find deplorable.

I want to remind you what the paper wrote in the aftermath of Hillsborough when the truth was that fans had been responsible for saving lives whilst the police stood in a line and watched. This is what my 18 year old self had to read.

Under the headline “The Truth” there were three subheadings:

Some fans picked pockets of victims 
Some fans urinated on the brave cops 
Some fans beat up PCs giving the kiss of life

The story read as follows: “Drunken Liverpool fans viciously attacked rescue workers as they tried to revive victims of the Hillsborough soccer disaster, it was revealed last night.

“Police officers, firemen and ambulance crew were punched, kicked and urinated upon by a hooligan element in the crowd. 

“Some thugs rifled the pockets of injured fans as they were stretched out unconscious on the pitch.

“Sheffield MP Irvine Patnick revealed that in one shameful episode a gang of Liverpool fans noticed that the blouse of a girl trampled to death had risen above her breasts.

“As a policeman struggled in vain to revive her, the mob jeered: ‘Throw her up here and we will **** her'”

Imagine being part of that day and then reading this, printed as truth. Imagine you have just identified the body of your child or been a fan who gave CPR or tried to pull people up to the stands above. Imagine anyone willing to believe that you could behave like this whilst witnessing such horror.

Imagine having to wait 28 years before anyone said sorry.

I cannot understand why you would or could choose to write for the paper that was prepared to do this.

It is because of this I am no longer able to stay in the party under your leadership because to me, your morality and integrity are forever flawed.  I cannot stay as I feel to do so would be to accept your actions.   You have committed the ultimate act of betrayal and I cannot forgive you, in the same way I could never forgive the S*n.

I understand those that want to stay and fight for change and I admire their tenacity. They will always have my support and solidarity.  I hope for the day I feel able to rejoin under a leader who would never find it acceptable to write for such press and who can unite us all, providing the hope we need once again.

Stephen Dolan

Dolan, also born on Merseyside, told Starmer:

Keir Starmer.
cc David Evans

I am resigning from the Labour Party because of your betrayal of the Labour Party values. Reneging on the ten pledges mentioned in the leadership election, pledges used to get so much of the membership that had voted in the previous election to trust you and vote for you. This made me extremely uncomfortable and questioned your character and moral compass.

Attempting to unilaterally change the leadership voting process strengthened these thoughts. But the final act of betrayal carried out by you that sealed the deal was yet to come.

I am a 49 year old man born and raised in Bootle, Merseyside. I am proud of where I come from, the place that helped shape me. I remember the aftermath of Hillsborough locally within families, at school and across the entire community. I will never forget how that day was portrayed by The S*n.

You have let the party down and tarnished its reputation. This party is supposed to encourage a spirit of solidarity, tolerance and respect. How does that tally with The S*n? I struggle to comprehend why you would ever think that writing for them would be seen as acceptable by the members of the party. I am disgusted that you did so.

As an East Hampshire District Councillor I am passionate about putting forward strong, progressive, socialist ideas to improve the lives of the people of my ward and beyond. The people of my ward chose to vote in a Labour councillor for the first time I believe in over 40 years. I will continue to push for Socialist changes to society. I am disappointed that the Labour Party under your leadership no longer wants to do the same.

Gideon Cristofoli

And Cristofoli added:

To Keir Starmer.
cc David Evans

I am hereby resigning from the Labour Party. I am a town councillor who along with my wife became the first labour candidates to ever win in our ward in Alton. We are resigning together along with Cllr Stephen Dolan.

Since you took over as Leader you have drained the life and soul from what was a passionate party with the strong belief that we could have a better society. I have felt deceived and betrayed by your words and actions.

You made ten pledges to the members to win the leadership election which you clearly have no intention of honouring. You have muzzled discussion and debate at CLPs and as a result membership attendance has dropped by over 75%.

‘A disgrace and a weapon of evil’

His letter continues:

The final act that has driven me to resign is your legitimising the S*n by writing an article for them. This tabloid is a disgrace and a weapon of evil. Its appalling lies in the aftermath of Hillsborough broke hearts and destroyed lives. It has continued to hound celebrities to suicide and harass those in terrible grief.

I will continue to work for a better society and continue with my many community projects outside the party as a true principled socialist.JFT97

Cllr Gideon Cristofoli
Alton Town Council (Eastbrooke)

Cristofoli serves on the town council, while Paula Langley and Stephen Dolan – who both grew up on Merseyside – were Labour’s only representatives on East Hants District Council. As a result of Starmer’s deceit and betrayal and his attacks on democracy and freedom of speech, Labour now has no representation – a mirror of the collapse he has driven in other parts of the country.

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    1. I don’t know. East Hampshire sounds like solid Tory country to me so it’s not like they could make a difference. Too many have left now and Starmer’s gone way beyond what is repairable. The only hope for Labour now is for a quick change to someone who will bring reconciliation to the party and it doesn’t look like that will happen before Labour loses the next election. By which time it will be far to late.

      1. Labour needs to die. There is no one capable of reconciliation. Think of all those right wingers out there. We saw with Corbyn. There is no magic left and right figure to achieve this.

        The right of labour has made their bed and they are going to sleep in it and own it too!

  1. And I am so pleased to see the Home counties wading in with a bit of plain English language,not pussyfooting because it is too important for the whole working-class movement that Starmer doesnt walk away unscathed for supporting a scum newspaper that descibed ordinary people of defiling dead bodys and robbing and sexually assaulted the dead..Scum Labour leader and a Scum comic are only fit for the trash can.

  2. Starmer is a proven liar, who will do anything to get elected including stabbing his own colleagues in the back. He obviously took the view of a Sun claim “It’s the Sun wot won it” seriously, the man has no political nous.
    We find that The Sun’s endorsements were associated with a significant increase in readers’ support for Labour in 1997, approximately 525,000 votes, and its switch back was associated with about 550,000 extra votes for the Conservatives in 2010.
    In 1997, The Sun newspaper’s endorsement of Labour increased support by 7% points.
    In 2010, The Sun’s endorsement of the Conservatives increased support by 15% points.

  3. Excellent! Another three Letters of Resignation, to add to Stephen Smith’s Letter of Resignation.

    All four letters eloquent, heartfelt and to-the point. Thank you, all.

    I doubt if Starmer – or Evans – will have the personal qualities to understand the points you make. They have, neither, the sensibilities, nor, the sensitivities, to understand those very well-made points.

    1. Reply to George Peel – Starmer and Evans will understand the points Stephen made – they just couldn’t care less.

  4. Mmmm. Harry -That data could indicate that the editorial team is adept at spotting which way the wind is blowing.

  5. Nice one Wirrelitogether…hope you have sent him a Copy of your investigative journalism.My condolences to the people of Wirral with such a scum reader as leader….which back up your comments on “local knowledge” .I must congratulate your daughter for the description…of the scum reader.

  6. I wish Keir Starmer had one hundredth of the integrity and decency these Councillors have. These good genuine Labour people have been (like so many others) driven out of the Labour party by an unscrupulous leader who is willing to drag the party into the gutter by writing for and thereby associating himself and us with The S*n, instigate a purge of Socialists particularly Jewish Socialists and non Zionists, abolish democracy in the party, proscribe organisations, ban debate and break the pledges he made in order to get elected. These actions are done brazenly and are in the public domain. Given this I dread to think what this shameless man is plotting secretly. I would put nothing past him – he’s capable of anything.

  7. A Scum headline from May 1982: “GOTCHA. Our lads sink gunboat and hole cruiser”. No mention that 40% of the Argentine Navy were conscripts. So roughly 130 sailors were pressed into dying on the Belgrano, but sold as ‘patriots’ by Galtieri. “STICK IT UP YOUR JUNTA” was another infamous one. Thatcher NEVER criticised this junta – nor Chile’s Pinochet – for torturing, disappearing and murdering their own people in their thousands prior to the Falklands invasion. You now have to wonder whether Starmer also has a sneaking admiration for blood drenched tyrants like these.

    1. I remember it. Wasn’t the Belgrano sailing away from the Islands when it was sunk? And Pinochet let us use a military airbase as a jump-off point which made him Thatcher’s best friend.

      1. Yes. And I think she admired this fascist long before then following 9/11, 1973, when Socialist Allende was put to the sword with British sourced weapons, which was followed by lucrative military aircraft and arms deals.

  8. Starmer is doing everything in his power to turn away socialists from the party! He is hell bent on having disillusioned Tory voters on board. Every move he makes proves it.

  9. A message to Sir Keir that echoes what Paula Langley said & imagine what a fan who tried to give CPR unsuccessfully feels. I didn;t feel anything after Hillsborough, no nightmares, non problems. I thought it hadn’t touched me but now, some 30years later & Sir Keir Starmer has opened the door as I woke up one morning recently with a strange taste on my lips & wondered if I had been blowing air into a corpse that was still warm. No Sir Keir, Jesus would never forgive what you do.

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