Analysis Breaking comment

‘Unsustainable’ – Cat Smith quits Shadow Cabinet over Corbyn whip remaining withdrawn

Cat Smith has resigned as Shadow Secretary of State for Young People and Democracy, despite attempts by Keir Starmer to keep her in the position and in Labour’s Shadow Cabinet. Smith’s letter of resignation states that she wishes to focus more time on her constituency, having been on the back benches for only four months in her more than six years as an MP.

But her letter also makes clear that her dissatisfaction with Starmer’s ‘unsustainable’ determination to keep Jeremy Corbyn out of the parliamentary Labour party (PLP) is a major factor in her decision to resign:

Smith had been due to meet Starmer to discuss the issue and, as her brief on the front bench merits, wanted to discuss not only the lack of due process in Starmer’s actions but also the massive damage he has caused to Labour on the front lines. Starmer’s lack of support for proportional representation is also cited as an issue.


True to form, the former right-wing MP Michel Dugher jumped in to try to defend Starmer – and didn’t appear to have bothered reading her letter, since he claimed Starmer had sacked her when he had in fact tried to keep her. But Smith took him down in style:

Skwawkbox view:

The last traces of any quality are rapidly evaporating from Keir Starmer’s front bench. But the idea of a shadow minister for democracy in Starmer’s Labour is a sick joke in any case. ‘War on democracy’, yes, but democracy – not a chance.

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    1. Let’s hope so Paul! It’s possible that the successor party doesn’t even exist yet*.

      “You don’t have to take what you’re given.You don’t have to live without power and without hope. Things can, and they will change” – Jeremy Corbyn

      * – as a political party 😀

  1. Regarding Cat Smith’s resignation letter .. this is the crucial part:

    ” … how much damage this is Causing in Constituency Parties and among ordinary members, a number of whom are no longer campaigning ..”

    Now Labour MPs NEED these campaig ning members to
    survive – so if this does not make them think I despair ..

    1. HollyFanMW, it’s certainly the case that there is panic in the ranks of local councillors who are seeing loyal CLP members giving up on campaigning since Starmer became Boris 2.0. There’s going to be awful lot of Labour councillors fretting over their cushy number they’ve had for decades as probably the Greens or FibDems target their seats. Conservative councillors are putting in a huge effort in areas that Labour councillors don’t have any time for. May elections are going to be awful for Labour.

    2. HolbyFanMw
      I read recently Starmer and his supporters have got it into their heads that they can operate like the Tories whose membership is lower than Labour’s. So they don’t need to rely upon lots of members/supporters who are willing to canvass for the party to win elections.

      1. Then they are even stupider than I thought – it was notable how
        much campaigning the Lib Dems did in order to increase
        support .. and it worked.

        AS for comment above about the “cushy number” for
        Labour Councillors the ones I know work very hard for their
        Communities and will be badly hit by resignations of previously
        enthusiastic supporters as well as “work to rule” of others.

  2. Sir Establishment is just getting rid of anyone remotely sympathetic to socialism now. Cat Smith comes across as too honest. too principled and too personable for Starmer’s nasty pretend Labour outfit anyway.

    The sooner Labour members ‘rm -rf Starmer’ the better.

    1. Cat Smith’s four word put down is certainly subtle and to the point.

      Dugher’ and his phone aren’t just ‘dis’ (telephone engineer slang for disconnected) one leg. That’s an earth fault if ever I saw one.

      Nerve to brain cell. Come in Michael!

  3. At what stage does the left react to Red Tories Scorched Earth policy
    Party bankrupted and unelectable, they did their best under New Labour

  4. Yes, but it’s not enough to walk away. Those councillors and MPs who know people are refusing to work for Labour need to be given a bigger shock. If you live in a Labour ward or constituency, select a workable area, produce your own flyers or news sheet, and shove them through letterboxes, week in week out. The message will soon get through. If we just give in, Starmer will celebrate. If we fight back by telling potential Labour voters how bad he is and how democracy in the Party has been shut down, it will sow panic. How many of us are there, nationwide? Say, modestly, 10,000. If we each put out 100 flyers a week, which is easy, that’s a million a week. It works.

  5. Sorry but 🐱cats not got the cream in running back to Lancashire thinking that it will sort itself out.Starmer is far from the only problem in the Labour party and we all know that the party is infected top to bottom and the gesture politics as come too late for the Labour party to be a functioning Opposition party let alone a Government in waiting.Theres about twenty socialists amongst the mps and of course jeremy as an independent…The majority who voted in the leadership election voted for Starmer and although a few regret decision it doesn’t make any difference because the Labour party is no longer a voice for the working-class or the vunerable.and is just another establishment party for the neo liberal alliance.

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