Butler owns silenced Ellman for defending ‘white feminist’ Phillips

Black Labour woman MP demands Ellman substantiate smear – and the silence is deafening

Black Labour MP Dawn Butler has silenced right-wing horror Louise Ellman by demanding that Ellman substantiate a snide smear Ellman made in defence of the equally awful right-winger Jess Phillips.

Ms Butler, a regular target for racists, spoke at the weekend about the racism she and her family had suffered at the hands of MPs, police and others – and added information about the ‘orchestrated coup’ against her by white right-wing women among the parliamentary Labour party (PLP) to remove her as chair – long an open secret among Labour insiders:

In 2016, at the height of the factional fight to remove Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the Labour party, Butler, who was a close ally of Corbyn, received a request to produce a report collating everything she had done to date as chair of the Women’s Parliamentary Labour party. Butler does not know who was responsible for the request but, to her knowledge, it was the first time in the history of the Women’s PLP that a chair was asked to do so.

“And what was a report supposed to prove exactly? The played-out racial stereotype of laziness? As a Black woman, I am no stranger to hurdles appearing out of nowhere and having to go the extra mile to prove myself, but this assignment felt like a slap in the face,” Butler writes. Still, she asked a staff member to produce an 11-page, double-sided document.

Later, Butler writes, she found out that a coup to remove her as chair was being orchestrated by Harriet Harman and Jess Phillips, both of whom were critical of Corbyn’s leadership. According to Butler, the chair usually steps down after a conversation to agree a change and a “civil handover” after about two years. Butler had been doing the role for a year and believed she was doing the job well. She says that just before she went into a meeting, a whistleblower called and said they were coming for her. She writes that she found herself walking into an ambush.

“There were fake smiles and niceties at the meeting, although it felt more like an execution,” Butler writes. She noticed senior female figures from the House of Lords she hadn’t seen before. “I thought: ‘Wow, they really have gone through their address books to see who they could find to vote me out, when all they needed to do was ask. I would gladly have stepped down.” By the end of the meeting, Butler was out and Phillips had become the new chair.

How does Butler feel about that incident seven years later? “It was hurtful. Really, really hurtful. I really didn’t recognise the term white feminism until that time … But I understood and felt it then and it was painful because I thought we were in this struggle together, but obviously we’re not.

Dawn Butler on the ‘white feminist’ coup to remove her as women’s PLP chair

Ellman – the former Liverpool Riverside MP who quit in 2019 to deprive local party members of the chance of voting her out after her smears against them and the wider party – jumped in, smearing Butler and claiming that supposed ‘Labour’s anti-Jewish racism’ was only ‘finally’ taken when Phillips became chair:

Louise Ellman’s tweet failed badly, garnering only sixteen reposts in twelve hours online

Ms Butler, who is used to confronting police and others, so one ‘white feminist’ smearing to defend another was addressed head-on with a demand to substantiate her smear:

And for good measure, she demanded Ellman substantiate what actions Phillips was supposed to have taken:

More than six hours later, Ellman has provided zero response, let alone any substantiation or evidence – and at the time of writing her Twitter account had been completely dormant since the original smear.

Ms Butler was not the only one to point out Louise Ellman’s and Jess Phillips’s failings, as a few among many hundreds of examples in response to her badly ‘ratioed’ post show:

This is not, of course, Louise Ellman’s first problematic claim about supposed antisemitism. In 2018, to attack Jeremy Corbyn she claimed to be ‘appalled’ to ‘find out’ that Corbyn had attended a parliamentary event by Jewish Holocaust survivor Hajo Meyer – but Skwawkbox revealed that she had not only personally attended the event as well, but stayed at it far longer than the then-party leader.

Liverpool legend Audrey White was one of many left-wingers viciously and libellously smeared by the right-wing, pro-Israel ‘Jewish Chronicle’, in White’s case for, among other lies, supposedly bullying Ellman. The rag paid out ‘substantial’ damages for its ‘litany of lies’.

Ellman has also lobbied in Parliament for international assistance to be withheld from Palestinian schoolchildren and notoriously responded to the murder of dozens of unarmed protesters by Israeli forces by suggesting that they were probably ‘hiding guns knives in their clothing:

Jess Phillips, who unlike Butler skipped at least one MPs’ meeting to attend a party thrown by billionaire ‘Scum’ owner Rupert Murdoch, has been accused of Islamophobia infamously claimed to have told Britain’s first Black woman MP Diane Abbott to ‘fuck off’, laughing merrily with TV presenters who mocked Abbott’s voice, and is a big fan of hard-right Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg. She also giggled giddily when Labour lost the 2019 general election after her current boss doomed the party’s prospects by promising a further Brexit referendum.

As Skwawkbox revealed in 2018, Phillips also lost the confidence of Black MPs who blamed her for the ‘dangerous’ leak of information to the Daily Mail that they felt endangered a domestic abuse victim, saying that many of them were ‘very unhappy with her leadership and attitude’ and linking their unhappiness also to eager participation in the antisemitism ‘witch-hunt’ by right-wing, white women MPs.

Phillips has also been personally accused of ‘white feminism’ by others before Dawn Butler – a phenomenon that extends well into the liberal media. The BBC, putting together an analysis last year about abuse toward MPs, left out any mention of Black and brown-skinned women entirely, even though it is well known that Diane Abbott and other Black and Asian women MPs receive far more abuse than any others.

Labour suspended Diane Abbott for highlighting the Labour right’s hierarchy of racism – the party’s endemic impunity for racists and Islamophobes (and sex pests) has been ignored by the so-called ‘mainstream’ media but well documented by Skwawkbox and others. Whether Dawn Butler will face the same fate is not yet known, but in the public arena she certainly ‘owned’ the odious Ellman.

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