The Labour party have now published the final MP Leadership nominations. Unsurprisingly, change candidate Keir Starmer walked it. The real news is that Clive Lewis dropped out and change candidate Lisa Nandy came a strong third. Emily Thornberry managed to get the level of support (at least 22 votes) needed to reach the next stage.
The next stage is for Starmer, Nandy, Phillips and Long-Bailey to receive nominations from at least (a) 5% of CLPs or (b) 3 affiliates (at least 2 of which shall be trade union affiliates) comprising 5% of fully paid up affiliated membership as of the 31st December 2019. Assuming they manage this, all 4 will be put to a vote of members, registered supporters and affiliates. A key challenge for the three change candidates (Starmer, Nandy & Phillips) at that stage will be to ensure their support use their 2nd and 3rd preference votes for other change candidates.
The Deputy Leadership contest is also wide open with 5 candidates reaching the next stage: Rosena Allin Khan (23 votes), Richard Burgon (22)
Dawn Butler (29), Ian Murray (34) & Angela Rayner (88).
What is interesting is how the Deputy Leadership vote split. The chart below shows that most candidates gained votes from MPs supporting a wide range of Leaderships candidates. The exception to this is Richard Buregon – he failed to get support from many MPs outside Long-Bailey’s camp – the people that voted for both were: Andy McDonald, Apsana Begum, Bell Ribeiro-Addy, Beth Winter, Claudia Webbe, Dan Carden, Diane Abbott, Grahame Morris, Ian Byrne, Ian Lavery, Ian Mearns, Imran Hussain, John McDonnell, Jon Trickett, Kate Osborne, Mary Foy, Rachel Hopkins, Zarah Sultana. If a Deputy Leader is unable to reach out, this must surely raise concerns about unity within the parliamentary group?
The situation for the leadership candidates is a little better (see below), but Long-Bailey does rely heavily on support from those backing Burgeon along with a small group of Rayner’s backers.
Our next Leader has a huge challenge. Voters won’t trust us if we are not a united party and parliamentary group. This does not rule out Long-Bailey and Burgeon, but they need to show they have the ability to reach all of the party and the parliamentary group.