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This is not the time to undermine our democratically elected leader says Graham Armitage


As every Labour member is aware the party membership recently voted overwhelmingly to install Jeremy Corbyn as leader. Elements of the PLP (Parliamentary Labour Party) have clearly never been happy about this and have continued to seek to undermine his leadership.We are now facing an entirely cynical and disgraceful attempt to unseat him using the EU referendum result as an excuse.

The supreme irony of this is that the (highly questionable) argument that is been used to justify this nonsense is the alleged failure of our Remain campaign to energise the working class to vote to stay in.The fact that this reasoning is coming from Blairite and similar MPs who were primarily responsible for the loss of our traditional connection with working people in the first place would be funny if it were not so sickening.

It is clear that we have not yet re-established that connection but that a) is hardly surprising given the limited amount of time that Jeremy has had to recreate a trust it took years to lose and  b) has been massively hindered by the impression of disunity created by the refusal of some MPs to accept the democratic decision of the membership..

Every ordinary member now has to decide whether they want to be effectively involved in running their own party or not.How? Well Momentum have already got over 10,000 signatures to a "Keep Corbyn" petition and if you agree then you should sign that. Secondly we can all lobby Labour MPs as party members-whether you have one in your constituency or not.

In this context following Jeremy's election there was talk of the possibility of deselection of some right wing MPs-this did not happen as no one (myself included) had any stomach for it. However I see no reason why local parties should not consider this option under the current circumstances-if you live by the sword etc.

Finally are we really so stupid that we are going to waste time on a leadership election when we have the opportunity of a lifetime to tear into a divided Tory Party?

Graham Armitage 

(Derbyshire Dales Member) 



Here are a few of the other letters we have received:


I wish to register with my local branch (I live in Matlock) my support for Jeremy Corbyn as our leader, and deplore the present attempts by the Blairites and others in the PLP to unseat him. If he is deposed I fully intend to resign as a member of the Labour party as I only joined because Jeremy gave me hope that Labour would return to being a party with socialist principles, not a Tory clone. 

Regards, Richard Litchfield


Dear Derbyshire Dales Secretary,

I like the other 245,000 members voted democratically for JC , and it is with growing frustration and anger that I see the PLP continuing its undermining of that democratic vote .I do not believe that those responsible for this behaviour  are ignorant of the timing of their leadership challenge .

I suspect that some of them will be mentioned in the forth coming Chilcot report and this is a cynical distraction to cloud that reports findings.

There are malevolent background forces at work in the party to ensure that no matter which way the electorate votes there will be a right wing government in power come what may.

It is this fact that JC offers a true centre left alternative , that is gathering real support , that threatens this power. I refer to the Progress group here which is supported by Corporations and multimillionaires who have this agenda as their goal.

No matter which way one voted on the EU the continued excuses to undermine the memberships vote  for JC continues

For example,  JC and Labour did better than expected in the local elections ,but that was still set up as a test for JC and he passed it well. So now onto the next opportunity to get rid of him with yet another manufactured excuse to undermine the memberships choice.

Thus to stop this ongoing war I would ask that all possible action including up to and  deselection of those MPs who are striving to undermine a democratic vote of the party membership , be taken , and that our CLP makes the case for such action and support .

I suspect that there are many of our members who feel the same,

Regards Rob Clarke

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commented 2016-07-11 09:50:56 +0100

Reg Race! The missing link – NHS privatisation profiteer and “Saving Labour”!

According to wikipedia:

“Since 2001 Race has been owner and Managing Director of a healthcare management consultancy based in Chesterfield. He backed Alan Johnson in the 2007 Labour leadership contest.

Race has donated nearly £50,000 to the Labour Party. In 2016 Race was involved in creating the ‘Saving Labour’ campaign website, intended to encourage members of the public to email Labour MPs to urge them not to back Jeremy Corbyn as leader of the party, and to encourage them to register as £3 Labour supporters enabling them to vote for an alternative party leader." There’s a lot of big money behind trying to oust Corbyn
commented 2016-07-06 22:51:34 +0100
We haven’t a Chilcot thread going so I’llpost this here instead:

These Labour MPs voted against the Iraq war
Diane Abbott
Graham Allen
Ronnie Campbell
Jeremy Corbyn
David Crausby
John Cryer
Clive Efford
Paul Flynn
Kate Hoey
Kelvin Hopkins
John McDonnell
Graham Stringer
Jon Trickett

These Labour MPs voted for the war. They were as culpable as Blair. They could have said no. Blair is their convenient scapegoat. They should go into the wilderness with him (it’s called “team work”!)
Adrian Bailey
Kevin Barron
Margaret Beckett
Hilary Benn
Clive Betts
Ben Bradshaw
Nick Brown
Chris Bryant
Andy Burnham
Alan Campbell
Ann Clwyd
Vernon Coaker
Ann Coffey
Yvette Cooper
Jon Cruddas
Jim Cunningham
Wayne David
Geraint Davies
Jim Dowd
Angela Eagle
Maria Eagle
Louise Ellman
Paul Farrelly
Frank Field
Jim Fitzpatrick
Caroline Flint
Mike Gapes
Barry Gardiner
Roger Godsiff
David Hanson
Harriet Harman
John Healey
Mark Hendrick
Margaret Hodge
George Howarth
Lindsay Hoyle
Alan Johnson
Helen Jones
Kevan Jones
Gerald Kaufman
David Lammy
Chris Leslie
Ivan Lewis
Fiona Mactaggart
John Mann
Rob Marris
Gordon Marsden
Steve McCabe
Siobhain McDonagh
Steve Pound
Geoffrey Robinson
Joan Ryan
Barry Sheerman
Andrew Smith
Angela Smith
John Spellar
Gisela Stuart
Mark Tami
Gareth Thomas
Stephen Timms
Derek Twigg
Stephen Twigg
Keith Vaz
Tom Watson
David Winnick
Rosie Winterton
commented 2016-07-02 07:44:00 +0100
Saving Labour
Another failed PR effort. The “owner” of this web site is deliberately hidden. There are no names on the site itself, no explanation, no discussion, no argument, no information.
Just the option to say yes. No “maybe”, no enquiry possible, no discussion board.
Positively sinister!
It sits there like a trap for the unwary.
Maybe we are seeing the end of an era – the Bullingdon boys, PR manipulation, media spin etc. A return to the good old very-nasty party led by V May, and good old fashioned socialism back on track (long overdue) led by us – the membership!!!
commented 2016-07-01 12:42:20 +0100
I’m appalled at the emerging story of the choreographed defection. We not only have the media solidly opposing Corbyn we now have paid PR firms adding their contribution to their fight against democracy. Angela Eagle is obviously complicit whatever the details of her premature website (angela4leader) and whoever set it up.
Do we want the party to run by hostile media and PR firms, or by the membership?
It’s about bigger issues than Corbyn – this is democracy under attack.
commented 2016-06-30 11:57:38 +0100
Should have written: “And yes this may win us acres of (edited) front page coverage,”
commented 2016-06-30 11:55:11 +0100
Rob this is not “Jeremy Corbyn’s quasi revolution”.
He is there because we the membership chose him. If it’s a revolution it’s ours – he just happens to be our spokesman having been added to the list of candidates at just the right time, more by accident than design, without any cunning plotting or pathetically choreographed defections!

“Abolishing Trident (without any proper debate within the party)” is not going to happen. There will be debate. There could not be no debate on such an issue. And yes this may win us acres of positive front page coverage, not least because the media will hope it’ll bring down Corbyn. They will of course remain silent on the less controversial items on the agenda.

Gary Younge on the ball:
“The choice before us now is whether we are finally ready to confront the issues that we have blissfully denied and engage with the communities we have carelessly ignored”
which echoes Corbyn’s comment;
“One clear message from last Thursday’s vote is that millions of people feel shut out of a political and economic system that has let them down and scarred our country with grotesque levels of inequality.” http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/jun/30/brexit-disaster-decades-in-the-making
commented 2016-06-30 08:55:04 +0100
Withdrawing from NATO. A sure vote winner guaranteed to woo any floating voter back from supporting the Tories.
Abolishing Trident (without any proper debate within the party) is sure to win us acres of positive front page coverage – I doubt!
This is starving the oxygen of media attention to the other policies you mention which will make a tangible difference to everybody’s daily life. And therein lies the problem because Jeremy Corbyn’s quasi revolution resonates strongly with a majority within a minority. It is not being pitched at the right audience. So, as I say, the man.
commented 2016-06-30 07:55:36 +0100
Just a reminder of what Corbyn is standing for. Not a definitive list just a snippet from the web. This is from the Telegraph so must be true.

From the Telegraph:
“What he stands for:
Ending austerity
Protecting workers’ rights
Blocking welfare cuts
Scrapping tuition fees
Creating a National Education Service (like the NHS for healthcare)
Ensuring the NHS is completely publicly run
Renationalising railways
Abolishing Trident
Withdrawing from Nato
Introducing rent controls in unaffordable areas
Investing more in the arts”

Who could argue with any of that?

To those who don’t understand why Corbyn is so popular: it’s the policies, stupid!!
commented 2016-06-30 07:43:48 +0100
Thank you for such a robust an interesting debate. I would just like to remind you all of the site rules.

Remember #StrongerTogether #MoreInCommon

- Rosemary Mackenzie CLP Secretary.

  • Be polite & courteous to everyone.
  • Be civil. No personal attacks.
  • 1 account per person. Please add your surname to posts.
  • Discuss the issue and respect the person with a different view.
  • No spam. No personal disrespectful comments. No trolling.
  • Find ways of stating what we will do – be positive.

PS Please e mail me to bring any infringements to my attention.

commented 2016-06-29 22:44:50 +0100
“What point the policies when the man is unelectable?” It’s the other way around – what point the man without policies? People will vote for Corbyn because of his policies – in spite of his beard and badly fitting suits. It’s the policies which will make him electable, got him elected as leader and which has generated so much enthusiasm. Strange that people can’t see this.
commented 2016-06-29 22:38:36 +0100
And like you I cannot edit posts…

Having just watched the news from Turkey, the moving BBC feature ahead of the Somme centenary, seeing the rise of race crime in our country and remembering Jo Cox puts our debates firmly in perspective.
Regards, Rob
commented 2016-06-29 22:29:17 +0100
And that brings us back around to the same old points of our merry go round discussion… What point the policies when the man is unelectable?
Interestingly the declaration of union support is rather luke warm form Jeremy Corbyn tonight. And in front of a paltry Momentum rally he was heckled. Perhaps his greatest legacy if he stepped down now would be to have paved the way for a candidate like Angela Eagle and to have inspired the bravery to openly oppose austerity. However, I just cannot agree that he is the man who can deliver.

On another note I bet it was cheaper membership in 1960. It cost me less to treat my family of 5 to a meal at the Stepping Stones than it cost me in membership this year. Thank heavens for direct debit! All to a good cause.
commented 2016-06-29 22:20:13 +0100
PS again (sorry can’t edit posts with afterthoughts)
“Momentum. The party within a party.” not so alarming really – just equivalent to the Young Conservatives, but probably a lot younger, more intelligent and more interesting!
commented 2016-06-29 22:05:48 +0100
PS it’d be interesting to hear from the PLP defectors on the policies they would propose. We don’t know quite know what they stand for, other than simple wanting power. We do know what Corbyn stands for – he spells it out at every opportunity and at every PMQt, simply and clearly. It’s not the man it’s the policies.
commented 2016-06-29 21:55:54 +0100
These “seemingly inexhaustible list of Labour notables past and present” have failed utterly to prevent the rise of neo liberalism since 1979.
Austerity isn’t working. Wealth redistributed upwards doesn’t trickle back down.
Corbyn isn’t that radical in real terms. Time is up! Labour is coming back!
NB I personally have been a member of the party since about 1960 (on and off). Voting for Corbyn cost me more than £3. Corbyn has a majority amongst the old members alone – without the £3 lot he would still have been elected.
commented 2016-06-29 21:24:26 +0100
I know Jacob, haven’t the PLP misread Jeremy Corbyn. Who on earth would have thought it possible that he could be so astonishingly thick skinned, short termist and self centred as to put his own ambitions before the needs of the people the party is here to serve. Even when a seemingly inexhaustible list of Labour notables past and present issue heart felt pleas for him step down. Even when ‘loyal’ MPs who have tried to work with the leadership have admitted their frustrations at the cabal of Corbyn, McDonnell and Milne. Even when 172 Labour MPs vote no confidence and the entire Commons looks on in disdain (as the 40 confidence voters sit in silence such is their expression of support).
But you are right. The membership will support him. The majority of members called Momentum. The party within a party. The £3 tsunami. The minority in the wider electorate who’s increasingly hard line rhetoric scares voters away rather than tempting them back across the centre ground to the left. Yes, now the race is on they can deliver another crushing mandate for Corbyn, and may it keep them warm in the cold political wilderness to which Labour will be exiled.

Sad times. All within the power of one man to bring to an end. Please go Jeremy.
commented 2016-06-29 20:20:06 +0100
The untenable position is that of the PLP defectors. They have only minority support in the party as a whole. The majority of the party wants Corbyn to hang on in. He is increasingly looking like the last one standing – Cameron gone, Gove/boris in hiding, tories in disarray, PLP defectors running around like headless chickens . I hope whoever set up this choreographed fiasco doesn’t get paid – so far they are doing really badly and have utterly misread the man and the party.
commented 2016-06-29 14:27:07 +0100
Phil, I’m glad that you’ve found the debate of interest and especially that you have recognised the spirit in which the vigorous exchange of views has been intended – unstoppable force meeting immovable object and all that…..
I have been drawn back to see the updates and would like to offer my response to your recognition of the unedifying effects of recent days. Of course, I agree with your assessment of the damage being done to the standing of our party, who couldn’t? What I would ask now that it is happening, and it is despite anything we write here, surely a swift and decisive end will limit the unedifying effects to a minimum? Essentially a resignation. Jeremy Corbyn’s refusal to go is going to draw the divisions into a long and highly publicised leadership debate. Already Plaid Cymru are looking to scavenge over a Labour carcass in Wales with promises of independence. How many more attacks like that will we face? We know it will be many, UKIP being the most dangerous. Corbyn’s position is untenable and the future of the Labour Party now has a shelf life unless we find (and I’ll risk sounding like a Tory leadership contender here) a unity candidate to heal the rifts that have existed for a long time in our party. Keep it short and make it decisive.
commented 2016-06-29 13:10:29 +0100
Ro et al. I think care should be exercised on this website to ensure that all comments are accompanied by the full name of the commentator. I suspect there are no prices for guessing who Jacob is, but who is Rob? It seems very evident it is not Robert Clarke but a lot of people might be mistaken in thinking it is. I am also aware from another comment on the website that it has been subjected to infiltration by a PR organisation working for the Blairites. Could it be these disaffected comments are coming not from Derbyshire Dales Labour Party members but rather Tony at PR empires. Without seeing the full names of those commenting we have no way of knowing. It also raises the issue about taking all comments seriously. We can’t do that if we feel any commentators we disagree with are mere dupes with no links to this CLP whose strings are being pulled by sources outside the Derbyshire Dales.
Bob Cartwright.
commented 2016-06-29 12:06:42 +0100
I have followed with interest the well argued, equally valid but completely irreconcilable points made by both Jacob and Rob. The debate shows that, amongst the members, we are capable of intelligent debate without damaging falling outs. While, personally, I agree with Jacob, I think it is beneficial that all views are exchanged in this way, as this makes us stronger as a party.
Whether or not people think that Jeremy is a good leader, everyone in the party needs to remember that we are a democratic party with agreed structures and processes. We must stick to those structures and follow those processes. The point being made in the heading to this post remains the key one and, whatever anyone’s views of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership skills, I find it hard to believe that anyone thinks that this whole unedifying process has done anything other than damage the standing of our party. Whether or not he survives the rebellion, I have no doubt that what has happened has damaged our chances if an early election is called.
I do not think we would have won an outright victory in any case, as the Referendum result has strengthened the position of the SNP, however, until the weekend’s events, we had a realistic chance of being in a position to lead a progressive coalition – now we do not. The time for considering any change of leadership should have been after any autumn election, not before.
commented 2016-06-29 09:01:49 +0100
So the media is the problem!! They have to be attacked them head on – "subtlety and patience " means dancing to their tune which Corbyn does not do, quite rightly.
What about collecting and collating the wit and wisdom of Corbyn (such as it is). Wouldn’t want to make a cult figure of him but I do agree with a lot of what he says. A little red book? Polka dots?
His PMQT contributions are always good in spite of the hee-hawing from the tory donkeys.

Here’s a few snippets from recent postings elsewhere:
From the Telegraph
“What he stands for:
Ending austerity
Protecting workers’ rights
Blocking welfare cuts
Scrapping tuition fees
Creating a National Education Service (like the NHS for healthcare)
Ensuring the NHS is completely publicly run
Renationalising railways
Abolishing Trident
Withdrawing from Nato
Introducing rent controls in unaffordable areas
Investing more in the arts”

What Corbyn says about Brexit:
“One clear message from last Thursday’s vote is that millions of people feel shut out of a political and economic system that has let them down and scarred our country with grotesque levels of inequality.”

He gets it right nearly all the time. What have the PLP defectors to say on these issues?
commented 2016-06-28 23:08:53 +0100
But that success is relative and restricted to certain people already sharing a common principle. This is a democracy, the people are sovereign, but how they are informed of their views is the media’s strength and our weakness. When Ed Milliband stood up at Leveson he paid the price. Yes, take on the media, but subtlety and patience are needed I think. Take them head on and they’ll crush any green shoots of free thinking debate.
At this point I must bow out of the debate, sleep followed by some busy days at work follow! Thanks John and Jacob for an enjoyable discussion – it would have been better (and quicker) face to face over a couple of pints, but enjoyable none the less.
Regards, Rob.
commented 2016-06-28 22:37:15 +0100
“We can cry foul about the media, but the bottom line is they have the power and influence we don’t”

I don’t agree.The great success of Corbyn has been to confound the media and diminish their credibility with many people. They are fighting back hard but we shouldn’t let them win and effectively govern the country. This is a democracy, we, not the media, run the country.
commented 2016-06-28 22:02:39 +0100
David Cameron resigned immediately. It was his fault, but once the referendum began it was every Remain supporters fight. As the leader of a party supporting Remain then Jeremy Corbyn must bear responsibility for his poor performance.
Arm wrestling??? Don’t know about MPs extra curricular activities, but Corbyn was mocked from all sides of the House. He stood alone. And alone in the commons he will stand. Even when he has brought in his Momentum supporters to deselect MPs who dare to question him, he will preside over the shrivelled rump of a once great party as it is voted into insignificance. 2016, 2020, whenever, it will happen if he remains as leader. We can cry foul about the media, but the bottom line is they have the power and influence we don’t. Day by day children fall into poverty, family homes are lost and much needed benefits denied. Youre so right when you say this isn’t school debating, that’s why I have been so earnest in defending the actions of the people who can still save our party and protect the people they represent. Just listen to the resigned MPs heart felt statements. These are honourable people.
commented 2016-06-28 21:36:34 +0100
“I believe Jeremy Corbyn, despite his wise words you quote, did not campaign hard enough”
No – it was Cameron’s fight and it was he who didn’t fight hard enough.
And clearly – ALL Remain campaigners didn’t fight hard enough. Should they all be sacked?

We don’t care about tory guffaws in the house. This isn’t arm wrestling or school debating, there are much bigger issues.
The media has hated Corbyn from the beginning – this is no reason for us to side with the media. Remember the media is mostly owned by non-dom tax dodging mega rich neo-liberals who don’t give a toss for civilisation and are only concerned about wealth and power.
commented 2016-06-28 20:25:41 +0100
Such a good point you make Jacob about the EU being a force for good. Every time I drive my family down to South Wales to visit the inlaws we drive into the most deprived valleys along brand new roads built with EU money and the inward investment it has brought – signs flagging it up for all to see – and the voters in area opted leave. Where we differ is that I believe Jeremy Corbyn, despite his wise words you quote, did not campaign hard enough. He helped maintain this disconnect in the referendum, he was not alone in this, but as evidence is increasingly showing was purposefully pulling back from the campaign (I’ve not even read your conspiracy link yet before subscribing to my own!). I just cannot agree that under Jeremy Corbyn we ever appeared cool or competent, even yesterday David Cameron could mock him to universal guffaws around the House. And as John rightly points out earlier the media have rejected him. Surely there is no way back but a swift departure by Corbyn and McDonnell. This is the moment when Jeremy Corbyn chooses to put himself first or the future of the Labour Party. That is a message coming from well beyond the PLP now.
commented 2016-06-28 20:06:26 +0100
Would like to know what people think of this
I ask because the PLP defection seems such a carefully stage managed business obviously planned in advance but more than that – it seems insane; doesn’t make sense unless there is a covert agenda.
I don’t normally go for cunning plots and conspiracies but maybe this really is one.
I’m for Corbyn even more!
commented 2016-06-28 18:57:48 +0100
It’s too soon to panic. Election is 2020. Only sooner if the tories simply collapse, as they seem to be doing as we speak. Labour need hardly do anything except appear cool, calm, competent and collected – which they have now made impossible.
We also need to take note of what Corbyn said about Brexit:
“One clear message from last Thursday’s vote is that millions of people feel shut out of a political and economic system that has let them down and scarred our country with grotesque levels of inequality.”. This is the issue, not details of leadership style. In fact the EU is a force to combat these inequalities and the Labour party should be flagging this up and making it credible, not fighting amongst themselves..
commented 2016-06-28 18:47:57 +0100
You said it Jacob – panic. Panic because we as a party face a drubbing at the next election if not consignment to history as a parliamentary force. Panic because Jeremy Corbyn has been unable to lead Labour to respectable showings in the polls despite the Conservatives being divided and presiding over devastating cuts. Panic because they know the vile appeal of UKIP resonates far more with people than the cosy appeal to yesteryear socialist platitudes of Mr Corbyn that will not work in a modern globalised economy. Panic because there are numbers of much better candidates for leadership who face being denied the opportunity to lead us to success by the Momentum faction.
The PLP’s actions, that’s pragmatism.
commented 2016-06-28 18:29:35 +0100
PLP defectors – this is panic of the worst sort. Even if a better leader than Corbyn is waiting in the wings there are better ways to bring him/her out.
Ciorbyn is more than anything a pragmatist and would recognise the need to bow out if there was a better candidate.

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