Labour Deputy Has Diane Abbott’s Back Amid Labour Party Purge

Angela Rayner has defended Diane Abbott’s right to stand as a Labour candidate amidst internal party tensions and allegations of a left-wing purge. Here’s the full story.

Rayner’s Intervention

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The controversy surrounding Diane Abbott, the UK’s first black woman MP, has been ratcheted up another few notches following the intervention of Labour’s Deputy Leader Angela Rayner. 

“Subject to Racism”

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The controversy began when Abbot, who has represented Hackney North and Stoke Newington since her election in 1987, faced suspension from the Labour Party following a controversial letter to the Observer in April 2023, in which she claimed that Jewish, Irish and Traveller people undoubtedly experienced prejudice but stated that “they are not, all their lives, subject to racism.”

Immediate Apology

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The remarks, for which Abbott immediately apologised after claiming the letter was an early draft sent in error, sparked an immediate backlash and led to an investigation by Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC). 

Political Limbo

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A BBC Newsnight investigation found that the investigation into Abbott had reached its conclusions in December of 2023. However, this information was not made public, leaving Diane Abbott’s political career trapped in a bureaucratic limbo. 

Popular Support

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Following the news that Abbott had completed a training course on antisemitism, many on the left of the Labour Party were excited to have the veteran politician and campaigner, who enjoys enormous popular support in her constituency, back on the Labour benches. 

“I Will Be Campaigning for a Labour Victory”

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When Abbott wrote online, “Naturally I am delighted to have the Labour whip restored and to be a member of the PLP [parliamentary Labour party]. Thank you to all those who supported me along the way. I will be campaigning for a Labour victory.”

Thrown into Disarray

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However, this was all thrown into disarray after an unnamed Labour source briefed that Abbott was to be barred from standing for Labour in her constituency. 


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This led to a massive outcry from the left of the party and many others within Labour, who described Abbott’s treatment as “abhorrent.”

“One of the Most Popular MPs in Modern Times”

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Co-founder of Operation Black Vote, Simon Woolley, told the BBC that Labour was “in danger of… disrespecting one of the most popular MPs in modern times.”

“Slap in the Face”

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He added, “If they get this disrespectfully wrong, it’ll also be a slap in the face for Britain’s African and Caribbean communities.”

“Not True”

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Starmer was forced to deny the reports that Abbott had been barred from standing. When asked by journalists, he replied, “No, that’s not true. No decision has been taken to bar Diane Abbott.”

Left-Wing Purge

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However, the whole debacle led to claims that Starmer was attempting to purge the left of the party, of which Abbott was the most prominent remaining figure, before the general election. 

Vocal Supporter

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In an unexpected twist, Angela Rayner has emerged as a vocal supporter of Diane Abbott during this prolonged period of uncertainty.

“Don’t See Any Reason”

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Rayner said to ITV, “I don’t see any reason why Diane Abbott can’t stand as a Labour MP going forward. I am saying that as deputy leader of the Labour Party.” 

Town Hall Rally

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Amidst the uncertainty, Diane Abbott held a rally outside Hackney Town Hall in her constituency, where she delivered a defiant speech to her supporters. 

“I Will Always Stand With You”

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Abbott told the crowd, “You have always stood with me in good times and bad, and I will always stand with you.”

“I Promise You”

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She continued, “So I promise you that as long as it is possible, I will be the Member of Parliament for Hackney North and Stoke Newington.”

Rapidly Unravelling

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The whole debacle is rapidly unravelling what had been a pretty straightforward campaign for Starmer up until now. 

Putting Up Barriers

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Since the news broke regarding Abbott, several left-wing candidates have come forward to outline obstacles they felt had been placed in their way to stop them from standing for election. 

“Serious Complaint”

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Lloyd Russell-Moyle, MP for Brighton Kemptown, was suspended after a “serious complaint” was lodged against him, which he described as “vexatious” and “false.” 

Accusations Emerge

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Similarly, Faiza Shaheen, who was set to stand in Chingford and Woodford Green, was deselected just five weeks before the election. These instances have led to accusations of a “cull of left-wingers” within the party.

Repeated Denials

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Starmer was forced to repeat his denial that he was purging left-wingers like Abbott from the party and reiterate that she could stand for Labour in her seat. 

“Stalinist Purges”

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The controversy is a gift for the Conservatives, who, up until now, had not been having the best campaign. They are now pouring attention onto the situation, with some unnamed Tories accusing Starmer of carrying out “Stalinist purges.”

Significant Implications

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The rapidly unfolding fiasco over Diane Abbott’s candidacy has significant implications for the Labour Party and presents unexpected and unwanted challenges to maintaining party unity for Starmer. 

Future Remains Undecided

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While Abbott’s immediate future remains undecided, the support from figures like Angela Rayner will be a profound boost to her chances of standing for election once again. 

Uncertain Future

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It remains to be seen if the same will be true for the other unfortunate left-wingers in the Labour Party. 

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The post Rayner Defends Diane Abbott’s Future Amid Labour Party Purge first appeared on Edge Media.

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Grant Gallacher is a seasoned writer with expertise in politics and impactful daily news. His work, deeply rooted in addressing issues that resonate with a wide audience, showcases an unwavering commitment to bringing forth the stories that matter. He is also known for satirical writing and stand up comedy.

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